Rajnath Singh tries to break jinx among Muslim organisation towards Saffron

NEW DELHI: BJP government’s efforts to reach out to the Muslim community to give push to its counter-radicalisation agenda against ISIS seems to have paid some dividends at last albeit with conditions.

After continuous efforts to muster support of Muslim leaders who matter, Union home minister Rajnath Singh finally succeeded in meeting Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind (JUM) that carries a lot of weight among Indian Muslims.

The rest of the dozen-odd maulanas, who met Rajnath Singh to discuss ways to counter the ongoing radicalisation of youths on Tuesday, were either custodians of Sufi Dargahs whose following is already on the wane, leaders of Shia sect that is in minority in India and not considered a terror threat or RSS-backed Muslim organisations who do not count at all. The delegation even included chief imam of Parliament Masjid.
The JUM, while conveying that Muslim organisations are already doing their best to keep youth away from any sort of radicalisation, asked the home minister to arrest efforts to marginalise the Muslim community by way of ‘terrorising it’.
“The meeting was necessary to convey our concerns that we squarely conveyed. We asked the home minister why no action has been taken against the Hindu Swabhiman Sena that is giving arms training to 15,000 children.
Can we imagine any minority community or Muslims doing the same and not earn the wrath of law enforcement agencies?” said Kamal Faruqui, a well-known liberal Muslim scholar, who was also part of the delegation.
Faruqui said the home minister promised them that he has taken a note of it and some action would follow.
Encouraged by the first-time participation of Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind (JUeM), Rajnath Singh was keen to help the in establishing a mechanism of talks with other Muslim organisations of repute.
The JUeM’s representative Nia Niaz Farooqui understood to told the minister that Muslim organisations would want to meet the government and extend their full support but for that onus lies on the government to make conducive atmosphere by reining in rabid right-wing forces from spreading anti-Muslim canard.
But it seems that the BJP government will have have to put in a lot of effort in connecting with the Muslim world as the press release issued by the Union home ministry was riddled with mistakes in spelling of names of organisations and individuals who attended the three hour long marathon meeting.

For its part the ministry said the delegation condemned all kind of violence in the name of religion and explained that Islam stands for peace and well-being of all; and no one should be misguided or carry an understanding contrary to this fact. They also added that they were against any sort of terrorist or violence activities including cross-border terrorism.