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Islam,Terrorism and Jihad ( 6 Dec 2008, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Muslim Response To Mumbai Terror In Sync With The National Mood, But What Is Wrong With Our Intellectuals?




By Sultan Shahin, Founding Editor, New Age Islam

December 07, 2008



From the very moment it became clear that the terrorists who attacked India recently in Mumbai were Pakistanis, Indian Muslim anger against Pakistan and the godfathers of terror in that county has been expressing itself in a variety of ways.  They are particularly angry that these marauders have been maligning the fair name of Islam and its image as a religion of peace. They seem to instinctively understand that Indian Muslims’ peaceful co-existence and continued integration in the national mainstream is not in the interest of Pakistan’s permanent establishment. It negates the Two-Nation Theory on which their country is ideologically based. They keep trying - and, fortunately for us, failing - to instigate communal violence on any pretext that may become available to them. They did that in the aftermath of Bombay riots in 1993. Dawood Ibrahim-organised serial blasts took 250 civilian lives and caused 700 injuries alongside massive economic disruption but India refused to fall in the Pakistani trap. Our country is displaying the same commitment to secularism now and thanks God for that.


Muslims recognise the reasons behind Pakistani desperation to attack our secularism, our tolerance and national cohesion, our growing prosperity. India presents a complete contrast to their divided house, virtually every ethnic community seeking to secede, every sect bent upon destroying every other sect, killing its members in as large numbers as possible. Only the day before yesterday a Sunni suicide-bomber killed 20 Shias in a mosque in an event that has become routine in that country. Hence the Mumbai Muslims’ refusal to bury the Pakistani dead in their graveyards, refusal to mourn the loss of Babri Masjid on December 6 this year, which has become an annual event, a sort of another Muharram since 1992. Muslim fury at a clear Pakistani attempt to foment wider violence against them resulted in their participation in large numbers in fellow-citizen’s efforts to show solidarity with the families of those who had died in the latest invasion of our territory – 40 out of 172 killed were Muslims – and condemn the barbaric atrocities while paying homage to those brave policemen and commandos who laid down their lives in the service of nation.


But as we open the Urdu newspapers on 6 th of December, we find the editorial pages recycling the same material they keep doing every year on this Moharram II day, the same bemoaning of the “shahadat”(martyrdom) of the Babri mosque, without explaining how can bricks and mortar become “shaheed”-  will they go to Jannat, one naturally wonders. You won’t  find any of these newspapers ever bemoaning the “shahadat” in Saudi Arabia of Islam’s holiest shrines and greatest heritage buildings, that were living proofs of the historicity of many events in Islam’s and Prophet Mohammad’s life (PBUH).


Then you find Rashtriya Sahara reproducing historian Amareesh Mishra’s conspiracy theories about Mumbai terror being the work of Israeli and Hindu Zionists’ handiwork. You open your mailbox and find several Muslims enthusiastically lapping up Mishraji’s theories and circulating them. Just sample one sentence of what a widely-circulated e-mail by convenor of the Mumbai-based Muslim Intellectual Forum, Firoze Mithiborwala, reads: “As far as the terrorists who attacked Mumbai are concerned, they are in all likelihood… controlled by the American CIA, the Pakistani ISI and the Israeli MOSSAD.”


As Zulkif Manzoor, a Ramanujan Fellow at the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore has been quoted in The Hindustan Times as saying: “Such poisoned opinion has only helped to strengthen prejudices (against Muslims).” Clearly our intellectuals are forgetting that Amareesh Mishra is a Kanyakubaja Brahmin and can say what he will, but we can’t, not at this time.


Now does this mean that we are second class citizens; we don’t have the same rights as Brahmins or others? No it doesn’t mean that at all. We are and have been free to express ourselves in whatever way we will; our newspapers have been spreading venom for long - part of the reason why we have alienated ourselves to a certain extent from some sections of society and also injected cynicism in the minds of some of our youth. Mercifully, not many non-Muslims read Urdu newspapers. More mercy, not many of our own youth read Urdu newspapers either; that would have poisoned their minds beyond redemption perhaps.


