Ruchika Girhotra, Safia Bibi and Mukhtar Mai: any different?

 By Ishtiaq Ahmed         Daily Times 05 Jan 2010

What goes on all the time in rural India with regard to working women, especially from lower castes, hardly ever figures in media discussions. Such women are constantly harassed and molested by men of the superior castes

Some years ago, I met Indian human rights activists in Delhi. A lively discussion followed without the usual rancour that India-Pakistan interactions are notorious for, because we were interested in the rights and dignity of human beings as human beings and not as Christians, Hindus, Muslims, and Sikhs and so on. The exchange of views and notes ended with us being unable to decide whether the Indian or the Pakistani dominant classes were more ruthless and heartless. That both were identical in their inhumanity was probably the easier conclusion to draw.

Imagine what transpired recently in Haryana, India, once the easternmost part of the undivided Punjab. In 1990, a young girl, Ruchika Girhotra, 14, a budding tennis player and a fairly good student was sexually molested by senior police officer, SPS Rathore, who later became the Director General of Police of Haryana. Rathore used his influence to harass the family and kept on doing so for nearly 20 years. She was thrown out of school, a convent school with the perfect reputation for high moral standards supposedly upheld by sacred mothers and sisters, for alleged late payment of school fees; her brother who was also of school-going age was accused of theft over and over again and beaten up. At one point the persecution she and her family faced was so great that they all had to go into hiding, but Rathore kept on pursuing them. Unable to cope with constant harassment, Ruchika committed suicide.

After 19 years, a court finally found Rathore guilty, but sentenced him to mere six months in prison and imposed a fine of Rs 1000 (US$ 20)! All those years, he remained in service, received promotion and a medal for “exemplary conduct”. After the court announced the sentence, Rathore reportedly walked away smiling and unremorseful, as bail had been arranged before hand. Public anger and outcry for retrial compelled the Indian Law Minister Veerappa Moily to say that the molestation case of teenager Ruchika Girhotra needs to be “revisited” (Times of India 25 December 2009). Ruchika’s tragic story has moved many people, and now the Indian media and human rights activists are up in arms against the patently gross travesty of justice that has transpired. There are plans now to put Rathore on trial for “abetment to suicide”. Suddenly, the whole Indian establishment is very concerned that justice must be done.

However, what goes on all the time in rural India with regard to working women, especially from lower castes, hardly ever figures in media discussions. Such women are constantly harassed and molested by men of the superior castes. Very rarely are such cases taken up by the authorities and punishment of culprits is an exception and not the rule. Terrorisation of women and other poor people is therefore a reflection of systemic distortions in the penal and legal systems. Ruchika is no more now, but the fact that her case attracted so much attention is because at least in modern society the value system no longer considers it acceptable that a young girl should be driven to such desperate action as suicide.

All this sounds very familiar with the situation in Pakistan as well. In the early 1980s, Safia Bibi 13, a blind girl-servant was raped by her employers, a landlord from southern Punjab and his son. The case caught the limelight because a Pakistan court found her guilty of false accusation of rape because she could not produce, as required by the sharia, four pious Muslims who were witness to that outrage. She was first punished under hudood (offences for which the Quran is believed to have fixed punishments), which would have meant 100 lashes, but later the case was converted into a tazir (punishment decided on discretion of judge) offence and given a sentence of five years. On that occasion, Pakistani human rights activists and world opinion prevailed and she was ultimately released.

Then again in 2002, Mukhtar Mai from the Gujjar caste was gang-raped after a council of village elders comprising the dominant Baloch clan decided that she should be punished because her brother allegedly had illicit liaison with one of their girls. That case went through different court levels, but, shockingly, a judge from the Lahore High Court freed the accused men. The revulsion that such a verdict caused led to the men being arrested again. Since then, constant delays have occurred and the Supreme Court is yet to pass a verdict. Mukhtar Mai reported that in December 2008 a federal minister threatened her to drop the charges otherwise the judgment will go in favour of the men. It will be interesting to see what our very conscientious Supreme Court will do in such a situation.

Returning to the Indian situation, it is important to note the limitations of Indian democracy. Democracy without democratisation of social relations is always dependent on constant top-down management. What India could achieve under Jawaharlal Nehru in his 17-years of premiership was consolidation of political or procedural democracy: one person one vote, free and fair elections on a multiparty basis and the supremacy of the civilian government over other sections of the state. Such democracy is a necessary but not sufficient basis for the democratisation of society as a whole. And without democratisation of society, procedural democracy remains a ritual for reproducing and legitimising an unequal and hierarchical social order. Under the circumstances the question is: what can be done?

At the level of the state, it is imperative that a thorough overhaul of the laws and procedures is effected with the intention of establishing an administrative ethic that shows zero tolerance of abuse of office. Therefore, if a retrial of the Haryana police chief takes place and he is found guilty of wrecking the life of Ruchika, he must be punished severely and made an example for others. Deterrence is advisable in such circumstances.

At the level of society, empowerment of women must be facilitated at all levels of society. The first step in such a direction is education for all women and indeed men. I am convinced that even small cuts on defence spending can release enough resources that can eradicate illiteracy and thus empower the people in the real sense. All such measures may not suffice to prevent the victimisation of women but they can reduce them significantly.

Indian and Pakistani ruling elites have no problem in waxing eloquent about their ambitions to serve their people; the problem is innate insincerity when it comes to action.

62 Comments

Filed under culture, Democracy, Education, human rights, India, Islam, Justice, Law

62 responses to “Ruchika Girhotra, Safia Bibi and Mukhtar Mai: any different?

  1. Majumdar

    Returning to the Indian situation, it is important to note the limitations of Indian democracy. Democracy without democratisation of social relations is always dependent on constant top-down management.

    Sadly, this is a very true comment about the state of affairs in India.

    Regards

  2. Milind Kher

    Whether it is India or Pakistan, there are any number of people who blatantly ill treat women.

    The manner in which the Islamic law is administered is arguably the most barbaric in Pakistan.

    Naturally, people not well versed with Islam develop a revulsion to it. Any wonder Mr Jinnah wanted a secular state.

  3. ved

    In india and particular in north and west India, there are blatant violations of human rights and law. They do not feel any fear from law or law enforcing agencies.

    Intoxicant from power, inherited from position in society, they cruely abuses the dignity of women, poor people and helpless citizen. The example of Goa’s politicians son, Bittu Mohanti of Orissa, KPS Gill and now DGP Rathore are one of many countless unnoticed incidents.

    Law should be made so tough and punishment should be so severe, they should remember for life.

  4. vajra

    @ved

    Sadly, this is not true of north and west India alone. Even the east and south suffer from it, the south from the increasingly rapid saffronisation of the west coast, the Konkan. People are already corrupted regarding gender relations, very little time is left to elapse before a Hindu Taliban impose their rule on these areas.

