By Ambreen Zaidi
April 30, 2019
Our Indian army has a rich tradition of having Sarv Dharm Sthals in our regiments. These Sthals are just not a place of worship; they invariably become a part of our hearts. We all follow and respect, all religions, Sarv Dharm. I am a Muslim by birth but as an army wife I have proudly put Tilak on my forehead whenever the occasion demanded. I have actively participated in all kinds of Pujas in the regiments like Ganesh Chaturthi, Karwa Chauth and many more. Me and my husband have lead Pujas like Satyanarayan Puja, Holika Dahan Puja, Sarawasti Puja, Maha Mrityunjay Jap when he was the Commanding Officer. All this along with our daily Namaz.
And today I can proudly say that I am a better Hindu than the Hindutva activists and a better Muslim that the Islamic fanatics, for in my heart resides the love for Krishna, Hazrat Ali, Ganpati Bappa, Imam Hussain, Jesus and Guru Nanak. Above all I am better human being than all those redeemers of religions. So next time you troll me, abuse me, hurl distorted verses from Quran on me, telling me how Muslims should behave, please take a hard look at yourself. Who are you? What has hate done to you? What have you become?
All and I repeat, all of the Hindus I have known in my life, my friends and colleagues, the ones I have actually spent time with, have always been so decent, respectful, loving and not at all the filthy gutter mouths we come across on social media. Even now , irrespective of our political inclinations. So, who are you? I ask again. Who are you, who thinks, wearing saffron attire or a huge Tilak or a Rudraksh Mala or having angry Hanuman display pic gives you the certificate to be violent towards other communities. No, you are certainly not the Hindus India has always been so proud of.
I know you will ask me about Islamic terror, well, we have always condemned each and every act of terror done in the name of religion. But even then we are paying a heavy price on a daily basis. We are blamed for the acts we never committed, of Mughals, IS, Pakistan, Taliban, Jihadists, Kashmiri separatists, just because we share the same religion. Is this even fair? We are denied jobs, houses, visas; our kids are ridiculed and alienated in schools. Why? What for? We have been fighting the fanatics within our religion in our own capacities; we will not let them have a control over us ever.
Whoever you are, you are doing a great damage to Hinduism and true Hindus, just like the way, Islamic terror organisations did to Islam and Muslims all over the world. Such people with only divisive and dirty agenda need to be called out, exactly the way we call out all Islamic terror every single time. If you don’t, I am sorry you are one of them.
Please understand there are people, politicians who benefit the most out of this divisiveness. They fuel this dangerous fire to benefit themselves. Let’s stand united against each and every force which tries to break our diversity, our syncretic culture, our unity. And as Shahrukh Khan says, being diverse is a good thing, being divisive is not. Sarv dhram bhav is what I have in my heart and that is exactly what I have taught my children. That is what being a true Indian means to me, I hope it does to you too.
DISCLAIMER: Views expressed above are the author's own.