We have been free and have misused our freedom to the hilt. What is different this time then? Well, as theatre personality Amir Reza Khan explained in a NDTV discussion, right now WE ARE AT WAR. And this war has been declared by a country inhabited by fellow-Muslims and not only in our name but also in the name of our religion. They have been posing as saviours of Indian Muslims and practitioners of Islam. Rules of the game are different in a war. We do, therefore, need to wear on our sleeves not only our patriotism but also a few verses of the Holy Quran preaching peace and opposing violence. As actor Shah Rukh Khan pointed out in his interview with Barkha Dutt on NDTV, it is not only Muslims in India, but all over the world who are being called upon to explain that Islam is not a religion of violence.


To those who love to spread conspiracy theories here is one that is more grounded in reality and common sense. Backed by US Imperialism, Christian crusaders and Israeli Zionism, Saudi Arabia has for decades been damaging Islam, not only destroying Islam’s heritage buildings, but also spending billions of dollars to spreading a view of Islam that says that Muslims should not only kill all non-Muslims but also those Muslims who do not believe in this murderous version of Islam. Like the known enemies of Islam from the time of the first crusades, this Saudi Islam believes that Islam spread with the power of the sword that the Prophet and his successors wielded. Now use your imagination and you can easily surmise what the Crusader, Zionist game is in protecting the Saudi regime and promoting Saudi Islam, even after 9/11, while they destroyed the only bastion of secular and tolerant Islam in the Middle East, Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, on a manifestly false pretext, and turned it into a Saudi or Iranian version of sectarian and intolerant Islam.


Fortunately the common Muslim understands the need of the hour that some of our intellectuals and journalists do not. I would appeal to Muslims to continue to walk the extra mile in condemning the Mumbai attacks and distancing themselves and their religion from Osama bin Laden’s or Hafiz Saeed’s version of Islam that has spawned Al-Qaeda, Lashkar-e-Tayyaba and similar scourges.


URL: https://www.newageislam.com/islam,terrorism-and-jihad/muslim-response-to-mumbai-terror-in-sync-with-the-national-mood,-but-what-is-wrong-with-our-intellectuals?-/d/1043

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  1. RE:Muslims recognise the reasons behind Pakistani desperation to attack our secularism, our tolerance and national cohesion, our growing prosperity.

    Would you call this a growing prosperity?

    India's shame Vol. 23 :: No. 18 September 09 - 22, 2006 INDIA'S NATIONAL MAGAZINE
    from the publishers of THE HINDU

    http://www.hinduonnet.com/fline/fl2318/index.htm

    Caste stranglehold Volume 23 - Issue 18 :: Sep. 09-22, 2006
    INDIA'S NATIONAL MAGAZINE from the publishers of THE HINDU

    http://www.hinduonnet.com/fline/fl2318/stories/20060922005200900.htm

    IF India has not been able to do away with a practice that is admittedly `a blot on humanity', it is because the issue goes beyond poverty, indifference, lack of awareness, or a reluctance to switch from traditional practices. Manual scavenging is rooted in caste as surely as caste is rooted in the nation's psyche.

    Out in the open S. DORAIRAJ in Chennai Volume 23 - Issue 18 :: Sep. 09-22, 2006 INDIA'S NATIONAL MAGAZINE from the publishers of THE HINDU

    http://www.hinduonnet.com/fline/fl2318/stories/20060922005601000.htm

    Part of the system K. VENKATESHWARLU Volume 23 - Issue 18 :: Sep. 09-22, 2006 INDIA'S NATIONAL MAGAZINE from the publishers of THE HINDU

    http://www.hinduonnet.com/fline/fl2318/stories/20060922005001300.htm

    Bengal's record Volume 23 - Issue 18 :: Sep. 09-22, 2006 INDIA'S NATIONAL MAGAZINE from the publishers of THE HINDU

    http://www.hinduonnet.com/fline/fl2318/stories/20060922005501400.htm

    SCAVENGERS who carry night soil on their heads for a livelihood are more or less a thing of the past in West Bengal, according to the State government. Ashok Bhattacharya, Minister for Municipal Affairs and Urban Development, Town and Country Planning, said that 120 of the 126 urban local bodies in the State and the Kolkata Municipal Corporation, are absolutely free of such scavenging. "As of today, there are no human scavengers working in most parts of West Bengal. Such work may be prevalent in very remote areas, or newly added areas (including areas added to townships) but the different municipalities have specific instruction to address the situation," Bhattacharya told Frontline.

