Saturday, April 12, 2014

Muslims and Vote Bank politics

When all Political parties forget all issues and only talk about Secularism, you would know that Election season has arrived. You can easily find various party members having discussions with different Religious leaders. It can be Rahul Gandhi or Modi. Mulayam Singh or Arvind Kejriwal. All political parties are showing themselves as well wishers of Muslims. Sonia Gandhi has recently met Imam bukhari of Delhi Jama Masjid asking for Muslims vote. Modi has given special emphasis on people with skull cap and Burqas in his rallies. Arvind Kejriwal has attended meetings with few Religious leaders and guaranteed for a proper share of Muslims in his party. Why is that all Political leaders develop special love for Muslims in elections and show as if they are solely well-wishers for them.

Rajnath Singh conducted an event in Delhi called “Mission 272+ : Role of Muslim summit” in which he gathered few Mullahs and asked for forgiveness if anything wrong was done in the past from his side. Why a party like BJP which is considered Hindu Nationalist does needs Muslim votes to form its government. It is because Muslims are not a minority but second largest Majority in India. They compromise of 18% of total population of India. Their vote shares decides around 300 seats in General elections. That’s why all parties show special love towards Muslims and gather few Mullahs and Muftis to get a Secular certificate from them. Like Hindus which are distributed in many forms based on their Caste, region and languages Muslims are also divided into various forms like Shia, Sunni, Bohra, Ahmediya etc. and even in various castes like Sheikh, Ansari, Qureshi etc. But unlike Hindus it is observed that in an elections mostly Muslims vote goes to same party which decides who will win from that assembly.

The irony of this country is that whenever Muslims are considered in mainstream politics, they are recognized by their skull cap and Burqas. Irrespective of election issues for others, For Muslims it is always Communalism. That’s why leaders like Mulayam Singh or Lalu Yadav have remained in power for so long. There are leaders who think Muslims as their vote bank and use them in times of elections. Muzaffarnagar riots are the  latest example of such incident where a normal fight between 2 persons increased so much that more than 60 lost their lives and thousand were forced to leave their homes and live like refugees. Initial investigation shows that riots were done for gathering Hindus vote on BJP side and Muslims vote on the Samajwadi Party’s side. In between these riots main issues of elections were lost and again focus points were moved from development to Communalism. So after such an incident politicians gathers few religious leaders and ask for their Certificate for Secularism.

Why no one asks for such Certificates from Sikhs or Christians for Communalism against them and why does whenever Communalism is talked about, it is only talked from minorities end. Why Majority communalism is left behind. If we don’t talk about Majority communalism, there is no need of talking about Minority Communalism. If a Majority is communal, then there is no use of such gatherings and having a conference with different religious leaders. I fully agree with M.J.Akbar who once said India is secular not because 15% of the population, Muslims think it is secular but because 80% of our population, Hindus think it is secular. But there are people on both sides who are creating rifts between people for their own sake. Similarly, Indian Muslims want a secular country otherwise Hyderabad based political party MIM led by Akbaruddin owaisi has failed to increase its reach from one seat to two in the last fifty years and not being able to win in other Muslim dominated parts of the country.

In UPA-1, Manmohan Singh formed a Sachchar which was formed to have a study of conditions of Muslims in India. In 2006, it handed over its report to Lok Sabha in which Rajinder Sachar mentioned that the status of Indian Muslims are below the conditions of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled tribes and the overall percentage of muslims in bureaucracy in India is just 2.5 % whereas muslims contribute 15% of its population. He recommended few measures in which Education and Social status can be increased in the society. Similarly, Ranganath Commission had recommended quotas for Muslims.

But none of these recommendations have been approved by Cabinet which shows their special love towards Minorities. It has been eight years and now also in every election they just repeat their statements that they will implement Sachchar committee recommendations but nothing has been so far.

A Political will is missing in today’s politicians to upfront the Minority population of the country. Unless this will is developed, nothing can be done irrespective of how many Committees submit their reports.

1 comment:

  1. There is lack of political will in implementing Sachchar comittee recommendations because all the political parties preaching secularism fear losing muslim vote bank.As majority of muslims when uplifted from poverty and provided proper education will not get misled by these political parties and start voting for good governance and development.Therefore, these parties stand to lose from Muslims progress.