This article is contributed by Rushmore, active volunteer of Agniveer.
In the previous article, Was Islam Spread by Sword, we proved logically that Islam was indeed spread by sword in Indian subcontinent. In this and next couple of articles, we will establish our point with the help of pure facts. These facts will be reproduced from the biographies and chronicles written by those invaders themselves (or by their own historians), who are hailed as Ghazis (who fights for the cause of Allah) and Wali (friend of Allah) by most of today’s Muslims!
Islamic invasion of India:
“The world famous historian, Will Durant has written in his Story of Civilisation that “the Mohammedan conquest of India was probably the bloodiest story in history”.
India before the advent of Islamic imperialism was not exactly a zone of peace. There were plenty of wars fought by Hindu princes. But in all their wars, the Hindus had observed some time-honoured conventions sanctioned by the Šãstras. The Brahmins and the Bhikshus were never molested. The cows were never killed. The temples were never touched. The chastity of women was never violated. The non-combatants were never killed or captured. A human habitation was never attacked unless it was a fort. The civil population was never plundered. War booty was an unknown item in the calculations of conquerors. The martial classes who clashed, mostly in open spaces, had a code of honour. Sacrifice of honour for victory or material gain was deemed as worse than death.
The Hindu records about pre-Islamic foreign invasions present a striking contrast. The Greeks, the Scythians, the Kushans, and the Hunas are accused by them of savagery and lust for plunder. But they are never accused of making Hindu Dharma or its outer symbols the specific targets of their attacks. We have also the accounts of these alien invaders becoming good Shaivites, and Vaishnavas, and Buddhists after their first fury was spent, and they settled down in India. “ Sita Ram Goel in The Story of Islamic Imperialism in India.
Who are the Indian Muslims?
Indian Muslims form the third largest Muslim population (after Indonesia and Pakistan) and they form the world’s largest Muslim minority population. Given this numerical strength which, in today’s Indian electoral scenario, is considered a game changer, we set out to analyze, understand and explore from historical archives (neutral and Islamic) as to who the Indian Muslims were (before becoming Muslims) and the circumstances which led them to becoming Muslims.
For our analysis, we are considering the undivided (politically) land mass that existed way before 1947. Specifically we are going to look at Sind and Kashmir. This analysis will also bust some of the myths that exist amongst Indian Muslims. For example, it is often said that Muhammad Bin Qasim came to India in order to avenge and help Arab traders that were looted by Hindu forces on the high seas and that Islam came to India only in a peaceful way and the invasions were just like an Alexander invading Sind ages before Islam & the invasions was about money and not about religion etc etc. Staying true to the cause of our research, we do not deny that the very first set of Arab Muslims landed in Malabar coast were mere traders. But this kind of an interaction was an exception when compared to how Islam landed in the above mentioned regions of India.
Without much ado we are heading to Sind. Let us start with the clichéd “In the Beginning.” The advent of Islam in Sind starts with the attack on Debal, near Karachi in 712 CE by Muhammad Bin Qasim. This was a coastal town near modern Karachi. When Debal was sacked by this barbarian’s forces, all men aged 17 and above were killed without compunctions irrespective of whether or not these men were combatants. The women and children were all enslaved. 700 women that had taken shelter in a temple were captured and enslaved. Of the booty obtained by sacking Debal, Muhammad dispatched 1/5th to Hajaj (including 75 damsels) and the remaining booty was distributed to the soldiers. [Source: Cambridge History of India, III, 3 and Chach Nama by Kàzí Ismáíl (English translation by Kalichbeg Fredunbeg)]. If anybody wants to know who Kàzí Ismáíl was, he was a close confidante of Muhammad Bin Qasim & the former documented the conquest of Sind.
