By Abdul Sattar
Some Muslims wanted to live in a separate land called Pakistan, which at this point is very far from being what Jinnah had dreamed of it. One cannot generalize all Muslims and assume that they wanted to move to Pakistan. A significant majority of Muslims stayed back in India. We, Indian Muslims, are very confident in our democratic process, and that India has the second largest population of Muslims in the world. Muslims are very happy to be part of India, and would prefer it if one does not go on ranting about how “Muslims of India” wanted to move to Pakistan: majority of them didn’t. Pro-Pakistani Muslims have no right to tell the Indian Muslims that we made a wrong choice, and are suffering the wrath of it. We belong to a free country and, yes, we have issues, but at least, we are not afraid of being blown up every other Friday by our own kind or our Hindu neighbors.
Majority of the Hindus and Muslims actually live in harmony with each other, especially in the southern region of India. We have a free press, a growing economy and the situation now is better than what it may have been a few years ago. We don’t have random dictatorships or the level of disgusting extremism, violence against women and children, and unequal rights like in Pakistan.
If “occupation” of Kashmir by India is repressive, then how does anybody explain the Hudood Ordinance chapter? How does anybody explain the atrocities against women, children, Sikhs, as well as men, in the north-west tribal regions of Pakistan? How does one explain the abnormally high murder rate of Pakistan? Will anyone say that Indian Muslims should regret for not belonging to a country whose Presidents and leaders have been people like the corrupt Bhuttos, extremist dictators like Zia-ul-Haq, idiots like Nawaz Shariff or convicts like Zardari? Are Indian Muslims supposed to regret for not belonging to a country that gets bombed, blasted, taken over by foreign military, taken over by its own military, robs the people of their freedom in the name of “religion” that it barely follows, creates laws that tarnish Islam, or punishes people for freedom speech?
Some of us may be poor in India, but we are very happy to live in a country that provides us with more educational, social, financial and religious opportunities than Pakistan. Some of the greatest modern-day scholars come from India. We have Islamic universities in India. We have a lot to be happy about in India.