नागपुर में पिछले महीने पुरुष अधिकारों के प्रति समर्पित सेव इंडिया फॅमिली फाउंडेशन (SIFF) ने अपने पांचवे राष्ट्रीय सम्मलेन का भव्य और सफल आयोजन किया। मुख्य समारोह जो तीन दिनों का था, १६ अगस्त से लेकर १८ अगस्त तक, का आयोजन नागपुर से १०० किलोमीटर दूर पेंच टाइगर रिज़र्व के शांत और रमणीक स्थल पर हुआ. पेंच के जंगल नोबेल पुरस्कार विजेता रुडयार्ड किपलिंग से सम्बन्ध रखता है जहा पे उन्होंने मशहूर किरदार मोगली को जन्म दिया। बहरहाल इसी जगह पे तीन दिनों तक वैचारिक कसरत में सलंग्न रहना एक संवेदनशील मुद्दे पर एक सुखद और यादगार अनुभव रहा. ये कहने में कोई सकोच नहीं कि पुरुष अधिकारों के प्रति अभी भी बहुत बड़ा वर्ग उदासीन है लिहाज़ा ऐसे आयोजन समय की मांग बन गए है जो इस मुद्दे पे देश और देश के बाहर एक उपयुक्त भूमि का निर्माण कर सके.
इस सम्मलेन का आयोजन राजेश वखारिया और नागपुर की SIFF टीम ने नागपुर में अन्य महत्तवपूर्ण संस्थाओ के साथ मिलकर किया जिनमे रविन्द्र दरक का योगदान सराहनीय था. इस राष्ट्रीय सम्मलेन में SIFF की देश भर में फैली शाखाओ ने शिरकत की जिसमे बेंगालूरू , पुणे, मुंबई, लखनऊ, कन्याकुमारी, चेन्नई, इलाहबाद, हैदराबाद, नई दिल्ली और अन्य जगहों से आये सत्रह राज्यों के कुल १५० से अधिक् जुझारु कार्यकर्ताओ ने अपनी सहभागिता दर्ज करायी जिन्होंने देश भर में फैले 40,000 एक्टिविस्ट्स का प्रतिनिधित्व किया। इसके साथ ही कुछ प्रसिद्ध विदेशी संस्थाओ जिसमे मैरिटल जस्टिस, यूनाइटेड किंगडम और इन्साफ, यूनाइटेड स्टेट्स ऑफ़ अमेरिका, प्रमुख थे ने भी अपनी उपस्थिति दर्ज कराई। उल्लेखनीय बात ये रही कि जर्मनी, जापान, ऑस्ट्रेलिया, रूस, सिंगापुर और मिडिल ईस्ट से भी एक्टिविस्टस का आगमन हुआ.
समारोह में मैंने एक लेखक/ब्लॉगर की हैसियत से अपनी सहभागिता दर्ज कराई। चूंकि पुरुष अधिकारों में बहुत पहले से विचार विमर्श में सलंग्न रहा हूँ जो मेरे कई लेखो में उभर कर सामने आये है लिहाज़ा इस समारोह के जरिये मुझे कई और पहलुओ को बारीकी से समझने का अवसर प्राप्त हुआ.यद्धपि इस सम्मलेन में हुई चर्चाओ का फलक, विषय विन्दु कुछ सीमित सा रह गया, कुछ जरूरी सन्दर्भ जो परिवार के विघटन के प्रमुख कारण होते है जैसे उपभोक्तावाद, सांस्कृतिक हमले, इन पर कोई ख़ास चर्चा नहीं हुई और इसके अलावा संचालन में प्रक्रियागत ख़ामिया भी रह गयी लेकिन इसके बावजूद कई मुद्दों पर सार्थक चर्चा हुई. डॉ पोनप्पा, जो कि मैसूर से पधारे सर्जन थें, ने सही व्यक्त किया कि जिन मुद्दों को हम लेकर चल रहे है वे एक गहन गंभीरता की मांग करते है जो अगर इस तरह के समरॊह में भी अगर न दिखे तो तकलीफ होती है.
ये सर्वविदित है कि IPC 498a, डोमेस्टिक वायलेंस एक्ट जैसे घातक कानूनो ने समाज की कमर तोड़कर रख दी है. इनका जिस तरह से व्यापक दुरुपयोग हुआ है उसको सुप्रीम कोर्ट ने कानूनी आतंकवाद की संज्ञा दी है. ये बेहद अफ़सोसजनक है कि कांग्रेस अपने वोट बैंक के चलते इस स्थिति में कोई सुधार नहीं कर पा रही. उलटे महिलाओ का वोट पक्का करने के लिए हिंदी विवाह अधिनियम (संशोधन) बिल, २०१०, पारित करा रही है जिसके पास हो जाने के बाद पुरुषो को आपसी सहमती से हासिल तलाक के उपरान्त अपनी गाढ़ी कमाई से अर्जित संपत्ति से हाथ धोना पड़ेगा। इस लाचार और पंगु सरकार के पास अपने अस्तित्व को बचाने के लिए सिवाय इस तरह के आत्मघाती कदमो के अलावा कोई और कदम नहीं सुझाई पड़ता है. सरकार में बैठे शामिल मंत्री और महत्त्वपूर्ण संस्थाओ को चला रहे अफसर शायद रेत में शुतुरमुर्ग की तरह सर गाड कर बैठे है कि उनको ये सरकारी आंकड़े जो कि ये दर्शाते है 242 पुरुष और 129 स्त्री हर दिन आत्महत्या करते है ( NCRB) की नाजुकता और गंभीरता समझ में नहीं आती है. इसको और बारीकी से देखे तो 71 प्रतिशत के लगभग शादी शुदा पुरुष आत्महत्या करते है तो लगभग 67 प्रतिशत शादी शुदा महिलाये आत्महत्या करती है.
कितने अफ़सोस की बात है कि जहा महिलाओ का पक्ष सुनने के लिए कई संस्थान है वही पुरुष को सड़ने गड़ने को छोड़ दिया जाता है उसको अपनी तमाम समस्याओ के साथ. खैर आधुनिक सभ्यता अपने उस मकाम पर आ गयी है जब पुरुषो का हर तरीके से शोषण बंद हो चाहे वो किसी भी रूप में हूँ और किसी स्तर पर हो. उनके योगदान का सही रूप से मूल्यांकन हो. लेकिन तमाशा देखिये कि कांग्रेस सरकार ना केवल परिवार संस्था को तहस नहस करने में लगी है बल्कि कानूनी आतंकवाद के जरिये पुरुषो को लाचार और अक्षम बनाने पर तुली है. आखिर हिन्दू विवाह अधिनियम (संशोधन) बिल, २०१०, जैसे अपूर्ण और भ्रामक कानून को बनाने का उद्देश्य क्या है जो संविधान के कई मूल पहलुओं की उपेक्षा करता है? जेंडर इक्वलिटी के दायरे में में क्या पुरुषो को आपत्ति करने का कोई अधिकार नहीं है? फिर ऐसा कानून लाने की क्या जरूरत है जो सिर्फ हिन्दू संपत्ति के बटवारे की बात करता हूँ? ऐसा ही संशोधन मुस्लिम पर्सनल कानून पर क्यों नहीं लागू होता? कितने खेद की बात है कि कांग्रेस की अक्षम सरकार ने विवाह नाम की संस्था की धज्जिया उड़ा दी पर हिन्दू खामोश है और नर के भेस में नारी समान पुरुष खामोश है.