Sind bore the brunt of Muhammad Bin Qasim’s atrocities. Debal became the template that he would follow in every town across Sind. The enslaved women of Sind were forcefully converted to Islam and married to Arab soldiers. Towns like Multan, Kuzdar and Mahfuza became Arab colonies in Sind. When the conquest of Sind was winding down, over twenty thousand infidels were brought as slaves. The women among the slaves that belonged to aristocracy of the Hindu king were veiled and set aside to be sent to Hajaj. The remaining women were distributed to the soldiers. More about Muhammad Bin Qasim’s atrocities in Sind from historians before we move forward:
After Rawar was taken Muhammad Qasim “halted there for three days during which he massacred 6000 (men). Their followers and dependents, as well as their women and children were taken prisoner.” Later on “the slaves were counted, and their number came to 60,000 (of both sexes). [Please remember that we are talking about 7th Century during which such number would be much significant as compared to this era. Total population of Sind that time would be hardly few Lakh out of which more than one Lakh were either killed or enslaved. Brutality of this act can be equated today, in numbers, if someone kills and enslave 1 Crore people in Delhi alone]. Out of these, 30 were young ladies of the royal blood… Muhammad Qasim sent all these to Hajjaj” who forwarded them to Walid, the Khalifa. “He sold some of these female slaves of royal birth, and some he presented to others.” Raja Dahir’s daughters also were counted among slave girls.
[Sources: Chach Nama, Kalichbeg Fredunbeg (the name of English translator), pg 154.]
“From the seventh century onwards and with a peak during Muhammad al-Qasim’s campaigns in 712-13”, writes Andre Wink, “a considerable number of Jats were captured as prisoners of war and deported to Iraq and elsewhere as slaves.” Jats here is obviously used as a general word for all Hindus. In Brahmanabad, “it is said that about six thousand fighting men were slain, but according to others sixteen thousand were killed”, and their families enslaved. The garrison in the fort-city of Multan was put to the sword, and families of the chiefs and warriors of Multan, numbering about six thousand, were enslaved. [Sources: Andre Wink, Al Hind, 161 and Mohammad Habib, “The Arab conquest of Sind.”]
One question begs a definite answer. How did Hindu women react to Muhammad Bin Qasim’s barbaric acts? Here is more from Chach Nama… “Raja Dahir’s sister Bai collected all the women in the fort (of Rawar) and addressed them thus: ‘It is certain that we cannot escape the clutches of these Chandals and cow-eaters… As there is no hope of safety and liberty, let us collect fire-wood and cotton and oil (and) burn ourselves to ashes, and thus quickly meet our husbands (in the next world). Whoever is inclined to go and ask mercy of the enemy, let her go… But all of them were of one mind, and so they entered a house and set fire to it, and were soon burnt to ashes.” This practice came to be known as Jauhar (jova har, taking of life), for those hapless but valiant women that chose to die instead of being consumed by the Islamic invaders.
From Islamic chronicles of conquest of Sind: Futûhu’l-Buldãn by Ahmad bin Yahya bin Jãbir, is known as al-Bilãdhurî. His history is one of the earliest and major Arab chronicles. It gives an account of Arab conquests in Syria, Mesopotamia, Egypt, Iran, Armenia, Transoxiana, Africa, Spain and Sindh.
Here are some extracts on Sind, from the above chronicle.
“The town (Debal) was thus taken by assault, and the carnage endured for three days. The governor of the town, appointed by Dãhir, fled and the priests of the temple were massacred. Muhammad marked a place for the Musalmans to dwell in, built a mosque, and left four thousand Musalmans to garrison the place.”
“He then crossed the Biyãs, and went towards Multãn… Muhammad destroyed the water-course; upon which the inhabitants, oppressed with thirst, surrendered at discretion. He massacred the men capable of bearing arms, but the children were taken captive, as well as the ministers of the temple, to the number of six thousand. The Muslamãns found there much gold in a chamber ten cubits long by eight broad, and there was an aperture above, through which the gold was poured into the chamber.”
