Category Archives: India

The girl that wasn’t

There she was.. Amidst hungry people,  who were gobbling up whatever the ‘Chat Street’ in Basavangudi was throwing at them. “She looks gorgeous”, you realise. “She is perfect for me”, you tell yourself. You have spoken to her before. In fact, it was one of the greatest conversations you have ever had with another woman.

VV Puram, Sajjan Rao Circle

Dose, Idly, Bhel Puri, Pav Bhaji, Bajji and what not!

Every guy has met a woman.. The woman.

The number doesn’t necessarily have to be restricted to one. After all, if people were allowed to fall in Love only once, the species would have died off long back or the world would be filled with Devdasses. Do not believe Bollywood propaganda..

One meets her either in a Party, or in College, or a place you had been for an interview. She is either your colleague, or classmate, or neighbour, or met her at the Gym. The world is full of possibilities.

You have seen her before, much before you actually spoke to her – in BMS Engineering College fest years ago; after that in a friend’s Birthday Party; after that in some Engagement party your parents managed to drag you into. Every time the reaction was the same – you froze and were mesmerized.

Brain stops working, you are dumfounded as to what to do next

Each time the urge to go talk to her was immense, which was only overwhelmed by the fear of saying something stupid and losing the battle of the nerves and.. the chance to make a decent impression.

Natural Selection

The thing is: she is not the prettiest woman you were attracted to. But, a certain indescribable quality sets her apart, something which even you can’t explain to yourself. Its like Nature is crying out : She is the perfect mate for you, Human Being! 

Love is all Science, you see. Do you think you chose your mate because of Love? How naive..

Nature probably knows more about you than yourself. It knows, for instance, that you are not the most attractive guy out there and is hinting that you should settle down with someone who is more suited to your ugliness.

Nature: Perfect for each other!

You are 6 (on the scale of 1 to 10) and you expect an 8? Aase olledu, duraase kettaddu(due to lack of proper knowledge of either English and/or Kannada, I am unable to translate.. Hoping to get some help soon). 

Karma is a bitch!

As luck would have it, it would not be long before you meet her, this time at a friend’s wedding. As always, she looked radiant. This time it was different. This time a friend manages to drag you and introduce you to all her friends and ‘she’ happens to be one of them.

Yaay!

Life is colourful again!

You quickly get working. You are charming(after years of mental practice, you are finally ready.. You have trained for this and now its time to put it into practice), have managed to make her laugh. Her natural charm is making you comfortable and the conversation is enthralling. Her smile is so disarming, but you keep at it.

You discuss all the right things: Your common friend who just introduced you, other friends you realise both have in common, the latest Aamir Khan movie (She turns out to be Shahrukh Khan fan and you realise he is not that bad after all.. After all Swades – She laughs at your pronunciation of ‘Swades’ – was pretty awesome!), how you and her both miss college life (Oh shit! Another commonality!), where she works, where you work, where she lives, where you live.. “Did you go to the Soul Sante? Wasn’t it amazing!”

“OMG! She is the cousin of a cousin of my friend, whom I know since ages. This is so meant to be!”

You are in love. You are bowled over and the bowler is a 5 foot something, female, looking stunning in a Red Saree and getting her fill of Mosaranna (Curd Rice) right now. The bowler’s secret weapon : No freaking idea!

She is everything you aspire to be like and more – She ignites in you to be a better version of yourself!

“Our kids will have her looks and my brains, hopefully”. “Ok, what should I do next?”.

“Should I tell my friend whose marriage it is, that I have a thing for her friend? Naah, she will be busy with, I don’t know, with the wedding?”

Sketch haaku

“Lets ask her out for a movie!”. The heart is running a race, you look at your male friend who smells something is fishy, who asks, “Yen maam? Yen vishya?(Whats up?)”

You nod your head as to indicate nothing is up and start working on your master plan.

Clubbing? Unsure if she likes it. Lets go to the beach! Too bad, its very far. “Why the hell doesn’t Bangalore have beaches?”. Dinner? Too Hollywood-ey. Bowling? No, there is a good chance I might suck; Can’t risk it. Paint ball! Need too many people. Invite her home for lunch to meet my parents? Not appropriate, too soon. Take her to the secret nature get-away! Might sound creepy. Need a public place for the first date.

Coffee? Good option, but need more than that..