    `System has become more pervasive' ANNIE ZAIDI Volume 23 - Issue 18 :: Sep. 09-22, 2006 INDIA'S NATIONAL MAGAZINE from the publishers of THE HINDU

    http://www.hinduonnet.com/fline/fl2318/stories/20060922005101600.htm

    COVER STORY Captured live Volume 23 - Issue 18 :: Sep. 09-22, 2006 INDIA'S NATIONAL MAGAZINE from the publishers of THE HINDU

    http://www.hinduonnet.com/fline/fl2318/stories/20060922004202000.htm

    In denial mode V. VENKATESAN in New Delhi Volume 23 - Issue 18 :: Sep. 09-22, 2006 INDIA'S NATIONAL MAGAZINE from the publishers of THE HINDU

    http://www.hinduonnet.com/fline/fl2318/stories/20060922004501800.htm

    As States fudge facts and figures to deny manual scavenging exists, the Supreme Court may scan their claims to get at the truth.

    Interview with Martin Macwan, founder of Navsarjan.

    Near the showpiece HITEC City are a dozen dry latrines. The situation is worse in the other districts of Andhra Pradesh.

    Tamil Nadu has miles to go before eliminating manual scavenging.


    AT A DUMP for garbage in Coimbatore.

     

     


    CLEANING A NEW public toilet facility for women at Moolikkulam in Tirunelveli town.

     


    Meena, a manual scavenger, at home with family in Nand Nagri.


    In the same city, a public facility that is cleaned manually.


    IN COIMBATORE, TAMIL Nadu, going down to clear a choked drain with minimum equipment.


    Clearing garbage and sewage on a cart she has hired.


    In the scavengers' colony.

     

    1 - Poor Muslims of India & Rajinder Sachar Report - 1

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/11/poor-muslims-of-india-rajinder-sachar.html

     


    Community on the margins VENKITESH RAMAKRISHNAN

    The Rajinder Sachar Committee finds that the Muslim community in India is deprived and neglected, and makes far-reaching recommendations. MUKHTAR KHAN/AP

     

    2 - Poor Muslims of India & Rajinder Sachar Report - 2

     

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/11/poor-muslims-of-india-rajinder-sachar_18.html

    Poverty in India

    Poverty in India is reducing but it is still a major issue. Rural Indians depend on unpredictable agriculture incomes, while urban Indians rely on jobs that are, at best, scarce.

    Since its independence, the issue of poverty within India has remained a prevalent concern. According to the common definition of poverty, when a person finds it difficult to meet the minimum requirement of acceptable living standards, he or she is considered poor.

    Millions of people in India are unable to meet these basic standards, and according to government estimates, in 2007 there were nearly 220.1 million people living below the poverty line.

    Nearly 21.1% of the entire rural population and 15% of the urban population of India exists in this difficult physical and financial predicament. The following chart presents the poverty situation:

    http://www.economywatch.com/indianeconomy/poverty-in-india.html

    Let me clear one more thing that things in Pakistan are not at all rosy as well, 40 % people are living below poverty line. What a shame two NUCLEAR ARMED NATIONS CANNOT EVEN FEED THEIR OWN PEOPLE

    Regards

    Muhammad Aamir Mughal

    Pakistan

     

    By Aamir Mughal
  2. RE:It negates the Two-Nation Theory on which their country is ideologically based.

    Dear Sultan Sahab,

    Background and Harsh Reality of Two Nation Theory and so-called Islamic Ideology of Pakistan:

    1 - Secular Republic or Islamic Republic of Pakistan

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/secular-republic-or-islamic-republic-of.html

    2 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 1

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-1.html

    3 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 2

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-2.html

    4 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 3

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-3.html

    5 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 4

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-4.html

    6 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 5

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-5.html

    7 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 6

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-6.html

    8 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 7

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-7.html

    9 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 8

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-8.html

    10 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 9

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-9.html

    11 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 10

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-10.html

    12 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 11

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-11.html

    13 - Behind Pakistan's Islamic Ideology - 12

    http://chagataikhan.blogspot.com/2008/10/behind-pakistans-islamic-ideology-12.html

    By Aamir Mughal
  3. RE:You open your mailbox and find several Muslims enthusiastically lapping up Mishraji’s theories and circulating them. Just sample one sentence of what a widely-circulated e-mail by convenor of the Mumbai-based Muslim Intellectual Forum, Firoze Mithiborwala, reads: “As far as the terrorists who attacked Mumbai are concerned, they are in all likelihood… controlled by the American CIA, the Pakistani ISI and the Israeli MOSSAD.”