    On the subject of tougher laws, I submit that in most cases, the laws on the statute books are sufficient. Unfortunately, framed as they were in more conservative times, when recognition of some of the most perverted acts of modern times was absent, punishment for some actions is still insufficient. Perhaps if one were to interpret your suggestion as one for thorough reform and re-orientation of the laws to provide for more appropriate framing of the offences themselves, and for more appropriate punishments, it would meet the case. My suggestion only.

  5. Mustafa Shaban

    India and Pakistan have high level abuses and human rights violation, but according to human rights organizations, the intensity and frequency of such abuses and violation is much higher in India than in Pakistan.

    @Milind: Islam is misused, generally religion and ideology is misused to abuse people but that does not mean that the certain religion or idelogy is bad, it is the misuse and perversion off tht ideology that creates problems. Hence the idea of an Islamic State instead of secular is not bad but the misuse has been great. If it were to be a very secular state there would have been the same level of abuse but of a different kind. Basically without the rule of law, nobody can prosper, religous or secular.

  6. Mustafa Shaban

    There are a lot more incidents like the Gujrat and Orissa massacre, against Sikhs, Christaians, Muslims and Dalits in India than people think. Such things happen in Pakistan but rarely, not as often as India.

  7. Bloody Civilian

    @MS

    Such things happen in Pakistan but rarely, not as often as India

    so have more people been killed in sporadic communal riots in india, or a continuous low intensity sectarian war in pakistan? i put it to you that more shia were killed in pakistan between 1992 and 2002 than muslims killed in the riots of 1992 and 2002 in india.

  8. Mustafa Shaban

    @Bloody Civilian: I am talking about the number of human beings killed in religious related violence is greater in India than in Pakistan. Do you have statistics to report your facts? Also sectarion violence and religous violence is a little different but both are violent abuses, my impression from reading different reports was that the situation is more severe in India than in Pakistan.

  9. Bloody Civilian

    @MS

    You said:

    Such things happen in Pakistan but rarely, not as often as India

    and now you are saying:

    I am talking about the number of human beings killed in religious related violence is greater in India than in Pakistan.

    and, also:

    sectarion violence and religous violence is a little different

    i don’t know what’s the difference there, however, there is a slight difference between sustained, weekly, targetted killings and sporadic, short, partially spontaneous riots.

    Do you have statistics to report your facts?

    no. not readily available. i lived through them, but it never occured to me to record each and every event and statistic.

  10. Mustafa Shaban

    @BC: I was just asking.

  11. Bloody Civilian

    @MS

    i was just trying to better understand the question. i’m sure you’ll find a variety of figures being quoted. i’d say 3000 to 4000 for the decade (ie 1990s).

    this kind of violent sectarianism in pak started in the mid/late 1980’s. before that there had been the two waves of anti-qadiani riots. india has had a riot roughly every decade. the numbers sadly have increased… but, otoh, the likelihood of a future riot – always small – keeps receding.

    the anti-hindu incidents carried on in east pakistan, now and then. we had the sustained violence of the military operation from 25 march to 16 dec 1971.

    we can carry on with similar comparisons, but what will be gained?

  12. Mustafa Shaban

    Good point BC

  13. Gorki

    @MS:
    “we can carry on with similar comparisons, but what will be gained?”

    That is the whole point.
    There are comparisions and then there are comparisions.

    While India Pakistan forums often become places for one upmanship with people comparing armaments, nukes, GDP, sports (sorry Vajra) etc. comparing the level of social injustice to minorities is most inappropriate of them all.

    To a victim, it matters little whether it was secretarian violence, riots, or mob violence or that other people across the border are suffering even more. It is torture pure and simple.

    My bet is that Mukhtaran Mai will find little comfort from the fact that Ruchika lost her life and her family is still waiting 19 years after her death to get justice.

    Anyone who has ever been a father to a daughter will tell you that it hurts even to hear of either woman’s plight. Both these women were abused, molested and tortured is a matter of shame; for all humanity.

    Regards.

  14. PM

    for Shaban

    In Pakistan the minorities are so tiny and frightened that the majority muslims have little need to persecute or frighten them anymore. What more on persecution of non-muslims is at all possible still in Pakistan?

    Hindu population in (West)Pakistan has fallen from 25% to less than 2% in the year 1947 itself.

    As against that the muslim population in India is large and growing (now almost 18% – way up from the 7% in 1947) and not at all frighetened, but very vocal, arrogant, well-equipped and even violent.

    Hence anti-minority riots in Pakistan may (now)appear to be less in number and intensity.

    Muslims in India are safer and socially more free and better developed than in Pakistan. Hindus in Pakistan are nowhere enjoying the rights which muslims have in India. The kind of resources which muslims in India have – no non-muslims in Pakistan can even dream of that.

    Demographic changes are the real indicators.

  15. Gorki

    @ PM:
    None of what you say means anything to a Muslim victim of Godhara or a Sikh widow from Trilokpuri.

    What happens to minorites in Pakistan and elsewhere is important for all mankind but does not change the fact that India still is a very fragile society and a long way from ‘wiping every tear from every eye…’

    Regards.

  16. PM

    To gorki

    How can you say it means nothing (to a muslim or sikh victim)?

    BTW: Indian and India is what is left behind after everyone takes his own share away. So India’s fragility is natural. But those who took away their shares with grand plans about what they are and shall be have to be inspected more carefully and strictly.

    It is like in a marriage. The man (or woman) plans a divorce and goes away. He (she) knows what he (she) has planned, but the woman (man) is suddenly left with no plan.

    It will help a muslim victim in Godhra in 2001 to know what the hindus had to suffer in Pakistan in 1947 (54 years earlier).

    India was not created in order to “wipe all tears”. But Pakistan was created with great tamasha and emotion and grand claims in order to prove to mankind what a wonderful religion islam is. You have to judge accordingly. Self-made claims are what the first judgmental criterion is.

  17. Sameet

    Gorki, you seem to be handling a candle for all the unfortunate muslims and sikhs out there in India. You have mentioned about them couple of times at least. What are your views about the Kashmiri Pandits who have been evicted out of their own home or the Hindus in Afghanistan who are migrating out of their out of sheer fear? Hope you mention them a couple of times too! Seems fair enough!

  18. Gorki

    @ PM: “It will help a muslim victim in Godhra in 2001 to know what the hindus had to suffer in Pakistan in 1947 (54 years earlier).”

    I don’t understand your logic. How can something that happened 54 years ago in a land that is now foreign justify anything that happens to an Indian citizen in Godhara today?
    I am sorry but I look at things differently.
    To me the faith of the victims of Godhara is immaterial; they are all Indians first and last.
    If any Indian is denied justice, it as an insult to the Indian nationhood and to the memory of the thousands who braved long sentences at Andaman to achieve it.
    It is an insult to the memory of the young rebel hanged by the British who gave his name out as Ram Mohammed Singh Azad before he was sentenced.
    To me specifically, it is an insult to the memory of an Indian who died in those very events in 1947 that you talk about because he would not want to be ‘avenged’ this way. I know that because his blood runs in my veins.