Movie? No, no good Hindi movie in the theatres. Krrrrrish 3, you have promised yourself, you will never ever ever watch in your lifetime and you just know she feels the same.

“Kannada movie? Hmm.. Beda, level hog bidathe.”.

“OK ok.. English movie, then”. Its settled.

“So.. What plans for the weekend?”, you ask hopefully.

“Umm.. I don’t know, shop for a while and maybe catch Gravity with my Fiancé?”.

Trying not to look sad, after hearing some shocking news

Your heart sinks..

Back from flashback

“Yen sakkathagiddale, sisya!(Dude, she is so pretty!)”, you tell your cousin, who is happily married and is currently munching on some delicious Idlies. He gives her a glance and quickly realises his plate is empty and goes for a refill. Clearly, she didn’t make much of an impression on him, or that he indeed is happily married.

You wonder “Are recently married and happily married the same things?”

“Look at her.. Laughing without a care in the world. Man, isn’t she perfect for me!”. You remind yourself of an unmodifiable fact and snap back to reality.

As always, nothing happens, you finish hogging and get in the Car after having one last look at her. “Yella nan Karma“.

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Filed under About Anoop, Happy, India, Life, Love

How the Modi-bashers are leading to radicalisation of Muslims in India

Why does Islamic Terror exist in India?

Is it an unfortunate expression of oppression of the Muslim minority?

Lets assume for now that is the reason.. Indian Muslims are oppressed, hence, resorting to Terror.

But, the perpetrators of 7/7 London Bombings were not oppressed. They were living in a society which their parents or themselves opted to live in. Why did they kill so many people of their own country? Poverty?

So, what about 9/11? The perpetrators were from a US-ally Saudi Arabia, one of the richest countries in the world and highly educated.

What does UK, US, India have in common? A Muslim minority population which has produced people with extremist tendencies, for some un-explainable reasons(for the fear of being politically incorrect).

What does it all have to do with Modi? A LOT!

Modi is no saint. His actions during the 2002 riots cannot be verified and are highly suspect, yes. Legally he is innocent and proven guilty. There is no clinching evidence of his connivance in promoting the riots. He is also a highly successful Chief Minister of a very important, incredibly successful state. Things are never black and white. Portraying people as such will leave no room for flexibility.

But, instead of saying it as-it-is, the Modi-Bashers(Group MB) are hell-bent on painting him as the devil-incarnate.

There is a good chance that Modi might end up being the Prime Minister of India. At the very least, there is a very good chance that BJP of Modi will return to power.

Most Muslims in India do not hold a favourable view of the Hindu Right. They despise it and understandably so. What Group MB has done, by demonising Modi, is that it they have set the stage for Radicals among the Muslim community to gain centre-stage.

The Muslim leadership is incredibly stupid.

They in their hatred of the Hindu Right have forgotten that Hindu conservative ideas too need a vent. Modi is that vent, whether they like it or not. By projecting him as something worse than Darth Vader, they have managed to sow seeds of Radicalisation in their own community.

We often hear how LeT camps in Pakistan show images and videos of 2002 riots to stir up their cadres, many of whom are Indian citizens. What do you think will happen to the 150 Million Muslims, if a person who is projected by Group MB as a ruthless killer of Muslims comes to power?

Alienation. Leading to Radicalisation on a very large scale. Leading to more alienation and radicalisation. A perfect vicious cycle. Only this time there are no Gandhis and Nehrus; and we cannot create another Pakistan.

9/11 happened almost without any meaningful provocation. The seeds of Islamist behaviour are not rooted neither in poverty nor illiteracy. BJP coming to power, especially with Modi at the helm, will exacerbate an already vicious mood among the Muslims of India, who are not isolated from the larger Muslim world; and, who are in greater numbers than UK and US combined!

Terror Groups like Indian Mujahideen will have absolutely no trouble getting cadres.

Group MB will have only itself to blame, if these unfortunate series of events do unfold.

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Our very own “Argo”

Recently watched Argo. Loved it. Especially bit about the secret agent, infiltrating into enemy territory and getting the good guys out. There was much appreciation of the methods of the CIA(Even though, in this case, most of the work was apparently done by the Canadians), especially after the Osama episode. Scarcely does anyone come to know what our own premier Intelligence Agency – RAW – has been upto.

I first found out about this couple of years ago. Lets get into details.

