“It’s a universal law— intolerance is the first sign of an inadequate education. An ill-educated person behaves with arrogant impatience, whereas truly profound education breeds humility.”

–Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (1918 - 2008).

Religious vigour soared high during the time of the Partition of India, and rightly so. The British Raj had employed a damaging system of ‘divide and rule’ for around ninety years, which led to perpetual conflict between its subjects. As the intent to decolonise the Indian Subcontinent became apparent, there was a sense of uncertainty regarding the way domestic politics would play out after the departure of the British. Islamic monotheism seemed at the risk of being dominated, nationally, by Hinduism. This existential concern was cleverly added to the political rhetoric, as the Muslim leaders pushed for an independent state.

The newfound state has come a long way from the days of the Partition. The same religion that was used as an instrument of solidarity, has become an agent of conflict. Religious intolerance, ethnic strife, and xenophobia have become cardinal ills, preventing our society from achieving the true potential that lies within the diverse population. It is high time we opt for peaceful coexistence, and through becoming better versions of ourselves, we become a more progressive and tolerant society.