Thoughts on 1971 by Dr. Firoz Mahboob Kamal

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The earned occupation

Some alarming news is circulating in the media. Now in police, civil administrations and ministerial secretariats of Bangladesh, Hindus are getting jobs at disproportionately higher proportion than the Muslims. Hundreds of thousands of Indians are working legally or illegally in Bangladesh. Now it is no secret that Shaikh Hasina’s government is doing everything to appease the Hindu minority. She takes it as a strategy to appease the Hindutva rulers in Delhi – her real masters and promoters in politics. Muslims are about 15 percent in India, but in government services, they are only about 3 percent. The exclusion of Muslims from government jobs is the government policy since independence of India in 1947. The ruling party gets changed but the anti-Muslim policy stays.

The same Hindutva policy of excluding Muslims is working in Bangladesh. The Indian occupation is taking place in every form and everywhere in Bangladesh. India could take transit through Bangladesh. It enjoys access to the country’s sea ports. It withdraws water from more than 50 rivers. It can kill any number of unarmed Bangladeshis on the border; but it can’t dare kill Pakistanis or Nepalese or Bhutanese in the same way. But the Bangladesh government maintains its conspicuous silence. As if the caged pigeon has no choice. What else could be the worst symptoms of the Indian occupation? Even those who fought against Pakistan shoulder to shoulder with the Indian Army are raising the voice against such occupation.

War of a country has never been a charity for any other country or people. It is an investment of money and blood. War is always used as a tool of geopolitical dominance.  Hence, India’s war in 1971 was not a gift for Bengali people. It was not only to dismember Pakistan; but also to put a shackle at the neck of the Bangladeshis. But the secularised Bengalis foolishly believe that India fought for their independence. They fail to understand that they earned only occupation and not independence.

To live with geopolitical independence is the most costly enterprise in the world. For that, Pakistan had to bear economic hardship and make nuclear bombs. The European countries had to form the European Union and join NATO to minimise the cost of defence. For the same reason, the wise Bengali Muslim leaders of the 1940s forged unity with the West Pakistanis to form united Pakistan. But Shaikh Mujib had only one agenda; it was to grab power by any means. Defence or independence of Bangladesh wasn’t not an issue for him. He was even ready to accept slavery of India if he is kept in power. This is why he became part of the India inspired Agartala conspiracy in the 1960s. Her daughter Hasina is following the same strategy. And India, too, knows very well that Bangladesh will never have the ability to bear the huge cost of defence against India. Bangladesh possesses only one option and that is to accept the Indian hegemony. In fact, Tajuddin’s acceptance of 7 point and Mujib’s acceptance of 25 point treaty of surrender with India testify to such vulnerability.

The fortunate India

India is working with the strategy to occupy Bangladesh from 1947. It was a great success in 1971. India is fortunate to get millions of armed and unarmed collaborators to execute its strategy. India didn’t get such collaborators in other neighbouring countries –not even in Hindu majority Nepal. It is a shame that most of the Bangladeshis couldn’t see India’s covert and overt agenda. It is also a shame that they took a proven Indian agent and the killer of democracy as the father and friend of Bengalis (father of nation and bangabandhu).  

Not surprisingly, the de-Islamised secularists and the Bengali nationalists celebrate Indian occupation as liberation. They sing a song of an idol worshiper like Indian Tagore as the national anthem. In 1972, India withdrew its occupational forces but had enough internal collaborators to sustain the Indian occupation. So to kill anti-Indians like Abrar Fahad of BUET, India didn’t need to send any Rashtriya Sevak Sangh (RSS) thugs, the Bangladesh branch of RSS does the job. They can kill and kidnap anybody from anywhere in the country.


Telling the truth: a holy jihad

The de-Islamised and secularised collaborators of India have successfully killed truth in Bangladesh. In a Tsunami of lies even a university professor sells popular lies of 1971’s 30 million deaths with a loud voice and a pious man feels hesitant to speak even the proven truth. In Bangladesh, most of the people analyse political events of 1971 with the prism of Bengali nationalism and secularism. Nationalist and secularist prisms hide the crimes of the Bengali nationalists. Hence they can’t see the genocide of Biharis, rape of the non-Bengalis women, killing of unarmed razakars in 1971.