What happened on January 30, 1971?

1) What we know is there were two Kashmiris, Hashim Quereshi and his cousin Ashraf Butt, who went on to highjack an Indian Airlines plane named ‘Ganga’ using a Toy Pistol.

2) They take the craft to Lahore, burn it down, Pakistan was happy, they were treated as heroes, Pakistan created a mini-media spectacle thinking it would promote the Kashmiri cause. Passengers were safe, as the intention was to, apparently, promote the “cause” and advertise it to the world.

A picture of the type of aircraft in question. Ganga was an old Fokker F27 Friendship Indian Airlines aircraft.

3) On January 31, Z.A. Bhutto, Pakistani PM to be and the most prominent Politician of the then West Pakistan, visited the airport and embraced the two hijackers as true champions of the Pakistani cause. After five days, he issued a statement to the effect that the hijackers were “two brave men” and their deed demonstrated that “no power on earth can stifle the Kashmiris’ struggle for liberation.” The Pakistani authorities justified the hijacking which they described as the direct result of repressive measures taken by the Government of India in Kashmir.

4) Indian Government seethes with anger and bans overflight from West Pakistan to East Pakistan. A major blow, considering soldiers were being transported in civilian disguise in civilian planes, for the impending bloody massacre of fellow Pakistanis by Pakistani soldiers; and the war that is to follow. The crucial air link is cut off.

5) India liberates “Bangladesh” from Pakistan.

Till now facts speak for themselves. But, strange things begin to happen.

1) Pakistan jails one of the high-jackers for 19 years! Labelling them agents of India and calling one of them BSF. They realised that this Highjacking was used by Indira Gandhi to ban overhead flights between the 2 wings of Pakistan.

2) It comes to be known that the aircraft in question was the oldest of its type in the fleet of the Indian Airlines, was in a poor state of maintenance and lacked certain items of equipment usually carried on such aircraft. Basically the loss of the craft was no-big-deal. It was old and dusty.

3) Now, G.M. Sadiq, the Chief Minister of Jammu & Kashmir, calls this an Indian plan. Basically, a false flag operation by India.

Who benefits, who loses?

To put things simply. Pakistan loses, India gains tremendously.

Pakistani losses: Pakistan wanted to highlight India’s actions in Kashmir. But, ended up getting cut off from its own Eastern wing. By helping the Terrorists, Pakistan forces India’s hand to ban the overhead flights between the 2 wings.

Considering most of the troop movement used to happen using these overhead flights, under civilian disguise, this was a major blow to Pakistani war efforts and a disruption of troop movement.

Indian gains: Needless to say, India had nothing but to gain from these two idiotic youths taking their plane to Lahore. Even the Aircraft, as it turned out, was old and had no real value. No passengers were hurt(even though their lives were at risk). India gets a solid reason to ban the overhead flight privileges, stops the Pakistani troop movement, escalates the cost and time to transport the troops from West wing to the East for Pakistan.

When Pakistan jails the Terrorist accusing them of acting on behalf of India, India manages to ignite few protests against Pakistan by Kashmiris in Pakistan and outside of the Sub-Continent(Owning to pressure of overseas Kashmiris and the disquiet of Kashmiris in PoK, Pakistan had to release the Terrorist, who later gives up arms to pursue a peaceful resolution of Kashmir. I wonder why!).

Into the realm of speculation and conjecture

Now, with our bases covered, lets look at the interview of the high jacker, who now lives in India.

The interview can be found here:

“In a haircutting salon in Lal Chowk, I met a Kashmiri Border Security Force (BSF) officer. I told him I wanted to go to Pakistan. He agreed to help me cross the border provided I brought some information the BSF needed. I agreed and the BSF managed my clandestine entry into Pakistan through the Sialkot border.”

He was actually double-crossing the BSF. In Pakistan, Hashim was trained for the hijack.

“Maqbool Bhat said to highlight the Kashmir problem we must hijack an Indian plane. Javaid Mantoo, a retired pilot, helped familiarise me with a Fokker Friendship plane. He took me to Chaklala airport where I was allowed to see the plane from inside.”

After hijack training, Hashim crossed back into Kashmir from the Sialkot border.

“I boarded a bus, but the bus was stopped by police and I was caught with a pistol and a hand grenade. I was taken to a BSF interrogation centre. I told them how I had been trained along with three others for the hijack in Pakistan.

