Politics of Appeasement: A Dangerous Game, From Moplah Tragedy to Dhulagarh Riots

Politics of conciliation
Politics of conciliation

Politics of Appeasement : A Dangerous game

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]I[/dropcap]ronically, the Khilafat movement which is said to be the symbol of the Hindu-Muslim unity was the inauguration point of the Hindu-Muslim riots. Gandhiji didn’t understand that restoration of the caliph would only result in making him again as a symbol of pan-islamisation as a world religion with its people forming ummah. This forthcoming danger was clearly foreseen by then Viceroy council member Sir Sankar Nair who wrote in his boo Gandhi and anarchy’ that, “it is impossible to believe that Gandhi and his adherents are not aware that this claim of the mahomedans to be judged only by the law of the Koran, is a claim which is the finest original of all khilafat claims of whatever kind”.

In 1921, moplah rebellion began as a reaction against the crackdown of Khilafat Movement by the British authorities. The rebellion started with the minor clashes between Muslims and the police, but the violence soon spread across the region. Muslims attacked the police stations, government offices and looted the government treasuries.

During the rebellion thousands of Hindus were killed, hundreds of women were raped. Annie Besant reported that Muslims of moplah forcibly converted many Hindus, drove away Hindus who renounce the Islam who were totaling to more than 100,000. Despite this brutal incident, Mahatma Gandhi showed his sympathy on moplahs by writing, “It’s wrong to say that Islam has employed force. No religion in this world has spread through the use of force. No Musalman, to my knowledge, has ever approved of compulsion”. This shows how the congress and Gandhi practiced the double dealings in politics.

Lord Reading viceroy of India announced in his speech, of 20 August 1921″A few Europeans and many Hindus have been murdered, communications have been sacked, houses of Europeans and Hindus were burnt. The result had been temporary collapse of civilian government. European and Hindu refugees of all classes are concentrated at Calicut and it is satisfactory to note that they are safe there. Those who are responsible for this grave outbreak of violence and crime must be brought to the justice and made suffer the punishment of the guilty”. Now, let us see how Gandhi overlooked the men slaughtering, women raping of Moplah Muslims. In his writing Gandhi concluded that “The moplah’s are among the bravest in the land and they are god fearing”.

Dr. B.R. Ambedkar’s take on Gandhi for his appeasement politics by quoting “Gandhi has never called the Muslims to account even when they have been guilty of gross crimes against Hindus. It is notorious fact that many prominent Hindus who had offended the religious susceptibilities of the Muslims have been murdered by some fanatic Musalmans. The leading Muslims never condemned these criminals. This attitude of the Muslims is understandable. What is not understandable is the attitude of Mr. Gandhi”.

Annie Besant once a stalwart figure of congress and loved by Indian masses, written an article titled Malabar’s Agony in New India of 29 November 1921 which exposes the brutality of moplah’s: “Words fails to explain my feelings of indignation and abhorrence which I experienced when I came to Konkan of an instance of rape, committed by the rebels under chembrasseri Thangal. A respectable Nair lady at Melathur was stripped naked by the rebels in presence of her husband and brothers who were made to stand close by with their hands tied behind. When they shut their eyes in abhorrence, they were compelled at the point of the sword to open their eyes and witness the rape by the brute in their presence”.

The atrocities committed by the moplah’s were reported on many English and regional newspapers all across British India. Gandhi was fully aware of developments in Malabar, but he went on with his views by showing blind eye on reality. On speaking about double talking of Gandhi, Annie Besant criticized him by saying “It would be well if Mr. M K Gandhi could be taken into Malabar to see with his own eyes the ghastly horrors which have been created by the preaching of himself and his “Loved Brothers” Muhammad and Shaukat Ali”.

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]M[/dropcap]ahatma Gandhi sowed the seed of Khilafat in 1921 and it reaped in the form of Pakistan in 1947. Tragically, Lucknow pact of 1916 was the starting point of Muslim fanaticism which secured the prestigious position in Indian politics after Khilafat movement in 1921 under Gandhi and later after independence continued under Nehru, Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi and other leaders. And today it is enjoying same privilege across the country. Nehru and Indira Gandhi’s approach towards the communalism were not balanced; they considered the minority communalism as less evil and majority communalism as fascism.

However, in 1980s the appeasement politics has reached its lowest point under the leadership of Rajiv Gandhi. In 1985, Shah Bano, a 70 year old Muslim woman, was sanctioned maintenance money by the Supreme Court of India. Her husband was ordered to pay Rs.500 as maintenance money. Massive protests were taken up by fundamentalist Muslims, especially the Islamic clergy who termed the decision as interference in the internal affairs of the community. Misusing the massive majority in parliament, then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi ensured the passage of the Muslim women (Protection of Rights on Divorce) Act of 1986. The bill absolved the Muslim husband of any responsibility for his divorced wife, irrespective of her pecuniary condition.

Another awful incident was the controversy on the book ‘The Satanic Verses’, there was a violent reaction of Muslims to the publication of Salman Rushdie’s novel. Muslim fundamentalists threatened massive protests against the allegedly blasphemous novel. In 1988, India became one of the first countries to ban novel as a pre-emptive measure. Rushdie showed his protest by writing an open letter to then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. Senior Congress leader P. Chidambaram in 2015 has admitted that the decision of the Mr. Rajiv Gandhi’s government to ban, The Satanic Verses was wrong. He was the Minister of state for Home affairs when the book was banned; ironically it took 27 years to admit the mistake.

