This is what national Front Leader Farrukh Abdullah said day before yesterday at World Book Fair, Pragati Maidan New Delhi.
“I’m Not a Muslim; I’m a Kashmiri Saraswat Pandit, who many years ago converted from Kashmiri Pandit to Islam. Kashmiri Muslims are the offshoots of the Kashmiri Muslims.”
Farrukh Abdullah was launching the first Children’s book written in Kashmiri language.
Search for One’s Roots is eternal
Some people will try to use Farrukh Abdullah’s statement to prove that all Muslims in India are Hindus. I’ll never make such an assertion; as I’ve read history. Indian Muslims is a mixed bag. Arabs, Afghans, Iranians, Central Asians and of Course those who converted to Islam from other religions (predominantly Hinduism).
Islam is religion founded by a prophet, hence it’s obvious the first group of believers, were believers of some other God or followers of some other religion. But over the course of hundreds of years, just like any other religion, majority of its followers are naturalized (that’s who belong to that religion, by being born to the followers of that religion).
Hence all Muslims in India being converted from Hinduism can’t be true.
The point I want to make is something different.
Farrukh Abdullah’s casual statement at World Book Fair points to something more universal than the logic that all Muslims living in India today were once Hindus.
That more universal appeal is: We humans keep searching for our roots.
Farrukh Abdullah’s family may had converted to Islam hundreds of years ago, but he’s still fond of his roots.
This also brings to fore the prevalence of Change in our lives. The House where I’m living today may not be present 100 years from now. Equally valid can be the thought that, the person inhabiting this place 100 years ago, would have been clueless as to who would inhabit his place 100 years later.
PS: Famous Fashion Designer, Rohit Bal may have left Kashmir years ago. But for him, his Birthplace Kashmir is the only Heaven on Earth. He is often seen quoting this couplet by famous Persian couplet by a sufi mystic, poet, composer and musician Amir Khusro belonging to medieval period:
“Agar firdaus bar roo-e zameen ast, Hameen ast-o hameen ast-o hameen ast”
“If there is paradise on the face of the Earth, it’s Here, it’s Here, It’s Here.”