Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad has rued the fact that though Hindus in India are vocal in their support for secularism, Indian Muslims don’t speak out against violence against minority community in countries like Pakistan and Bangladesh.
“There have been cases of violence against Muslims, from (Mohammad) Akhlaq’s lynching in Dadri to two boys in Jharkhand who were hung from a tree. And, there has never been a lack of expression of secularism from Hindus in our country. You see on television, how they (Hindus) strip RSS and BJP bare, whenever such incidents happen. But, why we (Muslims) don’t raise issues when there are violations against Hindus in Pakistan and Bangladesh,” Azad said while addressing a seminar on — Role of Muslim Youth in Strengthening Democracy — organised by National Tricolour Association of India on Tuesday.
Azad further said that if the Muslims in India start speaking out against such acts of violence in the neighbouring countries then the BJP’s anti-Muslim edge will be blunted.
Two other scholars, who also spoke at the seminar held at the India Islamic Centre, underlined the “silence” of the country’s Muslim community in hours of violence in “India’s neighbourhood”.
We hear cases of violence meted out to our Hindu brothers in Bangladesh, or of Hindu temples being razed or desecrated. But, do we (Muslims) speak out on such brazen acts of violations. We must speak out against injustice, just as we expect our majority Hindu brothers to stand by us in India, they said.
Azad also hit out at the government over the demonetisation issue saying, “the move has driven Indians crazy in the name of black money”. He also took a dig at the media and Prime Minister Modi, saying, “now it’s all Modi in newspapers and on TV channels, the Opposition cannot be seen.”
“The time of free and impartial media is no more. Now, you open, newspapers, and you see 10-20 pictures of Modi,” he alleged.
(With PTI inputs)