India

‘I have always defended my country abroad…’ —Dr. Zafarul-Islam Khan

By Dr. Zafarul-Islam Khan

Yesterday, 28 April 2020, I issued a tweet on my twitter handle. Nothing more should be added to this tweet as done by some media establishments.

This tweet is in the background of how the issues of Muslims have been dealt with in our country, be it lynching, riots, media-bashing or redressal of their problems in political and administrative processes.

I have not complained against my country to any foreign government or organization nor I intend to do so in future. I am a patriot to the core and I have always defended my country abroad. However, at the same time, I have always been vocal about the problems in our country like any other country but, I also believe that we and our political, constitutional and judicial system are capable to tackle them.

I have always defended my country in Arabic media and on channels like Al Jazeera where my defence of India during the Kargil War is still remembered by many in the Arab world. When Kuwait’s Al-Mujtama magazine asked me years ago to write about Indian Muslims’ viewpoint about Kashmir, the editor was shocked to see my article as it defended the Indian position and said that the Indian Muslims do not support the secession of Kashmir from India. That article was published along with a rejoinder by a person in Pakistan and that was the last time I wrote for that magazine.

According to my knowledge, Indian Muslims have never complained against their country to outside powers. I, like other Indian Muslims, believe in the rule of law, the Indian Constitution and the fine institutions our country has.

I must make it clear that I am not and never was a member of Aam Admi Party (AAP) and the Commission I head is a statutory and independent body governed by the Delhi Minorities Commission Act 1999. AAP or its government in Delhi do not run the Commission and are not accountable for what the Commission does.

I take this opportunity to bring to the notice of the media here that yesterday itself, United States Commission on International Religious Freedom said in its report that religious freedoms in India deteriorated sharply last year as the government allowed “campaigns of harassment and violence” against Muslims and other religious minorities to continue.

My views have been distorted on a few electronic media forums and many false statements/opinions have been attributed to me.  I will take appropriate legal steps available to me against them.

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