It has always been the strong, skilled, powerful and united that ruled over the weak, less-skilled and divided people. Unlike the common perception, in reality the question of majority and minority hardly matter when it comes to ‘who will rule whom’. It is only the current democratic set-ups in most of the countries that the majority community gets a bigger space. Historically, it was not so. The Mughals ruled India, still a Hindu-majority country, for several hundred years. A mere company from the British islands took the reins of the country, until the Queen took over for another hundred years. The best example of the brain and fist ruling over mere numbers was the famous adage that once ‘the sun never sets on the British empire’. Even now when the majority counts in decision making it is actually the Americas and Chinas that are virtually ruling the world. The whole world constantly monitors the happenings in a few economies and it’s not vice versa. Despite its burgeoning population, happenings in the African nations hardly make the world worried as does by dropping of a few cents in the NASDAQ market.
While Christians, Muslims and Hindus are world’s some of the biggest religious communities, the last being mainly confined to India, they are minorities in many countries of the world. There are other minority communities as well. These minorities have their own grievances – some fight it out, some take the injustices for granted, and some try to empower themselves through intellect and other means. The last option is the best as adopted by some minority communities like the Jews and Parsis. They have never taken up arms neither took it granted the injustice, if any, meted out to them. By their own virtues, they have been able to earn respect from other communities. And, the first path, most of the times, takes the community nowhere apart from causing bloodshed and pushing the community further backward, which is happening in the case of followers of Islam. Those who have responded to armed ‘struggle’, commonly called jihad, have served none keeping the emotion high and garnering more support for something known as crimes in the books of law. Therefore, the best jihad, if has to be said so, is to empower oneself by own virtue – it may take hundred years – rather than going into bloody conflicts.
(Published as editorial in The Meghalaya Guardian on July 15, 2016)