The importance of IUML (Indian Express)
Mains Paper 5 : Polity
Prelims level : IUML
Mains level : Political Party Participation in Democracy
- The Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) is in the news following Rahul
Gandhi’s decision to contest from the Wayanad constituency, a stronghold of
- Yogi Adityanath dubbed the League “a virus” sure to infect the rest of
the country if the Congress wins. The decision also occasioned an
unabashedly communal comment from the prime minister, who described Wayanad
as a constituency where the majority is in a minority. Interestingly,
statements from the Left, which is likely to face a major setback because of
Rahul’s foray into Kerala, reflected an uncanny resemblance to the Sangh
- The colour of the IUML’s party flag and the insinuations about its
purported links and nomenclatural similarity to Jinnah’s All India Muslim
League did not help matters either, especially at a time when the ruling
party’s pathological obsession with Pakistan and hatred of Muslims have
coalesced into an expedient election narrative.
- The only solace for Muslims in India today is that the PM and his party
have termed not only the Muslims, but also the entire Opposition as
anti-national and sympathetic to Pakistan.
Is the IUML a communal political formation?
- The “Muslim” in its name may hasten judgements about it, but its work in
Kerala over the past 70 years shows that the League never indulged in the
politics of hate and divisiveness.
- If organising a religious community politically on the basis of
antagonism to another is communalism, the IUML has never mobilised its cadre
nor used its political and often administrative clout to create religious
- On the contrary, whenever the state faced a communally sensitive
situation, the party rose to the occasion and played a stellar role in
dousing the flames.
- It is pertinent to mention that the decision to establish the Sree
Sankaracharya University of Sanskrit, Kalady, for “the promotion and
development of the study of Sanskrit, Indology, Indian Philosophy and Indian
languages” was taken when a Muslim League leader was Kerala’s minister of
So if not communal, what is the IUML?
- The founders of the party believed that the Muslims, in the volatile
post-Partition environment in India, needed a political outfit to work for
the empowerment and uplift of the community within the ambit of the
- Although it did not succeed in attracting people in the post-Partition
environment of fear and insecurity in the North, it took roots in Kerala,
far removed from the Partition nightmare.
- In Kerala, it pursued a carefully crafted politics, working for the
representation of the Muslims in all spheres of public life in the state.
- It did so without pitting itself or the Muslim community against the
other communities in the state.
- The Gulf remittances that began flowing in from the 1970s.
- Kerala’s remarkably harmonious social fabric for which the Left must get
due credit, and the legacy of struggles by marginalised groups in Kerala
from the late 19th century helped IUML’s unique brand of politics.
- By practicing a brand of politics that could be termed communitarian
rather than communal, the IUML succeeded in actualising the constitutional
guarantee of equal citizenship for the Muslims in the state.
- In fact, it will not be an exaggeration to say that Kerala is the only
state in the republic where the Muslims fully live out the constitutional
promise of equal citizenship.
- The IUML’s brand of identity politics, with its unmistakable Malayali
characteristics, created a language and idiom for articulating the
legitimate demands of a religious minority without alienating the other
segments of the polity.
- The distinctive feature of the League in Kerala is that it strove to
keep the community at the centre of the state’s politics, unlike other
Muslim political formations elsewhere in India that revelled in confessional
- The IUML has been downright conservative, often illiberal, sometimes
corrupt, some other times opportunistic, but never communal.
- That is precisely why it remains an integral and highly respected
component of Kerala’s multi-dimensional political fabric.
- That Atal Bihari Vajpayee had no hesitation in sending IUML MP, E Ahmed,
to the United Nations to represent India should convince the UP CM that his
utterances were widely off the mark.
Q.1) Consider the following statements.
1. Algae, when grown using sunlight, consume carbon dioxide as they grow and
release oxygen beneficial to the environment.
2. Algae can be used to produce biofuel due to their biomass characteristics and
Which of the above is/are correct?
a) 1 only
b) 2 only
c) Both 1 and 2
Q.1) Describe the importance of Indian Union Muslim League in Indian politics.
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