Muslims in Bihar wary of Narendra Modi; rue ‘innocents’ arrest2 min read
Darbhanga: Mohammad Zahid has come from Kolkata, where he studies in BCom, to his village Khurd Manihar in Darbhanga district. His friends- Mukhtar Ahmad, a PG psychology student at LN Mithila University, Mohammad Haider Ali of ITI and Mohammad Nishat who is waiting for admission in a college — have gathered at the highway dhaba here.
Zahid said he has come to see electioneering and cast his vote. His village has 540 Muslim voters, 150 Yadavs, 60 dalits and 700 Brahmins. They discussed the election scene in the area and felt Narendra Modi speaks too much against Rahul Gandhi, though he is not even a minister. “Narendra Modi cannot become the leader of Hindustan. Better he is not elected the prime minister keeping his past and present record. Woh jahar ugalta hai (he spews venom),” they said.
The young students said, “Narendra Modi danga phailane main number one hai (he is number one in fomenting communal riots).” He should even now realize members of other communities have suffered a lot because of riots in his state.” Asked whom his elders would vote for, the youths said, “Gaon main baith kar consensus ho jayega”.
Their village is two kms away from the highway. Mohibul Haq, an elderly person of the village who said he is a Sheikh, stated Nitish Kumar has got his village linked with pucca road under the PM rural road scheme, gave cycles and uniforms to girls and boys.
But they felt that the state government has failed to give protection to the Muslim students of Darbhanga and adjoining districts who were picked up by central agencies, particularly NIA, and killed. Citing example, they said Kafil Siddiqui was tortured to death in Yeravada jail. He was from Barsimela village under Keoti police station. He was allegedly involved in Chennaswami stadium bomb blasts. There are more than a dozen youths held in detention on suspicion only. When they were told that Bihar government had protested the arrests, the village youths said, “Is only writing letters enough for a chief minister?”
Mehjab, who works in a hotel in Saudi Arabia and has returned to his village, said, “We heard about Modi in Saudi Arabia for wrong reasons”.
The village cluster having Muslim families has no television sets. They get news through newspapers only. Though they have electricity connection, villagers prefer to have no ‘idiot’ boxes.
With the help of ‘Gulf money’, the neighbouring Sobhan village in Sadar block has developed fast. There is a branch of Delhi Public School there, with teachers from Delhi. There are 13 mosques in the village having three panchayats. Villagers here regret their integrity is questioned by a section of politicians.
Raj Mishra of Pandasarai, who was having his lunch at the dhaba, said in villages like Mabbi, Kajrapati, Bariyol, Makhai too, there was polarization. This distributor of a cigarette manufacturing company said that polarization would help the BJP candidates in Darbhanga, Madhubani and Jhanjharpur constituencies.