इसलिए नागपुर में आयोजित राष्ट्रीय सम्मलेन ख़ासा महत्व रखता है. ये एहसास दिलाता है कि इस तरह के आयोजन अनिवार्य हो गए है सरकार को शीशा दिखाने के लिए और समाज में एक सार्थक बदलाव लाने के लिये. इस सम्मलेन में कुछ महत्त्वपूर्ण प्रस्ताव पारित किये गए जिनमे प्रमुख है पुरुषो के लिए अलग मंत्रालय बनाने के लिए ताकि उनके समस्याओ पर बेहतर चिंतन हो सके; पुरुषो की जिंदगी को खतरनाक धंधो में भागिरदारी कम की जाए; वैवाहिक कानून जो कि आज समानता के कानून की अवहेलना करते है उनको “जेंडर इक्वल” बनाया जाए कानून की चौखट में; पिता को भी समान रूप से शेयर्ड पेरेंटिंग के भावना के अंतर्गत बच्चो को पालन पोषण करने की छूट दी जाए तलाक मंजूर होने के उपरान्त ताकि बच्चो को माता पिता का सामान रूप से सरंक्षण प्राप्त हो. इसके अलावा इस बात पे भी बल दिया गया कि पुरुषो की स्वास्थ्य सम्बन्धी समस्याओं का निराकरण करने की एक सार्थक पहल हो सरकार और समाज दोनों द्वारा।
सम्मलेन का समापन हिन्दू विवाह अधिनियम (संशोधन) बिल, २०१० को तुरंत वापस मांग लेने के साथ हुआ. सम्मलेन में बहुत से लोगो को पुरुषो के अधिकार के प्रति चेतना जगाने लिए सम्मानित भी किया गया जिसमे इस लेख के लेखक हिस्से में भी ये सम्मान आया, जिनका इलाहाबाद में इलाहाबाद हाई कोर्ट के वकीलों ने एक समारोह आयोजित कर इस उपलब्धि के लिए सम्मानित किया। बहुत जरूरी है ऐसे सम्मलेन, इस तरह के सम्मान समाज का अस्तित्व बचाने के लिए और इस बात को बल देने के लिए कि पुरुष भी स्त्री की तरह समाज की एक प्रमुख इकाई है. SIFF और इससे जुड़े लोग बधाई के पात्र है इस तरह के क्रांतिकारी पहल के लिए. उम्मीद है इस तरह के संस्थान समय के साथ नयी ऊंचाई को प्राप्त कर समाज को नयी दशा और दिशा देने में निश्चित रूप से कामयाव होंगे।
The Times Of India
P.S.: Media Persons Are Permitted To Publish This Article In Their Respective Publications. However, They Are Requested To Give Due Credit To The Author/Blog Page Apprising Him Of Its Publication As Early As Possible.
A High Court lawyer Arvind Kumar Pandey was felicitated by a section of lawyers for receiving an award at fifth National Men’s Rights Conference held in Nagpur recently, for outstanding contribution in championing the cause of men in national and International arena, during a programme organized at Indian Coffee House on Saturday.
Addressing the lawyers, Arvind Kumar Pandey said, “Biased criminal laws have spoiled the lives of many men charged under the Dowry Act. The laws like Domestic Violence Act, IPC 498 a, and Maintenance Act, to name a few are heavily tilted in favour of women and have done more harm than producing good effects.”
The Men’s Rights National conference, held at Pench Tiger Reserve in Nagpur was attended by more than 150 men’s rights activists, who represented 40,000 activists spread across India and other parts of the globe.
This year’s national conference was held under the aegis of Nagpur Chapter of Save Indian Family Foundation (SIFF), now being run by Rajesh Vakharia. Few prominent International Men’s Rights Associations like Marital Justice from United Kingdom and INSAAF from USA besides Men’s Rights activists from Germany, Singapore, Japan, Australia, South Africa, Middle East, Japan and Russia also attended the conference.
Informing about the resolutions passed at fifth Men’s Rights conference Arvind Kumar Pandey, who attended the conference as a writer and blogger said, “The first resolution was aimed at formation of Men’s Welfare Ministry while the next resolution aimed at reducing the number of men involved in hazardous professions and another important resolution dealt with creation of gender-neutral treatment in legal aspects. Recognition of the rights of fathers, making shared parenting necessary in wake of separation was another major demand made on the occasion. The activists were unanimous in rejecting the highly biased Marriage Law Amendment Bill, 2010, and demanded its roll back. Lastly, the need to make huge investment in areas of Men’s health was deeply felt.”
The felicitation ceremony at Coffee House, Allahabad, was attended by advocates including Neeraj Shukla, Sampanna Kumar Srivastava, Ashish Nigam, Satyadhar Dubey, Arvind Kushwaha, Pintu Jaiswal, Shubhranshu Pandey, Arun Prakash Srivastava, Mohit Kesarwani and few others.
Some More Pics From The Felicitation Held In Allahabad On August 27, 2013.
This news item also got published in these two newspapers:
P.S. : Advocate Altaf Ahamad, practicing at District Court, Allahabad, also attended the felicitation ceremony held at Coffee House, Allahabad on August 27. His name failed to find mention in the news reports. I regret the error.
Not much has changed in Middle East since my last conversation with Bill Kirkman in 2006. Israel and Palestine relations continue to remain tense even as US has given way to tactical shift in its policies aimed at bringing stability in that region. It has become more people oriented than relying absolutely on state-to-state negotiations.
Obama’s words make that aspect very clear– “Speaking as a politician, I can promise you this: political leaders will not take risks if the people do not demand that they do. You must create the change that you want to see…..Look to the future that you want for your own children – a future in which a Jewish, democratic state is protected and accepted, for this time and for all time. … There will be many voices that say this change is not possible. But remember this: Israel is the most powerful country in this region. Israel has the unshakeable support of the most powerful country in the world. Israel has the wisdom to see the world as it is, but also the courage to see the world as it should be.”
It would be interesting to know the views which flowed between us as we discussed this very sensitive issue seven years back.
This has reference to Bill Kirkman’s article “A war that is morally indefensible“ published in The Hindu on August 06, 2006. Well, the kidnapping of the Israeli soldiers by the Hamas and brutal murder of some of its soldiers by Hizballah were enough to fan the suppressed desires of Israeli. It’s time to acknowledge the fact that in war both the sides end up as losers. Let’s not intercept it as clash of civilization but clash of religious ideologies. However, it’s a harsh reality that none of the religious ideologies advocate violence but the fallacious interpretation of them by their followers leads to volcanic atmosphere. A situation which is cashed-in-on by the US and its like-minded allies to serve their vested interests. Unless the followers come to elevate their consciousness, it would be nothing sort of foolhardiness to expect miraculous changes in the future.
President Bush must heed to the words of Churchill: ” The statesman who yields to war fever ….is no longer the master of policy but the slave of unforeseeable and uncontrollable events.” Surely, the way events have taken shape in Iraq, shattering American hopes one after another, should be enough for the US to intercept the dangers in pursuing imperialist designs in the name of restoration of human rights.
However, Americans love to ignore the lessons offered by past debacle. Had US remembered setback it received in Vietnam, it would have certainly curtailed its habit of pulling the strings of weaker nation on one pretext or another.
Words Of Bill Kirkman:
Thank you for writing. I was interested in your comments. I agree that in war both sides end up as losers. I take a very gloomy view of the future of West Asia.