“I was asked by the BSF to keep a watch at the Srinagar airport. An advertisement appeared in a newspaper about the sale of a look-real pistol which could be used to scare away thieves. I ordered one by post. I fabricated a wooden hand grenade and painted it with metallic colour.”

After the episode, Pakistan alleges that Indian agencies conducted this false flag operation, by R&AW, tags one of the Terrorist as an Indian agent and tortures him and puts in jail. 

Now, tell me if this isn’t better than Argo!

Indira Gandhi, whom the liberated, free citizens of Bangladesh begin to call “Maa Durga”, deserves a lot of credit, for quickly using this as a justification for banning the flights, imposing a major tactical disadvantage on the Pakistanis. Apart from the CM of J&K saying this was an Indian operation, no accounts of this have been released by India and R&AW.

You can guess why – People in the aircraft(Indian citizens) were put at risk, intentionally, by the planners. Admitting this would create a controversy within India, as to why Indian civilians were put in harm’s way. India loses face at the international level, as India had long maintained that it did nothing to precipitate the war and war was forced upon it.

R&AW might not be as glamorous, or might have the technology of a CIA, but if this indeed, seems very likely it was, a R&AW operation, full marks to it. It achieved the desired result, with zero lives lost, no damage to the infrastructure and sowing the seeds of confusion in the opposing ranks. India gets what it wants – Stop movement of troops from West Pakistan to the East, thereby escalating the cost and the time required to transport the troops.

All of this using a Toy Pistol and a wooden “grenade”. And, we think CIA’s hunt of Osama was awesome!

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Hafiz Saeed can be an Indian asset

Yes, you heard that right!

Hafiz Saeed, if used well, can turn out to be an advantage for India, from this point onward. Hear me out..

Hafiz Saeed has done great harm to India. Undeniable. A Terrorist. True.

But, it is also true that nobody can get to him in Pakistan. The Government of Pakistan has no real power. His services to the military of Pakistan will not be forgotten, as there are too many people sympathetic to his cause in the ranks. Everyday we see him on giving statements and interviews, it hurts us, angers us.

The trick here is to turn this into an advantage.

What is our objective? To protect India, to project to the world Pakistan’s real face.

Why was Osama being killed a greater feat than a low key Al Qaeda figure? Because he was a symbol. So is Hafiz Saeed. And, unlike Osama, he is not hiding in secrecy, but moving around freely in Pakistan.

This is the key.

Things will not be the same forever. Today Pakistan is notorious for Terror. Pakistan gets away with it as US depends on Pakistan to get into Afghanistan; and, Paksitan has been using this leverage wonderfully well. But, that disappears after 2014. When NATO packs up, the dependence on Pakistan evaporates too. Add to this the Northern Distribution Network (NDN) – which run through less hostile regions and the fact that there will be far less troops to service – NATO can be free of Pakistani shackles.

US will likely blackmail Pakistan with sanctions or punitive actions to fight its war and hunt down Al Qaeda in Af-Pak. How will it serve us? We can use Hafiz Saeed as our Osama; Make him a symbol, a larger than life Terrorist, who has killed Americans and Indians, to paint Pakistan in bad light; Use our lobby-machine in Washington and Brussels to get what we want: Dismantling of Terror infrastructure in Pakistan and bring to justice the Terrorists.

Pakistan is heavily dependent on US/EU countries. A majority of exports from Pakistan is to these countries. They close down their market to Pakistan, millions will be out of their jobs in Pakistan. Deny financial help from IMF and WB, Pakistan will not be able to pay their own bills. Impose sanctions, Pakistan will be at US/EU mercy.

But, will they do it? That is where we come in. Our influence with these countries is substantial. If we take people like Hafiz Saeed and put on a show, where people like Hafiz Saeed are the villain and a danger to world peace, we would have achieved a major propaganda win over Pakistan. Its not that hard also..

We have to help Pakistan make the transition to another Iran or North Korea. Unlike Iran, Pakistan has no minerals or resources to bank on and its impact on the world is minimal. Like North Korea has nukes and its sole benefactor is China. Look how North Korea is faring.. Or, how Iran is caving, slowly, but surely, under the combined US/EU sanctions.

I know this is not nearly as equivalent to the heinous crimes he has committed with Pakistan military’s help. But, sitting on our hands and do nothing about it is not an option as well. This is doable.

