By Lazy Fly
The home parliament met this morning after a long hiatus – to discuss matters of national and international importance.
“Are India’s intelligentsia and the governmental decision-makers seemingly and successfully dumb? Why is the song – Saare Jahaan Se Achchaa – being rammed down the throats of Bharat’s brave soldiers during every official defence do? It was penned by Allamaa Iqbal – who began hating India at the behest of the British and tirelessly worked for the creation of Pakistan, for God’s sake!”
The question and its follow-up remark were posed by the world’s only female talking dog [we do not term Babushka a bitch because of implied human promiscuity by cursing at curs]. All of us were having breakfast on yet another birthday of Gandhiji.
For the record, Babushka is the daughter of the eternal Bolshoi the Boxer. He had been the late journalist Busybee a.k.a. Behram Contractor’ favourite pet. His widow Farzana terms Babushka her ‘adopted’ God-Daughter. Babushka also is the presiding officer of our domestic parliament – our residence’s breakfast table – whose members – comprise – besides Babushka – poor old me, the wife, offspring Dirk and Diana and the charwoman Gangubai. Our non-human but humane ‘presiding officer of the house’ is yet to get a chance to yell “sit down” or baith jaayiye at the members here – unlike the real thing in Delhi. We – at our domestic parliament – behave much better. None talks over the other or out of turn or shouts slogans. Of course, we have no use for placards of pepper sprays – weapons seen in India’s parliament these days.
“It is India’s official song. Saying things against it is sacrilege,” the wife said.
“It is sung at every official army function and it does say that India is the best in the world,” the son Dirk opined.
“What is your problem about a song that is 100 plus years old, now of all times,” the daughter Diana asked in a rather irate tone.
Knowing that Babushka never makes a flippant remark, I waited. That apart, she is better informed than most humans.
“The poem, entitled Tarana-e-Hind [Anthem of India] was penned by Mohammad ‘Allamaa’ Iqbal in 1904 – while he taught in the Government College, Lahore. Born in Sialkot [now in Pakistan] Iqbal self admittedly hailed from a family of Kashmiri Pandits who had converted to Islam. And it was he who piloted the idea of creating the state called Pakistan – purely for Muslims – against all interests of Indian unity before independence. And it was Iqbal who succeeded in convincing Jinnah – who was ready, willing and able to do a deal with the Congress on the one hand and the British on the other to keep India as a single nation. Pakistan was finally carved out of India to bleed Bharat. The perfidy continues,” Babushka opined.
“He may have supported the British at some time and been knighted for the yeoman service. But, the sentiments expressed in the song are per se pro-India and very patriotic,” I interpolated.
Babushka ignored me and continued.
“At that point in time, the song triggered nationalist sentiments in India. Being very fond of his mother, Iqbal used the term ‘Maadr-e-watan’ or simply, Mother Nation. The foreign rulers did not like it, as it landed a fly in the ointment of the dictum called dīvide et īmpera – a term so usefully coined by Phillip II of Macedon in the 4th century BCE.  But, the same Iqbal who went to Cambridge soon afterwards, became a member of the Muslim League in London , wrote a parody of the same Saare Jahaan Se Achchaa as what he termed Tarana-e-Milli [Anthem of the Universe] – in which he said, Cheeno-Arab-Hamaara, Hindustan Hamaara, Muslim Hain Hum, Saara Jahaan Hamaara [Central Asia, West Asia, India and the entire world belongs to us Muslims]. Finally, Iqbal drilled the idea of the separate Muslim state called Pakistan – into the mind of an otherwise unwilling Jinnah,” Babushka spoke with some vehemence.
“You cannot be serious,” the wife yelled in a strained voice.
“It is you humans who are non-serious. We animals are always serious about what we say and do. Besides, I am quoting facts! It was Iqbal whose teaching “spiritually … has been the chief force behind the creation of Pakistan,” says a website dedicated to the man who became famous a Shaayar-e-Mashreeq [poet of the East]. In 1907, Iqbal joined the London branch of the All India Muslim League, when he studied law and philosophy. In 1908, while in England, was chosen as a member of the executive council of the newly-established British branch of the Indian Muslim League,” Babushka pointed out.