If anyone sees things through an Islamic perspective, he or she is blamed to have Pakistani prism and labelled as Razaker. Whereas in any form of analysis, to have an Islamic prism is an Islamic obligation. Faith in Islam brings changes not only in beliefs and lifestyle, but also in ideological perspectives of the prism. This is why people living in the same place don’t see things the same way. So an Islamist sees differently from a secularist or a nationalist. 

We must tell the most unpalatable truth about 1971. Even a thief can tell a popular truth to raise his credibility in society. But a man who offers five prayers and keeps a month-long fasting may not say the most unpopular truth. There is a risk of being abused or killed. Even the great Prophet (peace be upon him) was labelled as lunatic for telling the truth. Because terrorism works not only in politics but also in the intellectual discourse. Bangladesh is under the rule of the worst cultural and intellectual terrorists. So Allah Sub’hana wa Ta’la gives extra reward for those who tell the most unpopular truth. It is jihad in Islam. In the history of Bangladesh there are so many such truths that are hidden and rarely told in public. And a lie can only survive if truth is suppressed. A lot of lies have been manufactured around the events of 1917. The lie of the liberation by Mukti Bahini, 3 million deaths and 300, 000 rapes could get a huge market only because the truth was suppressed. It is claimed that Mukti Bahini has libearted Bangladesh but it is not said that they could not liberate even a single district or mahakuma, let alone the whole Bangladesh. The people have been listening to that stuff all the time since 1971 both from Bangladesh Awami League (BAL) Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and other secular camps.   

The haram politics

A Muslim must have his or her politics fully halal like halal foods and drinks. There must not be any compromise on that. Taking haram food is the rebellion against the order of Allah Sub’hana wa Ta’la; hence it makes a man kafir. Likewise, haram politic is the disobedience of Allah’s guidance in statecraft; hence it also makes one kafir. This is why secularist and nationalist politics are haram in Islam. These are sheer ideological corruption and disobedience. A Muslim must incorporate all the Islamic guidance in his politics. There is no scope of excluding any Islamic rule from any space of life. It is the full submission to Islam. It is the Qur’anic decree: “ud’khulu fis slime ka’ffa” (enter into Islam fully). Hence nothing of life should be outside the rule of Islam.

But a secularist doesn’t give space for the implementation Islamic principles in politics, judiciary, culture, dress code and other affairs. They call it medieval barbarism. They call it communalism and superstition. This is exactly happening in Bangladesh. They are restrictive against Islam. So the secularists become monarchist, fascist, nationalist, socialist and liberalist. Unfortunately, like prostitution and riba (interest) this haram stuff like secularism, nationalism, and liberalism thrive in countries like Bangladesh. Trading such evil ideologies has become a staple of the secularist parties like Bangladesh Awami League (BAL) Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and many other secular parties.  

In the secular paradigm even adultery (jina) is appreciated as love if done with consent. But in Islamic paradigm, it is punishable by stoning to death in public if they are married. Those who are unmarried have to face lashes. Those who disagree with such Qur’anic verdict instantly turn to be kafir -as revealed in surah Maida verse 44. The same is true about breaking a Muslim country.  It is a punishable crime by death. If not punished here, will be punished in the hereafter. Pakistan was not a perfect Islamic state. But it was Muslim state. A house may have some poisonous snakes in it. For that, the house must not be burnt. Instead, the snakes should be killed. The same is about a Muslim state. The Umaiya, Abbasiya and Osmani caliphates were not perfect Islamic states like khulafa-e Rashida. Even some rulers burnt kabah. Despite all the inadequacies, no believer tried to dismember those caliphates; so the caliphate survived for more than 13 hundred years. The Muslim Army had to fight wars only on the frontiers against the alien kuffars, they didn’t face any internal separatists. Later on it became the crime of the nationalist devils and in 1971, Pakistan too, had to face them. But the secularists don’t bother about sharia. They only want power by any means –even aligning with the kuffars, as Mujib and his comrades did in 1971. The Arab World is divided into 22 states. But that is not Islamic, it is the sign of old Arab tribalism. The crimes of Arabs cannot justify the crimes of Bengalis in 1971. 

Politics is an ibadah in Islam. It must be used as a tool only to please Allah Subhana wa Tala by bringing victory to Islam and Muslims. In Islam, politics is not power-grabbing enterprise; it is a holy jihad to defend Islamic ideology, sharia and the Muslim land. It must not be used to appease any national, tribal, personal or party aspirations. 

So a true Muslim always does politics to build and expand a Muslim country and never engage to break it. This is why in 1971, not a single Islamic party or a single alim supported the break of Pakistan. They all called it haram. 

