“Vastanvi’s removal a disappointment for all secular forces, says BJP,” is a headline in The Hindu today [July 25, 2011]. It is a disappointment for the BJP because Vastanvi was perhaps the only significant Muslim leader to have praised Narendra Modi’s activities in Gujarat which allegedly led to the state’s development.
The Muslims were obviously upset with Vastanvi’s declaration. Understandably so. If someone comes and kills my family members and then uses my family property for the welfare of a few others, I will not be able to appreciate the ‘development.’
Modi brought development to Gujarat at the cost of the Muslims. Also at the cost of many Hindus in Gujarat. At the cost of many ordinary Gujaratis who cannot question Modi. But who cares at whose cost so long as development is being brought in!
Vastanvi blundered by praising Narendra Modi, who is a known killer. Vastanvi could have struck a better deal with Modi. A deal for communal understanding in Gujarat. And Vastanvi was the right person for that. He is a highly educated Muslim with sufficient experience of the world behind him. He should have known better than praise Modi.
The Muslim community blundered by sacking Vastanvi from the post as the rector of their Deoband seminary. They should have understood the person behind the statement. This is where the Muslim community goes wrong almost always, unfortunately. They don’t understand the person behind the man/woman. They are so blind!
Who can open the eyes of the religiously blind – whether it is a Hindu blindness or Muslim blindness or Christian blindness or any religious blindness? Not the 33-crore Hindu pantheon. Not Allah. Not Jesus.
That’s my only problem. Vastanvi’s disappointment is mine too.