“Why dig up old and rusty and buried hatchets of hatred?” I asked in exasperation.
“Because, Pakistan was created to hate, was sustained by sustaining its populace’s hatred, its hatred dogma was kept alive by illegal funding from abroad under spurious alibis and now, it has become a pain in several parts of the global anatomy. Iqbal hated the Congress and was disillusioned with the politicians of the Muslim League – because most of the 20’s leaders were a bickering, in-fighting lot. Their only interest was sharing power with the Congress if and when India became independent. He abhorred leaders like Muhammad Shafi and Fazl-ur-Rahman. In Mohammad Ali Jinnah, Iqbal found a man ambitious enough to chase the mirage called Pakistan. Jinnah was cajoled into returning to India from a self-imposed exile in London and take charge of the Muslim League. This was purely the ‘remote controlled retaliation” by the British, of the British and for the British who frowned at Gandhiji’s clarion call on January 26 1930 for ‘Poorna Swaraj’ or complete independence,” Babushka argued.
“Is there any evidence of this far-fetched theory?” Incredulousness dripped from Diana’s query.
“On December 29 1930, during a lecture in Allahabad, for the first time during the British Raj, Iqbal suggested the creation of a separate homeland for the Muslims of India. It was a time, when Jinnah was talking of being hopeful to be part of India. Operative excerpt from Iqbal’s speech: I would like to see the Punjab, North-West Frontier Provinces, Sind and Baluchistan into a single State …. Self-government within the British Empire or without the British Empire. The formation of the consolidated North-West Indian Muslim State appears to be the final destiny of the Muslims, at least of the North-West India. In 1931 and 1932 Iqbal represented the Muslims of India in the Round Table Conferences held in England to discuss the issue of the political future of India. A letter Iqbal wrote to Jinnah – at that point in time – is telling. Operative excerpt: “I know you are a busy man but I do hope you won’t mind my writing to you often, as you are the only Muslim in India today to whom the community has right to look up for safe guidance through the storm which is coming to North-West India and, perhaps, to the whole of India.”
Babushka was firm in her narrative.
“Aguh-baaya,” exclaimed our charwoman Gangubai.
“But what does that have to do with modern day India, on Gandhi Jayanti day of all times? In Mumbai, we have our problems. The roads are bad as the rains are still yet to really end. The Corporation elections are due now. Shiv Sena, BJP and the rest of the rat-brat-pack politicians will be fighting like Kilkenny Cats. Salman Khan is taking the side of Pakistani actors’ God Given right to earn a living in India. Meanwhile vegetable prices are going through the roof. Those are interesting – at least – to read and debate,” Gangubai averred in an acerbic tone.
“Digging up old graves only creates newer problems and a stink. The exercise serves no useful purpose,” I said lamely.
“You stupid journalists say this because you do not know the horrible truth,” Babushka exclaimed rather dramatically.
“I would like to hear this so-called horrible truth,” the wife said sarcastically.