    Above all, it is an insult to my country; to its flag and to its constitution.
    You are wrong when you say that India was not created in order to “wipe all tears”. Check it out. The following are the exact words spoken by a great Indian on the eve of the founding of the modern Indian nation on August 15th 1947:

    “The service of India means the service of the millions who suffer. It means the ending of poverty and ignorance and disease and inequality of opportunity. The ambition of the greatest man of our generation has been to wipe every tear from every eye. That may be beyond us, but as long as there are tears and suffering, so long our work will not be over.”

    I am afraid you and I are talking on two different wavelengths. When you talk of fragility of the Indian nationhood, it is in terms of something subtracted from it by ‘others’ and think that the mob justice can some how restore something to it.
    When I look upon India, I look at its frequent rioting, its lawlessness, its corruption and above all its general drift towards intolerance as its greatest threats while the promise of its founding fathers and the covenant solemnized by its constitution its greatest strengths.
    Take away that sacred covenant and I a Punjabi, find that I have nothing in common with a Bihari Easterner or a Southern Tamil; yet as long as that constitutional covenant is in place, I am honor bound to defend it, with my life if I must.

    That to me is the essence of the Indian nationhood; not any revisionist garbage taught in a Hindutva training camp.

    @ Sameet: I am sorry if I gave the wrong impression; the pain of a displaced Kashmiri Pundit or even of a Punjabi Hindu displaced by the Khalistan uprising is no less than the pain of a Sikh affected by the Delhi riots. Unlike PM, I don’t believe that two wrongs make a right. As long as anyone son or daughter of India suffers; it is our national shame and national responsibility.

    Regards.

  19. Hayyer

    “The exchange of views and notes ended with us being unable to decide whether the Indian or the Pakistani dominant classes were more ruthless and heartless. That both were identical in their inhumanity was probably the easier conclusion to draw.”

    With respect to the general thrust of the article I must submit that the dominant classes in India and Pakistan are of different kinds. The Pakistani dominant class, one reads, is the feudal class. In India it is the ruling party and the police. The ruling party changes every now and then and so are not always dominant. The police remains perennially dominant and is able to protect itself all the way.
    The same media that now having fits (because of a lack of news) is the media that kept quiet when the girl first complained, was expelled from school and when her brother was harassed, and when she killed herself. Media men as are as much responsible as anyone else. Had they gone after Rathore then when the molestation took place and the harassment she might not have killed herself.
    Judges too have different standards for the public and themselves. Two judges of the Karnataka High Court got away with a sex scandal accusation and a former CJ of the Supreme Court managed to hush an entire corruption charge against his sons who abused his position.
    What is common between the two countries is lack of respect for the law. The police implements the law and they sell their services to the political leadership in exchange for protection. This protection racket is the bane of Indian democracy. The police looks the other way for political leaders in exchange for being allowed to exploit the general public.

    MS and BC:
    The number of dead in communal riots is published every year, I think by the Home Ministry. The Minorities Commission should also have them.
    The dead in Ahmedabad in Gujrat were about 3000 and in Bombay after the Babri Masjid episode perhaps 500. In earlier riots such as the one in Bhiwandi in 1969 and some in Bihar and UP a few hundreds lost their lives. Annually, apart from the major riots probably less than 10 persons die annually in communal violence. But this is only an estimate. That is ten too much of course.

  20. lal

    @PM
    “It will help a muslim victim in Godhra in 2001 to know what the hindus had to suffer in Pakistan in 1947 (54 years earlier).”

    It seems you feel that muslims in india have a good life because of the magnaninmity of hindus…….have no such illusions…India belongs to all of us…be it muslim ,sikh,hindu or christian….be it punjabi,malayalee,bihari or assameese….NO RELIGION HAS ANY SPECIAL RIGHT IN INDIA…BE CLEAR ON THAT

  21. Majumdar

    PM sb,

    Indian and India is what is left behind after everyone takes his own share away. So India’s fragility is natural.

    Let’s assume for a time that this is correct. This will explain India’s fragility in 1947. But we are in 2009 now, if India is fragile still it is the fault of Indians and those who rule India. We cannot blame the creation process for this now.

    It will help a muslim victim in Godhra in 2001 to know what the hindus had to suffer in Pakistan in 1947

    Why shud a Gujarati Muslim have to pay in 2002 for what happened to Punjabi or Sindhi Hindus in 1947. Punjabi, Sindhi and Bengali Hindu/Sikhs got the bamboo in 1947, Hindus gave it back in good measure in Hindu dominated regions.

    But then both countries for better or worse chose constitutions (India in 1950, Pak in 56) which gave minorities the right to exist with dignity as citizens. So why shud Muslims in India and Hindus in Pak/BD have to pay now for what happened (or did not happen) in 1947?

    Regards

  22. PML

    sorry for the confusion !
    I signed in as “PM” not knowing that another PM was already expressing his views here.

    So now as PML

    We in India and Pakistan are devoid of history or knowledge of history, especially about each other.

    Jinnah himself said about Shivaji (the maratha warrior against muslim imperialists in the 17th century) that for a muslim Shivaji is just a scoff-worthy rebel and petty looter. For Shaukat Ali the best hindu moralist, namely Mahatma Gandhi, was (from the standpoint of islamic theory) lower than even a criminal muslim.

    Nehru took the Kashmir problem to the UNO – China never took the Tibet problem to the UNO. Today China rules over UNO, India is a no-one in UNO. This is India’s fragility. The fragility of one-sided moralism in a cynical machiavellian world. Nehru wanted to be an exemplary in democracy for the whole world. But this became a weapon in the hands of Pakistan to attack India (not just verbally) for not having carried out the promised referendum. Has Pakistan ever demanded that China (Pakistan’s best friend) should carry out a referendum in Tibet among tibetan-speaking people. Will Pakistan carry out a referendum in Balochistan? No chance.

    Its the same thing when non-muslims want to be exemplary-secular and give full rights to muslims, although islamic shariah foresees no such full rights or equal rights for non-muslims. Such a super-moralism (“I will be good/fair irrespective of whether others are good/fair or not”) may be all right in individual life but is not desirable or effective in politics or the public sphere.

    Its no point teaching (or trying to teach) integro-differential equations to someone who still cannot understand or calculate 1+2=?.

  23. Hayyer

    PML:
    That was eminently weep-worthy. What good guys we Indians are, aren’t we? Nothing wrong with us, is there?

