Christians, Muslims with good income mulling migration

November 29, 2015 by  
Filed under newsletter-india

persecutionNew Delhi, November 27, 2015: With incidents of religious persecution of minorities happening across the country and the Indian government’s inaction to control it, a section of people from Muslim and Christian communities with decent incomes have started weighing the option of moving abroad but are not fully convinced to make the move yet.

Rashid Rehman, a 42-year-old footwear importer from East Delhi, said the thought of leaving did occur to him, but he quickly brushes it aside with his unflinching faith in secular India, which strengthens when he sees countless number of Hindus speaking up for the minorities and condemning hate crimes.

“I don’t think we will leave [India]. Until our Hindu friends are talking on our behalf, until we understand that their hearts don’t want us, we are not going anywhere,” he said.

However, the recent violence inflicted on Muslims makes him anxious and then obtuse statements coming from senior ministers who “either tacitly justify the violence or come up with vague statements to ensure accountability”.

“The fear factor is there,” he said.

Rehman said he is not sure what kind of future his children will face if “the Hindu versus Muslim mentality is systematically nurtured”.

Many on social media argue that India has gone through several bouts of religious violence and yet its secular character has remained.

A Delhi-based computer engineer, who is a Christian, said he was contemplating moving out “if the situation remains the same”.

He said that the reason for his migration was not just communal tensions but “other forms of intolerance as well”.

Recently famous actor Aamir Khan reopened a debate about intolerance by saying that his wife recently suggested moving from India.

Though they abhor the idea of leaving, they are still considering it to ensure that their children grow up in a society free from religious prejudice.

The first round of migration among elite Muslim families — those who would hang out with people like the “Ambanis and Tatas” — happened in the early 1990s, after the demolition of the Babri Masjid and the subsequent riots.

It was largely Mumbai-centric with several families moving to Europe and the Gulf. Their children struggled to establish ties with the new world, but as they grew up they began to make peace with their “Non-Resident Indian” (NRI) identity.

– the hindu

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