If it makes you feel better, Hafiz Saeed has done more harm to Pakistan, than he can ever do to India. He has sent thousands of people across LoC to be gunned down by our guys. The ideology he preaches has given birth to thousands of Pakistanis who have joined other Terrorist groups and killed other Pakistanis. Not to forget, every time a report features in the world media about the infamous Terrorist operating freely in Pakistan, it embarrasses Pakistan(Or, at least it should embarrass them).

India should get justice, in one way or the other. Inaction is not an option.

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Salman Rushdie’s Open Letter to Rajiv Gandhi

Today is the Karnataka Bandh, here I sit, bored out of my mind(Never thought I would get to appreciate the routine of work and weekends). Even though it is a weekend, I cannot venture out(Well, I can but choose not to); cannot watch TV(The geniuses to control the switches to my TV box think it would make a better statement to the Tamilians, who are accused of forcing us to withdraw excess water, if the Kannadigas not get to watch some TV and are deprived of entertainment).

So I turned to the only logical place in these troubled times – Youtube. I started off with the interview of Salman Rushdie on The Hindu and started thinking about the book I am currently reading(and, which I cannot get enough of) – The Midnight’s Children. One thing led to another and here I was watching all sorts of Salman Rushdie videos; the best one being this:

Huh! How he rips into Imran Khan! I loved the part about Chetan Bhagat, though… Chetan Bhagat is primarily responsible for the Dumb-ification of the Indian public, who after reading such junk as ‘One Night at a Call Center’, think they can be qualified as book lovers; Chetan Bhagat is also responsible for the emergence of all those writers who have questionable writing and story telling skills, who know their weaknesses and yet derive hope from the successes of Chetan Bhagat novels.

Heck, even I know I can succeed in the literary world(I got the spelling of literary wrong at first; thats how good I am!) if I come up with a simply worded book, with a few funny tales, a more than a few boring sequences put together unintelligibly; and an excellent excellent cover, which just appeals to the reader to buy the book; not to forget the media blitz. People like me should not be given such hope. Its good for me, but bad for Art in general. I daresay Chetan Bhagat writes only marginally better than me. He is an IITian, I am from third rate Engineering College in Bangalore(Even though it is generally considered bad, but I love to death that college, the campus and the people.. More on that in another post some other Bandh. I see the Diesel and Petrol prices will be increased soon, so keeping my fingers crossed). So, I take it as a plus for me.

Now, to the topic at hand.

Salman Rushdie after writing this wonderful, spectacular book – The Midnight’s Children – wrote another book – The Satanic Verses. I’ve read half the book before my cousin’s constant pestering (If she is reading this, I am embellishing of course.. I gave it out of Love!) made me give her the book half way. I read the dreaded Mahound chapter so that gives me the right to talk about it, I am concluding all on my own.

So, this book was published when I was just born and it was banned India’s PM(my favourite when I was 10) on grounds of, well, to quote Rushdie – “..proscribed for.. its own good”.

I didn’t find any Blasphemous material, apart from the question it forces you to ask, but doesn’t ask itself – “How strongly do you believe in the tales your elders lead you to believe about God and the Godliness of God?”. The question he never asks to the Muslims is,”Could Prophet be not Prophet at all?”,”Could he have been.. “, well, I don’t want to commit such Blasphemy. If I run for office sometime in the next 30 years I also want the Muslim vote bank. I can take the path of Manmohan Singh, yes, but the Muslim vote bank will stop voting for my party and that again reflects badly on me. So, I will stop here. I don’t want to comment on the level of Blasphemy perpetrated by a book more than 2 decades ago but its aftermath in my India; the India to which I had just been born.

Salman Rushdie writes an “Open Letter” to the then PM Rajiv. I quote from it..

These persons, whom I do not hesitate to call extremists, even fundamentalists, have attacked me and my novel while stating that they had no need actually to read it. That the Government should have given in to such figures is profoundly disturbing.

It is indeed disturbing isn’t it. After the cave in with the Shah Bano case, this was Rajiv Gandhi’s second cave in to the same set of extremists.

This theme is being repeated even today in India. When the World over the people are fighting for their Rights; when people in West are up and defending their Constitutionally enshrined Freedom of Speech, we are least bothered.

