...From superpower-in-waiting India, silly!
All Muslims are not Terrorists, but all Terrorists are Muslims
After the death of more than 200 commuters in the coordinated Mumbai train blasts in July, 2006, the city police in an effort to prove that no stone is being unturned to catch the culprits raided the shanties and flats of the Muslim ghettos throughout the metropolis. Houses were searched, cupboards were emptied, and mattresses were turned upside down. While the women were spared, the men in the house - fathers, sons, uncles, cousins - were taken to the nearest police station for further interrogation. Almost all of them were later released.
It is believed that Islamist terrorists were behind the blasts and this logic gave a moral license to the country's authorities to put an entire community to suspicion.
Muslims in India
Islam is the second largest religion in India. True. India has the largest number of Muslims after Indonesia. True. Indian Muslims are the only Muslims in the world who are fortunate to repeatedly cast votes in free democratic elections in their native lands. True. Some of India's top film stars are Muslims. True. There have been three Muslim Presidents in India, including the present one. True. India's richest man is a Muslim. True. The Indian whose company manufactures cheap AIDS medicines for the world's poor is a Muslim. True. India's greatest ornithologist was a Muslim. True. Taj Mahal was built by a Muslim. True.
So what's the problem?
Muslim Pie in India
According to the 2001 Census of India, Muslims constitute 13.4% of the country's population. But they account for just 3% of government employees, and an even smaller percentage are employed by private Hindu businesses. Meanwhile, in the cities, 30% of Muslims are illiterate, vs. 19% of Hindus. Literacy rate of Muslims is 59.1, vs. 65.11 of Hindus. Work participation rate is 31.3, vs. 40.4 of Hindus. The statistics of the Hindus, who constitute more than 80% of the total population, should be kept in perspective while comparing these figures.
Islam in India’s Domestic Politics
Muslims are generally sympathetic to the country's apparently secular political parties. They are advised to vote for these parties if they do not wish to be eaten alive by the Hindu fundamentalists, who happen to have a very impressive following in the country.
Sadly, these secular parties have done nothing to lift Muslims from their pothole of primitive madrasa education and abject poverty. They treat Muslims as mere vote banks.
Muslims Not Wanted
Salman Rushdie in his novel The Moor's Last Sigh observed that if somebody hates India, he just needs to destroy Mumbai. We Indians are quite up to the task.