  24. Gorki

    @ PM, PML whatever:
    “Its no point teaching (or trying to teach) integro-differential equations to someone who still cannot understand or calculate 1+2=?”

    Unfortunately, this is one statement you and I can agree upon. There is nothing more I have to say to you.
    Thank you for your time.

    I do however have a couple of questions to ask a certain self described right winger and maverick; Majumdar Da, who does not miss a single chance to praise the partition (and MAJ) or to hurl abuse at Gandhiji.

    1. Did the proponents of partition not see the damage the partition would do to India and the vulnerability of the minorities left behind at the hands of such rightwingers as a result? Whom did they entrust the minorities to, the same hindu congress whom they could not work with in the first place?
    How could they have been so blind to their plight?

    2. And if you are a right winger, then what is this thing above and where does he fit in with your views?

    Regards.

  25. PML

    To gorki

    Everyone has mixed views – right, left, center. Let’s not get into those labels.

    Partition between muslims and non-muslims is evident in and built-in into the kuran. It had to happen – if not in 1947 may be later, whether more or less bloody and hate-filled – that no one can say today. The kuran does instigate muslims to a separatism and feeling of superiority. And if the muslims can’t separate and/or exercise their superiority then they feel terribly persecuted.

    Its like a person who thinks “I am born to rule” and if I cannot rule then “I am being persecuted”. This is also the basic reason for sectarian wars in islam. The kuran contains some severe contradictions and ambiguities (muslims will refuse to admit this for reasons of ideology and faith-based indoctrination) and such sectarian wars will always be the face of islam.

    Let us stick to themes of Pakistan and the so-called pakistan ideology in PTH – and not about some views by Majumdar.

    Hayyers remarks do not contribute to any discussion. Neither pakistanis nor indians claim perfection. We are just trying to talk to each other in this imperfection.

  26. B. Civilian

    ye factory hai kahan jahan se ek se ek namoona nikalta hai?

  27. B. Civilian

    Gorki

    i hope this does not distract majumdar from answering the question you have put to him.. nor get any namoona responses from another quarter, but

    “Whom did either entrust the minorities to, the same hindu congress or muslim League whom neither could work with in the first place or eventually… as the case may have been?
    How could either have been so blind to their plight?”

  28. PML

    To gorki

    It is my observation (may be I am wrong) that more often a left-winger becomes a right-winger than the otherway round?

    This is because the left-winger (esp. the younger ones) has always tried to be charitous at someone else’s cost. Whereas the right-winger says “If you want to be a do-gooder then do it out of your own pocket (resources), not out of mine.”

    Majumdar wrote: “Why shud a Gujarati Muslim have to pay in 2002 for what happened to Punjabi or Sindhi Hindus in 1947. Punjabi, Sindhi and Bengali Hindu/Sikhs got the bamboo in 1947, Hindus gave it back in good measure in Hindu dominated regions.”

    Answer: 1) Islam is an international and transnational (and supposedly) time-independent ideology . 2) Hindu population in West Pakistan fell from 25% (1947) to less than 2% (1948), in East Pakistan / Bangladesh from 40% (1947) to less than 11% (2009). In India muslim population has gone up from 7% (1947) to 18% (2009). So you can’t say the hindus “gave it back in good measure” (depends of course on what you mean by “good”).

  29. Hoss

    “2) Hindu population in West Pakistan fell from 25% (1947) to less than 2% (1948), in East Pakistan / Bangladesh from 40% (1947) to less than 11% (2009). In India muslim population has gone up from 7% (1947) to 18% (2009).”

    PML

    You seem to be flying really high. I don’t know about Bangladesh but can you please present any stats from some worthy source to show 25% Hindu population in west Pakistan after the
    partition?

    I have heard this comment from many but I have yet to see any credible source that proves the 25% claim.

    Your comments are NOT credible until you actually show some sources and credible sources to support the numbers you posted.

    Perhaps you don’t understand that you are claiming that a genocide took place in Pakistan and no body in the whole world is aware of that. So it is important that you prove your point.

    You appear to be a troll and I would request the admin to take a note of this poster here.

  30. PML

    to hoss

    Hindus 25% in 1947 before, not after, partition (i.e. before August 1947) – after partition the population percentage quickly fell to less than 5% in the very first weeks of October 1947.

    I read those figures somewhere some time ago. Cannot say now exactly where.

    What are your figures – let us know. They won’t be too different from what I have given.

    Genocide has various definitions. When people leave home out of fear of being persecuted or deprived of their human rights or their daughters being raped and sons being killed, is it then genocide or quasi-genocide? Have they been able to go back within a resonable amount of time? If not, is it then genocide?

    Certain is that the hindus in today’s pakistan territory were before August 1947 much more than the <2% of today, wheras muslims in India have grown to 18% (some muslim leaders claim even 25%) from the 7% in 62 years.

    Demographic numbers are never accurate like some data in physics – there can be a +/- 5% margin of error.

    Many genocides have taken place and the world has not bothered about them. The genocide of the hindus in the Pakistan territory is one such. Even in 1970-71 when hindus were massively killed or forced to flee from East Pakistan into India the world took no notice. China, UK and USA (under Nixon, who was a great friend of Yahya Khan) even supported Pakistan in this clearly genocidal war against hindus and non-hindu bangalis (who were regarded as inferior muslims and west pakistanis in East Pakistan were told to impregnate bangali women for this reason).

    This fits to the title under which this discussion is being held.

  31. hoss

    “I read those figures somewhere some time ago. Cannot say now exactly where.”

    You make totally stupid and false claim and you want me to find figures for you. dumboo.
    Troll, you need to know the facts before you make accusations. Idiot!

  32. Majumdar

    Gorki sb,

    Did the proponents of partition not see the damage the partition would do to minorities left behind

    First, of all there is enough evidence that the “proponents of partition” never proposed a complete partition- they were looking for a Pakistan within the Indian confederation where both successor entities would jointly guarantee the safety of minorities.

    Now of course that course of action was ruled out by June 1947. Now what were the options open left to MAJ/AIML.

    1. He could have assumed that INC rule wud be unfair to Muslim interests. In that case, it would have been foolish to abandon the entire Muslim community to the whims and fancies of the INC. At least by ensuring Pakistan, he wud salvage 2/3rd of his qaum.

    2. He cud have assumed that INC wud be fair to Muslims, in which case he cud have safely assumed that the Muslims who were left behind wud be treated well by INC in which case he wud have no qualms in demanding Partition.

    Gorki sb/Civvie mian,

    This part is addressed to both of you where you want to know my views as a rightwinger about Partition and why as a rightwinger I support Pakistan. Including Civvie mian’s poser whether INC behaved irresponsibly in abandoning Pak’s Hindoo minority.

