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Muslims should learn a lesson from their Sikh brethren 
By Mehroz Mian 

If we review riots in Bhagalpur and Gujarat and other riots that took place earlier, we shall find that Muslims suffered very great loss of life and property. In Gujarat riots only their losses were worth more than 3000 crores of rupees. What is more regrettable is that after being destroyed once Muslims are not able to recover. Why after all their shops, small and large factories, bakeries etc cannot be rebuilt on the same pattern after being looted and burnt? Obviously because Muslims have no other side business. They go on pursuing one and the same work.

Wealthy Muslims should, in addition to their factories and other business etc, purchase land, build farm houses and undertake farming there. Whatever the nature of riots may be nobody can steal land. At the most one can destroy or set fire to the crops but soon thereafter the land again becomes green with crops. 

After Indira Gandhi’s assassination there were anti-Sikh riots throughout the country but soon thereafter they recovered economically and became well-to-do as before. A special characteristic of Sikhs is that even in spite of owning large factories they definitely build farm houses. Even Punjab’s former chief minister Prakash Singh Badal, who lives in Punjab, has purchased a farm house in Uttaranchal. In the same way Muslims also should adopt such practices. They should get their shops and other business establishments insured. In places where the atmosphere is communal, they must get their properties insured. In addition, they must educate and train their children for becoming doctors, engineers, lawyers and other professionals. Material wealth may or may not remain but the wealth of knowledge cannot be destroyed and with its help they can rebuild and maintain their respectable position. 
(Translated from Urdu - Nai Duniya, 3-9 May 2002
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