Gujarat is a state in Western India. The state is bordered by Rajasthan to the north, Maharashtra to the south, Madhya Pradesh to the east, and the Arabian Sea and the Pakistani province of Sindh to the west. Its capital city is Gandhinagar, while its largest city is Ahmedabad.
- The element that binds the people of Gujarat, across differences of religion and region, caste, communities or creed, is the Gujarati language. Evolved during the Chaulukya era on the foundation of Sanskrit, Prakrit and Apabhransh, Gujarati acquired its distinct character in the Sultanate era. During the Mughal era, it was further cultivated by saint poets on the one hand and merchants on the other. As the court language of both the Gujarat Sultanate and the Mughals was Persian and because merchant communities had extensive linkages with Arabic-speaking West Asia, the influence of Persian and Arabic is immense and pervasive. It would not be an exaggeration to say that it is impossible to write good Gujarati without using Persian or Arabic words. In addition to administrative and legal words like zilla (district), taluk (block), jamin (land), jaydad (property), faujdari (criminal), diwani (civil), adalat (court) and insaaf (Justice), Persian and Arabic words related to human existence like dil (heart), dimaag (mind), jindagi (life), lohi (blood), jaban (speech), hayati (existence) and khud (self) have been internalized by Gujarati.
- Acyuta Yājñika; Suchitra Sheth (2005). The Shaping of Modern Gujarat: Plurality, Hindutva, and Beyond. Penguin Books India. pp. 15–16. ISBN 978-0-14-400038-8.
- “It is true that Mosque architecture in Gujarat only began in the 14th century. When ‘Ala-al-Din Khalji conquered and annexed the country to the Delhi Sultanate in the later part of the 13th century, there still flourished a singularly beautiful indigenous style of architecture. The early monuments of Gujarat, notably at Patan (Anhilvada) tell the same story of the demolition of local temples and the reconstruction of their fragments… “…In the beginning, at the Qutb, the Hindu element was confined architecturally to the trabeate constructive methods, and to part of the decoration, Islam contributing the plan and the embellishment of the Arabic lettering. In Gujarat, notably in the entrance porches of the Jami‘ Masjid at Cambay, much may fairly be described as literal reconstruction of Hindu work, as units in the established plan of a Muslim place of worship. These entrances have their parallels in the pavilions and mandapas of Hindu and Jaina temples still standing, for instance, at Modhera and Mount Abu…”
- Syed Mahmudul Hasan, Mosque Architecture of Pre-Mughal Bengal, Dacca (Bangladesh), 1979. p. 45-46
- In 1299 he (Alauddin Khalji) despatched a large army for the invasion of Gujarat. There all the major towns and cities like Naharwala, Asaval, Vanmanthali, Surat, Cambay, Somnath etc. were sacked. There the temples were broken, wealth looted and large numbers of captives of both sexes captured, including the famous Malik Kafur and the Vaghela king’s consort Kamala Devi. In the words of Wassaf, the Muslim army in the sack of Somnath “took captive a great number of handsome and elegant maidens, amounting to 20,000, and children of both sexes… the Muhammadan army brought the country to utter ruin, and destroyed the lives of inhabitants, and plundered the cities and captured their offspring…”
- Wassaf, Mahdi Husain, Quoted from Lal, K. S. (1994). Muslim slave system in medieval India. New Delhi: Aditya Prakashan. Chapter 5
- It is not just Modi, but the entire Gujarati society has moved on, and is reconstructing a new equation with Muslims. After 2002, we took it upon ourselves to ensure that no Muslim child would be deprived of education simply because his or her family can not afford the fees or buy books. Many Hindus gave us money for it. For example, at the start when we sponsored a Muslim girl’s education in a medical college, one of my Hindu friends said that he will pay for that semester’s fee for the girl. That really boosted my morale and convinced me that humanitarian spirit is alive even in Gujarat. Those who say that there is a lot of Hindu-Muslim hatred in Gujarat are perpetuating a myth. That hostility stayed alive for some time after the riots. Even after 2002, once things settled down and the ice was broken, it is Hindus who extended help to Muslims to rebuild their lives. How much can the Muslims do alone?... Hundreds of Hindu families came for our daughter’s wedding. As the state is experiencing genuine social peace and security, inter-community relations have become far more relaxed. I tell my fellow Muslims, we also must take the initiative to promote social interaction. Muslims cannot continue to live in an alienated, insulated manner. We have not made much effort to familiarise our Hindu brothers about our culture....But today such social interaction has begun to take place all over Gujarat because the ruling party is not acting as a divisive force. It is providing a sense of security by upholding the rule of law. People don’t view each other with as much suspicion as they did when riots were engineered routinely.