About Bill Kirkman:
” He began his career as a journalist on the Wolverhampton Express & Star, which he joined on graduating from Oxford. Bill then moved on to The Times, where he was Africa Correspondent and Commonwealth Staff Correspondent in the early 1960s, covering the period of rapid de-colonisation. He is the author of Unscrambling an Empire (Chatto & Windus 1966) and has been a columnist for The Hindu since 1994. He was a frequent broadcaster with the BBC World Service and Africa Service in the 1960s, and with BBC Radio Cambridgeshire in the 1990s. In 1983 Bill was awarded the MBE for services to journalism…..Bill was Head of the University Careers Service from his arrival in Cambridge in 1968 until 1992 (following four years as Careers Advisor at Oxford) and University Advisor on Public Relations 1992-1996.”
Source: Wolfson College Cambridge
Reflections on Hyderabad Twin Blasts: How Long Will Muslims Take To Feel That They Truly Belong To India?
How will you define the separatist feelings in Indian Muslims? How long will they take to feel that they truly belong to India? Have you ever visited Muslim locality during India-Pakistan Match? They celebrate Pakistan’s victory as if Pakistan has gained something incredible. They never celebrate it in sportsmanship style. In fact, I also, being a cricket lover, feel happy if Pakistan wins after displaying good strategies. However, that’s not the way Muslim celebrate it. It’s a different celebration altogether. It speaks volume about their mindset. They are Muslims first and nationalists later.
Before I proceed further, it would be interesting to read what a conscious Indian thinks about blasts which hit Hyderabad on Febuary 21, 2013:
“Arvindji, Pakistan keenly wants Hindu-Muslim riots in India to destabilize India and malign our image in front of international community. They want Hindus and Muslims to fight with each other. If a riot happens, Pakistan will blame India for torturing Muslims. If a riot happens then Indians will suffer and Pakistan will be very happy. If India wages a war against Pakistan, then also India has much to lose. A war will destroy our economic growth. Pakistan, whose economy is in shatters, has not much to loose.India needs a powerful and independent agency, formed jointly by state and centre, which must work to build a strong internal security and intelligence gathering system. India has to prepare itself to fight against foes who are hidden among us.” ( Prasanjit Saha, Hyderabad)
Very well said, my dear conscious Indian! We have always suffered because we always dared to read the intentions of enemy lightly. That’s why traitors like Mir Zafar, hand-in-glove, with foreign powers ensured that India became battle ground for dubious foreign powers in past! The right strategy is that we should crush the enemy to an extent that it dares not make an attempt to give force to divisive forces. Our decency is seen as weakness even as it win friends in International circles. Safety of our individuals is first than ensuring that we have friends in foreign lands. That should be our top priority. If our people are dying like street dogs, then to have happy face is cowardice and sin.
You can control an enemy- a simple enemy. But how will you control an enemy with a dubious mindset. The problem with Muslims is not that they are Muslims. It’s more about their mindset. How would you change that? That too when government at Centre, is lame duck, which refuses to see problems pertaining to Muslims as threat to national integrity. Obviously, it’s all about politics to retain power. However, in this great game the victims are ordinary citizens, who have no other desire than to live dignified life, peaceful life.
How will you ensure who is friend and who is foe when foes appear in form of friends? In Hindi you have better term to express it: “Genhu ke Sath Ghun Bhi Pis Jaate Hai” ( Few good people also die in an attempt to eliminate the enemy).This situation would not have arisen unless the members of Muslim community had given clear indication of their intentions that they in no way identify with negative forces operating within their community.So it’s a catch 22 situation. Isn’t it? The intelligence reports, which government dares not to make it public, or rather citizens are not conscious enough to read it, or else it would have given insights how the home grown terrorists are operating from one corner of the nation to another remote part of the nation.
“According to IB reports, the ISI has set up strong modules of the Lashkar-e-Tayiba in the Gulf. The Oman module is also very strong and directly connected to the modules in Kerala. ..The annual remittance through hawala channels into Kerala is a whopping Rs 20,000 crore. This figure tells the story of a state, which has today become a hub for extremists….The National Investigating Agency, which has its eyes on this state, has also found that large sums of money, which has been pumped in from the Gulf, had been used to execute the blasts at Delhi, Bengaluru and also at Ahmedabad.”
Worse, how can you ignore the fact that there are many who see a strong intelligence as a threat for secular fabric of this nation? They are the ones who will immediately give way to propaganda via International media that it’s a move to terrorize minorities. See it in light of human rights violation allegations heaped upon security forces operating in Kashmir!! It’s anybody’s guess that with this sort of political will and dismal scenario, the war against terror is not on the right track. It’s time to tackle divisive forces with iron hand, to ensure a safe future for India, better future for India.
कल तथाकथित प्यार करने वालो का परम पुनीत दिवस है। कुछ कहने की जरूरत नहीं है कि फर्जी इमोशंस के साथ बहुत सारे गुलाबो का आदान प्रदान होगा। गुलाब का तो पता नहीं पर वो अगर समझदार लड़की होगी तो उसका काम तो लह गया क्योकि गुलाब तो मुरझा जायेंगे, चाकलेट उदर में समा जायेंगे लेकिन गिफ्ट हो सकता है अगले साल भी किसी और को देने में काम आ सकते है। क्योकि एक साल में बहुत से इस साल वैलेंटाइन डे मनाने वालो लड़कियों के बॉयफ्रेंड इनके द्वारा ऐक्स्ड (axed ) कर देने के कारण एक्स-बॉयफ्रेंड हो जाते है। एक्स- गर्लफ्रेंड भी अस्तित्व में आ जाती है। खैर ये सब पुराने प्रेमी नहीं कि जाके किसी सॉलिड रॉक के ऊपर कोई दुखांत सा गीत गाये। इतने संवेदनशील नहीं कि शोक मनाये। कुछ एक जो थोड़े दुखी होंगे वो जरूर सॉलिड रॉक कुक्कुर धुन में रचे गीत जैसे” जो भी मै कहना चाहू बर्बाद करे अल्फाज़ मेरे“ को गाने या सुनने के बाद “तू नहीं सही कोई और सही” को चरितार्थ करते हुएँ किसी नए के दामन से लिपट जायेंगें। अब कितने सारे आप्शन माने विकल्प ”जोड़ी ब्रेकर” के रूप में भटक रह होते है। वो तो पुराने प्रेमी थे जो बेचारे कितने साल महीने आंसू टपकाते थें “प्यार की आग में तन बदन जल गया” गाते थें। अब तो आप इतने व्यापक विकल्पों वाले है कि मौका मिले तो “मेरे ब्रदर की दुल्हन” भी आपकी हो सकती है।
बाज़ार में देख रहा हूँ कि भोजपुरी गीतों के रोमांटिक एल्बम भी बहुत सारे आ गए है जिसके ऊपर “लभ” वाले चिन्ह बने हुएं है। मतलब प्यार का व्यापार ग्रामीण संस्कृति में गहनता से व्याप्त हो गया है। अहसास तो यही होता है। वर्ना ये अजंता-एलोरा की आधुनिक संस्करण तो भोजपुरी वाले “लभ” में इंटरेस्ट दिखाने से रही। जितनी तेज़ी से भारत ग्लोबल हुआ उतनी तेज़ी से लव का ग्राफ भी बढ़ा ये तय है। दोनों में समानुपाती रिश्ता सा लगता है। खैर एक चीज़ ये है कि इंडिया ने अब इतनी फ्रीडम जरूर दी है कि अगर इतने सारे आप्शनस लॉन्ग टर्म, शार्ट टर्म, लिव-इन के बावजूद भी आप अगर अकेले रह गए तो आप अपने सेक्स के साथ भी लव कर सकते है। इससे आप का कॉन्फिडेंस लेवल तो बढेगा ही और साथ में आप सब पे धौंस जमा सकते है प्रोग्रेसिव बन कर। कम से कम लोगो को अपने अनुभव से उत्पन्न प्रोग्रेसिव लेक्चर तो झाड़ ही सकते है। थोडा अच्छा लिख लेते हो तो क्या पता आप एक दो नोवेल भी लिख दे और पुरस्कार वगैरह मिल गया, जो ऐसे थीम पे अन्तराष्ट्रीय या राष्ट्रीय जगत में कुछ न कुछ मिलना तय ही है, तो युवा वर्ग की नब्ज़ पकड़ने वाले तमगो सहित आप की लेखक के रूप में उभार तय है।
