The task of attempting a study on the population geography of Muslim Indians, assessing the present in the historical context, as Dr. Siddiqui has done, is a particularly hazardous task since India today has only about a third of the Muslims who inhabit the sub-continent. It should, however, have been possible to refer objectively to the facts and consequences of Partition to achieve a more balanced perspective. Anyone not conversant with the recent history of the subcontinent would be puzzled by the introductory remark, ‘With a considerably long period of co-existence of a variety of entities, the (sic) Indian culture has emerged as a unit of diversities. The exclusion of any single component can disturb the whole fabric of Indian life and destroy the very form of Indian society’, being followed by the subsequently reiterated reference to the ‘Muslim populations who in the wake of the partition of the country had to leave their home country either to die on the way or reach a new country for refuge, i.e. Pakistan’. To say, ‘Thus, through the last two thousand years and (sic) so, the Muslims like their predecessors, the Aryans, became a part and parcel of India and today over 61 million Muslims inhabit the country’ tends to further confuse the perspective.
July 1976, volume 1, No 3