    Weekend Edition December 5 / 7, 2008

    1992 vs. 2008 Mumbai's Charge of the Lightweight Brigade By FARZANA VERSEY

    http://www.counterpunch.org/versey12052008.html

    If you believe for a moment that the residents of Mumbai are angry about the recent terror attacks, then they have succeeded in fooling you. There is no anger; there is irritation. Their daily routines have been mucked up. For those 60 hours when terrorists took hold of what have been constantly referred to as 'landmarks' of the city, they sat glued before their television sets. They saw the image of Indian wealth and power being destroyed by invisible men. They were not interested in those men. They were not interested in anything beyond the fact that these men– men who ate dry fruits, for pete's sake – had held five star hotels hostage.

    No one was talking about the 58 people who died at the local train station or the 10 others who died at the hospital or the taxi driver whose vehicle was burnt and so was he. Or even the cops who took the bullets.

    They may cry themselves hoarse at peace marches, they may cry themselves hoarse on panel discussions, they may cry themselves hoarse in petitions that sound like school essays, but their sensitivity is like froth on lager; it will settle down after a  few sips. They are basking in their newfound role as conscience keepers; the international press is watching global India in all its glory as they stand dressed as global citizens near the Gateway of India with black smoke rising over the dome of the Taj Mahal Hotel in the background. It is both symbol and saviour of their pathetic attempts at downward mobility. It is a counter-reaction. After all, the terrorist wore Versace, until now the uniform of their kind. They audaciously claim that there is no time for resilience anymore; they won't take it. Resilience? They have been spitting it out, a sardonic sneer being the new expression. It is a sad sight, for the chauffeurs of the cars they drove up in, the person who ironed their clothes and the valet who waited on them till they were all set for their date with the candle-light dinner of sound bytes, all those minions had to show resilience. They had to travel by the local train to bring these people to the streets. This is resilience.

    They can shudder as much as they want before that dome wrapped in smoke. Do they recall another dome? The one that was broken down with hammers by our own people, egged on by senior leaders? Soon after December 6, 1992, and the demolition of the Babri Masjid, there was no such spontaneous expression of grief or anger. 900 people were killed in cold blood, hunted down because of the faith they were born in. Reports gave figures of more than 200,000 people, most of them Muslim, fleeing the city during the riots. Cops who took part in the death dance were promoted; no politician was asked to resign. In the subsequent revenge bomb blasts, orchestrated by an underworld don and not by the local Muslim population, unlike what happened in Gujarat in 2002, 250 people died.

    Those who are railing against the government today had kept quiet then. Quiet at a time when the government and the police had backed the local lumpens, our very own citizens.

    They were not bothered because the areas targeted did not house their cocktail party circuit. Some did express disgust when they heard stories about the Muslim driver asked to remove his pants in the street to confirm his religion. They were disgusted by the sheer indelicacy but they had an ace up their sleeve – he was a mere driver.

    Today, the people who would run down the elite are speaking up for them; they are all into rubbing shoulders and back-scratching. It is a limited edition utopia: our elite vs. their elite. If you don't play their game, you are as bad as the terrorists. 'Condemn' is the catchword. I have refused to do so. One mainstream newspaper journalist wanted my opinion and said the same thing. He mentioned some liberals who were condemning. I said I condemn those liberals and I condemn the government of India. My views were not carried. I did not expect them to. I can hit out at the government only if I belong to one elite group. They are going to decide. They will constitute the citizens movement. Men and women who had never heard about such groups are now parroting the names of Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed. One aging film star even said that this time India has become exposed to international terrorism. His utter ignorance did not strike anyone, for we have been blaming the outside hand, mainly Pakistan, for years. In effect, only because this time his people were the targets he has discovered such a phenomenon.

