On Half truths – Guest Post by Ali Eteraz
Today, Jahane Rumi is publishing a guest post by Ali Eteraz who is well known in the blogopshere.Eteraz is a gifted, fiery writer based in the US. He maintains a blog Eteraz, writes for the Huffington Post as well as for the Guardians blog. Ali also manages a web portal called Plural Politics. The views expressed below are solely those of the author.
Why is NYT’s India Editorial About Pakistan?
On August 15, 2007, presumably to mark India’s 60th birthday, the NYT published an op-ed by Ramachandra Guha, entitled “India’s Internal Partition.” At the outset it appeared to be a promising examination of Hindu-Muslim relations, in India. Guha started by discussing1990:
Bharatiya Janata leader Lal Krishna Advani journeyed for five weeks between Somnath and Ayodhya, making fiery speeches at towns and villages en route, denouncing the Indian government for “appeasing” the Muslims. In many places Mr. Advani visited, attacks on Muslims followed.In New Delhi, where I then lived, Mr. Advani’s march represented a grave threat to the inclusive, plural, secular and democratic idea of India.
Though he is quick to invoke his friendship with Pakistani Tariq Banuri who was the first Muslim Guha ever became “close” with (even having dreams about Banuri during the Ayodha crisis), it would appear that the friendship did not leave any discernible positive residue.
They also cheated their tenants. In six years in Delhi, my wife and I had four landlords, all refugees from the Pakistani part of Punjab. All four hooked their appliances to our electricity meter, and all kept our deposits when we left.
Then I went across to the majestic Badshahi Mosque, built by the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb. It was Friday evening, and a large crowd of worshipers was coming out after the weekly prayers. Walking against the flow, I had to jostle my way through.
As I bumped into one worshiper, I was seized by panic. In one pocket of my kurta lay my wallet; in the other, an exquisite little statue of the Hindu god Ganesh, dancing. I am not a believer, but this was my mascot, a gift from my sister, carried whenever I was separated from my wife and little children. What if it now fell out and was seized upon by the crowd? How would that turn out â€” an infidel discovered in a Muslim shrine, an Indian visitor illegally in Lahore?
Despite their shared culture, cuisine and love for the game of cricket, India and Pakistan have already fought four wars. And judging by the number of troops on their borders and the missiles and nuclear weapons to back them, they seem prepared to fight a fifth.