Kabhi Na bhool divide and rule. My history teacher once told this phrase to the class while teaching some lesson on British rule. She told us that it was the British who sow the seed of hatred among Hindus and Muslims. It was they who inculcated this hatred to keep their Raj intact. It was the British who first introduced our country to communal violence. Before the British came to our country, no one really worked on religious lines. Before the British came, Hindus and Muslims always lived happily together and bla bla bla. In a nut shell there used to be the golden days of Hindu Muslim unity and how peace prevailed everywhere. But, doesn’t some time all these claims made by almost every intellectual and historian of our country looks very hollow? Doesn’t it feel as if these are nothing more than few of the other myths about our history? Doesn’t it seem as if the reality is hiding somewhere out there? Doesn’t it appear as if we are deliberately turning a blind eye towards the truth? It certainly does to me, atleast.
Before the descend of British in India, we hardly see any mention of any communal riot or tension in the pages of history. So looking at the history superficially gives us a view which is actually in accordance with the high claims of our historians. It reaffirms our belief that communal hatred is a British brainchild, which the British used as a weapon against us for the sake of existence of their mighty empire. But if we try, not too hard, then we can really make out that where ever two different ideologies prevail, which are not at all in accordance with each other, then there confrontation between them is inevitable. Similar is the scenario with Hindu Muslim unity in our history. Although there ain’t any direct instances which can actually standby my inferences, but these inferences are instances in themselves only.
To begin with, many times in our history we come across instances, when certain Mahmud or Mohammad from different places around the world raided India, and plundered the temples countless number of times. When we are so much considerate about our religion and Gods, so don’t you think it sounds a little absurd that all those raids never inculcated any feelings of hatred against Muslims and harmony continued to prevail? “Jaziya” was a special tax payed by only the non believers, i.e. Hindus. The dispute of various Hindu kings with Mughal rulers and the ways by which they were cheated and killed at different point of time, Hundreds of temples demolished by Muslim rulers, forceful conversions to Islam, abduction of numerous Hindu girls and many other such acts of heinous crimes always inculcated hatred, courtesy the barbarism of Muslims, but there was always peace between the two religions.
During the Mughal period a huge number of atrocities were done against Hindus, still we claim that the two religions co-existed mutually. At every stage we read about the discrimination against Hindus by Muslims and still we believe in the cordial relations of the two. All this which our historians claim about pleasant Hindu Muslim relations during the Mughal period, sounds very sweet to ears. But this sugar coated portion of history is nothing more than a mere eye wash. The existence which was peaceful was not of harmony but fear. The existence which was non-violent was not of affection but oppression. The existence which was serene was not of love but tyranny. Not much have changed for Muslims. The ruler class of one time still considers itself superior, and they blanch at the thought of having to be governed by a common civil law. It is a world known fact that there are verses in the Koran that justify violence. When Islam was in its infancy and battling against non believers, violence was deemed legitimate to put them down. For Muslims violence has been always the way out and it still continues to be, and to them Hindus are still “Kafirs” who should be put down by every means.