By Special Correspondent
New Delhi: History is being re-interpreted these days. This is nothing new and has been the case for several decades now. However, now it has got patronage like never before. Therefore the preservation of Indian Muslim history has become all the more important than any time in the past.
For more than a millennia, Muslims have been an integral part of the country and it were they who first united the nation in a cohesive form and kept it that way for centuries. Now when the history is being re-written and there is an effort to obscure not just the Muslim part of the medieval history, but also the contribution of the Indian Muslims in the different freedom movements, it has become all the more important to preserve history and present our huge contributions in the freedom movement.
By bringing our contribution in the freedom movements to the fore, that have been obscured over the decades due to multiple reasons including lack of our interest in this important task, we can help preserve our history.
While some efforts have been made to take care of these efforts, these were half hearted at best. Syed Ubaidur Rahman, a renowned journalist and author has taken upon himself the challenge of doing this gigantic task. He has already authored three books on Muslims contribution on freedom movements. His first book, ‘Muslim Freedom Fighters and their Role in the Freedom Movement’ documents 40 top Muslim freedom fighters appeared in the year 2018. The book has been translated in Urdu as well. Its Urdu version has been titled ‘Muslim Mujahideen e Azadi aur Tehrike Azadi Mein unka Kirdar’.
Third book of the series, ‘Ulema’s Role in India’s Freedom Movements: With focus on Silk Letter Movement (Reshmi Rumal Tehrik)’ looks into the sacrifices made by the Muslim ulema in different phases of the freedom struggle including 1857 Mutiny, Faraizi Movement of Bengal, Tehrik e Jihad of Sayyid Ahmad Shaheed and Reshmi Rumal Tehrik of Deobandi ulema headed by Shaikhul Hind Mahmud Hasan and Ubaidullah Sindhi.
Fourth book under the India Muslim History Project, ‘Biographical Encyclopedia of Indian Muslim Freedom Fighters’ is almost complete and should go to the press in March, or early April inshAllah. The book documents the lives and sacrifices of 150 Muslim leaders who gave great sacrifices for the nation, spending years and decades in jail, even going to kalapani and confronting every trouble for the freedom of the nation. Many of them gave the supreme sacrifice and were martyred.
Fifth book ‘Muslims of India and Freedom Movement: From 1920-1947’ will document the role of Muslims, their struggle and sacrifices. It negates the whole argument that Muslims sided with the theory of two nation theory and caused partition. It should come out in October inshaAllah.
Syed Ubaidur Rahman, the man behind the initiative tells this correspondent that the project is of utmost importance given the changing political scenario. “Questions are raised about the patriotism of the Muslims and the alleged Muslim role in the partition of the country. India Muslim History Project aims to put the record straight by refuting such allegations and documenting the history that shows as to how they gave sacrifices for the nation, fighting not just against the colonial powers, but also against the idea of two nation theory and partition”, says Rahman.
“We aim not just to publish original books and documents, but also translate some rare Urdu books that need to be rendered into English and Hindi to fight off such baseless rumors”, he adds.
However, this has been a lonely struggle for him thus far. The community needs to realize that these efforts not just need words of praise but also real support.
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Syed Ubaidur Rahman