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Mistakes not missiles- What should move the liberal Indian

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The word ‘Liberal’ as defined by the Oxford dictionary means respecting and allowing many different types of beliefs or behavior and is one of the most sought after marque by the “pseudo-intellectual Hindu” without them meriting it. The word appears ‘cool’ as the opposite of the word seems to imply feudal, hidebound, and retrograde values that have become ‘old-fashioned’ in today’s day and epoch.

Previously the tag of being a liberal was reserved and only flaunted by the pseudo-secularist in their wine lit drawing rooms amidst the chill of their air conditioners fenced by classes of cheese.

Now coming 2020, Liberalism and Secularism are now little more than terms of cruelties in India. Even in that aloof past when it was wholly acceptable to mention the term in polite company, there was a lot of fuzziness about its meaning. But now amidst the hue and cry of the Covid-19 pandemic we have been again reminded that liberalism and secularism are vital ingredients of a democracy and that it means not just the divorce of religion from the state but also the subservience of religion to the state in matters of national importance.

The lesson is driven home by the conduct of certain Tablighis, zealous Ram Bhakts, and armed Nihangs.

The Tablighi Jamaat botched this basic subordination of religion when it disobeyed the directive and mandate of the Delhi government against gatherings of more than 200 people and the steeper ban on congregations of 50 individuals that jolted in after March 13th, when the Tablighi’s affair got over.

The Jamaat leaders behaved with life-threatening frivolity, using religion to incite people to stay inside the Markaz and to ignore government emergency pointers. What was more worrying is the performance of Tabhlighi members with police and doctors. There had been reports of these clan members spitting out from the buses, on medics and paramedics while in quarantine hubs.

In bulletins, there were statements of people assaulting doctors in Indore. What followed was a countrywide deliberation on the “communal color” being given to the novel coronavirus in India. On one end the critiques of the administration have termed this “a bid to make an entire cult a stooge of regime’s negligence and a scheme to avert attention from its near-disaster supervision of migrant laborers commute without any concrete plan in place”.

As awaited the right-wing liberals attacked the intents of Indian Muslims and called out the Indian “secularism” or what they term “pseudo-secularism” for the chain of events. As the anti-government and pro-government sides encountered themselves on communalism and secularism, the concrete delinquent again had taken a back seat.

By just saying that the government is trying to create hype around this to divert attention from its failures, you are doing more harm to Indian Muslims and secularism.The administration’s accomplishments and failures are out in open for every Indian to see. Should a reasonable mind not recognize that religious celebrities like Maulana Saad are also a part of the puzzle in times of an epidemic?

A person, who exerts enormous and unrestricted power over his religious community, should have acted more dutifully. The cases are exploding all over the globe. In spite of being warned by the Ministry of Home and police forces, the Phoney prophets of Islam didn’t think twofold about the casualties for his followers and the rest of the nation.

Netizens are sharing a tweet by the PTI saying that the government said that it is not a health emergency yet when the congregation took place. Some are even saying that the ruling party was mischievously busy forming rule in Madhya Pradesh and the PM himself was witnessing a swearing-in ritual.

Unpredictably, the liberal side who precisely shun and glance down upon “whataboutery” are indulging in identical acts either by emphasizing a temple visit by the UP chief minister of by citing a Gau-mutra bash organized by Hindu Mahasabha.

But, this finger directing and accusations will not serve any resolution except for fostering the divide between people. Two sins can never make a right. This isn’t a Hindu-Muslim debate. This is about reasonableness and religion.

To merely pinpoint to the faults of others and to advocate that the Jamaat is not the solitary guilty party is like saying that the Holocaust was partially Adolf Hitler’s blunder because the global stalwarts could have immobilized him before single-handedly but did not.

The fact that notwithstanding warnings of the police these people went forward with the congregation is in itself an adequate intention to hold them responsible. And this was a religious community affair, which makes it imperative to deliberate religious reforms. The fact that a Priest or a Maulana or a Pandit can impact people thwart them from fearing a pandemic is a startling situation for a republic that seeks to imbibe scientific nature midst its citizens and references it in directive principles and fundamental duties of the constitution.

The Indore episode where stones were pelted on Doctors raises serious questions about the extent of scientific temperament in our country. But instead of calling out these people for their ignorant and irrational conduct, we are more focused on criticizing the government and defeating the narratives going around on WhatsApp and Facebook.

This is the setback with a typical contemporary Indian liberal. A true realistic and liberal mind would have first censured religion that is deceptive and blinding communities to such an extent that they are attacking medics who are around to help them.

When Raja Ram Mohan Roy mounted against the orthodox Hindu and the Hindu society for the prohibition of Sati in the 17th century, he overhauled the community, along with other social reformers. That is how we got our society reformed and our religion evolved, be it for educating girls, equality among people, the abolition of untouchability, or any other reform that took place in modern Indian history, it all happened because someone made an effort. Someone called out the irrational behavior in his or her communities.

Today times are different. We are not obligated to inevitably rely on intellectuals of a specific religious cult to come forward and synchronize reforms. India has been a self-governing collective and secular republic for more than 70 years. If Hindu – Muslim unison can pull a protest as enormous as Shaheen Bagh why can’t those coming out and defending the Tabhlighi Jamaat criticize them? I admire anyone who calls out bigotry. But, if you can’t tell the people you are fighting for where they went wrong why are you fighting for them in the first place?

If you truly want to support the Muslims in the country, the secularism in our country, you need to acknowledge that along with political alterations you need to promote social transformation as well. If your finger doesn’t stop before sharing a cow urine meme and thumping all the irrationality in Hinduism why can’t you do the same for Islam or any other religion? You are doing a disservice to these people by shielding their unfounded behavior and witlessness.

Why should Muslims be treated otherwise? Are they only timidly a part of your anti-regime chronicle? If you truly care about them and secularism, call them out for spattering in public after testing positive, call them out for pelting boulders on doctors, call them out for hiding and trying to flight the testing. Why do we create this rift of religion suddenly when it comes to amendments and become one when it comes to politics?

I am not preaching or paving way for Islam-o-phobia, it will forever be a prejudice that needs vehement opposition. But if this isn’t plain idiocy in the name of Allah, then what is?

We need to understand that creating a dialogue against a wrong dyed-in-the-wool by an orthodox religious group from a specific religious community doesn’t imply that you’re stereotyping them. Of course, Muslims in India have always been differentiated against and encountered Islamophobia. Nevertheless, this does not mean that you should not express yourself in contradiction to crimes committed by a group of orthodox people. Not speaking up against this gross violation of human safety exposes your insincerity and your lack of equilibrium. More so, it sheds light on the fact why the Indian Liberal will always lack “Liberalness” in its true sense.

When ISIS struck a Gurdwara in Kabul last month, some said they were humiliated by the crimes of this radical organization in the pretext of preaching Islam. There were others who not only tried shielding Islam in the wake of the Islamic state’s actions but also tried their best to institute the difference between ISIS and Islam.

The fact is ISIS is a worldwide extremist outfit that destroys people and rapes women. It has much less to do with Islam than it has to do with supremacy. But Tablighi Jamaat should force us to contemplate our religious practices in daily life. This congregation is perhaps the worst mechanism that these 3,000 Muslims could have ever inflicted on humankind in the name of preaching Islam.

Ultimately, the brokers of Islam have added to this Covid-19 mess with their cess.

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