    In 16 years nothing has changed. A week after this carnage, a flight attendant serving on a private airline was pointedly asked by a passenger what religion she belonged to. He spewed out, "Why the bloody hell are you Muslims doing this to our country?"

    She calmly replied, "Sir, this is my country too."

    He shot back, "I don't think so, because people from your community are behind these attacks."

    She was on the verge of tears but said bravely, "Sorry Sir, they don't belong to India. They are not Indians."

    I have had 16 years of practice, yet sometimes the tears flow; sometimes I am taken aback. We are being pushed into a corner unless we play the game of 'we are all one'. I call it a game because ever since that December there has been suspicion. My superficial elitism, an elitism I have fortunately never internalised, makes it easy for them to hit out differently. There is irritation that I am not the poor, illiterate Muslim that fits into their pigeonhole. There is disapproval that I don't dress up in standard Muslim clothes, or speak in a standard Muslim way. I don't have a big business enterprise where I can flash secularism if I employ Hindus like Azim Premji does. I am not a film star like Shahrukh Khan who can happily claim a Pathan allegiance and will still be considered acceptable because he says cute things like he is a monkey entertaining people. I don't even have the good sense to join in token gestures of sympathy and denounce terrorism and talk about Islam as a religion of peace. They are irritated because I do not quote anything from the Quran, but can bring up Shakespeare and Neruda and revel in Urdu poets like Faiz and Faraz.

    In 1992-93, there were a few who had told me, "As truly secular people it is our duty to protect you Muslims."

    I don't buy into their protection business. Therefore, the minute I open my mouth I become "that Muslim woman using the minority card". It does not strike them that I may not be safe myself, and it is rather dismissive to say I am having fun flaunting the minority status.

    No paranoia here, yet I will be accused of it.

    India's big legend, superstar Amitabh Bachchan, can show how disturbed he is and how afraid by saying that he has loaded his licensed pistol and keeps it under his pillow now. No prominent Muslim would be able to say that, so there is no question of someone like me even dreaming about a scenario of possessing a licensed gun. Suketu Mehta wrote in The New York Times, "This is the problem, say the nativists. The city is just too hospitable. You let them in, and they break your heart." It is interesting that he uses a term like nativists at a time when he is hailing the wealthy 'outsiders' for the rich dreams they have sponsored.

    He is buffering an exclusivist notion by showing concern about the cream of society. He is concerned about how the terrorists want people to keep out of Mumbai, which contradicts his nativist theory. He is concerned that cricket matches won't happen for a while. Does he remember that a local political party had dug the pitches and prevented any cricket match with Pakistan in the city? He comes up with a rather insensitive analysis when he states, "In 1993, Hindu mobs burned people alive in the streets — for the crime of being Muslim in Mumbai. Now these young Muslim men murdered people in front of their families — for the crime of visiting Mumbai…Their drunken revelry, their shameless flirting, must have offended the righteous believers in the jihad."

    For being a much-touted global citizen and an expatriate he seems to believe that it is kosher to make the Hindu-Muslim divide clear. (Incidentally, what is the connection between tourists and Hindus?) He ought to know there is a difference between Hindus and Hindutva groups and Muslims and Islamist goons. Somewhere it bothers him too, like it does the elite, that these goons were not bearded or wearing skull caps; they drank and made merry. They were so much like the young men in pubs in any part of the world. Mumbai is a city of transaction but the free market can hardly be construed as breaking the barriers. If anything, it is most elitist. It is a thoroughly 'Show me the money' scenario and individualism prevails. The privileged class is also a product, the creation of the 'manufacturing company'; we politely call it ethos.

    Today's dissent is peripheral, not feral. It is cultivated in the factory of prototypes, assembly-line ideas that subsist on amnesia.I shall always remember November 2008 and never forget December 1992. Surface scratches irritate, but don't last. I still have the anger from old wounds.

    Farzana Versey is a Mumbai-based author-columnist. She can be reached at

    kaaghaz.kalam@gmail.com

    By Aamir Mughal
  4. RE: Muslim response to Mumbai terror in sync with the national mood, but what is wrong with our intellectuals? Then you find Rashtriya Sahara reproducing historian Amareesh Mishra’s conspiracy theories about Mumbai terror being the work of Israeli and Hindu Zionists’ handiwork. You open your mailbox and find several Muslims enthusiastically lapping up Mishraji’s theories and circulating them.

