In this Section
There is a need to correct a sense of discrimination and unconscious bias against Muslims in appointments or disbursal of loans, said Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram, while addressing a gathering of Muslims on the occasion of Milad-un-Nabi in Karaikudi, Tamil Nadu. Mr. Chidambaram criticised the tendency to brand those religions that came into India from outside as alien. Though four major religions had originated here, all religions practised by the people of the country should be deemed Indian. Islam, he pointed out, came to India when Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless and greet him) was alive. Zoroastrians came here as displaced people and they contributed a lot to industrial development. No religion, even if it had come from outside, could be looked at as alien. Maintaining that the country’s strength was its plurality, Mr. Chidambaram said the real challenge was in people belonging to different religions enjoying peaceful coexistence, devoid of any confrontation. The economic imbalances now existing between communities could be set right by ensuring equal rights and equal opportunities.