By Latheef Farook
India’s relations with oil rich Gulf countries seems to be passing through a period of crisis ever since two ruling BJP senior officials made derogatory remarks on Islam’s Holy Prophet Muhammad.
It is true that Gulf governments responded promptly as the enraged people began reacting by emptying supermarkets of Indian products and boycotting the import of Indian products with some demanding to repatriate Hindu workers.
However the demand to repatriate hundreds of thousands of Hindus is unreasonable as most Hindus have nothing to do with RSS and its off shoot Bharatiya Janata Party – BJP – hell bent on wiping out Muslims and Islam and turn India into a pure Hindu raj meant only for Hindus.
Remarks on Prophet Mohammed has brought to limelight the ongoing government sponsored violence against Muslims ever since Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s BJP government was elected in 2004. Besides supporting the ongoing violence against Muslims, the government itself introduced legal measures to reduce Muslims in India to nonentity.
Columnist and author J Wereman, the author of Crucifying America, God Hates You. Hate Him Back and Koran Curious said “ Modi and his BJP are scrambling to contain a diplomatic firestorm that has erupted throughout the Middle East over derogatory remarks made by two senior officials about the Prophet Muhammad and the Islamic faith.
For those familiar with Indian politics, the past few weeks have been profoundly revelatory, marking the first time India’s ruling party has been caught embarrassed by its systematic mistreatment of its Muslim minority since riding into office on the back of a muscular Hindu nationalist agenda in 2014.
Warning the government of a civil war Bollywood actor Naseerudeen Shah spoke about the ongoing violence against Muslims in India. He emphasized the need for Modi to stop violence against Muslims to avert a civil war which could tear apart the country. He said this was essential especially in the context of calls for genocide of Muslims by Hindu priests and the government’s failure to deal with such lawlessness.
Under the circumstance what is the future of Muslim in India, he asked.
Meanwhile columnist Mushtaque Rahmat stated that Indian Muslims must not forget that Gulf nations and others have voiced concern for the Prophet of Islam and not in support of Indian Muslims.
He added that more than a dozen countries have denounced the blasphemous statement and asked India to apologize. On a positive note, this international embarrassment has temporarily halted unrelenting Islamophobia by the rabid votaries of Hindutva patronized by the current ruling dispensation.
Muslims of India should be better off without the support of their co-religionists from the Gulf’s autocratic nations. Indian Muslims should also learn to discern the difference between support of religion and concern for their well-being.
Muslims in India have been suffering authorization and exclusion from the political, economic, and social spheres for some time. There has been a constant threat to their life and livelihood by the current dispensation. The RSS, BJP and its cohorts have never hidden their disdain for Muslims.
There have been many Dharam sansads and the meetings held across India calling for Muslims’ genocide, rape of Muslim women, an economic boycott of Muslims, and hatred against Islam, the Quran, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), and his wives.
The Indian Muslims must fight their battle on their own. Pinning hope of international support to fight domestic political struggle doesn’t have strong moral legs to walk far. Any word of help from forces other than Indian society will increasingly radicalize Indian Muslims. If demonstration across India is anything, it points in this direction.
But it’s hardly surprising the Modi government has been caught off-guard here, given that Arab states have willingly turned a blind eye to any number of India’s persecutory actions against Muslims.
No Arab country ever criticized India for its shabby treatment of Muslims. This unwanted support from Arab nations for Indian Muslims may indeed be counterproductive. BJP and Sangh Parivar have mastered the art of dog-whistle, double speak, studied silence, smoke screen, or not acknowledging any wrongdoing.
They may turn around and play the victim card against the Islamic nations, whose core constituencies will lap up on the one hand. On the other hand, they will unleash full state power on the hapless Muslim demonstrators by indiscriminate firing, arresting, and bulldozing their houses. Thus, as Yogendra Yadav said, blasphemy may stop but not the bulldozer. Thus concluded Mushtaque Rahmat.
Indian journalist Rana Ayyub said “Iran, Saudi Arabia and Qatar speaking in one voice. When was the last time the world witnessed this? Modi made this possible .”
On the other hand Gulf countries, especially Saudi Arabia and UAE, have a common secret axis with Israel and India under which both Saudi and Abu Dhabi have abandoned Islam and Muslims .What is important for oil sheikhs is their own safety and survival, their power, wealth and comforts.
For example” on the one hand, Saudi Arabia condemns controversial remarks about the Prophet Muhammad by BJP leaders while extending business with organizations closely linked to Modi and his BJP. Are they actually clueless or just don’t care about Muslims when the BJP’s anti-Muslim agenda is so clear for all to see?”
According to reports Saudi Arabia has hired a Dubai based company linked to Indian Modi to process Hajj applications. The company tasked with collecting and facilitating applications from prospective Hajj pilgrims living in western countries has at least one investor with close ties to India’s BJP government
There is anger among Muslims that lucrative deal may be enriching Indian BJP activists, whose Islamophobia has been widely reported. Several Indian activists said the revelations were concerning. Nabiya Khan, based in the capital, New Delhi, told that Saudi Arabia’s decision to outsource the application process to a company with investor links to the BJP was “outrageous” and “dangerous”.
Khan said that the BJP-led Karnataka government was at the centre of several anti-Muslim policies, including restrictions on the hijab and adhan (dawn prayer).”Muslims in Karnataka have been under continuous attack under the BJP. The personal data of those Muslims who applied through the portal could easily end up in the wrong hands,”.
Disclaimer: Gulf Sheikhs are not interested in Indian Muslims
However India scrambles to contain diplomatic fire storm - Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not necessarily reflect Latheefarook.com point-of-view