    ======================================

    Conveyor Belt Hacks The Indian media's ask-no-questions reporting does not bode well  Nasim Zehra Magazine | Dec 15, 2008

    (The author, Fellow, Harvard University Asia Center, is also Consulting Editor with Duniya TV in Pakistan)

    http://www.outlookindia.com/full.asp?fodname=20081215&fname=VCol+Nasim+Zehra+%28F%29&sid=1

    As news of the unfolding Mumbai terror attacks spread countrywide, shock and horror were woven with sorrow and sympathy here. But soon this empathy began transforming into disbelief. Even before the bloody saga in Mumbai had ended, sections of the Indian media was pointing accusatory fingers at Pakistan, claiming the terrorists had been trained in Karachi.

    The terrorists were still inside the buildings, but the Indian media was already reporting on their nationality, the weapons they carried, the phones they were using! Who provided them the information? Could that information be believed? Sure, available information must be provided to the viewer but shouldn't reporters also raise questions arising automatically from the 'information' provided to him/her? Only government channels act as 'conveyor belts', passing on the official version to the people. Here are some vivid examples:

    An Indian TV network interviews one of the terrorists holed up in a hotel surrounded by commandos, but no one wonders why his phone hadn't been jammed. And how did the terrorist call the TV reporter? Or did the latter call the terrorist? If yes, then how did he/she get the number?

    On the second day of the carnage, an Indian Major General says Pakistan was involved; the Indian prime minister talks of the 'external' forces and the Indian foreign minister insists on Pakistan's complicity. No questions are asked about evidence, doubts raised that the assessments may be premature; not even a suggestion that the possible source of terrorism could be from within India. No one remembered what Jeremy Kahn wrote in the September 29, '08 Newsweek. Kahn reported, "Several people arrested after the Ahmedabad blasts reportedly told authorities they'd attended paramilitary camps in India, not in Pakistan or Bangladesh. Authorities now fear these camps...have trained hundreds of radicalised Indians in the past few years."

    No one asked whether the in-depth information the terrorists had about their targets suggested local support. The number of terrorists also kept changing—from eight to 12 to 25 and now, finally, 10. The reportage was incredible. For example, did anyone check how it was possible for Pakistani terrorists to travel in fishing boats for over 500 nautical miles?

    The post-blast reporting has been a bit simple—buy the government's version, dramatise it like Hollywood does, and raise questions that the government wants raised. For example, should India attack terrorist camps? On December 2, the host of a CNN-IBN programme, 'Nation's Survival', said, "I don't want to be war-mongering but our question is, should India attack the terror camps?" Some 95 per cent said yes.

    Asked by the host of the Dawn News morning show why a section of the press was blaming Pakistan, an Indian journalist gruffly responded, "I think it is very insensitive of those raising the question that why are some in the Indian media blaming Pakistan." And then you had Simi Garewal telling NDTV she would like to see Pakistan carpet-bombed.

    One of the Hindi channels said a Karachi-based character, Chacha Rehman, masterminded the Mumbai attacks. Chacha is a character who often finds mention in the Indian press. Don't believe me? In 1999, Rediff (www.rediff.com/news/1999/nov/05blast.htm) reported, "Mohammad Kasim Lajpuria alias Mechanic Chacha, an accused in the sensational serial bomb blasts case that rocked Bombay in 1993, was arrested in Nepal yesterday, almost six-and-a-half years after the incident. Earlier, after being arrested by the Nepal police, Mechanic Chacha was handed over to a CBI team...."

    No one even bothers to recall the number of times the Indians have wrongly accused Pakistan of fomenting terror—Chattisingpora, the Parliament attack, the more recent Samjhauta Express blasts in which a serving Indian Lt Colonel may have been involved.But the Indian media, in the service of patriotism, opted to ask no questions.

    In Pakistan, we learnt at extremely high cost that the 'ask-no-question' brand of journalism, whether on foreign policy or internal security, ultimately contributes to the creation of the Leviathan, increasingly aided by the 'purists', the militarised and the 'uncompromising' ideologues/communalists. It's this Leviathan that wreaks havoc on the very nation it must protect. The media cannot abandon its role in keeping it in check. We in Pakistan learnt this the hard way. Which is why we are bewildered by our Indian counterparts' ask-no-questions brand reporting of the Mumbai carnage.

