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vamsi/sanjai's query answered

Please help make the Manifesto better, or accept it, and propagate it!

Not long ago Mr. Vamsi relentlessly asked the question to IPI members
regarding India's democracy. Those of you who are oblivious, the question

And not very long ago, Mr. Sanjai spilled his venom on Islam/Muslims and/or
Christianity/Christians and an ardent yet indirect support to
Hinduism/Hindus, albeit he "declares" himself an athiest.

I request you all to read this article and your puzzles will be solved once
you finish reading it.

Enjoy reading!!!!






Adversity has this strange knack of bringing people together. When you are
battling for survival, caste and creed do not matter. Roving Editor Ramesh
Menon details one such incident, which could have been a landmark in
communally strife-torn Ahmedabad. Only, it was too good to last. 
When the earth shook violently on January 26, the residents of Sarangpur
Chakla -- like everyone else in Ahmedabad -- ran out of their homes. Many
of them moved into the large courtyard of Rani's mosque, a 15th century
monument. Located in an area that is dominated by Hindus, the mosque has
been closed for over 32 years. But, as a protected heritage monument, it is
being looked after by the Archaeological Survey of India. 
It proved to be a safe shelter during the quake, since it is surrounded by
an open area, while Sarangpur is dominated by narrow lanes and old buildings. 
Soon after, a group of elderly Hindus approached Muslims in the Panchkuva
area of Kalupur and asked them to begin offering namaz at the mosque again.
They hoped it would please the Gods and the anger within the earth would
subside. The Muslims happily acquiesced. 
On January 31, a dozen-odd Muslims went to the mosque to offer namaz early
in the morning. It was the first time since the 1969 communal riots in the
city that this had happened. 
The Hindus in the locality got together and organised water; before
offering namaz, the Muslims are required to wash their hands and feet. "The
residents thanked us and said our prayers would ward off danger to their
area. Though the tremors continued, we thought it brought us together,"
remembers Mohsin Sheikh, a small-time businessman who deals with bags and
plastic sheets. 
For the next namaz, there were about two dozen Muslims offering prayers. 
The one held in the afternoon saw four dozen devotees. 
Though the numbers swelled to 250 for the namaz after sunset, the Muslims
could sense the tension in the air. One of them walked up to a policeman
outside the mosque and told him that, if there is a problem in them
offering prayers there, they would stop immediately. The policeman said
there was no problem; that the prayers -- which were for everyone's
well-being -- should continue. 
Yet, by the time of the night namaz, they were told not to come to the
mosque, thanks to strident protests from a handful of vocal residents
associated with the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, the Bajrang Dal and the
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. 
The residents themselves had no complaints about the namaz. The area's
right wing elements, though, felt the presence of so many Muslims -- the
numbers were increasing with each namaz -- should not be allowed since
Sarangpur borders Muslim-dominated areas. 
The last namaz of the day did not take place. 
The amity between the two communities did not last 24 hours. Those who
reached the mosque for the last namaz say the policemen were beginning to
worry about communal tension and did not want anything to spark it. 
Today, the iron gate leading to the mosque has been locked. The courtyard
is silent except when the wind blows; then, one can hear the sound of
rustling leaves. 
Four policemen are sleeping in front of the gate; which is covered with
their damp clothes. One of them views me with suspicion. "Have you come
here to read namaz?" he demands. 
I tell him I am, like him, a Hindu. Still suspicious, he says I cannot go
in. "The mosque had been closed for years and will not open again. We are
here to ensure that." 

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