वैलेंटाइन डे के ठीक एक दिन के बाद भट्ट कैम्प की मर्डर थ्री रिलीज़ हो रही है। ये सीरिज मैंने नहीं देखी है और ना मै चाहता हूँ कि इस सीरिज की कोई फ़िल्म देखने का सौभाग्य कभी भविष्य में बने लेकिन इस नयी फ़िल्म के पोस्टर में लिखी पंच लाइन आज के लव की हकीकत बयान कर देती है। लिखा है कि आप अपने प्रेमी को कितना जानते है? मतलब साफ़ है कि अगर आप सचेत नहीं है तो लव के बाद धोखा अवश्य है। वैसे अच्छा है वैलेंटाइन डे के ठीक एक दिन के बाद ही बहुत सारे नए नए प्रेमी भूतपूर्व प्रेमी हो जायेंगे। एक्सपीरियंस बढेगा युवाओं का। कैसी संस्कृति है कि वफ़ा की सोच भी रखना जुर्म से कम नहीं। सब में मिलावट, सब में खोट है चाइनीज़ माल की तरह। कब फुस्स हो जाए पता नहीं। एक युग था कि सरल और सीधा होना सम्मानजनक था। आज आप के नाकाबिलियत का परिचायक है। आप के विरुद्ध निकम्मेपन का तमगा है। शातिर दिमाग होना ही बुद्धिमानी बन गया है। खैर ये लव करने वाले प्रेमी उगते रहे, पनपते रहे। लेकिन चूँकि गाँव में “लभ” पाँव पसार चूका है इसलिए सरकार को जैसे शहर में लव के डाक्टर माने साइकोलोजिस्टस है जो प्यार के साइड इफेक्ट्स डिप्रेशन या टीनेज प्रेगनेंसी के केसेस को देखते है ऐसे कुछ डाक्टरों को ग्रामीण क्षेत्रो में नियुक्त किये जाए। ताकि कम से कम प्रेम के बाद जो शॉक्स झेंले पड़े उनका निदान वैज्ञानिक तरीके से हो। खैर मेरी तरफ से सब प्रेमी जनों को शुभकामनायें।
मेरे अन्दर तो साहिर की यही पंक्तियाँ उभर रही है:
हर चीज़ ज़माने की जहाँ पर थी वहीं है,
एक तू ही नहीं है
नज़रें भी वही और नज़ारे भी वही हैं
ख़ामोश फ़ज़ाओं के इशारे भी वही हैं
कहने को तो सब कुछ है, मगर कुछ भी नहीं है
हर अश्क में खोई हुई ख़ुशियों की झलक है
हर साँस में बीती हुई घड़ियों की कसक है
तू चाहे कहीं भी हो, तेरा दर्द यहीं है
हसरत नहीं, अरमान नहीं, आस नहीं है
यादों के सिवा कुछ भी मेरे पास नहीं है
यादें भी रहें या न रहें किसको यक़ीं है
The women community seeking “equality of gender”, should either accept this concept in entirety, or else, follow desirable norms. The point is why so much insistence on rights for behaving as you want, for doing whatever you want? Why not give way to responsibilities shared, supposedly always considered as role of men since time immemorial! That includes all menial jobs requiring intense labour in tough conditions. That also means serving the men community, inside homes, for ages. The men community did that for ages, supplying money like ATM machine, despite suffering severely at hands of cruel wives. That too silently! These employed, high salaried women, should also marry unemployed youths and offer them all comforts for many centuries without feeling the pinch just the way men community did that in past! I am just trying to convey that this drama of gender equality gained momentum in wake of the world becoming a sophisticated place to live, largely shaped by men and women in the same patriarchal mode, which the bunch of derailed feminists saw as an obstacle for the emancipation of woman.
I am not interested in narrating the consequences of feminism in other parts of the world, but in Indian context, it has given rise to new set of complexities. There was already healthy division of labour but with the rise of feminism, or call it curse of modernism, the world inside home got projected as insult to the capabilities of women. The traditional roles were projected as subservient. However, as the modern women, shattering so-called shackles, stepped out of the confines of home, they realized that world is not bed of roses, or on par with their expectations, largely because of limitations caused by their physicality. So another set of calculated efforts came into action, to make the outside world seem a safer domain. And for that very reason, males were advised to co-operate inside homes, doing household work, after all, that’s what true equality demands! That also meant loving ”fathers, brothers, sons” all be presented as “potential rapists” so that a false alarm can be raised, and thus, International bodies can come to dictate us, calling it a nation, which does not respects and honours women! The problems pertaining to women were highlighted in exaggerated way so as to ensure that hocus-pocus, called feminism, can make its presence felt in India.
It’s not that the problems related to woman community do not exist but a shrewd attempt to use them to create rift between the relationship, using the same bothering issues, is simply an attempt to hit hard at the cherished institutions called family and marriage. One never said that problems related with women be it female foeticide, rising sexual crimes, health concerns, low literacy level and etc. should never be dealt with in a conscious way. However, why should one not be alarmed when these very issues became a part of the plot to destabilize Indian society? It’s amazing that lesbians, drunk female girls, prostitutes not by condition but by choice, females involved in all sorts of complex relationship should be hailed as appropriate but the same women living inside the confines of home as an ideal wife is seen as insult to womanhood! I mean what sort of values are being professed in name of equality? What’s being achieved? It leaves one in deep pain that even the most heinous crimes “rapes” are also being used as tool to ensure that gender imbalance sharpens in name of equality.
This sort of heightened false consciousness in Indian women is a necessity because the governments in future would largely be shaped by minorities and women, and so it’s necessary to appease them, to keep them ignorant about real implications of chasing imported theories related with equality. At global level, this sort of destabilized society, wherein men and women, are living highly individualistic lives, caters well to the needs of consumerist society. So why would corporate demons make women aware of consequences of aping such wayward lifestyle, which is resulting in single women, divorced couples, broken homes, fatherless children, eventually leading to rise in crime level too? It’s safer for them that women come out of their homes, work for them, leading to greater productivity.
On the other hand, political class is all prepared to use them as a tool to make their political dreams come alive with their help. Only to attain such diabolical interests, the concept called feminism-the great game of gender equality-came in effect. It’s a myth that it got introduced to make their lives better. At least, in India, it’s not the case. Indeed, women have a set of their own problems, but to remove them, was it necessary to fall in the trap of complex notions of feminism, having goals which even Western world has failed to exhibit in totality or demonstrate with perfection? However, the problem starts when New Delhi starts living the pattern of life found in New York and Washington. That’s why borrowed concepts become a necessity. That’s why “equality” also becomes a necessity. That’s why a highly reputed media publication is bound to see “Sunny Leone” as woman of exceptional talent and merit. And that’s why it’s necessary to give rise to conflicts wherein woman is equal when it comes to enjoy benefits of modern society but woman feels no longer equal when threat is directly to her body. At that point, she is woman! Be equal to enjoy benefit, but be a woman in helpless positions!
