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Monday, July 09, 2007

Indian Muslims - An inspiring story and a response to terrorism

I haven't followed the entire story of the Glasgow attack so far, as most of the media excesses these days, I take interest in stories only if they last for a week or more and try not to give in to sensational headlines.

Still, am rattled that Indian Muslims are involved in terrorist attacks directly. I think there may be many who would sympathize with the global Muslim community in India just like elsewhere - these may be Muslims and non-Muslims.

India is reasonably safe in the eyes of the International community, a large democracy, issues here can still be settled through a political process, now booming economy limited though to a few sectors, growing urban rich and middle class, .... all seem to be most unlikely place to consider as a possible nursery for terrorists, but, the on the other side, this could be the safest place for such a nursery, to build a base and prepare in safety so as to transplant them at an appropriate time and achieve whatever results terrorists aim to achieve. There are not too many safe places for terrorists, certainly not in the open, India could become one. People are largely free, such freedom cannot be seen in (though equally large) China, if you keep to yourself and live in a urban or semi-urban location in India, you can be as un-noticable as possible anywhere in the world. In fact, one of my long term suspicions has been who keeps track of all the westerns who go native by adopting the life of sadhus and sannyasis across the country. What happens to their citizenship? who keeps track of them?

And when Global recruitment firms think Indians are good enough for every kind of occupation, why discount terrorism? There are communities across India which have a long history of violence in their culture and life style. If people from these communities can be motivated to take up a modern day cause either locally or globally, then it is certain that they can be enrolled for terrorism as much as being hired for medical service, ITES or banking. The Terrorist tendencies in India, particularly among Muslims (outside of Kashmir) perhaps is a response to a global demand.

While looking up some material on the Indian Muslim response I came across the following two items that I wanted to share, one is a video story of a Muslim girl from slums of Vizag who made it to an IT Company while another is a response from an Indian Muslim to his fellow Muslims, a blog entry. (strong language for this blog regulars).

I do think that this issue once again focuses the lack of strong leaders among many communities in India, including Muslims. In the pursuit of better life or opportunities, Muslims of India need not succumb to terrorism, it is so pointless. But, in the pursuit of better opportunities, many Indians do take up un-healthy jobs, jobs that endanger their health and that of others, the environment, how can such tendencies be curtailed? what is the role of leaders of communities, castes and different spiritual and religious groups in such issues? Where are the leaders today who have a pan-Indian appeal and who not only talk for their brethren but also who command respect within their own religious followers?

Social or Political, the absence of leadership that can inspire and guide is what I see heading us into a situation where the idle minds and hands can succumb to dangerous professions for easy money, the unscrupulous greedy can succumb to large fortune at the cost of health and environment and the educated can be mentally corrupted by fanatical groups and succumb to their 'movement' needs. Thankfully, the new found medium of blog has brought out quite a few promises (please read the write-up in Indian Muslim blog) among the Muslim community to come out and express themselves, but, perhaps more is needed.

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