    The point is I am a Hindoo rightwinger, not a general purpose rightwinger. I am not interested in whether Partition served Muslim interests as a whole or not, my limited interest in on whether it served Hindoo (or more broadly Indic) interests or not. It did. As a result of the Partition almost 97% of the Indics got absorbed in India, a small number were left behind in W Pak. A much larger number of Indics were left behind in East Pak but a large chunk of these folks were Dalit supporters of JNM and his SCF who were of the opinion that they were better off with Muslims in Pakistan than with the evil caste Hindoos of India (they got what they deserved for their opinions but that is a different matter) and quite naturally INC bore no responsibility towards them.

    Regards

  33. PML

    to hoss

    mind your language.

    “totally stupid, dumboo, Troll, Idiot”

    I request moderators to tell hoss to mind his language.

    Furthermore it is no crime to have forgotten where one read something long ago.

    Why is the pakistani govt. shy of publishing the relevant demographic numbers and their changes.

  34. Luq

    Vishwas / PML no matter how you disguise yourself, your sick mind is a dead giveaway.

    Your single point agenda of hatred only reveals the rot within. You stand accused of the very same villification which you accuse others of possessing.

    Nobody responds to your arguments since they are put in an offensive manner. Even this post is not really addressed to you. Its for the benefit of my others who tend to fall into the traps laid by trolls.

    Please dont bother replying to me

    Luq

  35. Luq

    typos
    my others = my other friends

    Luq

  36. B. Civilian

    majumdar

    i just wanted to make sure that i wasn’t interrupting a conversation between you and gorki. i know your political position. thanks for restating it for us/gorki.

    my interest in this discussion is different. i hope to state it, if relevant at some point, later… when i’m less pressed for time.

    regards

  37. Majumdar

    Civvie mian,

    my interest in this discussion is different. i hope to state it, if relevant at some point, later…

    I will certainly look forward to it.

    Regards

  38. karun

    majumdar why do you ascribe such a narrow identity for yourself? Be magnanimous.

  39. Milind Kher

    It is a tribute to the tolerance of PTH that they put up with so many posts that are so full of communal hatred.

    While I appreciate that, a lot of intellectual energy of the bonafide posters is wasted in countering stuff that does not even merit a reading.

  40. vajra

    @Milind Kher

    True, very true. There has always been a case for banning the communalist hate-brigade, or at least taking earlier action against them than is the case. The counter-argument has been based on freedom of speech, a very vital component in our discussions, but also, on a minor key, on the fact that the moderators have day jobs that take pretty significant amounts of quality time.

    Also, you forgot to include the fribbles, the nincompoops who breeze in with some vapid comment that makes no difference to anybody, except that ‘a lot of the intellectual energy of bona-fide posters is wasted in’ reading ‘stuff that does not even merit a reading.’

    These two sets of jerks are really the banes of any discussion group. Because of PTH’s libertarian principles, they persist here a little longer than they persist elsewhere.

  41. Milind Kher

    @Vajra,

    I agree. However, life offers its compensations too in the forms of yourself, BC, Gorki, Majumdar, YLH etc to just name a few.

    So, if we can learn to ignore trolls, we can still merrily carry on with our discussions🙂

  42. hoss

    Dada,
    Your position that the proponents of partition never actually wanted partition but wanted a Pakistan within Indian confederation may not be the right position.They did not want partition but they wanted separation. There is a difference in separation and partition. Separation was the desired goal but the partition was not. Some Indians just assume the whole thing as partition it was primarily a separation. There is lots of flexibility in what those words meant and often I wonder if the misleading semantics were used in the discourse at that time. You see, in India and Pakistan the two words separation and partition have become synonymous but in reality they are not.

    I have looked at many movements for freedom or separation in many countries and in Pakistan we have had more than our share of separatists/independence movements.
    The one movement in Pakistan that actually succeeded never really came out swinging for the independence or separation and forced the decision on the other side. Bangladesh movement had a wide support for separation and independence but that movement used lots of semantics and skirted around actually asking for independence. The Six points were clearly a separatist agenda -like the 1940 resolution- but the AL always couched it in provincial autonomy lingo and never once used the word Bangladesh before the army action in 1971. The other movement in Pakistan such as the Baloch or to some extent movements in Sindh showed their hands prematurely and suffered for that.

    Like the Bangladesh movement, the movement for Pakistan was in reality a separatist movement but the genius of the movement was: despite giving all the indications that were correctly understood by both its opponents and proponents, it actually forced the other side or the opponents to offer separation or in other words its strategy was clearly for separation but it never said so in clearly defined words. That was somewhat Chanakya-isc or Machiavellian or even Orwellian. I think I would credit Jinnah for playing a top notch game of Contract Bridge where the opponents actually had more points but the winner despite fewer points knew he can make the game. I play chess and Bridge both and I have a feeling that Jinnah liked Bridge more than the Chess.

    The question that we have to deal with now is whether the ML was looking for partition of the two provinces or not. Just think in these terms: the ML wanted separation of the Muslim majority provinces and Jinnah had the feeling that he would get it but he knew in his game of Bridge that he can’t surrender more than two tricks to make the game. So when the partition was offered he took it calling that a moth eaten Pakistan but nonetheless, acceptable.

    Petition of two provinces was not in his game plan. He was trying to make the game taking all tricks but he did not anticipate the loss of two tricks would mean partition of two provinces.

    So whosoever asked for Partition of the two provinces was also responsible for the forced movement of the population.
    Jinnah did not anticipate a partition or the transfer of population. His assumption that both governments would be responsible for the minorities did not exactly pen out the way he perhaps visualized.

    Since Jinnah was not a religious fanatic, in fact he was less religious than anyone in INC leadership, including Nehru; he would have preferred to have non Muslim population in Pakistan. He did try that. What turned Pakistan into a religion dominated land was not what happened before the separation and partition but after the partition. The two groups that immigrated to Pakistan-Urdu speaking and the east Punjabis- were more fanatics than the rest of the Pakistan population.
    Urdu speaking were not actually religious but communalist and the lower class was more in to nabi ka Jhanda type stuff. The East Punjabi were less religious but turned communal after the partition riots. Unfortunately, because of the political clout and the education superiority they had, their support of the JI and Mullah and later the army turned Pakistan in to what it is now.