Bringing qualitative differences in lives of woman is quite a different issue than using these very issues to demonize men, or, in fact, use the same issues to shatter the citadels of society. The positive side of this gender equality is that it has allowed men to reshape their own priorities. It has given them a huge chance to realize their own worth and get united to fight for the cause of men in a spirited way-something never done until now. This gender equality is a great phenomenon. At least, now everything related with woman shall be put on trial and it’s a great chance to shatter all stereotyped notions with them. They are no holy cows, and they are as shrewd and manipulative as men needs to be ably projected. It’s a myth that they are a weaker sex and that they were the harassed lot in past. They have always enjoyed deep respect, care, both in external world and within the four walls of home. However, it’s ironical, and diabolical too, that instead of highlighting this aspect, all the men got clubbed in one category of abusers of women. So it’s time to tell that who actually has been abusing-man or woman? The men community should discuss their own issues in a more organized way-their concerns, their dilemmas, their worries, their pain and their sufferings etc. should get highlighted in a better way. It’s for them to decide that they have to live like a male or as a female in a male body. That’s the real agenda of feminism- to curb the instincts of men to make them in tune with absurd concerns of women.
Lastly, there is nothing like gender equality. There are honorable differences and these differences should persist for the growth of society in a better way. Radha, Seeta, Draupadi, Savitri and other such great women were the by-product of same patriarchal society. Even in modern times, the same society has produced women for whom their fathers have been the role model. Let’s not topple such a society or else the future will be more darker than one would have imagined. Agreed that women have suffered discrimination and face problems. But are the lives of men devoid of problems? Aren’t they facing host of complex problems? Some times back in Kargil War, the Indian soldiers were killed in barbaric manner. Their genitals were cut. That was simply treated as war crime. The same done with woman would not have not only been treated as a war crime but also as sexual assault, rape. Now there lies the difference. That’s the paradox. One wishing true gender equality should treat both bodies as mere bodies! If that’s not possible then stop this nonsense about gender equality. At present, there is a difference and no difference in the name of equality. Difference when you can’t face the heat and no difference in sophisticated scenario. That’s not equality. That’s opportunism. That’s selfishness. That’s shrewdness of highest type.
Pic Two Internet
I still treat Indira Gandhi as one of the finest politicians India ever produced. At least, she was a politician with a backbone. She had a mind of her own, which she perfectly used to serve the cause of nation. She was, indeed, mired in bundle of contradictions and offered no great resistance to Congress culture wedded with sycophancy. Despite being owner of iron-will, she was in grip of insecurities. That brought her head on with prominent leading constitutional body like Supreme Court. She was the one who really started the game of weakening Supreme Court after biting the dust due to Allahabad HighCourt’s decision. The emergency period, an evergreen stigma on India’s democratic credentials, prove that she inherited the dictatorship traits found in infamous dictators of the past.
This “dumb doll” was really deceptive, and, no wonder, she was at the receiving end of Nixon’s anger, who treated her as “witch” and “clever fox”. The problem with her was that she had a disturbed childhood, followed by broken marriage, which when got combined with bourgeois set up offered by Congress culture, produced a fractured personality. She had flashes of brilliance in matters pertaining to internal security but other times she remained in possession of her whims and fancies. The Congress Party, which likes of Mahatma Gandhi, believed should be dissolved after Independence, remained in power with all its ills. Against this backdrop, a strong lady like Indira Gandhi had no other option but to share the road with corrupt minds.
We have many legitimate reasons to believe that her flaws in her persona outnumbered her positive aspects. However, it’s undisputed that her love towards nation was supreme. She had perfect global mind, which could argue with egocentric American leaders in tough language. She had the ability to call a spade a spade besides having the ability to follow her own way even as that meant ransacking American wishes. India, if we leave Atal Bihari Vajpayee, has not seen any Prime Minister who articulated dreams and wishes so well before the global leaders in the post Nehru regime in such a bold fashion. Lal Bahadur Shashtri also led the nation in glorious way but that’s a different story.
Today this nation is in mess. It’s progressing in a manner which has further widened the gap between the haves and the have nots. The Jihadi elements rule the roost, naxalites run a parallel government in this nation, China has increased its influence in Nepal and Arunanchal Pradesh, Kashmir remains in the grip of separatist leaders and scams have become the only phenomenon taking place regularly but our puppet Prime Minster Manmohan Singh, like Roman Emperor Nero, feels all is well! Imagine the fate of this nation in hands of likes of Rahul Babas and Robert Vadheras.
India was much safe in hands of Indira Gandhi than in the hands of mentally retarded leaders of our era, having huge difference in theory and practice. This lady with so many flaws had the sincere desire to keep India’s integrity intact. Her hardcore attitude was better than tendencies exhibited by leaders like Pranab Mukherjee, Manmohan Singh and Chidambaram, which is nothing other than cowardice masquerading as gentleness. We need her boldness and not such pretenders at the helm of affairs, in control of foreign hands, hidden behind the curtain.
My previous article created sound and fury of unprecedented type and a serious attempt to understand the alienation of Muslim society and its inability to mix with the other societies in homogeneous way was labeled as propaganda, sponsored by CIA and Mossad. However, such knee and jerk reaction proves one thing quite well: Muslim societies prefer to remain frogs in the well. At the very outset, I wish to make it very clear that I am neither interested in hurting the religious sentiments of Muslims nor interested in painting them in wrong colour. However, here arrives the mother of all questions: Why the attempt to understand the elements involved in the making of Muslim mind creates so much anxiety within the Muslim world? Why an outsider is always prevented to understand them in free flowing manner and his/her efforts are viewed with suspicion? Why such efforts are perceived as an attempt to desecrate Islam? This exhibition of flawed hypersensitivity on part of Muslim minds, wherein efforts to understand them ultimately gets reduced to Jews/Christian vs Muslims thing of sort has left this author aghast. This narrow-mindedness is quite baffling in modern world, leading to another important consideration: Is Islamic ideology inherently flawed, which does not believe in expansion of societies based on other religions, and to prevent their expansion it’s not hesitant enough to give way to violent means? We need to travel back in the history to understand the Muslim mindset and for this very reason episodes from the Medieval Indian history are being presented to establish that Islamic ideology is not about harmonious living; it’s all about dominance of Islam.
It’s pretty interesting that forget outsiders, even the attempts of conscious minds, belonging to the Muslim world, like Salman Rushdie and Tasleema Nasrin face great resistance from rigid minds-the hardliners within the Muslim circles. Very recently, when Rushdie tried to attend a meeting organized in Jaipur, he was forced to cancel his visit at the last moment under pressure from various Muslim organizations. Ironically, they have no problem in hearing the lectures delivered by the likes of Dr.Zakir Naik, who has nothing to offer but brutal suppression of facts and twisted logic, which ultimately upholds supremacy of Allah. One also finds hard to ignore that they are in conflict with original inhabitants right from Spain to China. China, which kept itself above from nuisance created by the elements operating within the dangerous Muslim world, is now struggling hard to curb the negative Muslim forces. The recent violent demonstrations in Central Sydney, Australia, brings back in our memories the words of John Howard, former Australian PM, who had explicitly stated that”jihad and extreme attitudes towards women were two problems unique to Muslims that previous intakes of migrants from Europe did not have’. He had to make an appeal that Muslims have to abide by Australian mainstream values. “It is not a problem that we have ever faced with other immigrant communities who become easily absorbed by Australia’s mainstream.”