Rushdie says Freedom is like a war, if you don’t fight for one, you will eventually lose it. Those words were reverberating in my head for a while and I decided to put them down on my blog. Feel much better now.

Its 7 already! A weekend wasted? Well, at least, a good post came out of it. I am heading out to meet my incredibly funny friends, some of whom are stuck in torrential rain.

So, Ta-Ta!

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The Britishers came here to loot, so did everyone else

At the turn of the last millennium India was the BIGGEST economy in the World. The greatest power on Earth today was discovered by a man set out to discover the greatest power of the time.

Mughals wanted to invade and loot it; Alexander tried his best; the Britishers did it successfully.

I don’t know if its naivety or just stupidity if people think the British rule over India did any good. Yes, they have largely created the Railway system which we still use to this day; yes, they have given us post-Industrial revolution education, or what you may call, a modern education. But, one thing you forget or are not aware of – They did all this to loot India or to enable looting India.

In 1500 AD, India and China formed two of the BIGGEST economies in the World.

Enter: The English, at the turn of the 17th Century, India simply collapses as a power.

There is one more chart from Angus Maddison which goes back to the start of the Millennium.

For a greater part of the previous millennium, India, accompanied by China, was an Economic Super Power.

What happened? The British happened. They came in the garb of trade and to spread “civilization” to a civilization which had a history of 5000 years.

When they left India in 1947, India had a poverty rate of 80%. If it were not for Nehru-Patel, India would have been split up into many pieces as per the Cabinet Mission Plan which Jinnah wanted to implement; India would have got the foundations. We were lucky to have such individuals at the helm at such a crucial juncture. Gandhi delivered us the freedom, Nehru and Patel made it valuable.

Do not mistake my anger with anger against the British(As Gandhi and Nehru wanted, we will say goodbye to them with a smile). They did what they had to do, it is us who goofed up. We were too divided, too many kingdoms, too much regional politics (If you think Congress Vs Mamata or the Congress Vs BJP politics is stupid, just think of the murderous politics of that era which used to end in wars). India, in many ways, was a World in itself. So many cultures, diverse ethnicity, plethora of language shared a common roof. Others wanted to have a piece of the action, we were busy being divided.

I do not hate the British, but I realize the importance of being united. India is destined to be a big power and by around 2040 it will be the 3rd biggest economy in the World. By PPP terms it already is.

We owe it to ourselves, to the poor of India to accelerate this process.

We had a minor hiccup, let us fix ourselves and move on: We are destined for greatness.

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How Pakistan is good for India

When a limb is infected beyond hope, you have two choices: Persist with it and hope against hope that it will heal and risk death, or you cut it off to save the body.

This is the story of India’s partition into the soul- India- and the gangrenous limb-Pakistan, or what I would like to call- the result of an idea, The Two Nation Theory.

I’ve heard from various intensely,bordering on the jingoistic, patriotic Indians, (privately, of course) how India was broken into two by the ‘M’. Little do they realize that creation of Pakistan ended up saving India.

1. Two Nation Theory

As with any political–slash-religious theory the Two Nation Theory (TNT) has different versions and interpretations based on the guy’s political leanings.

Essentially it comes down to two points:

a) There are two Nations withing India (In spite of the fact that both of them have been living side by side for centuries).

b) The point of divide being Religion (This point is important). The divide is so great that these nations cannot co-exist at any cost.

A secular, liberal, progressive mind will probably disagree, including me, but not completely. What I am going to say next might sound contradictory in nature(and, controversial even), but is really not.

I do agree that dividing Humans into two sets based on some lofty man-made idea called Religion is idiotic, but we have to also agree that division exists and have to factor that in our calculations.

Hindus and Muslims were at each others throats. Muslims formed around 25% of the population of British India, making them a powerful bloc. Owing to their size and strength in numbers in certain parts of India, they had terrible nuisance potential.

But, one will argue that this is also true of the Hindus. Yes, but Hindus never wished for a separate state from Muslims. This is important. In the Hindu Religion(If you can call it that), there is no political side, as in Islam. Its priestly class has never been all-powerful.

But, its not the case with Islam. Its scriptures do interfere in the matter of the state. For instance, there are more than 50 Muslim Majority Countries in the World and only few of them are Democracies. Most of them call themselves Islamic.