Breaking Pakistan was the project of India and pro-Indian BAL, NAP, communist party and Hindus. Of course they won; but that doesn’t mean that they were right. Victory is never a marker of rightfulness. Many devils like Pharaoh won and ruled for long years in history. A Hindu never supports any good for the Muslims. India’s support in 1971 proved that it was wrong and harmful for the Muslims.

The lost opportunity

Pakistan has its own problems. But the Bengalis -the majority of Pakistan didn’t try to help solve those problems. Rather the nationalist and secularist Bengalis abused those problems to fulfil the Indian agenda and their own narrow parochial goal. Serving Islam and the Muslims didn’t receive any priority in Mujib’s politics in 1971. 

Pakistan was the largest Muslim country in the world and now a nuclear power. Pakistan gave the Bengali Muslims a golden opportunity to shine in the world and play a significant role in world politics. Breaking Pakistan was not the solution of the problems of Bengali Muslims, it could be strengthened by democratisation. Pakistan’s strength was Bengali Muslims’ strength. But fascist Shaikh Mujib and his ilk didn’t have any iota of love for democracy. He proved that while got power. He harmed both Pakistan and Bangladesh. Now Pakistan has achieved the democratic goal but democracy is dead in Bangladesh. 

The BAL people described East Pakistan as a colony of West Pakistan. It is totally wrong. The man who sat on the chair of the Head of the State of Pakistan after the death of Jinnah was Khawja Nazimuddin of Dhaka. Pakistan had three Bengali Prime Ministers in 23 years. But these BAL Bengalis do not understand what colonial rule does mean -although Bengal had the longest colonial rule in the whole span of the Muslim history. The Bengalis enjoyed more democracy in Pakistan than in Bangladesh. The politics of killing political opponents, forced disappearance, hanging through fabricated trials didn’t exist in Pakistan.  

As a Muslim, one must try to be a pan-Islamist. Any secularist or nationalist inclination must not enter into believers’ hearts. This is an Islamic obligation. A true believer must hate to be a nationalist as he or she hates idol worshipping. It doesn’t need any moral strength or ideological correctness to flow with the wave of toxic nationalism, even a thief or killer can amply follow such a political trend. But it is haram in Islam. If a Muslim is alone, even then he or she must stand against such a deviant trend. 

So my analysis on 1971 definitely differs from that of those who are nationalist, secularist and non-conformist with Islam. My cherished Muslimness is responsible for such a distinctiveness from others. I admire those wise Bengali Muslim leaders of the 1940s who created a golden opportunity for the Bengali Muslim to play a significant role in the global stage. 

In February 2020, I went to present a research paper in an international conference arranged jointly by the University of Paris and the University of Normandy. I felt very proud as a Bengali while an Indonesian professor in his paper on Bandung Spirit in non-aligned movement mentioned the name of Mohammad Ali Bogra who attended the NAM conference in Bandung in Indonesia as the Prime Minister of Pakistan -along with President Naser, President Shukarno, Marshal Tito. In that hall, it came to mind that we the Bengalis could have played a more important role on the world stage if we had been a part of Pakistan. At least we could escape the ongoing Indian hegemony. Those who damaged that golden opportunity will face harsh criticism if not today at least a hundred years later. 

The new hope

However, the paradigm in the Muslim World is rapidly shifting. The nationalists and secularists are now recognised as the deviants and internal enemies of the Muslim Ummah. Even a school kid with little Islamic knowledge understands that. Once, Mr. Sharif Musaddeque of Iran was a great hero of the Iranian nationalists. He was an elected Prime Minister of Iran in 1953 and admired for ousting the King Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi and nationalising Iranian oil. After the revolution in 1979, the famous road of Tehran was immediately renamed after him. But now he lives only in the midst of historical garbage. His crime is nothing but adherence to secularism and Iranian nationalism. 

So the Mujib’ite or the Zia’ite Mukti Bahini people who danced with the victorious Indian Army in 1971 and killed thousands of innocent Bengali and non-Bengali people for their love for Islam and Pakistan will be condemned for their heinous crime against Islam and Muslims.  In the history of Islam they will be remembered as the destroyers of the largest Muslim Country of the world and for serving Hindutva agenda. 21/09/2021   

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Disclaimer: Thoughts on 1971 by Dr. Firoz Mahboob Kamal - Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not necessarily reflect point-of-view

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