The Muslim world offers unique logic that it’s a small percentage of misguided people, who have given way to extremist philosophy.What they fail to explain or conveniently ignore is that these so-called small percentage has hugely bothered peaceful democratic nations across the globe,leading to formation of tough laws to keep Jihadi elements out of their society. For example, India is comprised of minorities which include people belonging to Buddhist and Parsi community but they never come in conflict with Indian mainstream society. However, when it comes to Muslim society, even the so-called liberal mind, Poet Iqbal, the composer of Saare Jahan Se Achha Hindustan Hamara (India is best in the world), played an active role in formation of Pakistan with help of Jinnah! The Indian historians like Romila Thapar, belonging to secular group, never fail to refer to Ganga-Jamuni Tehjeeb (merger of opposite cultures) but what they never bothered to explain why the same balanced approach, which talked of peaceful co-existence, did not prevent Jinnah from declaring that:”To yoke together two such nations under a single state, one as a numerical minority and the other as a majority, must lead to growing discontent and final destruction of any fabric that may be so built up for the government of such a state.”
Well, it would be difficult to understand such a flawed mindset which refuses to honour the values prevalent in other societies, and instead tries to influence or topple it, unless we make a serious study of the Medieval History. The author is presenting episodes in Indian context only but that would be suffice to make any conscious reader gain perfect insight.
The Magnitude of Muslim Atrocities
(Ghazanavi to Amir Timur)
The world famous historian, Will Durant has written in his Story of Civilisation that “the Mohammedan conquest of India was probably the bloodiest story in history”.
India before the advent of Islamic imperialism was not exactly a zone of peace. There were plenty of wars fought by Hindu princes. But in all their wars, the Hindus had observed some time-honoured conventions sanctioned by the Sastras. The Brahmins and the Bhikshus were never molested. The cows were never killed. The temples were never touched. The chastity of women was never violated. The non-combatants were never killed or captured. A human habitation was never attacked unless it was a fort. The civil population was never plundered. War booty was an unknown item in the calculations of conquerors. The martial classes who clashed, mostly in open spaces, had a code of honor. Sacrifice of honor for victory or material gain was deemed as worse than death.
Islamic imperialism came with a different code–the Sunnah of the Prophet. It required its warriors to fall upon the helpless civil population after a decisive victory had been won on the battlefield. It required them to sack and burn down villages and towns after the defenders had died fighting or had fled. The cows, the Brahmins, and the Bhikshus invited their special attention in mass murders of non-combatants. The temples and monasteries were their special targets in an orgy of pillage and arson. Those whom they did not kill, they captured and sold as slaves. The magnitude of the booty looted even from the bodies of the dead, was a measure of the success of a military mission. And they did all this as mujahids (holy warriors) and ghazls (kafir-killers) in the service of Allah and his Last Prophet.
Hindus found it very hard to understand the psychology of this new invader. For the first time in their history, Hindus were witnessing a scene which was described by Kanhadade Prabandha (1456 AD) in the following words:
“The conquering army burnt villages, devastated the land, plundered people’s wealth, took Brahmins and children and women of all classes captive, flogged with thongs of raw hide, carried a moving prison with it, and converted the prisoners into obsequious Turks.”
That was written in remembrance of Alauddin Khalji’s invasion of Gujarat in the year l298 AD. But the gruesome game had started three centuries earlier when Mahmud Ghaznavi had vowed to invade India every year in order to destroy idolatry, kill the kafirs, capture prisoners of war, and plunder vast wealth for which India was well-known.
MAHMUD AND MASOOD GHAZNAVI
In 1000 AD Mahmud defeated Raja Jaipal, a scion of the Hindu Shahiya dynasty of Kabul. This dynasty had been for long the doorkeeper of India in the Northwest. Mahmud collected 250,000 dinars as indemnity. That perhaps was normal business of an empire builder. But in 1004 AD he stormed Bhatiya and plundered the place. He stayed there for some time to convert the Hindus to Islam with the help of mullahs he had brought with him.
In 1008 AD he captured Nagarkot (Kangra). The loot amounted to 70,000,000 dirhams in coins and 700,400 mans of gold and silver, besides plenty of precious stones and embroidered cloths. In 1011 AD he plundered Thanesar which was undefended, destroyed many temples, and broke a large number of idols. The chief idol, that of Chakraswamin, was taken to Ghazni and thrown into the public square for defilement under the feet of the faithful. According to Tarikh-i-Yamini of Utbi, Mahmud’s secretary,
“The blood of the infidels flowed so copiously [at Thanesar] that the stream was discolored, notwithstanding its purity, and people were unable to drink it. The Sultan returned with plunder which is impossible to count. Praise he to Allah for the honor he bestows on Islam and Muslims.”
In 1013 AD Mahmud advanced against Nandana where the Shahiya king, Anandapal, had established his new capital. The Hindus fought very hard but lost. Again, the temples were destroyed, and innocent citizens slaughtered. Utbi provides an account of the plunder and the prisoners of war:
“The Sultan returned in the rear of immense booty, and slaves were so plentiful that they became very cheap and men of respectability in their native land were degraded by becoming slaves of common shopkeepers. But this is the goodness of Allah, who bestows honor on his own religion and degrades infidelity.”
The road was now clear for an assault on the heartland of Hindustan. In December 1018 AD Mahmud crossed the Yamuna, collected 1,000,000 dirhams from Baran (Bulandshahar), and marched to Mahaban in Mathura district. Utbi records:
“The infidels…deserted the fort and tried to cross the foaming river…but many of them were slain, taken or drowned… Nearly fifty thousand men were killed.”
Mathura was the next victim. Mahmud seized five gold idols weighing 89,300 missals and 200 silver idols. According to Utbi, “The Sultan gave orders that all the temples should be burnt with naptha and fire, and levelled with the ground.” The pillage of the city continued for 20 days. Mahmud now turned towards Kanauj which had been the seat of several Hindu dynasties. Utbi continues: “In Kanauj there were nearly ten thousand temples… Many of the inhabitants of the place fled in consequence of witnessing the fate of their deaf and dumb idols. Those who did not fly were put to death. The Sultan gave his soldiers leave to plunder and take prisoners.”
The Brahmins of Munj, which was attacked next, fought to the last man after throwing their wives and children into fire. The fate of Asi was sealed when its ruler took fright and fled. According to Utbi, “…. the Sultan ordered that his five forts should be demolished from their foundations, the inhabitants buried in their ruins, and the soldiers of the garrison plundered, slain and captured”.
Shrawa, the next important place to be invaded, met the same fate. Utbi concludes:
“The Muslims paid no regard to the booty till they had satiated themselves with the slaughter of the infidels and worshipers of sun and fire. The friends of Allah searched the bodies of the slain for three days in order to obtain booty…The booty amounted in gold and silver, rubies and pearls nearly to three hundred thousand dirhams, and the number of prisoners may be conceived from the fact that each was sold for two to ten dirhams. These were afterwards taken to Ghazni and merchants came from distant cities to purchase them, so that the countries of Mawaraun-Nahr, Iraq and Khurasan were filled with them, and the fair and the dark, the rich and the poor, were commingled in one common slavery.”
