The real history of partition that was kept in the dark for a quite period was brought out by eminent historians and scholars. Muslims took the history to the streets and proudly proclaimed that they were the one who had given a major share in the sacrifice for the country’s freedom. But things didn’t change as expected. On the eve of every Independence Day, Muslims were generally rounded up and a few of them were also arrested. The conspirator here is not the Sangh Parivar but the Intelligence Department and the local police. The vested interest groups used this opportunity and time and again have questioned the patriotism of Indian Muslims. The irony is that these groups have played no part in the freedom struggle of our nation.
The Independence Day celebrations are arranged by Muslims and organizations all around the country. At this stage it should be remembered that the Sangh Parivar groups do not have the habit of celebrating the Day. It was only after much criticism they have started to hoist the national flag in some places in recent years.
As part of Independence Day celebrations, Popular Front of India organizes a Freedom Parade every year. It started in the year 2004 in Kerala and was also done in Tamil Nadu since 2008. It’s an organized march by the cadres of Popular Front, followed by a speech and the felicitation of the freedom fighters. The Kerala Government denied permission for this parade last year on petty political issues. In Tamil Nadu, the Government denied permission for a public march. In Karnataka, the BJP Government is not ready to give them permission. As usual this year also the parade was arranged in the three South Indian states. But to the surprise of the many, the freedom parade was denied permission in all the three states. This has irked the Muslims and now they are just asking a single question to the Government, “Don’t we have the right to celebrate the Independence Day?”
To add to the woes of the Muslims, RSS organized parades in many parts of Kerala. The members of RSS marched in their traditional uniforms. The national flag could not be seen in all the places, but the members marched with weapons such as sword in broad day light. It’s also learnt that the parade by RSS was carried out without getting any permission.
This shows the double standard of the Government and security agencies. While the Muslims are denied permission to march with national flag, the Hindutuva fundamentalists are given permission to march with weapons.
Parades are taken out by the political parties and other organizations at all places. The participants parade in uniforms in the streets. This is a common practice in our country. But the denial of permission to Muslims alone is raising serious questions. Is the Government trying to alienate the Muslims? The Government and security agencies should change their attitude.
Denial of permission to celebrate the Independence Day is a fundamental right and we hope that the law maker will not be the law breaker.
By Riaz Ahamed