  43. Gorki

    Here is one assertion about the desires and intentions of the Indian Muslims as interpreted by a tone deaf individual who claims know their mind better than anyone else:

    “Partition between muslims and non-muslims is evident in and built-in into the kuran. It had to happen – if not in 1947 may be later, whether more or less bloody and hate-filled – that no one can say today. The kuran does instigate muslims to a separatism and feeling of superiority. And if the muslims can’t separate and/or exercise their superiority then they feel terribly persecuted”. (PM aka PML aka G. Vishvas; resident agent provocateur on the PTH)

    And here below is another, in his own words by one of the great Indians of his age:

    It was India’s historic destiny that many human races and cultures should flow to her, finding a home in her hospitable soil, and that many a caravan should find rest here. . . . Eleven hundred years of common history [of Islam and Hinduism] have enriched India with our common achievements. Our languages, our poetry, our literature, our culture, our art, our dress, our manners and customs, the innumerable happenings of our daily life, everything bears the stamp of our joint endeavor. . . . These thousand years of our joint life [have] molded us into a common nationality. . . .Whether we like it or not, we have now become an Indian nation, united and indivisible. No fantasy or artificial scheming to separate and divide can break this unity. (from Azad’s Congress Presidential Address, 1940)

    The readers are free to draw their own conclusions.
    Regards.

  44. Milind Kher

    @Gorki,

    I appreciate the effort on your part. However – such people as the ones in your first 2 paras will not change, and we don’t care what they think anyway!

  45. Hayyer

    Dear Hoss,
    Typical of the mood and sentiment of the discussants on PTH that even so straightforward a matter as sexual harassment should eventually turn towards well trodden paths.
    “Separation was the desired goal but the partition was not. Some Indians just assume the whole thing as partition it was primarily a separation. There is lots of flexibility in what those words meant and often I wonder if the misleading semantics were used in the discourse at that time. You see, in India and Pakistan the two words separation and partition have become synonymous but in reality they are not.”

    In India partition does not stand just for partition of the Punjab and Bengal. It is synonymous with the partition of India into two countries. In Hindustani the term used is ‘mulk ka batwara’. There may still be a few Indians around who when they think at all about the events of ’47, think only of the partition of two states, but I doubt it. That is not so perhaps in Pakistan. Regret over partition there, if it exists at all, is over partition of the two states-Regret that all of Punjab, Himachal Bengal and Assam was not included in Pakistan.
    The demand for Pakistan was therefore a separatist demand alright and understood as such by all players whatever MAJ’s inner thoughts may have been.

    “The other movement in Pakistan such as the Baloch or to some extent movements in Sindh showed their hands prematurely and suffered for that.”
    Bangladesh too would have been premature, and it did suffer. Circumstances in the form of Indian intervention created that separation, but even India could not have intervened if it had not been handed the excuse of 10 million refugees, or if there had not been that infamous army crackdown. It was mishandling by the West Pak establishment not the inherent strength of Bangali sentiment that led to the separation.
    The question though is what causes separatist feeling. What is it in Pakistan that Balochis, Bangalis and Sindhi want to be separated from?
    India has separatists in Kashmir, for a time in Punjab, and even now in Manipur and Nagaland. In the 60s there existed sparks of Tamil separatism. It is not difficult to understand what the source of such sentiments is in these cases.

    “I think I would credit Jinnah for playing a top notch game of Contract Bridge where the opponents actually had more points but the winner despite fewer points knew he can make the game.”

    I would suggest, with respect, that the analogous card game is poker, or even teen patti (I don’t know if it is played in Pakistan). MAJ was carrying out a tremendous bluff. One can make a game or even a slam in bridge with fewer points than necessary if the cards are suitably placed. That was never the case in Punjab, and even in Bengal I think. I cannot believe that all those sharp minds in the Congress would not have planned out their strategies for the time when push came to shove.

    “Jinnah did not anticipate a partition or the transfer of population. His assumption that both governments would be responsible for the minorities did not exactly pen out the way he perhaps visualized.”

    In the communally charged atmosphere in Punjab in the years leading upto the separation it would have been obvious to any observer that there would be a blood bath. Mountbatten’s incontinent hurry and his mismanagement of the partition process may have exacerbated fears. Perhaps such a complete transfer of population would not have happened in a more orderly division, but I doubt it. My own family was approached by a Muslim landowner in Ludhiana in 1946 to exchange our land with his, an offer that was turned down laughingly. But that says more for the naivette of my forbears than anything else. It was widely expected that there would be a blood bath and there was. Jinnah may not have seen it but he was not a Punjabi politician and may not have had his ear to the ground as the local Punjabis did.

    “The East Punjabi were less religious but turned communal after the partition riots”

    That sums up mostly the sentiments of Punjabi Hindus generally speaking,excepting those of the Arya Samaji revivalist school. Sikh Muslim intercourse was poisoned by history but Hindu communalism was new.
    As a matter of inquiry, where exactly does West Punjab begin. The term East Punjab is certainly of post partition provenance . It included Haryana and the Punjab Himalya, now Himachal. Punjabi speaking Punjab which ends roughly around Ambala is itself divided into a number of regions. Amritsar and half of Gurdaspur are actually Majha which includes Lahore district and perhaps Sheikhupura. I think West Punjab,if the distinction is to be made began somewhere west of the diagonal running from Sialkot to Bhawalpur. Would some knowledgeable reader on PTH care to enlighten me?

  46. rex minor

    Once again a very interesting debate about the separation or the partition!!
    @ Hoss
    I am prejudiced, the last twelve lines of your commentry, starting from ” Jinnah did not……….”, appeal to me most. Assuming, these were the reasons for most of the problems after partition and you also play Bridge, What would have been Mr Jinnah’s proposed remedy, or now yours since he is absent, to rescue Pakistan from further calamities.
    Regards,

  47. hoss

    Hayyer,
    First, I had no intention to follow the “well trodden paths” I wanted to present a historical anomaly that appeared in Majumadar’s post.

    In India partition does not stand just for partition of the Punjab and Bengal. It is synonymous with the partition of India into two countries.

    As I had pointed out we might just be dealing with inaccurate words and loose semantics to describe the separation as Batwara or Taqseem or partition. Indian boundaries throughout the history have contracted and expanded in many periods. NWFP, SINDH and even Punjab often were not part of India when India contracted. Similarly, Bengal often was not part of or ruled from the center-whatever center was- for many centuries. I take creation of Pakistan as part of that similar historical process. The only thing is that due to nature of the current evolution, the same provinces that had in the past separated from the central India formed a new body as Pakistan.

    Let me elucidate this even further by another analogy. Had Sindh alone left India or separated from India due to its own sub-nationalist desired, would that be a separation and independence or division and partition? When Bengal separated from Pakistan it was not a partition, it was a separation or independence of a Pakistan province from the central Pakistani state.

    Even though Pakistan was created out of a contiguous Indian subcontinent, it was not a partition. It was a separation of a few Indian states from the central India though they are still part of the larger geographical unit known as subcontinent India or just India.
    The use of the word partition is a direct translation of the Hindi-Urdu words such as Batwara or Taqseem. This perhaps represents a paucity of appropriate words in the aforementioned languages not the true political situation.

    The question might arise then why the partition of Punjab or Bengal was partition and not separation?

