Babri Masjid: Lack of leadership among Hindus

    By Mike Ghouse

    Twenty one years ago, on December 6, 1992, the hypocrite Indians who call India their mother, ripped her apart. Not only they hurt the other children of that mother but destroyed their historic symbol; Babri Masjid.

    Do we have a leader among Indians who considers every Indian to be an Indian, and nothing but an Indian?

    In August of 2003, ten years ago, I talked about Ayodhya; here is clip from Mark Donald’s Across the Divide in Dallas Observer, a lead story for that week.

    “Ayodhya. It is an issue a lot of Indian-Americans shun talking about,” Ghouse tells his radio audience. “But we must talk about it. We only know some aspects of the issue. When we learn all aspects, it brings some sort of resolution. It settles the dust in our minds, and when the dust settles, it gives clarity, peace of mind. It gives you freedom from the bondage of your prejudice.”

    On this issue, however, Ghouse can’t resist offering his own opinion. He sees the problem as political rather than religious, exploited by Hindu extremists within the BJP to solidify their power. His idea is to defuse the problem through conciliation. “My suggestion is that Muslims should offer the land to build a temple for Ram. That is what a majority of Muslims in India feel. That is what a majority of Hindus feel. Let’s not fight over an issue that is not going to help my children get education or get food on the table.

    Quickly, he gulps some water and wipes a thin layer of sweat from his brow. “I will take your calls now. I will take all opinions, no matter how extreme, no matter how calm, no matter how agitated. All opinions are welcome.”

    The legitimate fear that holds Muslims from putting an end to this conflict is really not the land; it is the bent of the extremist politicians who want to dupe the common Hindus into believing that, to be a Hindu, one has to be anti-Muslim.

    Of course India’s pluralistic ethos is deeper and has a solid foundation for the majority of Hindus to fall into the extremist politician’s trap, who want to wipe out everything that is Muslim. Thank God that is not the view of Hindu majority. However, the ones who scream the loudest get the hearing and corrupt the goodness of an average Hindu.

    There are millions of Muslims out there who would want to live in harmony with every Indian regardless of his religion, caste or linguistic heritage, and that has been the tradition. Many of us want to be a part of building the Ram Temple and let go of the Mosque, but the blood thirsty politicians will not be satisfied with it, there is no end to their demands, they want more, and more and every pound of flesh from Muslims.

    This is what is holding the nation. Do we have a leader among BJP who considers every Indians to be an Indian – no matter what that Indian eats, drinks, wears or believes? Do we have a Hindu leader who can rack up support to put an end to the harassment of Muslims, Christians, Dalits and other minorities in their daily conversations? Do we have a leader whose word is an iron clad guarantee that if Muslims walk away from Babri Masjid, they will not be pushed to give more and more? If there is a mai ka laal son of Bharat Mata, come forward, it will put an end to the conflict and we all can live our own lives and mind our own business.

    The Indian Muslims are sick of the blame and the ugly comments hurled at them about India’s partition, attacks of Ghazni on Somnath or the cruelties and Massacres of Aurangzeb. Many a parents teach their children to hate, and build biases against Muslims. It is not good for any one.

    The Muslims of independent India are not responsible for the Partition, attacks of Ghazni or cruelty of Aurangzeb, just as the present day Hindus are not responsible for the past cruelties towards untouchables and burning of widows. This must be clearly understood and taught to bring Mukti (freedom) to both Hindus and Muslims from the bondage of the past.

    Deep down, all humans seek justice and a balance in life, and without it, they are lost in sectarian warfare. As a member of the civilized nations, we need to collectively work towards building a cohesive India, where no Indian has to live in apprehension, discomfort or fear of the other — an India where everyone is free to eat, drink, wear and believe whatever suits him/her.

    What we need is trust building steps and Indians taking responsibility for their commitments. The Civility of a nation is measured by how she treats her women, children, and the ones in ditches, the minorities and the voiceless. An Australian professor shot back and wanted to know India’s record.

    Neither Indian, nor Australian or American system will score 100 in civility, but certainly it has the structure to contribute towards that goal, and if the rule of law prevails.

    As a solution, India has offered reservations in jobs, and education system to those economically backward and those in the ditches to uplift them, we still have Sachar Report’s recommendations to be implemented to uplift Muslims. We have to pull every one up from the ditches to a point from which they will be competitive. Harassment and Oppression of women continues female infanticide is a daily occurrence.

    However, India’s laws are equitable, the knowledge of which has not permeated into the whole society, nor its implementation occurs. Thanks to the internet and social media, the society will eventually monitor itself. You can be who you want to be in India. It’s a tough battle, but legally, our path is paved.

    Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer. He can be reached at