Indians, Muslims and non-Muslims alike, must learn from the sectarian developments in Pakistan, and make every effort to stop any expression of sectarian prejudice in public contexts.
A few days back a small headline in the Urdu daily Munsif (Hyderabad) caught my eye: “The Worst Attempt at the State Level to Declare the Qadianis Muslim.” The text went on to report on what the dignitaries of an organization called Majlis-iKhatm-i-Nabuwwat Trust, Andhra Pradesh had said in the way of denouncing the Mayawati government in Uttar Pradesh. However, only one sentence in the report running to 18 lines communicated any sense of what the alleged “attempt and conspiracy” was: “In the textbooks for high schools the Qadiani sect has been included in the account of the many sects among the Muslims.” Then I received a mailing that brought to my attention a long note by Sultan Shahin entitled “Muslim Juhala threaten Mayawati government over Ahmadiya issue.” ) It included the full text of an item published in Hamara Samaj (New Delhi; 25 August 2010) that provided the information I needed:
“It is to be noted that on page 30 of Samajik Vigyan of Class X, in the chapter titled “Ahamdiyya Andolan”, the sect has been linked to Muslims terming it as a reformist sect. Not only that, on page 29, in the essay titled “Muslim Andolan” an attempt has been made to present Muslims as divided into various sects as Wahabi Andolan( Movement), Deobandi Andolan and Aligarh Andolan. It is to be noted that Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was born in mouza Qadian in Gurdaspur district of Punjab (India) in 1839. He claimed to be a prophet in 1899 and died in 1908.”
Clearly, the only questionable feature in the report is the use of “Andolan” for “sect.” Continue reading