“There is an unsolved mystery about Gandhiji’s murder – or rather – the gun used in the gruesome deed. As India’s independence date neared, Mahatma Gandhi had floated the idea of making Jinnah – who was dying of tuberculosis anyway – as Bharat’s first Prime Minister – to negate the 2-nation theory, says an article published in Outlook magazine. The lines said to have been uttered by the Mahatma were, “If the experiment succeeds, none would care for a Pakistan. If it fails, none would dare to demand for a Pakistan. Either way, India wins.” Nehru was as guiltier as Jinnah was in the partitioning of India. Nathuram Godse shot Gandhiji to death on January 30 1948 pre-empting the February 1948 trip of the Father of the Nation to Pakistan for talks with Jinnah. Gandhiji had proposed to meet Jinnah in Pakistan and undo the crime of partition. Operative excerpts from the Times of India say the 3 fatal bullets were fired from a Beretta pistol M1934 semi-automatic pistol in of point 38 ACP calibre, Serial Number 606824. Investigators however, never pursued the person to whom it was actually licensed. The Gandhi murder case charge-sheet reads: “Godse reached Gwalior by train on January 28 and secured the Beretta pistol with the help of Gwalior based Dr Dattatraya S Parchure, Gangadhar Dandvate, Gangadhar Jadhao, and Suryadeo Sharma. Dr Parchure, a Gwalior resident, was detained on February 3, 1948. The formal arrest was recorded 2 weeks later. On February 18, he confessed to his role in the murder during trial before First Class Magistrate (Gwalior) R B Atal, but later retracted citing it as ‘forcefully extracted’. Records say that Godse obtained the pistol from Gwalior through Dr Parchure who had got it from Dandvate. During the trial, Dandvate said that he had bought the pistol from a person named – Jagdish Prasad Goel. Goel admitted to have sold the pistol to Dandvate, but, never explained how he himself had obtained it. ‘It’s a secret that has been secured for last many years. Revealing it now might cause political turmoil…I don’t want more trouble at this age,’ Chandrasekhar (58), the son of Dandvate, who works in a private school at Gwalior, has been quoted as saying. The Hindu Mahasabha, an organisation with which Godse had been connected, adds to this enigma. ‘The pistol’s ownership was a secret and will remain a secret … only fact I can tell you is that Goel was not the last person in chain,’ Dr Jaiveer Bharadwaj, the national vice president of Hindu Mahasabha has said. Now ask yourselves the question as to whether to take Outlook magazine’s line of thought – about Gandhiji’s continued life, the continuance of Pakistan as a state bleeding India and what what followed – seriously or otherwise. The rumour is that a male Caucasian was around when the weapon used to kill Gandhiji changed hands. Cops never tried to find out who it was and why was he around. Then comes the clincher question: who gained and continues to gain by keeping the heavy lid on the ownership of gun’s licence on,” Babushka observed and paused for four sips from her milk bowl.
“You hanging this far-fetched tale on the hook called the Mahatma’s birthday, like a few of my fellow journalists, who seem to have nothing better to do. Finding the owner of the gun will not bring the Mahatma back to life,” I commented in a matter-of-fact tone. This was getting too controversial and I wanted to end it.
“If you look at the other side of the coin, you would know why it is important. Jinnah, whose chest congestion was getting worse by the day, was brought from Quetta to Karachi for a cure. The cause, everyone knew was TB and the man’s insatiable craving for nicotine-laced smoke from a cigarette whose brand name, ironically, was Craven! He was ferried vide a special aircraft to Karachi. As he was being shifted by ambulance to a hospital from the airport, some 3 km away, the air-conditioned ambulance ran out of petrol! In the dust and grime of one of the dirtiest parts of Pakistan’s financial hub, the Quaid-e-Azam panted for breath and crossed the threshold between life and death towards the inevitable end. Moments before his death an hour or so later, the man told his military physician Dr Ilahi Baksh – “I will not remain alive!” In a way, someone in Pakistan obviously went to great lengths to ensure Jinnah did not continue to live.  According to Pakistan’s Dawn newspaper, the death of Jinnah’s sister Fatima too is shrouded in mystery. Juxtapose all this with what India’s Karachi born BJP leader LK Advani said about the founder of Pakistan being a secular person, a patriot and someone who wanted Hindu Muslim unity. Then, you can make your own guesses,” Babushka said in a grim tone, that was cold, remote and sepulchral.
I was stumped by all this. To restore some sanity, I croaked, “All this is too fantastic. Who stood to gain by keeping India and Pakistan separate and at each other’s throats?”
“Between 1947 and now, India and Pakistan have officially fought 4 wars and have seriously exchanged fire countless times across the border. If Nawaz Sharif is to be believed, we just have finished the latest – the 5th, as he termed India’s surgical strike against terrorists across the border as ‘naked aggression’. The Paki military denial of this being a fabricated tale and/or exaggeration of an ordinary cross border small arms’ firing exchange can be deciphered by looking at the toll of 38 Pakistani terrorists. The costs of these wars have crossed the equivalent financial outlay of over US$ 2 trillion – if one counts both sides. Besides – there is a huge loss of lives. The guys and gals who made profits are those who sell arms and drugs from beyond the borders of India in the Asian subcontinent,” Babushka retorted angrily.
