Ahmad Chafa: Bengali Muslim state project


Not only Dinesh Chandra, but people from various walks of life have held him up as an example of this state project. A thousand years of history of this ethnicity sighs in Zainul’s portrayal. Ilyas’s Khowabnama—written in the context of fakir-sannyasi rebellion—breaks Bankim’s ‘false discourse’ and presents a new narrative, in which the master of ‘Hindu-Muslim joint history of Bengal’. Behind this vision of the state is Jeebananda Das, who, like Dinesh Babu, gave poetic form to the folklore of Bengal. Jasimuddin ‘people have only accepted the flesh of tradition’, and Jibanananda ‘is flesh and bones then life’. With the touch of his sharp sense of history, he brought to life ‘the history of your motherland.’

Chhafa’s state project is ‘vigilantly’ seen in the eyes of Muslims; Chhafa considered himself a member of the Muslim farming community, and the Bengali ethnicity of which he was a commentator, ‘about eighty percent of the people are Muslims’. Naturally, he owed some distance to Pakistanist political thought. In this subcontinent, Abul Kalam Shamsuddin wrote, ‘There was never—never is—a nation. So just as India is not one country, the people of India are not one nation either.’ Abul Mansoor Ahmad tried to show that in exactly what sense the demand for Pakistan was a revolutionary event. The essence of communism is to provide opportunities for self-development, which development is not monomorphic in nature, but multiform. But fascism wants to homogenize the world by erasing diversity. The Congress-led imperialist attempt to declare India’s ‘forty crore human beings as ‘one caste”’, Mansoor wrote, ‘is Pakistan which has shaken the foundations of imperialism.’ To literature, Pakistan means Tammaduni Azadi—which means, as in politics, ‘Hindus and Muslims are separate castes in culture.’ For this freedom it is important to understand that Bengali literature from Vidyasagar to Saratchandra is not Muslim literature. It is also true, Mansoor points out, that East and West Pakistan are not one and the same. Because, even if religion is hidden in Tammadun, Tammadun cannot escape the limits of geography.

The article is in Bengali

Tags: Ahmad Chafa Bengali Muslim state project


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