    By Aamir Mughal
  5. This is in response to Sultan Shin's article, "Muslim response to Mumbai terror in sync with the national mood, but what is wrong with our intellectuals?"

    Let me first comment on the email under circulation which revolves around  historian Amareesh Mishra’s conspiracy theories about Mumbai terror being the work of Israeli and Hindu Zionists’ handiwork. I was also in receipt of this email. But I refused to read such bad stuff and I dismissed it immediately as a figment of imagination. What one failed to understand was the underlying conspiracy behind such a theory. He was not speaking out of love to Muslim cause but to ignite passions and create unrest among the Muslims against Hindutva forces. Besides,  he wanted to succeed where Pakistan failed to cash in. The Urdu Press, irresponsible as it is ever before, playing into the hands of such forces and writing such stuff that would raise the temperature of the Muslim youth. This is not the time to behave so irreponsibly when the responsibility of guiding the Muslim youth on a righteous path lies with such powerful media. Thanks for its low level circulation in the south, particularly Tamilnadu, the Urdu Press could hardly make any dent into the otherwise peaceful co-existence between various communities here in Tamilnadu. I cannot speak for the reaction from the responsible Muslim intellectuals to such reports emanating from such Urdu newspapers in northern part of India but one thing is sure that Muslim intellectual has a duty cut out for them to guide our youth aright. But as I understand they are not doing any service to the Muslim cause or to the nation at large. This is the pathetic state of the Urdu newspapers in India. Are they trying to ape the style of their counter part in Pakistan, is not clear. What is clear is that they are certainly playing into the hands of the divisive forces.

    Mourning in Islam is haram and I have been saying this for a long time, no matter who does it. Whether it for so called 'Shadat' of Imam Hussein or 'Shahdat' of Babri Masjid, there is no justification for the Muslims to mourn such events of history. As for Babri Masjid is concerned, Sultan Shahin, has rightly asked the question that how could the structure of bricks and sand would attain martyrdom in Islam. Why Muslims are so oversensitive to an event which has no relevance in Islam or its followers. At the worst, the vandalisation of the Masjid by the insane karsevaks, could be termed as reprehensible act of insanity. Beyond that the Hindu press called it a 'national shame' and majority of the Hindus did not approve such actions and according to them what was the difference between the action of Aurangazeeb, the Moghul Emperor, infamous in history for his act of destroying temples and the Hindutva forces that aped him to carry on the same act of insanity when they destroyed and demolished the Babri Masjid at Ayodhya? As public memory is short, so they forgot the event. But for Muslim, the memory is strong and it is revived every year on 6th of December as an event to protest and demand its reconstruction in the same place. I for one who feel that Muslims have no business to make such a demand to reconstruct the mosque in the same place. "Masjid Wahin Banegi" is the slogan chanted every year and nearly 16 years have elapsed since the event took place. Such a demand is bordering on stupidity as this would never happen in future for two reasons. Firstly, the case is pending in the court of law for more than four decades and secondly this place is equally but emotionally important to Hindus, for they believe it to be the birth place of Lord Rama. In any case, it is an emotional issue that would certainly raise tempers and would not augur well for the Hindu-Muslim unity. But on the other hand, if Muslim proactively hand over the site for the construction of a Ram Temple on the condition that the Babri Masjid be reconstructed side by side, would be easily acceptable to the majority of the Hindus. This suggestion is on line with the existence of Mandir-Masjid at Srirangapattinam constructed by a true secular Tippu Sultan, which still stands today as a monument of secular credentials of a great Sultan, who refused to change the name of his capital Srirangapattinam after a Muslim name. Such people alone are revered in history. Will Muslims of India particularly Babri Masjid Re-building Committee take a leaf out of the life of Great Tippu Sultan and demonstrate large heartedness by donating the land voluntarily for the construction of Ram Mandir at Ayodhya?

