Anjum Altaf in The South Asian Idea:
How do we square that with the fact that up until 1857 Muslims had ruled parts of India for over 800 years? I mention this fact because, in the minds of some people, Muslims had expropriated all the wealth of India during this period and oppressed all the non-Muslims.
India has been independent for a little more than 60 years, so this transformation from being the owners of the land to being the poorest of the poor could not conceivably have occurred during this short period.
So, did the decline of the Muslims occur during the less than hundred years of British rule between 1857 and 1947? If so, how?
I don’t know. I am writing this post partly to find out and partly to discharge a long-owed debt to Dr. G.M. Mekhri, a remarkable man in my opinion, who I met just once in the mid-1980s and have never forgotten because he had a very unique perspective on this issue.
Dr. Mekhri had a hypothesis that intrigued me. I don’t really know if it would survive a rigorous test but that seems beside the point. What fascinated me was the audacity and innovativeness of his thinking and his ability to communicate the excitement of such thinking to a younger generation.