Mahmud’s sack of Somnath is too well-known to be retold here. What needs emphasizing is that the fragments of the famous Sivalinga were carried to Ghazni. Some of them were turned into steps of the Jama Masjid in that city. The rest were sent to Mecca, Medina, and Baghdad to be desecrated in the same manner.
Mahmud’s son Masud tried to follow in the footsteps of his father. In 1037 AD he succeeded in sacking the fort of Hansi which was defended very bravely by the Hindus. The Tarikh-us-Subuktigin records: “The Brahmins and other high ranking men were slain, and their women and children were carried away captive, and all the treasure which was found was distributed among the army.”
Masud could not repeat the performance due to his preoccupations elsewhere.
MUHAMMAD GHORI AND HIS LEUTENANTS
Invasion of India by Islamic imperialism was renewed by Muhmmad Ghori in the last quarter of the 12th century. After Prithiviraj Chauhan had been defeated in 1192 AD, Ghori took Ajmer by assault.
According the Taj-ul-Ma’sir of Hasan Nizami, “While the Sultan remained at Ajmer, he destroyed the pillars and foundations of the idol temples and built in their stead mosques and colleges and precepts of Islam, and the customs of the law were divulged and established.”
Next year he defeated Jayachandra of Kanauj. A general massacre, rapine, and pillage followed. The Gahadvad treasuries at Asni and Varanasi were plundered. Hasan Nizami rejoices that “in Benares which is the centre of the country of Hind, they destroyed one thousand temples and raised mosques on their foundations”.
According to Kamil-ut-Tawarikh of Ibn Asir, “The slaughter of Hindus (at Varanasi) was immense; none were spared except women and children, and the carnage of men went on until the earth was weary.”
The women and children were spared so that they could be enslaved and sold all over the Islamic world. It may be added that the Buddhist complex at Sarnath was sacked at this time, and the Bhikshus were slaughtered.
Ghori’s lieutenant Qutbuddin Aibak was also busy meanwhile. Hasan Nizami writes that after the suppression of a Hindu revolt at Kol (modern day Aligarh) in 1193 AD, Aibak raised “three bastions as high as heaven with their heads, and their carcases became food for beasts of prey. The tract was freed from idols and idol worship and the foundations of infidelism were destroyed.”
In 1194 AD Aibak destroyed 27 Hindu temples at Delhi and built the Quwwat-ul-lslam mosque with their debris. According to Nizami, Aibak “adorned it with the stones and gold obtained from the temples which had been demolished by elephants”.
In 1195 AD the Mher tribe of Ajmer rose in revolt, and the Chaulukyas of Gujarat came to their assistance. Aibak had to invite reinforcements from Ghazni before he could meet the challenge. In 1196 AD he advanced against Anahilwar Patan, the capital of Gujarat. Nizami writes that after Raja Karan was defeated and forced to flee, “fifty thousand infidels were dispatched to hell by the sword” and “more than twenty thousand slaves, and cattle beyond all calculation fell into the hands of the victors”.
The city was sacked, its temples demolished, and its palaces plundered. On his return to Ajmer, Aibak destroyed the Sanskrit College of Visaladeva, and laid the foundations of a mosque which came to be known as ‘Adhai Din ka Jhompada’.
Conquest of Kalinjar in 1202 AD was Aibak’s crowning achievement. Nizami concludes: “The temples were converted into mosques… Fifty thousand men came under the collar of slavery and the plain became black as pitch with Hindus.”
A free-lance adventurer, Muhammad Bakhtyar Khalji, was moving further east. In 1200 AD he sacked the undefended university town of Odantpuri in Bihar and massacred the Buddhist monks in the monasteries. In 1202 AD he took Nadiya by surprise. Badauni records in his Muntakhab-ut-Tawarikh that “property and booty beyond computation fell into the hands of the Muslims and Muhammad Bakhtyar having destroyed the places of worship and idol temples of the infidels founded mosques and Khanqahs”.
THE SLAVE (MAMLUK) SULTANS
Shamsuddin Iltutmish who succeeded Aibak at Delhi invaded Malwa in 1234 AD. He destroyed an ancient temple at Vidisha. Badauni reports in his ‘Muntakhab-ut-Tawarikh’:
“Having destroyed the idol temple of Ujjain which had been built six hundred years previously, and was called Mahakal, he levelled it to its foundations, and threw down the image of Rai Vikramajit from whom the Hindus reckon their era, and brought certain images of cast molten brass and placed them on the ground in front of the doors of mosques of old Delhi, and ordered the people of trample them under foot.”
Muslim power in India suffered a serious setback after Iltutmish. Balkan had to battle against a revival of Hindu power. The Katehar Rajputs of what came to be known as Rohilkhand in later history, had so far refused to submit to Islamic imperialism. Balkan led an expedition across the Ganges in 1254 AD. According to Badauni,
“In two days after leaving Delhi, he arrived in the midst of the territory of Katihar and put to death every male, even those of eight years of age, and bound the women.”
But in spite of such wanton cruelty, Muslim power continued to decline till the Khaljis revived it after 1290 AD.
Jalaluddin Khalji led an expedition to Ranthambhor in 1291 AD. On the way he destroyed Hindu temples at Chain. The broken idols were sent to Delhi to be spread before the gates of the Jama Masjid. His nephew Alauddin led an expedition to Vidisha in 1292 AD. According to Badauni in Muntakhab-ut-Tawarikh, Alauddin “brought much booty to the Sultan and the idol which was the object of worship of the Hindus, he caused to be cast in front of the Badaun gate to be trampled upon by the people. The services of Alauddin were highly appreciated, the jagir of Oudh (or Avadh – Central U.P.) also was added to his other estates.”
Alauddin became Sultan in 1296 AD after murdering his uncle and father-in-law, Jalaluddin. In 1298 AD he equipped an expedition to Gujarat under his generals Ulugh Khan and Nusrat Khan. The invaders plundered the ports of Surat and Cambay. The temple of Somnath, which had been rebuilt by the Hindus, was plundered and the idol taken to Delhi for being trodden upon by the Muslims. The whole region was subjected to fire and sword, and Hindus were slaughtered en masse. Kampala Devi, the queen of Gujarat, was captured along with the royal treasury, brought to Delhi and forced into Alauddin’s harem. The doings of the Malik Naib during his expedition to South India in 1310-1311 AD have already mentioned in earlier parts.
Muslim power again suffered a setback after the death of Alauddin Khalji in 1316 AD. But it was soon revived by the Tughlaqs. By now most of the famous temples over the length and breadth of the Islamic occupation in India had been demolished, except in Orissa and Rajasthan which had retained their independence. By now most of the rich treasuries had been plundered and shared between the Islamic state and its swordsmen. Firuz Shah Tughlaq led an expedition to Orissa in 1360 AD. He destroyed the temple of Jagannath at Puri, and desecrated many other Hindu shrines. According to ‘Sirat-i-Firoz Shahi’ which he himself wrote or dictated,
“Allah who is the only true God and has no other emanation, endowed the king of Islam with the strength to destroy this ancient shrine on the eastern sea-coast and to plunge it into the sea, and after its destruction he ordered the image of Jagannath to be perforated, and disgraced it by casting it down on the ground. They dug out other idols which were worshipped by the polytheists in the kingdom of Jajnagar and overthrew them as they did the image of Jagannath, for being laid in front of the mosques along the path of the Sunnis and the way of the ‘musallis’ (Muslim congregation for namaz) and stretched them in front of the portals of every mosque, so that the body and sides of the images might be trampled at the time of ascent and descent, entrance and exit, by the shoes on the feet of the Muslims.”