One can easily see how this is dangerous. As it went, Muslims began to see themselves as a separate entity from majority Hindus and began to see themselves as victims and more crucially, Hindus being their tormentors, despite the fact that it was the British who had complete control of India and before the British arrived there was Mughal rule in most parts of India.

What guarantee was there that these separatist emotions would have been locked away had India stayed together?

The thing is: Once a case is made for a separate state, rightly or wrongly, and if the people who make that demand are present in very large numbers, have financial and political capital (Like Jinnah had British patronage), its very difficult to impress them not to make their demands. They would not settle with anything less than complete political power, either in the present state or the new state.

A few enlightened Muslims did recognize this cancerous theory for what it is. Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan (also known as Frontier Gandhi or Sarhadi Gandhi, for his love of non-violence, a trait he shared with the greatest proponent of the art- Gandhi), for instance said, “You have thrown us to the wolves”, when he learned that Congress had accepted the plan for partition. Maulana Azad too recognized that this was a flawed theory.

TNT was the disease, India the patient. The diseased part had to be cut off; A sacrifice to please the Gods had to be made.

If these separatist tendencies were ignored or somehow placated with concessions, what is the guarantee that they would not have raised their ugly head again when time seemed right? Riots went on even after Partition, with both sides attacking each other. Had Pakistan not been born, they would have occurred at a much grander scale, thereby destabilizing India, robbing it of the opportunity to build itself a solid foundation, which it got. Which brings me to my next point.

2. India needed solid foundations, not uncertainty

“We shall have India divided or we shall have India destroyed.”

– Mohammad Ali Jinnah

India got a solid foundation, thanks to Nehru. But, this would not have been possible if Pakistan had not been created. Riots would have caused havoc in all of India. India could have easily been plunged into Civil war (Note: Jinnah did in fact threaten Civil war if his demands were not met. In a show of strength he called for ‘Direct Action Day’ on the 18th day of Ramzan [Note the Religious overtone of the call]. Suhrawardy, a Muslim Leaguer and a close associate of Jinnah; who was the Chief Minister of a Muslim-Majority united Bengal and in charge of the Home Ministry, did nothing when Muslim mobs went on a rampage against their fellow neighboring Hindus). That day shook India. About 5,000 people died and 15,000 injured.

What if someone in a united free India and invoked similar emotions and demands among Muslims? The Nation would have been hostage to the blackmail of thugs like Suhrawardy, who went on to become the Prime Minister of Pakistan.

There was a very real chance that India could have been divided into two or more states had the Cabinet Mission Plan been accepted. The Cabinet Mission Plan, which Nehru put a brake to, would have left India a “moth-eaten” state, in which the 3 wings of India possessing the power to declare independence after 10 short years.

The proverbial steam was let off.

3. Pakistan – The buffer state

Be it Alexander or the Mughals or the Afghans, who used to raid India to loot and plunder, they all came from the same direction.

Himalayas to the North and North-East, the Indian Ocean to the South acted as natural barriers for ancient India. Not surprisingly, India was invaded and looted only from one direction (Only the British came via the sea). Pakistan, today, graciously, plugs that hole.

Pakistan and Afghanistan(Af-Pak) today are some of the most dangerous, volatile and violent regions on Earth. If Pakistan hadn’t been born, that region would have been part of India! If Pakistan didn’t exist, the porous, long borders with Afghanistan would have made sure India was sucked into the instability.

4. The Demographic Challenge

Today Pakistan and Bangladesh have a combined population of 316 Million, out of which only a fraction are non-Muslim. The total Muslim population of South Asia is around 450 Million.

If Pakistan had not been born, the Muslims would have formed about half the population of India.  India would have been sitting on a time bomb today. That bomb would have torn the fabric of India into shreds. Riots would have engulfed India and would have torn it apart not too long after Independence.

Pakistan was always inevitable. If it was not Jinnah in the 1940s, it could or would have been someone else in the 1950s or the 1960s. Religion is a handy tool to gain popularity and hold the nation hostage (Just look at the History of Pakistan where many despots and politicians alike have used it to their advantage). Jinnah did that beautifully. Nehru recognized that.

A Nation should be born on the ideas of unity, brotherhood and love of the Motherland. Sometime the ideas of division creep in and in rare cases it is best to give respect to such ideas and let them take their own course.

Today India is a Secular, Democratic, Pluralistic society, and is at peace with itself; Everything Pakistan is not. Sacrifice the limb to save a life, the saying goes.

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