Where exactly is this country heading to? Isn’t that the question that is going on in the mind of every Indian citizen at the moment. Not a single corner of this country seems to be at peace. The beautiful valley of Jammu and Kashmir is the worst hit among all the other state. The conflict began way back after the Independence of India in 1947 regarding the issue of territory between India and Pakistan. But the latest conflict which is also the Burhan aftermath, refers to a series of violence in the Muslim-majority in the Indian-administered state of Jammu and Kashmir after the killing of Burhan Wani by the Indian security forces on 8th July,2016. Burhan Wani was the militant commander of the Kashmir-based Hizbul Mujahiddin. Since then anti-Indian protests have been familiar to the people of the state.
Let’s shift our focus to the eastern side of the country and by the mention of eastern India the first state that comes to our mind is the old and peaceful state of West Bengal, where life goes on at a different speed as compared to other metropolitan states. Well,well well! Once the state which was symbolized by the term “peace” is also under the umbrella of political unrest due to the demand of Gorkha Janamukti Morcha for a separate state.
All of these conflicts and unrest reached its epitome with the killing of 16 year-old Junaid Khan last week when he was returning home in Ballabhgarh, Haryana from Delhi with three other companions. The dispute which erupted over seats ended with the stabbing of an innocent teenager who was returning after Eid shopping with his family members. The reason behind all this chaos was because he was a Muslim. Religious slurs, pulling of his skull cap and beard was all that a fight over seats led to. The teen was stabbed to death with knives and his companions were severely injured with the allegations that they were carrying beef with them. His mother like any other mother was eagerly waiting for her sons to return home with something good completely unaware of the fate of her teenager son. Junaid’s death led to protests across India under a common banner “Not in My Name”. The protests were held in New Delhi, Kolkata, Allahabad, Chandigarh, Jaipur, Patna, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Lucknow, Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram in India and similar protests were also held in London, Toronto and Boston on 29th June, 2017. This widespread protest against mob lynching of which most of them killed were Muslims is helmed by a Gurgaon-based filmmaker Saba Dewan.
We claim to be living in a secular country but these are the times when the whole idea behind India being a secular country can be put under question. Muslims are as much part of this country as any other community. We the ordinary citizens of this nation have no right to take the law into our own hands. Nobody has the authority to question any religious belief of the opposite religion. Junaid was not supposed to die on June 22, rather he was supposed to return home happily to his family with new clothes and other things but fate had something else planned for him. He was brutally stabbed to death and later thrown out of the train on the basis of his religion. Religion cannot and should not be a factor for any kind of violence.
Every community has the right to live in our country, happy and healthy.