Before we move from Sind to Kashmir, let us see what the butcher Muhammad Bin Qasim wrote to his master Hijaj Bin Yusuf-
The forts of Siwistán and Sísam have been already taken. The nephew of Dáhir, his warriors, and principal officers have been despatched, and the infidels converted to Islám or destroyed. Instead of idol temples, mosques and other places of worship have been built, pulpits have been erected, the Khutba is read, the call to prayers is raised, so that devotions are performed at the stated hours. The takbír and praise to the Almighty God are offered every morning and evening.
So, there we go. Today’s Muslims of Sind had a Hindu lineage and we saw above how the lineages were broken by the marauding Arabs.
From Sind, let us now head a bit North-East to Kashmir. Kashmir was Islamized by a combination of force and a deceitful wave of conversions. It is also important to remember that compared to other regions like Sind or today’s North West Frontier Province (of Pakistan) or Afghanistan that tasted the brutality of Islam much earlier, Kashmir was a predominantly Hindu region just 750 years ago. The aim of this article is not to go through a blow by blow account of Kashmir’s glorious past whose kings held sway till Central Asia and today’s Afghanistan. To understand the whole nine yards of Islamization of Kashmir, the book “Converted Kashmir” by Narender Sehgal will be an excellent resource.
Islam entered Kashmir around 1322 when Zulkadur Khan invaded the region. But the mass conversions and tyranny was unleashed during the reign of Sikandar Butshikan (1394 – 1417). He invited clergy Islamic from Arabia and Persia and forced proselytization was in full swing. Sikandar is the one that needs to be credited with the destruction of the most famous temples at Martand, Vishya, Isna and Tripeshwar.
Preceding the force was the sugar quoted message of brotherhood, love and tolerance. Syed Ali Hamdani was a Muslim leader that set the template for conversion using deception in Kashmir. Syed Ali Hamdaani, better known as Shah Hamdaani came to Kashmir from Turkey / Persia along with a bunch of Syeds (numbering around 700) in 1372. Under the tolerance and kindness of the local Kashmiri Hindus, Syed Ali Hamdaani established an Islamic center in Srinagar called Allah-Udinpur, which, later came to be called as Khankai Moula. Narander Sehgal writes “The Syed established contact with Hindu saints of Kashmir. His meetings started with an influential Hindu Recluse, Lalleshwari. Both of them started visualising many similarities in their religious doctrines. Both of them opposed idol worship. In league with the Syed, Lalleshwari started propagating her sect and the sufi sect. Through Lalleshwari the Syed started using some sayings from Hindu religion cleverly in his discourses in order to establish his credibility among the disciples of Lalleshwari.
He even fully praised yoga. As a result of the political intrigue of Syed Ali Hamdaani some Hindu recluse and 37,000 Hindus adopted Islam. Historian Bamzai has written that outwardly the Syed would praise eloquently the Hindu religion but inwardly he used to hate the saints of this religion. After achieving great success in his mission he, while giving up his guise of love and coexistence, asked the Sultan to carry out forcible conversion of Hindus.”
Syed Ali Hamdani introduced in Kashmir, with the help of the then Sultan, dress of Muslim countries, throne on the Islamic model, Islamic customs in state administration and Islamic flag on Government buildings. On the directions of the Syed the Sultan started wearing an Arabic cap and divorced one of his two wives and remarried the other according to Islamic custom.
Now came Sikandar Butshikan. This king along with the son of Syed Ali Hamdaani, called Syed Mohammed Hamdani, unleashed the brutality where Hindu temples were systematically destroyed. The destruction of the temple at Martand is so graphic. It took one full year to destroy this architectural marvel. Given the destruction of the structure was taking time, sections of the temple were stuffed with wood and burnt down. The foundation of the temple was systematically dug out and every block of stone was uprooted. Those around the temple were given a choice between Islam and death. There were instances where those that opposed conversions were shoved into sacks and drowned into lakes.
Some Hindus were allowed to stay in Kashmir but they soon realized the futility, as, Hindus were forced to pay the taxes during Shivratri, Diwali, Ram Navmi, Navratri and Yagnopavit (sacred thread wearing ceremony). Taxes were imposed on pilgrimages. Those that were unable to pay these taxes were once again either killed or forced to accept Islam. Kashmir had many libraries and Sikander set about burning down all Sanskrit books in these houses of knowledge. Many fleeing Hindus, carried whatever Sanskrit books they could.
