Al Zawahiri’s tryst with India

Raising the hijab controversy in Karnataka, al Qaeda chief Ayman Al Zawahiri, in his latest video, has said people should “stop being deceived by the mirage of Hindu democracy of India”. This of course was how Muskan Khan, a Muslim woman who reportedly stood up to a group of extremist Hindu activists.

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“On Wednesday, the 8th of Rajab, news channels and social media accounts circulated a video clip of a sister in an Indian University, who, with her words and deeds, embodied the spirit of jihad, as she challenged a mob of Hindu polytheists with defiant slogans of takbeer, with immense pride in her identity and her hijab,” said Al-Zawahiri. This of course was how Muskan Khan, a Muslim woman who reportedly stood up to a group of extremist Hindu activists, who were harassing her for wearing a hijab on a college campus in the southern Indian state of Karnataka.

Since then and even before that things have been turning according to the dictates of RSS and its pracharak of great eminence, no other than PM Narendra Modi. He and his ilk like Yogi Adityanath and extremists all over India have taken up the juggernaut to turn India into a Hindu Rashtra. No Muslim has ever done anything in this matter. Indian Muslims are too preoccupied with their daily life of working very hard to meet both ends of life. How could there be a lobby of Muslims in India then? A lobby is a group of people working to influence important people within or outside the country. Even so, the arch demonizers of Muslims like Hemanta Biswa Sarma, Arnab Goswamy and uncountable others from godi media have become so paranoid over the note of cognizance of the utterance of Al Zawahiri.

Read more: A tale of two states: India and Pakistan

Understanding the matter better

The remaining part of Al Zawahiri’s address is also not provocative or threatening or serving ultimatum. “May Allah reward her [Khan] greatly on behalf of Islam and Muslims for upholding the honor of our sisters. May Allah reward her greatly for the positive spirit that she has reawakened in the ummah, a spirit of empathy, mutual understanding, and unity for the sake of upholding the shari’a and following the rulings of the Religion.

May Allah reward her for defending these principles with her hijab and her attachment to her Religion, and for offering practical proof of the superiority of the Islamic ummah — in its creed, norms, and shari’a — over the creed of the polytheists and the moral degeneration of Western atheists. So may Allah immensely reward our noble sister!” he said.
“She has shown them how a Muslim woman should be… proud of her Religion, firm in her adherence to the shari’a,”

This announcement is loud and clear, is circumspect and circumvented within the faith of the devotees. It also shows no castigation of anyone within the fold, a group of people or institutions that share a common faith, belief, activity, enthusiasm, or outsiders.
However, he is clear about the realities of how lynching and beating up and mob violence have created a furor over the plight of Indian Muslims and has added a tag to it:
Further, Al-Zawahiri used the incident to condemn Muslim women who abandon the hijab, saying that Khan has taught them a lesson. “She has shown them how a Muslim woman should be proud of her Religion, firm in her adherence to the shari’a,” he added.

The Al-Qaeda leader also credited Khan for “exposing the reality of Hindu India and the deception of its pagan democracy.” He then thanked the media outlets who circulated a video of the incident, urging them to continue to expose the injustice inflicted on Muslims and to “confront this oppression” by uncovering the truth.

Read more: Deep rooted virtues of Islam in afterlives

Addressing Muslims in India and elsewhere, Al-Zawahiri said that they must realize that Indian democracy is “nothing but a tool to oppress Muslims,” and that “there is no such thing as ‘human rights.'”

Al Qaida vs India?

There were many occasions when al-Qaida could have shown its strong feeling against India. The juggernaut of the BJP government against Indian Muslims is stepping up. The inhuman dragging of the accused Sharif Khan of more than seven miles, stark naked, pelted with stones and beaten most brutally and then hung on the clock tower in the center of the Dimapur city of Nagaland is a rare nightmare in India for more than six decades of Independence. For the beleaguered Muslim minority, it is continuing agony.

Read more: 20th Anniversary of Godhra & the first Hindutva genocide of Muslims

The time was well chosen to offset the cultural malaise of the ignominious male psychology of rapists as revealed through the BBC video film India’s Daughter. It was followed by a week in which PM Narendra Modi expressed regret for a 70-year-old nun raped in Nadia in West Bengal and a church in Hisar, Haryana vandalized but no regret for Sharif Khan ala no remorse over the contraption used in catching the head of a dog with which Ahsan Jafri was caught and hacked to pieces.

However, the situation has now changed with the Taliban coming to power in Afghanistan and Modi’s audacious agenda to crush Muslims for demanding their own way of life and not be daunted! The time of reckoning is at hand!


Mustafa Khan holds a Ph.D. on Mark Twain. He lives in Malegaon Maharashtra, India. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.

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