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Maulana Azad under media blackout


Maulana Abul Kalam Azad who played a significant role in India’s struggle for freedom through his fiery pen and speech can so early and easily forgotten cannot be imagined. It is an Indian tragedy that the new generation is absolutely ignorant about the contribution which enabled us to breathe freely in an independent nation. Whereas those who were mute spectators or had been sitting on the fence and even played informers to British have captured seats of power. 11 November was Maulana Azad’s birthday which passed without much fanfare. A few Muslim schools organised programmes in his remembrance; a formal wreath was offered by the government and the newspapers published an article or two. Our national press was ignorant of the fact that the freedom fighter was the first education minister in independent India. Electronic channels that show vulgar programmes of Rakhi Sawant and Rahul Mahajan and keep the viewers glued for hours together could not spare ten minutes for the Maulana. Door Darshan, of course, discharged its official responsibility by telecasting a film on Azad at 5 pm overlooking the fact that at 5 pm either people are returning home or in their offices while the shopkeepers are busy at their shops; children at the playrounds and housewives in the kitchen. Only Door Darshan can enlighten who could have watched the telecast.

Maulana Azad played a key role in getting India freed. At the same he was greatly distressed over formation of Pakistan which he strongly opposed. People in droves used to rush to hear him but these very persons turned so hostile towards him for his views about Pakistan that they misbehaved with him at Aligarh railway station while he was returning to Calcutta from Delhi. Even the tombs of his near ones were not spared by the angry mobs. The man who lost everything for the sake of country is lost in oblivion and children have to be told about his key role in the freedom struggle. There are neither his photos in schools nor chapters in school text books. It we continue forgetting the freedom fighters time is not very far when the new generation will forget India’s history of freedom.

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 1-15 December 2010 on page no. 18

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