After the sack of the temples in Orissa, Firoz Shah Tughlaq attacked an island on the sea-coast where “nearly 100,000 men of Jajnagar had taken refuge with their women, children, kinsmen and relations”. The swordsmen of Islam turned “the island into a basin of blood by the massacre of the unbelievers”.
A worse fate overtook the Hindu women. Sirat-i-Firuz Shahs records: “Women with babies and pregnant ladies were haltered, manacled, fettered and enchained, and pressed as slaves into service in the house of every soldier.”
Still more horrible scenes were enacted by Firuz Shah Tughlaq at Nagarkot (Kangra) where he sacked the shrine of Jvalamukhi. Firishta records that the Sultan “broke the idols of Jvalamukhi, mixed their fragments with the flesh of cows and hung them in nose bags round the necks of Brahmins. He sent the principal idol as trophy to Medina.”
THE PROVINCIAL MUSLIM SATRAPS
In 1391 AD the Muslims of Gujarat complained to Nasiruddin Muhammad, the Tughlaq Sultan of Delhi, that the local governor, Kurhat-ul-Mulk, was practising tolerance towards the Hindus. The Sultan immediately appointed Muzzaffar Khan as the new Governor. He became independent after the death of the Delhi Sultan and assumed the title of Muzzaffar Shah in 1392 AD. Next year he led an expidition to Somnath and sacked the temple which the Hindus had built once again. He killed many Hindus to chastise them for this “impudence,” and raised a mosque on the site of the ancient temple. The Hindus, however, restarted restoring the temple soon after. In 1401 AD Muzaffar came back with a huge army. He again killed many Hindus, demolished the temple once more, and erected another mosque.
Muzaffar was succeeded by his grandson, Ahmad Shah, in 1411 AD. Three years later Ahmad appointed a special darogah to destroy all temples throughout Gujarat. In 1415 AD Ahmad invaded Sidhpur where he destroyed the images in Rudramahalaya, and converted the grand temple into a mosque. Sidhpur was renamed Sayyadpur.
Mahmud Begrha who became the Sultan of Gujarat in 1458 AD was the worst fanatic of this dynasty. One of his vassals was the Mandalika of Junagadh who had never withheld the regular tribute. Yet in 1469 AD Mahmud invaded Junagadh. In reply to the Mandalika’s protests, Mahmud said that he was not interested in money as much as in the spread of Islam. The Mandalika was forcibly converted to Islam and Junagadh was renamed Mustafabad. In 1472 AD Mahmud attacked Dwarka, destroyed the local temples, and plundered the city. Raja Jaya Singh, the ruler of Champaner, and his minister were murdered by Mahmud in cold blood for refusing to embrace Islam after they had been defeated and their country pillaged and plundered. Champaner was renamed Mahmudabad.
Mahmud Khalji of Malwa (1436-69 AD) also destroyed Hindu temples and built mosques on their sites. He heaped many more insults on the Hindus. Ilyas Shah of Bengal (1339-1379 AD) invaded Nepal and destroyed the temple of Svayambhunath at Kathmandu. He also invaded Orissa, demolished many temples, and plundered many places. The Bahmani sultans of Gulbarga and Bidar considered it meritorious to kill a hundred thousand Hindu men, women, and children every year. They demolished and desecrated temples all over South India.
The climax came during the invasion of Timur in 1399 AD. He starts by quoting the Quran in his Tuzk-i-Timuri: “O Prophet, make war upon the infidels and unbelievers, and treat them severely.”
He continues: “My great object in invading Hindustan had been to wage a religious war against the infidel Hindus…[so that] the army of Islam might gain something by plundering the wealth and valuables of the Hindus.” To start with he stormed the fort of Kator on the border of Kashmir. He ordered his soldiers “to kill all the men, to make prisoners of women and children, and to plunder and lay waste all their property”. Next, he “directed towers to be built on the mountain of the skulls of those obstinate unbelievers”. Soon after, he laid siege to Bhatnir defended by Rajputs. They surrendered after some fight, and were pardoned. But Islam did not bind Timur to keep his word given to the “unbelievers”. His Tuzk-i-Timuri records:
“In a short space of time all the people in the fort were put to the sword, and in the course of one hour the heads of 10,000 infidels were cut off. The sword of Islam was washed in the blood of the infidels, and all the goods and effects, the treasure and the grain which for many a long year had been stored in the fort became the spoil of my soldiers. They set fire to the houses and reduced them to ashes, and they razed the buildings and the fort to the ground.”
At Sarsuti, the next city to be sacked, “all these infidel Hindus were slain, their wives and children were made prisoners and their property and goods became the spoil of the victors”. Timur was now moving through (modern day) Haryana, the land of the Jats. He directed his soldiers to “plunder and destroy and kill every one whom they met”. And so the soldiers “plundered every village, killed the men, and carried a number of Hindu prisoners, both male and female”.
Loni which was captured before he arrived at Delhi was predominantly a Hindu town. But some Muslim inhabitants were also taken prisoners. Timur ordered that “the Musulman prisoners should be separated and saved, but the infidels should all be dispatched to hell with the proselytizing sword”.
By now Timur had captured 100,000 Hindus. As he prepared for battle against the Tughlaq army after crossing the Yamuna, his Amirs advised him “that on the great day of battle these 100,000 prisoners could not be left with the baggage, and that it would be entirely opposed to the rules of war to set these idolators and enemies of Islam at liberty”. Therefore, “no other course remained but that of making them all food for the sword”.
“I proclaimed throughout the camp that every man who had infidel prisoners should put them to death, and whoever neglected to do so should himself be executed and his property given to the informer. When this order became known to the ghazis of Islam, they drew their swords and put their prisoners to death. One hundred thousand infidels, impious idolators, were on that day slain. Maulana Nasiruddin Umar, a counselor and man of learning, who, in all his life, had never killed a sparrow, now, in execution of my order, slew with his sword fifteen idolatrous Hindus, who were his captives.”
The Tughlaq army was defeated in the battle that ensued next day. Timur entered Delhi and learnt that a “great number of Hindus with their wives and children, and goods and valuables, had come into the city from all the country round”.
He directed his soldiers to seize these Hindus and their property. Tuzk-i-Timuri concludes:
“Many of them (Hindus) drew their swords and resisted…The flames of strife were thus lighted and spread through the whole city from Jahanpanah and Siri to Old Delhi, burning up all it reached. The Hindus set fire to their houses with their own hands, burned their wives and children in them and rushed into the fight and were killed…On that day, Thursday, and all the night of Friday, nearly 15,000 Turks were engaged in slaying, plundering and destroying. When morning broke on Friday, all my army …went off to the city and thought of nothing but killing, plundering and making prisoners….The following day, Saturday the 17th, all passed in the same way, and the spoil was so great.that each man secured from fifty to a hundred prisoners, men, women, and children. There was no man who took less than twenty. The other booty was immense in rubies, diamonds, garnets, pearls, and other gems and jewels; ashrafis, tankas of gold and silver of the celebrated Alai coinage: vessels of gold and silver; and brocades and silks of great value. Gold and silver ornaments of Hindu women were obtained in such quantities as to exceed all account. Excepting the quarter of the Saiyids, the Ulama and the other Musulmans, the whole city was sacked.”