    My ingenuous answer would be to say that the Punjab and Bengal were not looking for separation only some parts of Bengal or Punjab as a larger part of Pakistan demand, were looking for separation and the decision to divide these two provinces was purely an administrative action like the earlier division of Bengal in the earlier part of the 20th century. Three states have been carved out of the Indian Punjab and the creation of new provinces does not mean partition of Punjab it was merely administrative realignment.

    The word partition is semantically misleading.

    Bangladesh too would have been premature, and it did suffer. Circumstances in the form of Indian intervention created that separation, but even India could not have intervened if it had not been handed the excuse of 10 million refugees, or if there had not been that infamous army crackdown.

    My issue was not whether Bangladesh itself was premature or not, but the demand for Bangladesh only surfaced when the army action had started. Which means the Pakistan army forced the issue on the Bengalis. What happened from the operational point of view can be discussed at some other time.

    I would suggest, with respect, that the analogous card game is poker, or even teen patti (I don’t know if it is played in Pakistan). MAJ was carrying out a tremendous bluff.

    Poker and teen patti or flash in Pakistan are simple games compared to Bridge. I don’t think the creation of Pakistan was just a matter of bluffing the other party out of the table. It was a game of who had more points and who was operating from a weaker hand. A mere bluff can be called any time but when you are dealing with one trick at a time you plan for the whole game before the game starts. And then you make sure that the opponents make mistakes that help you. It is a matter of playing the right card at the right time.

    This game started in 1940 and after that you can count on how many mistakes the Congress made and how many mistakes Jinnah made. With bluff you make mistake only one time the next time around you are ready for the bluff and counter it. INC leaders were not green behind the ears they knew what the game was and they played their cards too but in the end Jinnah made the game and they did not.

    In the communally charged atmosphere in Punjab in the years leading upto the separation it would have been obvious to any observer that there would be a blood bath.

    Still people did not move until the division was announced. There was hardly any transfer of population before the Redcliff award. The idea of division of Bengal and Punjab was floated around the same time but compared to Punjab; there wasn’t any mayhem in Bengal. Bihari moved to East Pakistan after the riots in Bihar in 1947. Bihar was not divided.

    I think as soon as the CMP failed, people knew that division is coming but even the British did not anticipate large scale manslaughter in both Punjabs.

    Btw, East Punjabi is a Pakistan term for the people who moved from the Indian Punjab after the partition. It has nothing to do with exact geographical boundaries of Punjab.

    PS. Despite my aversion of the word, I too can’t restrain myself from using the word partition.

  48. hoss

    rex minor
    What would have been Mr Jinnah’s proposed remedy, or now yours since he is absent, to rescue Pakistan from further calamities.

    Even Jinnah would have failed to rescue Pakistan from this situation. Jinnah was instrumental in getting the country but his administrative experience was limited or rather nonexistence. The bureaucracy and the army Pakistan inherited were from the second or third tier. The politicians he left behind were third raters. They had the ability to follow but not lead.

    Jinnah himself was a centralist though his struggle in India was primarily against the center. In my opinion, Jinnah would have failed because the third raters in this administration would have sabotaged him.

    Another issue was how dedicated was he to make changes in structure. Changes were badly needed but easy to execute in early Pakistan as the vested interests that later entrenched were still finding their bearings.

    Jinnah himself was not ready to make the changes. He wanted to rule from the same British platform. I think there were certain gaps in his political thinking or ideology and he was averse to drastic changes. It was easy for him to lead in view of the adversity or but when he became the sole arbitrator he was lost.

    This has happened to many leaders, Mujib, Soekarno etc. are just a few other names on the list.

  49. Milind Kher

    The topic was the treatment of women in the subcontinent. It has again meandered into the realm of partition politics..

  50. Hayyer

    Hoss:
    I have long believed, like you, that Pakistan and Bangladesh or even more entities if they should appear, are natural outcomes in a country as complex as British India. India and Pakistan have not lost that complexity, India more than Pakistan. I cannot say (who can) whether some new epoch dawned on the subcontinent in ’47 to create permanent forever entities but Bangladesh shows this not to be so.
    However likely the historical outcomes we live in and for the present. Like evolutionary time, like geological time, historical spans of time elude us and we believe the present will continue into the future. That is the only way we can exist.
    Differing perceptions of reality and differing emotional reactions dictate the imputed meaning and the inferred meaning of the words we use. In such cases mutual comprehension is difficult.To some Indians separation meant a vivisection (I use the word not disingenuously) of the motherland. In extreme cases as of the Nagpur school it was cutting the mother in two. It is not just semantics. There is a strong emotional content built in.
    Interestingly, your comment on Bangladesh, where you say that its creation was not partition but separation is a correct description. Interesting because it is a semantic issue. Bengal was partitioned twice, Punjab once, India once, and that was by administrative action. So a third party partitions I suppose but separation is autonomous.

    As a amateurish bridge player myself however I still hold that Jinnah was gambling. Bridge is far too precise a game to permit the sort of brinkmanship that occurred. Jinnah had a weak hand, he bid it up to the limit, but he was depending on a partner who had lost interest in the game. His opponents held strong cards and were always willing to sacrifice a trick or two, which they did in the end. If I were to use a metaphor it would be from the courtrooms. As a lawyer he fought for the maximum but had to settle for a compromise.

  51. Karaya

    Hoss,

    Like the Bangladesh movement, the movement for Pakistan was in reality a separatist movement…

    The problem with casting “Partition” as a separatist movement are many:

    1) The main proponents of Partition came from provinces that were very much going to remain with the “mother country” (for lack of a better term). In fact, the All India Muslim League made much of the fact that it represented Muslim from, well, all over India—and by 1947 it actually did. Now why the residents of Central India would support a “separatist movement” on the country’s Eastern and Western borders is beyond me. In fact, Jinnah himself fought tooth and nail to keep the issue at the centre a purely communal one; a provincialisation of the issue (what Cripps tried to do) would have been disastrous for him.

    2) Of course, the separatist spin falls totally flat when it comes to Punjab. Here something like 40%+ of the population did not want to secede. When the representatives of these people in the Punjab Assembly were given a chance, E Punjab voted to remain with the mother country. It would be a weak separatist movement indeed which, at best, commands the support of a little more than half its population.

    3) If one goes by the Jalal thesis, Jinnah battled more for parity than a separation. If Jinnah was looking for a sort of loose confederation—a rethinking of India’s centre, even– then why would it be called a separatist movement?

    That said, the end results of 1947 was a seceding of just a few provinces (or parts of provinces); but this was not because of any characteristic of the Pakistan Movement; this was just because the Congress was able to hold onto to the Centre firmly and force the British to come up with a plan that ended up reducing the Pakistan demand into a separatist demand. Till the very end, in fact, J protested the adoption of the name India by Nehru’s Government.

    So whosoever asked for Partition of the two provinces was also responsible for the forced movement of the population.

