Indian Express 2015-02-04

Dear President Obama

Congratulations on your highly successful visit to India. We are grateful to you for these words of wisdom: “The peace we seek in the world begins in human hearts, and will find its glorious expression when we look beyond any differences in religion or tribe and rejoice in the beauty of every soul. And nowhere is that more important than India. Nowhere is it going to be more necessary for that foundational value to be upheld. India will succeed so long as it is not splintered along lines of religious faith; so long as it is not splintered along any lines and is unified as one nation”.
Indian Express 2015-01-17

The contest over ‘true Muslims’

As is the vogue, there was all-round condemnation of the Paris massacre, both by Muslims and non-Muslims. The denouncement of the dastardly act was along predictable lines — it was an attack on the freedom of expression, and those responsible for it were not “true Muslims”. Dalil Boubakeur, head of the French Council of the Muslim Faith, condemning the killing, said: this “immensely barbaric act is also against democracy and freedom of the press”, and that its perpetrators could not claim to be true Muslims. This statement raises an interesting question: Who is a “true Muslim”?