US President Obama’s visit to Mumbai has left out any contacts with a 20 percent strong Muslim presence in the city that projects an All India mix of relocated Muslims from practically every state in the Republic. That makes a very broad but very vibrant consensus of Muslims, especially when it comes to any reference to the world’s superpower USA and its interaction with World Muslims.
Compared to 2006 Bush visit to India, when Mumbai Muslims staged a very strong protest rally against Bush visit over his illegal invasion of Muslim countries, this time around, even though privately Muslims feel Obama has belied all hopes of the promised change, he is still recognized as defusing the crisis centers of Iraq, Afghanistan, Israel and recently Kashmir.
The city Muslim is calm and observant as to what Obama has to offer to Mumbai’s incendiary mix of Hindu-Muslim cosmopolitism that can forestall tragedies like the post-Babri communal riots, the Shiv Sena carnage and holding the city to ransom after the infamous Bombay Blasts, the train bombings and lastly the 26/11 tragedy.
It is evident that as local issues started taking back seat, when the international scenarios seem to dominate the danger of inflammations. Death of Karkare, the Anti Terrorist Squad Chief that exposed Saffron Terror and instantly became target of death threats from the Hindutva extremists, seems to be uncannily inserted in the 26/11 terror scenario; giving strong doubts of common authorship of the two distinct and disparate streams of terror, intermingling to achieve some common agenda.
It is uncertain, if Obama will touch on the deep malaise that exposes the city to such meticulously planned terror events. His focus is only cursorily on 26/11 carnage and possibly more on economic agenda that will take more of his time interacting with India’s top business and industry leaders gathered in the Commercial Capital of India.
His cultural forays in this city of most vibrant and thriving cultural diversities, has pointedly ignored Mumbai Muslims, the overwhelming majority of whom have remained peaceful, even after their gross and wanton victimization by communal elements, especially in Security establishments and political opportunists circles. In a total city population of over 20 million, Muslims are about 4 million. That is as big a population as possibly half the population of Muslim in the US. The diversity of regional origins of the relocated Muslims in Mumbai only gets superseded when a common threat on their Muslim identity is organized by political elements. The Muslim reaction to such victimization has potential for great disruption in national and international peace atmosphere.
If Obama had been rightly advised by the Mumbai’s American Consul General, as approached by the institution, a visit to a nearby 100-year old educational institution, Anjuman Islam, with student strength of over 100,000 Muslim boys and girls, right next to CST Railways Terminus, where Obama is scheduled to visit to pay homage to the innocents martyrs of 26/11, would have symbolized as America’s big endorsement of moderate and secular Muslim’s one institution that is relentlessly struggling to offer modern and professional education to the masses as the bulwark against any uncivil activities that could threaten national or international peace.