Combating Communalism through Correct Narratives

Keywords: Communalism, Harmony, Historical Narrative, Peace, Pluralism


Communalism is an ideology which negates the concept of pluralism and assumes that not only the interests of a religious community are common, but these are necessarily opposed to the interests of other religious communities. In India, communalism has spread mainly due to false historical narratives. The British historians, with an aim to create Hindu-Muslim dissension, divided the Indian history into Hindu, Muslim and British periods. It was projected that Hindus and Muslims had been two homogenous blocks who have always been antagonistic to each other and the subject of history is mainly a narration of the confrontation of Hindus and Muslims. It was also propagated that the religion of Islam spread mainly by sword and there was vast desecration of temples by Muslim rulers. But this communal version of history is not supported by historical research. All religions preach love and compassion and no religion teaches hatred for any class of persons. Responsible citizens of all religions need to become vocal and give an ideological challenge to communalism. Religious fanaticism needs to be strongly condemned and the common moral values of religions be emphasized. Highlighting the correct historical narratives and emphasizing the composite Indian culture will be helpful in engendering an environment of harmony and brotherhood. If the forces of Peace and Harmony become vocal, communalism will itself take a back seat.

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