Lets admit that the 'Hindus of Hindustan are smart people. They have intelligently projected themselves as pacifists throughout the world despite several facts to the contrary: they have fought three wars with Pakistan; engineered the break-up of Pakistan and mid-wifed the creation of Bangladesh; waged a war against China; sent their army to occupy Sri Lanka in the name of peace-keeping; and started the nuclear arms and missile race in South Asia. It is time to explore the Hindu mind in its historical context before any response is made to the current Indian peace overtures. One way to understand the Hindu mindset is to analyse what its leading lights thought and felt about the Muslims of the sub-continent. The first leading light could be Lala Lajpat Rai. He revealed his inner thoughts about the Muslims in a private letter to another Hindu leader C.R. Das: There is one point more which has been troubling me very much of late and one which I want you to think carefully, and that is the question of Hindu-Mohammedan unity. I have devoted most of the time during the last six months to the study of Muslim history and Muslim law and I am inclined to think it is neither possible nor practicable. Lalaji is dead but his ideas are a part of the sub-continental collective religio-political consciousness and thus serve as a source of inspiration to many of his Hindu followers in India, even today. The second one was Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya who was praised by the liberal Congressman Jawaharlal Nehru as a gentle and winning personality and by another Hindu liberal C.Y. Chintamani as the one who was full of the milk of human kindness. However, Malaviyas milk of human kindness flowed only for the Hindus as he held the most unkind words in his armoury for the Muslims. Addressing a huge Hindu public gathering in Lahore in 1922, he exhorted them against the Muslims in these words: Gentle folks So long as you fear rascals, they will continue to be impudent. They only dread the big stick. Give them a hard fight This Panditji, who was calling Muslims rascals and an enemy of the Hindus was not an ordinary person. In fact, he was an authority on Hindu law and religion; had been in the Congress since 1886 and in the Central Legislature since 1910; and was the founding father of the Banaras Hindu University. The third leader greatly revered by the Hindus is V. D. Savarkar, the author of Hindutva: who is a Hindu? In his grand opinion, all the Muslims of India were fifth columnists because they owed their allegiance to Mecca (where the Holy Kaaba is situated) and Istanbul (as it was the seat of Caliphate). Yet another leader, who profoundly influenced Hindu thinking, was Dr Balkrishna Moonje. Dr Sahib was actually no more than a Hindu fascist because he publicly preached that as England is the land of the Englishmen, Germany that of the Germans; similarly, Hindustan is the land of the Hindus. The underlying message being that there was no place for the Muslims in India. It was this rabid brand of Hindu nationalism that tried to eliminate the Muslims Quaid-i-Azam because it is historically established now that Savarkar tried to bribe Yashpal with Rs 50,000 and a revolver to kill Jinnah. These 'wise men enjoyed significant support among the Hindus before partition and their thought continues to exercise considerable influence in the Indian society even today. Had it not been so, the state-run Indian television Doordarshan would not have broadcast the hagiographic biography of V.D. Savarkar on May 28, 1992, in spite of the fact that the same Savarkar was actually the main conspirator in the murder of Gandhi. Such broadcasts do help in exposing the true Hindu face of the so-called secular Indian state. The same Indian state which clamours so much to establish friendly and peaceful relations with Pakistan has badly failed from day one to provide any sense of security to its own Muslim citizens at the hands of the Hindu nationalists. Even those Muslims, who were members of the Congress and had opposed the creation of Pakistan, found no safety in India. To elaborate the point, Ill quote the letter of one Abdul Ghafoor (a resident of Matia Mahal, Delhi) to the first Indian President Rajendra Prasad in which after narrating his credentials as a 'freedom fighter who had gone to jail nine times in the fight against the British, and who had opposed the Muslim League tooth and nail, complained that his property was looted, home was occupied and wife was sent to a Muslim refugee camp, consequently, for his type of Congressite Muslims Na Hind may jagah hai, na Pakistan may thikana (there is no space for them in India, nor a resting place in Pakistan). Instead of restoring the shaken confidence of its traumatized Muslims, the Hindus portray them both in their literature and media as violent, intolerant, criminally inclined and sexually depraved community. Moreover, they persistently allege that the Muslims proliferate and multiply like rabbits to convert the Hindu majority into a minority in their very own Hindustan. This is a white lie. Those who believe in such fictitious assertion are recommended to read the findings of Justice Rajinder Sachar Commission constituted by Premier Manmohan Singh to investigate the plight of the Indian Muslims. The Sachar Report (2006) admits that there is substantial demand from the community (the Muslims) for fertility regulation and for modern contraceptives and thus Muslim population growth has slowed down as fertility has declined substantially. In addition, the Hindus dub the Indian Muslims 'anti-national but the Sachar Committee unambiguously states that the Muslim community as a whole has never indulged in anti-national activities. In such a scenario, can the Pakistanis really trust the Indian moves for amity? Peace will remain a far-fetched ideal as long as Hindustan continues to produce 'wise men, such as L.K. Advani and Bal Thackeray, the latter having openly boasted to the international media that Indian Muslims would be treated like the Jews were in Nazi Germany. If these are the designs of the Hindu leaders about their fellow Muslim citizens, one can very well imagine what can be in store for the Pakistani Muslims. So, has the typical Hindu mindset really changed at all? A brief historical sojourn has showed that there has been no let up in the intensity of Hindu wrath towards the Muslims in the pre- and post-partition eras. Email: qizilbash2000@yahoo.com