Why Law Against Love Jihad but Not Against Love Dharmayudh?

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Representational image.

Karnataka, MP and several other state governments, too, are busy in bringing in a law against love jihad 

Dr. Javed Jamil | Clarion India

QUOTING Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister, a Hindustan Times report says, “The Allahabad High Court has said that for marriages, changing religion isn’t necessary. The government too has decided to check love jihad with all its might. An effective law would be made that would ensure that those who cheat gullible women by hiding their identity would be effectively dealt with,” the CM said.

Love jihad is a term used by right-wing workers to describe inter-faith relationships between a Muslim man and a Hindu woman. In February this year, the government told Parliament that “there was no definition of the term and no such cases were reported by agencies.”

Karnataka, MP and several other state governments, too, are busy in bringing in a law against love jihad. The question is: Why all these Chief Ministers and Hindutva activists are bringing in a law against love jihad only and not against love dharmayudh”?

Why are they worried only about the Muslim boys marrying Hindu girls, and not about Hindu boys marrying Muslim girls? Is there a sinister plan behind this? With births of girls rapidly decreasing among the newborn in various states, are they planning to launch love dharmayudh in future after making sure that love jihad is banned?

Long back, when I had just finished my MBBS, one of my closest friends, a Brahmin, fell in love with a Muslim nurse. They are now married for more than two decades. A Muslim lawyer of the Mohalla I lived in Saharanpur, known for its deeply religious denizens, married a Hindu lawyer. There are many other examples that I have come across where Hindu boys entered into “love” with Muslim girls.

Of course, we have many among the celebrities–Mahesh Bhatt’s mother Shirin, Yuvraj’s mother Shabnam, Shahid Kapoor’s mother Neelima, to name a few. But no Muslim organisation ever propounded the theory of love dharmayudh. But true to its ideology of spreading hatred against Muslims more than love for Hindus, the BJP and its sister Hindutva organisations are busy throwing around love jihad as its latest weapon of hate.

They are presenting it as a planned conspiracy by Muslims against Hindus. The truth, on the contrary, remains that Islamic organisations and clerics have never supported the idea of Muslims marrying non-Muslims, even if the girl or the boy happens to be a Hindu.  

If the examples of Muslim boys marrying Hindu girls outnumber the Muslim girls marrying Hindu boys to any appreciable degree, this is simply because fewer Muslim girls are going to higher institutions and jobs. Muslim boys studying in colleges or doing jobs find much greater number of Hindu girls around than Muslims. Mixing and close contacts soon develop into relationships. Most of these boys have relatively weaker religious leanings than the ordinary Muslim boys who prefer to marry Muslim girls.

After all, Inter-caste marriages, whatever their compositions, are not easy to manage with most fearing the long-term effects. In India, marriages are not just a relationship between the couple but involve families, and the religion almost always plays an important role in families and social life.

 It is also surprising that Hindutva organisations are opposing love jihad  despite the fact that Muslims marrying Hindu girls tend to be closer to Hindus than the ordinary Muslims. Many of them find it hard to face the Muslim hostility towards their marriages and join Hindu dominant organisations and parties.

Both of the two well-known Muslim faces in BJP are having Hindu wives, and the couples are proud of each other. Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and Shanawaz Hussain have proved to be more loyal to BJP than many other leaders.

If despite the massive hate-Muslim campaign by BJP and the other Hindutva organisations, they can maintain unadulterated loyalty to their party, it should, in fact, encourage Hindu organisations to accept the marriages of Muslim boys with Hindu girls. This can prove to be a boon for them in the future. And if love jihad is such a big threat, Naqvis and Shanawazes should be thrown out without delay.

Rather than fearing Muslim boys, BJP would better run a campaign on a war-footing against female infanticide which is rampant in the Hindu society. If, at all, the demography in India will have any shift, even if marginal, it will neither be due to Muslim boys marrying Hindu girls nor due to Muslims having a slightly higher growth rate. With fewer girls being born, it can become difficult for Hindus to cope with a situation where marriage-seeking boys will substantially outnumber marriage-seeking Hindu girls.

India is a strange society. At certain times, the whole Indian society tends to become communal; but soon they revert back to secularism, which in our country means respect to all religions.

Rather than adopting communalism, the forces of Hindutva would better try to take support of Muslims on the ground of their common positions on social vices like alcohol, smoking, gambling, family disintegration, nudity and sexual perversions and exploitations.

And if any law is passed against marriages between Hindus and Muslims, it should be applicable to both, boy-Hindu-girl-Muslim or boy-Muslim-girl-Hindu. Otherwise, it will not just be discrimination on the ground of religion but also discrimination on the ground of sex.

Hindutvavadis are not only busy in maligning Muslims but, like the West, are also becoming increasingly aggressive in their version of jihad, the dharmayudh. While in the Islamic vision of jihad, use of arms is only the last option, in dharmayudh, use of shastra (weapon) is the only option. When they talk of dharmayudh, it is nothing but pure use of shastra for the sake of religion.

What if not dharmayudh is this that their devotion to their gau mata leads to killing Muslims with impunity? What if not dharmayudh was this when they razed Babri Masjid to the ground and indulged in rioting against Muslims killing hundreds? What if not dharmayudh was this when they went on a killing spree in Gujarat in 2002 blaming Muslims for the death of a few dozen Kar Sewaks? What if not dharmayudh is this that riots are recurrently organised killing scores of Muslims with the help of police?

According to various reports, between 30,000 and 1,00,000 people have been killed in Hindu-Muslim riots since Partition, 75 percent of them being Muslims.

Hopefully, sooner than later, their leaders will realise that dharmayudh is not going to help them in the longer run and it will be better for their religion and community if they learn living in peace and sharing the resources with all the citizens of the country. Hopefully again, they will realise that the real challenge for religions in today’s world is not from the other religions but from the atheistic forces that want to destroy every religion and the religious morality associated with it to perpetuate their monopoly in the world.

The day they realise it, we will see the beginning of a new revolution which will make the world, cleaner, purer, healthier and more peaceful.

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Dr Javed Jamil is an eminent Islamic scholar and author.

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