I hurriedly got up.I had to end this as this chat was spiralling out of control.
“Before you trot out your usual excuse of being late for work or an imaginary appointment, let me tell you something unforgettable. Not far from where we live in Malabar Hill here in Mumbai, there is this place South Court – a.k.a. Jinnah House. It lies in complete disuse. But, its ownership is being claimed by Jinnah’s only female offspring Dina Wadia, who lives in the US of A. Uncle Sam was supportive of Pakistan’s terrorist acts and worse, is still continuing to fund it – using the alibi of fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan under the fig-leaf of its contorted foreign policy! Pakistan is trying to acquire Jinnah House in India’s financial capital ‘for cultural purposes and people-to-people-contact’ whatever that means. By the continuing litigation over the bungalow, where none of any importance may ever live, the imaginary issue of Muslims being suppressed in India is kept alive. In legal terms, Pakistan has no claim whatsoever Jinnah House. The same thing can be said of the Kashmir claim. The UN verdict is clear about this from 1948 onwards! In 2010 November, the UN finally removed the state of Jammu and Kashmir from the list of disputed territories. Kashmir terrorism tangle fattens the purses of the world’s carnage merchants whose agents sell dud choppers to India – sometimes from Italy. The Mumbai brouhaha over the palatial residence, keeps mindless Muslims talking of persecution in India’s maximum city and financial capital. It also could render a few lawyers richer by a few crores of rupees. We – 4-legged creatures – too have our own turf-wars. But, we settle our issues by altering our boundaries with our liquid defecation and are done with it. You humans, with your avarice for money, greed to grab someone else’s property, fuelled by your inbuilt disdain for the lives of others of your ilk, are the exact opposite. Thank God, I am only a female dog, talking like humans, but am far better in judgement than you the 2-legged jokers. I began this discussion with the Iqbal song. Why not replace it with Vande Mataram by Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay? Unlike Iqbal, the late Bankim loved India. We seem to be at war with Pakistan, yet are bent upon singing something created by an India-hating Pakistani pipsqueak British agent at military functions. We forget that our armed suffer the worst at the hands of the nation’s enemies – the Pakis – whose existence was caused by Iqbal! The controls for the never-ending real war – lie far beyond the physical borders of the subcontinent. The same can be said of the ensuing court battle for Jinnah House in the heart of India,” Babushka said in total disgust and walked out of the home for her morning stroll.
Phillip’s son Alexander the Great conquered a huge part of the world – applying this tactic – and left behind a set of his corrupt minions under the command of one of his infantry generals – Seleucus Nicator behind to rule what had become colonies – stretching from Greece to India. The only person who succeeded in defying this design was the wily Chanakya – who managed to get his protégé – Chandragupta Maurya – succeed in winning the hand of the enemy’s daughter – Helena.
Jinnah is often depicted as the villain of modern Indian history owing to the creation of Pakistan.
His ‘death’ remains a mystery.
On September 9, Jinnah had also developed pneumonia. Doctors urged him to return to Karachi, where he could receive better care, and with his agreement, he was flown there on 11 September. Dr. Ilahi Baksh, his personal physician, believed that Jinnah’s change of mind was caused by foreknowledge of death. The plane landed at Karachi that afternoon, to be met by Jinnah’s limousine, and an ambulance into which Jinnah’s stretcher was placed. The ambulance broke down on the road into town, and the Governor-General and those with him waited for another to arrive; he could not be placed in the car as he could not sit up. They waited by the roadside in oppressive heat as trucks and buses passed by, unsuitable for transporting the dying man and with their occupants not knowing of Jinnah’s presence. After an hour, the replacement ambulance came, and transported Jinnah to Government House, arriving there over two hours after the landing. Jinnah died at 10:20 pm at his home in Karachi on 11 September 1948 at the age of 71, just over a year after Pakistan’s creation.