Kommentar

India har ikke gått opp i limingen som følge av etniske konflikter. Hindu-nasjonalistiske BJP tapte valget, og en muslimsk president utnevnte en sikh til statsminister.

Da ekstremister nylig forsøkte å angripe Ayodhya, og seks ble drept, var det bare noen få tusen som fulgte oppfordringen om å demonstrere.

Da Newsweeks Fareed Zakaria skrev sin bok «The Future of Freedom» i 2003, var han pessimistisk på vegne av landet faren hans kommer fra. Men utviklingen har ikke gitt ham rett, og Zakaria er den første til å innrømme det.

I India er det kultur og forretningsliv som har gått foran, ikke politikerne. Indias Silicon Valley rundt Bangalore begeistrer Thomas L. Friedman i boken «The World is Flat». Men også muslimene er med på denne moderniseringen. Det gir håp for fremtiden.

According to the Financial Times, when Bush ran into India’s prime minister on his recent trip to Moscow, he said: «Laura, you’ve gotta meet Manmohan Singh from India. It’s a democracy with the largest Muslim population in the world, and you know what, there is not a single member of Al Qaeda among them. Isn’t that fantastic?» Bush’s statistics may have been off, but his point was clear: A liberal India is very much in America’s interest.

A distaste for conflict is growing among India’s 150 million Muslims as well. Opportunity is expanding, and many of the country’s traditional Islamic schools, or madrasas, have started to incorporate computer skills and subjects like journalism into their curricula. In a recent survey, 57 percent of Kashmiri youths said they would rather study at the Indian Institute of Technology than at the Quaid-e-Azam University in Islamabad (14 percent) or India’s largest Islamic seminary in Deoband (10 percent). A new wave of Muslim superstars is also generating a powerful symbolism that inspires both Hindus and Muslims. Cricketer Irfan Pathan, the son of a Gujarati muezzin (one who calls the Muslim faithful to prayer), regularly sends cricket-crazy India into a frenzy with his match-winning performances. The billionaire CEO of Wipro, one of India’s largest software firms, happens to be Muslim. And Indian girls of all creeds look up to Sania Mirza, an 18-year-old Muslim tennis player who has found success on the pro tour.

A VICTORY FOR LIBERALISM IN INDIA.
Conflict Averse
by Jai Singh