    For Muslims of India, we do not need any version of Islam to follow than the one given to us by our beloved Prophet Mohammed PBUH. Who is this Osama or Hafiz or Ibne Wahhab and why should one follow their form of Islam, when the Quran and Hadits are before us in their original forms. It is the duty of the Muslim intellectuals to come out in open not only to condemn terrorism or related activities but also all those organistions that are spreading the hate in the name of Islam much to the discomfort of ordinary Muslims who are by and large believe in peaceful co-existence. Let us distance ourselves from the activities and preachings of these radical organisations. Not only that, we must also dissuade our children from joining such organisations in future. The best things we can do is to give modern education to our children and towards this end, we need to open more and more educational insitutions without deviating from the path of Allah and Rasool SAW.

    India's unity in diversity is the cynosure of all eyes and more particularly of Pakistanis. They are sure to keep India on a boiling pot all the time, since they promised to do so after the loss of East Pakistan in a one sided war in 1971. It is a great conspiracy to wage a proxy war with India with such sporadic terror attacks every now and then. Whether it is Govt of Pakistan or its official machinery is behind all these training camps of terror outfits, a detailed but thorough investigation alone would reveal. Till then, it is very clear that there are elements within Pakistan whether it is Dawood's D-Company or Jaishe Mohammed or Lakshare Taoiba, that they are out to destroy the social fabric of this country. The Mumbai carnage took India to the brink of war with Pakistan and that is what they wanted to keep the powder dry. Luckily, India refused to fall into their trap and the political leadership of this great country showed  great maturity and political sagacity in dealing with such a dangerous but ticklish situation. India weighed different options particularly in the wake of such public hysteria, ouotcry, anger and frustration calling for a firm and decisive actions. India is well aware of the danger associated with such actions and taken the recourse to diplomatic pressure on Pakistan. US, which is an ally of Pakistan in the war on terror, sent its special emissary in Condaleeza Rice to avert a crisis but to convey a strong message to Pakistan. Either Pakistan should act fast or US would do on their behalf. The President-elect Obama too cautioned Pakistan while asserting the rights of India to protect its internal security. The whole world joined India in condemning the dastardly and cowardly terror mayhem that left 200 dead and scores wounded. Those killed including people from Japan, US, UK, Germans etc., and thus it became an issue of all other countries. This time the enormity of attack was so huge that the world refused to buy any story emanating from Pakistan that the attack was carried out by non-state actors but they were Pakistanis. Can Zardari and company deny their nationality. The theory of CIA-Zionist conspiracy is nothing but a diversionary tactics being spread by vested interest and our Urdu press is joining in the orchestra to fan the fire, in the already heated atmosphere. These people never thought for a moment how it is going to help the already battered Muslim community in India. This is the height of their irresponsibility with which the Urdu press is behaving in India, which is very unfortunate. A good couself shall soon prevail over them.

    I appeal to Muslims particularly intellengtsia to bahave responsibly in maintaining peace which is so vital to their own existence. It is to the great credit of the Hindu brethren that they refused to act emotionally against Muslim community for they were well aware that among the 195 killed 40 were Muslims including six members of a family awaiting to board the train to Patna. This is the greatness of the people of this country. They stand united in the hour of crisis, whether war or terror attack. We, the Muslim, salute the great spirit of the people of this country. It is our duty to express our solidarity with the people of this country. Not only that, we must delivere more to be secular first and last. We must also dismantle all such jamats and madrasas that are engaged in spreading hate campaign against other communities. Time and again it has been laid emphasis that Islam believes in peaceful co-existence. Allah is "Rabbul Aalamin" meaning the "Lord of the Univers" but Islam never said, Allah is "Rabbul Muslimeen" meaning He is the Lord of Muslims alone. All the people of the world to whatever religion they belong, are the children of the Lord of All Universes, that is, Allah. Hence it is our duty to love them as our own brothers and sisters. There is no place for hate in Islam. We, the Muslims of India have to live with our neighbours of different faith and we have to deal with them in our daily life including that of commerce. Are our merchants are selling to only Muslims or our Muslims are buying things only from Muslims? Are we constructing houses only for Muslims or for others? These are the questions we have to ask through introspection. We have to live here and deal with all sorts of people not based on one's religious faith but as human beings and equal partners. Respect their faith and in return they will respect your faith and religion. This is what is known as brotherhood and peaceful co-existence. It is happening for centuries and we, the Muslims of India resolve to preserve our unity with life.

    By A.M.JAMSHEED BASHA, CHENNAI, INDIA