    No. IMO, only the British were directly responsible for the Punjab troubles. Btw, in Bengal there was little “forced movement of the population” and almost none from West to East Bengal.

    Asking for the Partition of the two provinces was based itself on the very same plank that the Pakistan demand was based on—self determination. The only difference was that doing it district wise made it more accurate—lesser errors in rounding off to sound terribly anodyne.

  52. Karaya

    Hoss,

    The previous post is based on your January 10:49 pm post. Not the 2:06 am post, which I just saw.

  53. rex minor

    @Hoss
    Well said! I can assure you that the people of NWFP did not ask for partition nor separation but simply agreed to the association with other parts of the country which were likely to opt for Pakistan. It is obvious now that the minorities were more in touch with the developments in Dehli through the Congress party and therefore decided to leave immediately after the partition. I recently met an Indian gentleman who told me that his parents left the NWFP, at the direct request of Mr Nehru. His father was subsequently offered the ambassadorial position in the Indian diplomatic Corps.
    Sir, following the rules of the cards game, at the end there is a single winner and others loose. What eventually happened in India was termed “the partition of the country” and in my view every one lost. It would be of interest to know if there was a winner?
    Regards,

  54. Majumdar

    HP saeen,

    Interesting posts. I agree with you that MAJ and AIML were looking at separation (or Partition depending on how you look at it) but with two observations.

    One, that they were not looking at a complete separation that exists today. They were looking for separation with some bonds still tying the two successor states- in fact if you refer to the exact wordings of LR-40, it suggests a lot less.

    Two, notwithstanding their poll plank they wud have been willing to accept a common centre under certain circumstances.

    Had Sindh alone left India or separated from India due to its own sub-nationalist desired, would that be a separation and independence or division and partition? When Bengal separated from Pakistan it was not a partition, it was a separation or independence of a Pakistan province from the central Pakistani state. Even though Pakistan was created out of a contiguous Indian subcontinent, it was not a partition. It was a separation of a few Indian states from the central India though they are still part of the larger geographical unit known as subcontinent India or just India.

    PMA sb has stated this in a somewhat different way some time back. According to his theory the United British Indian Empire broke up in 1947 and the main constituent nations formed their separate states. I tend to agree with him.

    Indian boundaries throughout the history have contracted and expanded in many periods. NWFP, SINDH and even Punjab often were not part of India when India contracted. Similarly, Bengal often was not part of or ruled from the center-whatever center was- for many centuries. I take creation of Pakistan as part of that similar historical process. The only thing is that due to nature of the current evolution, the same provinces that had in the past separated from the central India formed a new body as Pakistan.

    One key difference of course was that for the first time communal identities defined this breakup. Delhi and Madras have less often been ruled up by the same centre (in 326 BC- 1947 AD) than Delhi and Lahore or even Delhi and Dhaka, yet in 1947 it was (West) Punjab, (East) Bengal and Sindh which parted ways and not Madras which parted way.

    My ingenuous answer would be to say that the Punjab and Bengal were not looking for separation only some parts of Bengal or Punjab as a larger part of Pakistan demand, were looking for separation and the decision to divide these two provinces was purely an administrative action like the earlier division of Bengal in the earlier part of the 20th century.

    You are being ingenuous, sir!!! There was absolutely no “administrative” basis for splitting up Bengal and Punjab (and we often forget Assam as well) in 1947, the division was demanded and obtained purely on communal lines.

    Regards

  55. Majumdar

    Rex,

    Sir, following the rules of the cards game, at the end there is a single winner and others loose. What eventually happened in India was termed “the partition of the country” and in my view every one lost. It would be of interest to know if there was a winner?

    The winners were the communal majorities of India, Pak and (eventually BD). The losers were minorities in all the three nations, although in the case of (West) Pak almost all the (Indic) minorities were successfully resettled in India.

    Regards

  56. yasserlatifhamdani

    Wow a partition discussion operating independently of me?

    And while we are on the issue of Islamic law, Pakistan does not implement it thankfully. It is there on statute books but it is blended it with the principles of English law which temper it. Ofcourse it is not Islamic in the least. Real Islamic legal principles are not about hadd and zina etc.

    So there is no question of Islamic law being barbaric in Pakistan. Islamic law is actually strictly followed in Saudi, Iran, Sudan etc and even Malaysia and it is far more barbarically executed then in Pakistan where for the most part it isn’t.

  57. yasserlatifhamdani

    Erratum than

  58. AMARJIT

    India and Pakistan should live peacefully…….they will rise only if they live peacefully……otherwise they will be marketing places for west….they are making fool of us…..let us convert Siachin and other places and convert them into joint tourist places…. let us compete to convert our respective Kashmirs into world tourist places….

    My opinion to my Muslim brothers…….they should fight for secularism every time and every where …..not only when you are in minority …..when in majority you start singing Islamalisation……..

    See…non-muslim populations %(hindus and sikhs) in Pakistan have gone down drastically after partition……any explanation for this ?.. where is secularism and love for everyone…in India non-hindu population% has gone up instead……..

  59. The way in which these women were treated by both their communities & their governments is both an insult and a crime. How can any nation consider itself even on the brink of modernity when they treat women & children as disposable objects? Equality should not be looked upon as a Western concept; it’s a concept that should be extended to everyone.

    It’s hypocritical to call yourself modern if you don’t view everyone as having the right to experience the same freedoms. Burgeoning economic stability does not qualify a country as ‘modern.’ There are many other traits that a country must have in order to be modern. But the most important is: equality extended toward
    each citizen; because without that, the others cannot exist or, at least, have a stable environment in which to thrive.

    I know there are cases where women & children are disrespected to some degree in all countries, but in many of those countries there is local and national outrage when such crimes/injustices occur, whereas in the aforementioned cases, the governments seem to passively and even blatantly condone the actions taken by the perpetrators not only by their ineffectiveness to a speedy and just trial but also by rewarding the perp. Maybe it’s time to evaluate some of the ‘traditional/cultural values’ that jeopardise the freedoms of its citizens, upheld in these countries.

    On a more primitive note, don’t these people realise that by allowing such acts to be committed they’re eliminating the very people who gave birth to them?? Where would these [vicious] people be if it weren’t for their mothers, who are after all, women?

  60. sonia khan

    mukhtaran mai not belong to gujjar clan.please correct this. her mother language seraiki so no gujjar speak seraiki language in pakistan.

  61. .please correct this. her mother language seraiki so no gujjar speak seraiki language in pakistan.

  62. Latha

    Do we have solid, scientific proof about the sexual abuse of lower-caste girls/women? Or is this just something that we assume?

    I know it would be very hard to do a scientific study, but not necessarily impossible — one just must be clever in going about it.

    Does anyone have any leads? Even a collection of anecdotes would be a first start.

    Thanks in advance.