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]A[/dropcap]nother victim of Muslim fundamentalists and the Indian appeasement politics was Bangladeshi author Taslima Nasreen. She has exiled to India for her voice against the discriminatory Islamic practices which are against the women. Back in India, “All India Muslim Personal Board (Jadeed)” has offered 500,000 rupees for her beheading in March 2007. While she was in Hyderabad releasing Telugu translations of her work, she was allegedly attacked by AIMIM party legislators. She was forced to move from Kolkata to Delhi, as fundamentalists organizing the protests and riots against her presence in the cultural capital (Kolkata). Recently she was barred from Jaipur literary festival by organizers to please the minority community as she spoke on the controversial subject Uniform Civil Code.

Fatwas are issued by the muftis, sometimes these fatwas are issued as death penalty by the illegal courts of these muftis. One such was issued on Prof. K.T. Joseph in 2010 for assigning a paper to students that contained derogatory references to the Prophet Muhammad due to which he lost his right hand and his job too. Recently a Fatwa was issued by the shah Imam of Kolkata offering a reward of Rs. 25 lakhs to anyone who will “cut off the PM Modi’s beard and shave his head”.

Congress politics of appeasement has led the other parties to consolidate the Muslims as a mere vote bank. A popular culture was prevailing across the country were the fundamentalist are encouraged by the political parties to rake up the voters. During the reign of Dr. Manmohan Singh congress government has followed the minorities as its state policy and encouraged the differential treatment for religious minorities.

To appease its Bangladeshi illegal immigrant voters. In 2006, congress has brought the law called Foreigners (Tribunals for Assam) order to nullify the apex court judgment on illegal immigrants. However, Supreme Court quashed the order as illegal and unconstitutional. A bunch of Justices S.P. Sinha and P.K. Balasubramanian came down heavily on the government for bringing the amendment; the apex court has declared the Illegal Migrants Determination Tribunal Act (IMDT) as unconstitutional. The court directed the central government to set up tribunals within the four months for determination of illegal migrants and for their deportation.

Bengal a great land was first to witness the Hindu renaissance in the entire sub-continent has become the hotbed for the Muslim terror. Pacification of the left front and TMC (All India Trinamool Congress) can be blamed for this, though Karl Marx said, “Religion is an opium to the mankind”, but leftist in Bengal have a different approach in their 34 years tenure. They allowed the illegal immigrants across the border and effectively converted them as their vote bank. However, TMC lead by Mamata Banerjee came to power in 2011. She took the appeasement politics to new low, by offering the monthly doles to the imams and muezzins. She started wearing a hijab while addressing or attending Muslim gatherings and majority beneficiaries of Mamata’s populist schemes are Muslims.

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]R[/dropcap]ecently Bengal witnessed the communal riots due to her appeasement politics; she issued an order banning immersion of idols on 12-13 October to allow Muharram procession on those two days. All the household pujas were asked to immerse their idols by 11 October. Calcutta High Court has struck down the orders, Justice Dipankar Dutta leading the branch has said that, “There has been a clear endeavor on the part of the state government to pamper and appease the minority section of the public at the cost of the majority section without there being any plausible justification. The reason, therefore, is however, not far to seek”. Another worst incident was Dhulagarh riots in the month of December 2016, which took place barely 20 kms away from the state secretariat where Hindus were targeted. Rioters vandalised many houses and looted the property, many were displaced. However, state government denied any incident of the riot in Dhulagarh. And the worst part is that the state government barred the three journalists of the Zee News channel, including the editor Sudhir Chaudhary and slapped the non- bailable charges against them.

Security concerns were totally isolated and ignored by the West Bengal government. In 2014, Bangladesh Foreign Minister Abdul Hassan Mehmood reportedly expressed his concerns to National Security Adviser Ajit Doval that money from the infamous Saradha scam had been diverted to fund the Jamaat-e-Islami in Bangladesh. This alleged diversion of funds raised the serious questions about the credibility of the TMC government. On one hand, jamaat group was killing the religious minorities in Bangladesh and strengthening the extremist forces in West Bengal.

Uttar Pradesh was a politically crucial state for every national party with the largest number of representatives in parliament. It has the highest number of Muslim population in the country, which constitutes more than 19 percent of the population of the state. There was an ongoing contest among the parties for the Muslim votes, BSP party lead by Mayawati a former CM of Uttar Pradesh has announced the Dalit-Muslim collation, and however, she failed to uplift both the communities in the past.

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]T[/dropcap]he Rajender Sachar committee has exposed the reality of the Muslim welfare in our country. They are the most backward community in economic terms in our country; they have per capita income of less than schedule castes. The community is witnessing the highest school dropouts; the Muslims representation in the bureaucracy is only 2.5 percent while they constitute 14 percent of the Indian population. But political parties never raise the topic of education and health care while asking for the votes, development becomes a non-issue for the political parties which could liberate the community from the orthodox mullahs. Most political parties encourage the orthodox mullahs and clergy for gaining the votes with their support, slowly voices of moderate Muslims has been suppressed. This kind of blatant appeasement could paralyze the secular structure of our country.

As Ronald Reagan said, “There is no security, no safety in the appeasement of evil”.

1. Text in Blue points to additional data on the topic.
2. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of PGurus.


  1. Sir Niranjan Gurram/Pgurus Team,

    Can you kindly elucidate how, uniform civil code was mooted and why/who is stalling it, and how long has it been stalled,effects/Consequence of uniform civil code on our society

    N Thangadurai

    • Sorry, Mr. Thangadurai I haven’t seen your reply. N I apologise for such a late reply after 1 year. Definitely soon I will come up with piece on uniform civil code n it could be more relevant now because the govt, has missed a great opportunity of implementing it.


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