This is important for India to remain the India we know and respect, as after the partition, Muslim population has once again started to play an important role both in our society and politics just like the pre-partition era. Today the general society should freely accept Muslims as part of Indian culture similar to other religions rather than something different or as foes or a threat to the free way of Indian life, we all enjoy today.
Are Muslims themselves responsible for their woes of being alienated, as they have failed in gelling with Indian general society which incorporates many religions like Christianity, Buddhism, Sikhism and Jainism, etc. Alternatively, is it government's mistake in not bringing out a uniform civil code (read my article on Merinews on Uniform Civil Code) like the French banning the ‘Purdah’ and ‘Hijab’ alike?
The day the British banned ‘Purdah’ system they actually laid the foundation of a much more liberalized and free thinking Indian society, which is in keeping with the democratic way of life in India alive. Muslims, as history shows should not show reluctance to modern Indian culture but rather be willing in adopting it as a way of life and a means to grow further.
In India, Muslims cannot live being distinct but rather as Indians or otherwise we all would face another partition or civil war, sooner or later as an outcome of this alienation. There is an old saying that 'in Paris you have to do as the French do' or the going becomes very tough in the long run. The majority never waits for the minority but rather it is the minority, which has to come forward in becoming part of the general Indian society. Its not at all hard for them as they are already more attuned to it then westerners.
The next question, which comes to my mind, is why women only are the reflections of degrees of Talibanisation in the society?
The fact is that Talibanisation bespeaks of women as being well off only by existing as subordinates to men. They should not mix in work or education and must always have a male guardian while traveling, according to top clerics who critics say are dangerously reminiscent of the Taliban era.
Only recently, panchayat bodies asked women not to use cellphones in public places. Even though many non-Muslim bodies have also issued such diktats, but nevertheless they are dangerously close to destroying fabric of harmonous social existence.
There is a link with what is happening all over the country with restrictions being put on women's rights, which is actually a green light for Talibanisation of masses in India and sadly today, it is being reflected by the media in every way it should not.
The TRP-driven media shows and glorifies women clad from head to toe in ‘Hijabs’. They should rather showcase a free Indian society where liberated women are free to wear anything they desire. The only countries where women are repressed are places like Saudi Arabia, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan. Women in all the other modern countries like Malaysia, China, Taiwan, European countries, US and Japan, enjoy the same rights as men irrespective of religion.
The media, especially Hindi and Urdu channels, I believe, is going the wrong way in portraying women. This is dangerous as it is bent on appeasing the clerics rather than the normal Muslim society. I see the clerics once again gloriously taking over as social advisories vide these channels, which I consider, will do more harm than good in alienating the Muslims further towards Talibanisation. There is also a danger of the channels being used for propaganda against Indians by the terrorists and hence they should be closely monitored by our security agencies.
The Hindu women, mostly in urban have overgrown the religious stereotypes and no more bother about such weird rules, although there cases of repression do take place in the countryside.
The Urdu media should showcase other religious and non-religious programs depicting Urdu culture where men and women freely wear modern dresses. They should showcase how they can become part of true modernistic India by adopting a modernistic approach towards participating with general Indian society like starting to stay fearlessly amongst Hindu-dominated areas rather than staying in ghettos or slums for safety. The channels should portray national integration and importance of modern education to bring do away with the stereotypes. They should show quality serials showcasing good Muslim culture but in a more modernistic approach towards life which helps the Muslims to gel with general society and vice versa. They should learn from Pakistani serials where men and women wear modern western dresses rather than anything otherwise.
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