This study titled “A shared Y-chromosomal heritage between Muslims and Hindus in India” was published in November 2006 in the journal of ‘Human Genetics’. The study carried out at the University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, Texas, USA. If you click on the title, it will take you to the abstract of this research paper.
Basically, this study reinforces the long-held belief that Muslims in Indian sub-continent (present India, Pakistan, Bangladesh) are not the descendants of central asian Muslim invaders. We all know that Islam came to India centuries back through the Islamic invaders (like Babur- his original name being Zāhir ud-Dīn Mohammad- or more broadly called Mughal emperors). They came to the Hindu Indian sub-continent and gradually Islam spread: largely through forceful conversions ( Aurangzeb is the best known example in this regard) and to some extent by the voluntary conversion through the teachings of sufis. Also it is said that the majority of Hindus who converted were poor or so-called lower caste Hindus (this examlifies that caste system has been a bane for the Hindu society and has done so much damage to Hindus. Obviously!).
Thus the Muslims of Indian sub-continent are converted Hindus. Majority of them!
How religion can play havoc with the soul of a nation: India is a very apt example. How ironic that a nation was divided on the basis of religion! And more ironic is the fact that the two communities are the sons of the same mother. But now they fight in the name of religion. Fight for a religion which was always ALIEN to this country. How rueful ! The two brothers share the same blood, but fight because one eats beef, and for other cow is sacred! One considers that the nation is like a mother (Bharat maata), but other is willing to die rather than bow (vande maatram controversy)! For an “implanted” religion! They eat same,dress same, speak almost the same language(Urdu is an offshoot from Hindi), share many cultural values, but when rabble rousers arouse their passions, they will kill each other!
And the worse, the terrorism- more precisely Islamic terrorism- has done so much harm to this nation. On a global level, it will seem that only USA (they have immortalized 9/11 because they as a nation donot want to forget it and want to avenge the attack!) or Britain or some more countries have actually been a victim of Islamic terrorism, but India (Kashmir) has been bleeding since 1947! Similarly, christian conversions are in full force in North-East India and many other parts. Will USA come to our rescue? No. First we (India) have to stand up and face the terrorism and then others will come and pitch in.
Hindus typically donot believe in conversions/proselytization and I have never seen concerted efforts in this regard. Is it a bad idea that the Hindu saints make appeals and efforts to bring back (Shuddhi)those estranged brothers who had converted to the other faiths? This of course must be peaceful and entirely voluntary!
When I was growing up in India, I remember we Indians have a craze for the westernized names and many of christian names sound very ‘musical’to their ears (they are, actually. No denying.) But after spending many years abroad (USA), I witness that Indian christians-even though living in nations with predominantly Christian populations- have their own churches! What to talk of these recent immigrants (as my Indian christains are), churches for blacks and whites are also separate. This is the level of acceptance! Thus it pains me that some of Indians look Indians, eat Indian foods, come to Indian stores for groceries, donot go to ‘their’ churches (even though share the common faith) but when it comes to names, have names that sound not Indian, rather sound totally alien! Why an Indian who was born in a village or city in India, grew up studying and speaking Hindi or a equally sweat regional language (along with English), swears by Indian customs, ethos and cannot live without ‘desi’ food, speaks English with a typical Indian accent and yet has a name like David, Johnson, Robert, Anney, Marria, Aurangzeb, Asif or Qutub! How alien it sounds! Someone will ask me : what is in a name? Very true, but your name does show your ethnicity,identity and cultural back-ground and values! Do we expect a boy living in a city somewhere in Peru (Latin America) having a name like Suresh or Bhaskar or Anil! No, we donot! And it will be weired, if we do come across! Does not it seem strange that a person living in India should carry an Arabic, Persian or Turkish name ( no offence intended, these are beautiful languages) because he is a muslim! Are these names relevant to an Indian- who has all his life lived in India, and never even ventured out of his city and carries the burden of ‘alien’ names like Khan ( a lineal descendant of Genkhis Khan), Zia( light), Hussain (name of a saint), Allam ( very knowledgeable), Manssor (victorious), Azmal (holy), Shakeel (beautiful), Anjum (star), Afroza , Ruksana. Similarly names like David, Phillips, Paul, Michael, Elizabeth, Nicolas, Peter, Sussan, Alexandra have some connotations to the Bible or the places but as far as Indian land is concerned, they are totally ‘foreign’, ‘alien’ and strange -looking names. That day, I met a person from Turkey whose 4 years daughter’s name was ‘Noorjahan”. Very apt and relevant name , I thought! But what the heck, why we Indians have been carrying the burden of such words since ages whom we donot even understand ! Agreed, India has been a land of assimilation, religious tolerance but whom are we aping? And why in the name of maintaining a separate identity, Muslims of my country -who are Indians in every respect- are carrying these alien language names!
Dear brothers and sisters! Dear countrymen!Come out of this paradox! Shun what was never yours! We are not the descendants of Babur and Aurangzeb! Come back and embrace your true roots of the oldest civilization -which belongs to you and you belong to it! And the one which spreads universal peace and brotherhood. Come back and letus bring back our glorious heritage: one based upon the universal concepts of peace, brotherhood and compassion. Come back to your original faith and be an Indian with a global vision (Vasudhaive Kutumbakam)and for world peace ( Vishwa Shanti).
This will be the first step to get back your identity!
I donot envisage a Hindu nation, beacuse I am of the resolute opinion that fathers of our Constitution showed greater vision in declaring India a ‘Secular’ state. And India has always been a secular nation. But regaining of our lost faith should be seen as a consolidation of our strength! And this will go a long way in furthering the cause of a truly secular society based upon uniform civil codes for all the citizens.