Sanskrit scholars were handpicked, beheaded; their heads were smeared with sandalwood and then left on highways, in order to terrorize Hindus. After mass execution of Hindus, the severed torsos would be thrown into the Jhelum river, which reaches the Wullar lake. And many swollen bodies will float on the lake for days together emitting foul smells and they would be consumed by vultures, stray dogs and crows. Hindu women were regularly picked up from the banks of Jhelum river by Muslim soldiers, as booty. Whoever stayed back ended up accepting Islam under coercion.
There are more and more well documented events in Kashmir’s history all the way till 1947, the role of neo-converts in Islamizing Kashmir and the way there were glimmer of hope in the middle of all this. But the aim of this article, as stated at the beginning was about exploring the lineages of the current generation Muslims in Kashmir. We have established that in Kashmir now.
While we can write reams and reams on what happened to Hindus in today’s Uttar Pradesh, Bengal, Gujarat, Deccan etc, our aim is to establish the lineage of Indian Muslims in at least two of very well known regions that are almost completely Islamic in faith. And going across every region in India also, having known the template that the Islamic invaders followed to Islamize the population could be an overkill too.
We request subcontinent Muslims to think as to where have gone those unfortunate descendants of Hindus who were slain or forced to become slaves in the Jihadi storm few centuries back? Aren’t you the one? If no then where are those? Answer is here. Now we provide some popular tribes with Hindu lineage that today’s Subcontinent Muslims still carry. This will help you ensure that you are not Arabs but Hindus by blood.
In Kashmir- Handoo, Aga, Atal, Bandhu, Bhan, Bagati, Bhat/Butt/Bhatt, Budki (Burki), Bindroo, Chowdhury, Dhar (Dar), Dass (Das), Dassi, Dulloo, Ganju (Ganjoo), Kaw, Gurtu, Hak, Haksar, Hangal, Hangoo, Hoon, Jaju, Jalali, Kachru (Kachroo), Kak, Kar, Kappu, Katju, Kaul(Koul), Kaw, Kemmu, Khar, Kasid Kher, Khosa, Kitchlu (Kitchlew), Kunzru, Langoo, Madan, Mahaldar, Malla, Mantoo, Mattoo, Mukoo,Muthoo, Mir, Misri, Natu, Nehru, Ogra, Pandit, Pandita, Parimoo, Qasba, Raina, Rayu, Razdan, Reu, Sadhu, Sapru, Shivpuri, Shrunglu, Shunglu, Tangnu, Thusoo, Tikoo,Wakhlu, Wanchoo/Wanchu, Wantoo/Wantu, Warikoo, Wattal, Wattoo, Zalpuri, Zaroo and Zutshi.
In Pakistan – Many of the Muslims in Pakistan and India still use their ancestral Hindu tribe names for their identity. Hundreds of such tribes’ names are still in use. Please visit the following links to know more.
Our readers would be surprised to know that almost 1/3rd of Pakistan’s total population (around 5 Crore out of total 18 Crore) is constituted by the Muslims having Hindu lineages- Jat and Rajput! Rest of the Pakistani and Indian Muslim population can also be easily traced back to their Hindu roots. Muhammad Ali Jinnah (founder of Pakistan), Zulfikar Ali Bhutto (former Pakistani President), Benazir Bhutto (former Pakistani Prime Minister), Asif Zardari (Pakistani president), belong to Hindu lineage- Rajput whereas Muhammad Iqbal’s (famous poet) grandfather was a Kashmiri Hindu.
So now that it is proven factually as well that Islam came to India with sword and all Muslims of today’s subcontinent carry Hindu ancestry, it is high time that our Muslim Brothers and sisters stop hating their own culture, ancestors, and motherland and come back to their original home, Vedas.