Advertisement
Tuesday, Oct 26, 2021
Outlook.com

The Two-Regiment Theory

The forces are our last bastion against communalism. Can anyone contest it?

The Two-Regiment Theory
R. Prasad
The Two-Regiment Theory
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
It’s by now a settled fact that the UPA government, at the instance of the Rajindar Sachar committee, tried to seek a Muslim headcount in the armed forces. The unprecedented opposition though has the government resorting to speaking with a forked tongue now. On the one hand, it denies the entire move while on the other it rationalises the exercise in the name of "secularism".

The idea of ‘dividing’ the armed forces on communal lines was inspired by a book, Khaki and Ethnic Violence in India by Omar Khalidi, a professor of Hyderabadi origin who teaches architectural history at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Excerpts from the book were part of IUML president G.M. Banatwala’s memorandum to the Sachar committee. Khalidi had also advocated, in an interview with The Times of India, a reorganisation of the districts in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal and Assam to create "compact Muslim zones" where their culture and rights could be "safeguarded". In other words, he’s playing ‘Pied Piper’ Allama Iqbal to a future Jinnah (ironically, he even has a Muslim League president by his side). It’s no surprise then that he suggests increasing the Muslim presence in the forces—it stems from the same mindset of Islamist consolidation.

Our armed forces have always been exemplarily and demonstrably secular. Any further attempt to rub in ‘secularism’ might provoke a psychological backlash. The armed forces, the last bastion of unalloyed nationalism, have remained apolitical and secular through the thick and thin of India’s political and communal crises. Its fatigues have never been sullied by communal accusations. While the Pakistani air force was pounding fellow Muslims in Balochistan with bombs, the IAF was carrying out relief operations in far-flung areas of quake-devastated J&K.

The 1971 Indo-Pak war is assumed to...

Advertisement

Outlook Newsletters

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Read More from Outlook

LIVE | Aryan Khan Bail: Former AG Mukul Rohatgi To Represent Shah Rukh Khan’s Son In Drugs Case

LIVE | Aryan Khan Bail: Former AG Mukul Rohatgi To Represent Shah Rukh Khan’s Son In Drugs Case

The Mumbai High Court will hear Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan Khan’s bail petition in his arrest by the Narcotics Control Bureau on Oct 3.

Explainer | Why A Lawyer Is Seeking FIR Against NCB's Wankhede For 'Extortion' In Aryan Khan Drugs Case

Explainer | Why A Lawyer Is Seeking FIR Against NCB's Wankhede For 'Extortion' In Aryan Khan Drugs Case

On Monday, a lawyer approached the Mumbai police with a complaint seeking registration of an FIR against Sameer Wankhede and five others for extortion in the drugs-on-cruise case.

Virat Kohli Was Graceful In Defeat, Says Pakistan's Sana Mir

Virat Kohli Was Graceful In Defeat, Says Pakistan's Sana Mir

Former Pakistan women's cricket team captain Sana Mir is floored by Virat Kohli's gesture towards his opponents even after their 10-wicket thrashing in a T20 World Cup clash on Sunday.

Why A Delegation Of Odisha Villagers Met Andhra Pradesh Collector Seeking Protection From 'Harassment'

Why A Delegation Of Odisha Villagers Met Andhra Pradesh Collector Seeking Protection From 'Harassment'

A delegation of elected representatives from 17 villages in the disputed Kotia area in Odisha's Koraput district has accused the state government of ‘harassment'.

Advertisement