Carcasses of Kairana
The exodus of Hindus from Kairana, located 124 kilometres from Delhi in Uttar Pradesh’s Shamli, has shaken the conscience of the nation. As per the 2011 Census, Kairana had 30 per cent Hindus while the percentage of Muslims was at 68 per cent. However, the figure now stands at only 8 per cent Hindus and 92 per cent Muslims, as per the local administration. Kairana is not an isolated case. There are areas in India which are called “mini Pakistan”. Secularism is fine till it reaches a line of control. Today Malda, parts of Kerala and Karnataka, old Hyderabad, parts in M.P. and U.P. are under the total control of Muslims and they dictate terms, even the government has no say except to bow to their wishes. In 1990, massive riots erupted in different parts of Kashmir. The targets were a small minority called Kashmiri Pandits, who had been an inseparable part of Kashmiri ethos from last 1100 years. Kashmiri Pandits constituted little over 4.5 per cent of Kashmir’s population and they were a rich and enterprising community, overrepresented in bureaucracy and other white collar jobs. The Kashmiri Muslims were the majority and they still are. They were writhing in poverty and they still are. Kashmiri Pandits were systematically flushed out. They were hacked to death in broad daylight; their women were killed and their properties were either torched or confiscated illegally. This resulted in the massive exodus of the Kashmiri Pandits. They were forced to stay like refugees in their very own country. The people of Kairana in Uttar Pradesh today are experiencing the same fate. The exodus of the Hindu families, as claimed by the local MP and former Union minister Hukum Singh, is reminiscent of the exodus of the Kashmiri Pandits in the nineties. There have already been several instances galore in Uttar Pradesh, of the state failing to protect its people from this kind of carnage, most recent being the Mathura’s Jawahar Park area. A lone man setting up an illegal settlement, which was beyond the state administration’s reach, can suffice to tell the sorry state of affairs in the state. Kairana and Mathura may have different contexts but the driving factors for both the incidents are the same: the prevailing lawlessness in the state.
It was witnessed in the past the stretching of Malda-like barbarism in Purnia, Bihar. Thereafter, a similar incident occurred in Nawatand, in another neighboring state – Jharkhand. Nawatand is a village where Hindus are in minority. The question arises: Will the Kashmir-like barbarism spread in every place where Hindus are less in number? It cannot be gainsaid that many areas in India are witnessing major religious demographic changes. One of the regions where the demographic changes are rapid is western Uttar Pradesh. Specifically, we refer to the regions of the Upper Doab (the districts of old Saharanpur, old Muzaffarnagar and old Meerut) and northern Rohilkhand (the districts of Bijnor, old Moradabad, Rampur and Bareilly). There are some facts which need to be pointed out here. As the district officials of the Kairana suggests that instead of communal angle the rising crime graph and lack of employment opportunities are the main reasons for the exodus. Even if we keep this in mind, it once again indicts the Akhilesh Yadav’s government. Government’s failure to provide security and employment opportunities to its people on the one hand and patronising a particular community for political gains is very dangerous situation. Patronising a particular community by the present government in the state makes it hard for the district administration to take action against the culprits in Kairana. This results in criminals having a free rein and the poor people are left to fend for themselves, resulting in mass exodus. It is imperative to take strict actions against the criminals otherwise it will not take too long for Kairana to turn into another Kashmir. Furthermore, underplaying the exodus in Kairana as an election ploy will undermine the gravity of the situation, as the Samajwadi Party is trying to do. The secular brigade has sought to underplay the events at Kairana by suggesting that they are an election stunt. The prevailing bad affairs of law and order in the state are in fact creating a grave crisis and the government must look into it and rectify at the earliest.