‘Growing sense of betrayal and victimisation leads to illogical protest’

December 8, 2012 by  
Filed under newsletter-india

Zahid Ali Khan

Zahid Ali Khan

Andhra Pradesh, December 6, 2012: Zahid Ali Khan is the Editor in Chief of the Hyderabad based Siasat Urdu daily, and Polit Bureau member of Telugu Desam Party (TDP), the largest opposition party in Andhra Pradesh.

In this series, the logic of protest, TCN will talk to a number of academicians, civil rights advocates, and members of intelligentsia and try to encourage a constructive debate on the issue.

Q. Why do Muslims get involved in severe agitations on third-grade films, or a worthless cartoons but not on the real issues which affect them the most?

ZAK: Many committees and commissions were formed and several recommendations were made to improve the social and economic conditions of Muslims. For 60 years Muslims have been supporting several political parties but those legitimate recommendations were never implemented. Political promises were made but never been fulfilled.

This betrayal has made Muslims upset and a sense of victimization is being created. This victimhood psychology has kept Muslims in dark and uninformed about the real issues which concern them the most.

Q. What role mainstream Media plays in sowing the seeds of victimization, which according to you lead to illogical protests?

ZAK: TOI recently reported that Taliban is threatening to attack Hyderabad to avenge the death of Kasab – totally illogical news. Media has to be serious in their reporting business.

But I don’t think mainstream media play crucial role in instigating Muslims, because in last decade or so Muslim media has become more powerful to balance it. I think the real culprits are the hate mongers and instigators within our community, who by their hate speeches instigate youth, then hide in their homes and make the gullible youths a fine target of victimization.

Q. Why do you think Muslims get so easily instigated by hate speeches?

ZAK: Because majority of Muslim youth don’t have proper employment opportunities, mainly they are involved in small scale trade. There is no social status in society, and they are also monetarily weak. All this negative aspects make them vulnerable to hate speeches.

Q. But why do Muslims always keep silent on intra-Muslim conflict and killings, but protest vehemently if the other side is non-Muslim specially Israel or America?

ZAK: What can they do? It happens, these intra-Muslim killings happen frequently in Pakistan and other nations, where Shia-Sunni fight with each other or different groups of Sunni fighting within them. There is a larger conspiracy behind this group wars.

It is our religious illiteracy, and stupidity which America and Israel are exploiting. They are forces which see Islam as a threat to their interests and they will never want Islam to remain unified and powerful. Muslims believe that Israel and America are working behind the veil to detract Islam, so Muslims do protest against them vehemently.

But Muslims have never been in forefront of violence in the world. See the American and its Western ally’s track record from First World War to Iraq war. But whenever Muslims do protest on those human rights violations they are being beaten up and shot. Then again they are being portrayed as violent community.

Q. So what according to you are the best ways for a constructive protest?

ZAK: See first of all our media is not strong, it is improving but we are lacking in many dimensions. Community has to make its own mass media robust and active to make its view reach to the larger audience in our nation. Muslim leaders in different political parties should raise their voice and build up pressure on their respective party’s so they work in the interest of Muslims.

If we are conducting a mass protest then we have to take the responsibility to organize it in a civilize manner. And lastly to be successful in all the above methods Muslims as a community have to become stronger and active in education field.

– tcn

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