- Zafar Sareshwala, quoted in Kishwar, Madhu (2014). Modi, Muslims and media: Voices from Narendra Modi's Gujarat. p.350-352
- Those who derive satisfaction by perpetuating pain in others will probably not stop their tirade against me. I do not expect them to. But, I pray in all humility, that they at least now stop irresponsibly maligning the 6 crore people of Gujarat.
- Narendra Modi. "Satyameva Jayate: Truth Alone Triumphs" on narendramodi.in, 27 December 2013; Statement issued in response to a 350-page court verdict which accepted the 541-page closure report, issued by an investigative panel appointed by the Supreme Court of India, concerning Modi's actions during the 2002 violence.
- It cannot be said that at the time these inscriptions were set up at Anhilwãd Pãtan, Prabhas Patan, Khambat, Junagadh and other places, the Hindus of Gujarat had had no taste of what Islam had in store for them, their women, their children, their cities, their temples, their idols, their priests, and their properties. The invasion of Ulugh Khan that was to subjugate Gujarat to a long spell of Muslim rule, was the eighth in a series which started within a few years after the Prophet’s death at Medina in AD 632. Five Islamic invasions had been mounted on Gujarat before Siddharãja Jayasimha ascended the throne of that kingdom in AD 1094 - first in AD 636 on Broach by sea; second in AD 732-35 by land; third and fourth in AD 756 and 776 by sea; and fifth by Mahmud of Ghazni in AD 1026. Two others had materialised by the time the Muslim ship-owner set up his inscription in AD 1264 on a mosque at Prabhas Patan. The sixth invasion was by Muhammad Ghuri in AD 1178, and the seventh was by Qutbu’d-Din Aibak in AD 1197. The only conclusion that can be drawn from the evidence is that either the Hindus of Gujarat had a very short memory or that they did not understand at all the inspiration at the back of these invasions. The temple of Somnath which stood, after the invasion of Mahmud of Ghazni in AD 1026, as a grim reminder of the character of Islam, had also failed to teach them any worthwhile lesson. Nor did they visualize that the Muslim settlements in their midst could play a role other than that of carrying on trade and commerce.
- S.R. Goel in Shourie, A., Goel, S.R. Hindu Temples – What Happened to Them, Volume II (1993)
- “For nearly the whole of the next century [c. 13th century], Gujarat remained independent. Perhaps no other Indian dynasty put up a more sustained or successful resistance against the Muslims for a longer period.”
- Ram Gopal, Indian Resistance to Early Muslim Invaders Upto 1206 A.D., quoted in Quoted from S.R. Goel, (1994) Heroic Hindu resistance to Muslim invaders, 636 AD to 1206 AD
- In the year AH 817 (AD 1414), Mullik Tohfa, one of the Officers of the King’s government was ennobled by the title of Taj-ool-Moolk, and received a special commission to destroy all idolatrous temples, and establish the Mahomedan authority throughout Guzerat; a duty which he executed with such diligence, that the names of Mawass and Girass were hereafter unheard of in the whole kingdom.
- General order by Sultãn Ahmad Shãh I of Gujrat (AD 1411-1443), who appointed Taj-ul-Mulk to destroy all temples and to establish Muslim authority throughout Gujarat. Tãrîkh-i-Firishta, translated by John Briggs under the title History of the Rise of the Mahomedan Power in India, first published in 1829, New Delhi Reprint 1981, Vol I, p.10
- Thereafter in AH 823 (AD 1420-21) he proceeded to different parts of his Kingdom for establishing order and good government… He got temples demolished and palaces and mosques constructed in their stead…
- Sultãn Ahmad Shãh I of Gujarat (AD 1411-1443) General Order Mir‘ãt-i-Sikandarî in S.A.A. Rizvi in Uttara Taimûr Kãlîna Bhãrata, Aligarh, 1959, Vol. II, p. 273
- About conversions through enslavement, Dr. Satish C. Misra, who has made a special study of the history of Gujarat, writes that “the conflict (in Gujarat) veered round two main objectives - land and women. The conqueror inexorably demanded, more often forcibly wrested, both land and women…”
- Satish C. Misra, The Rise of Muslim Power in Gujarat (Bombay, 1963), quoted from Lal, K. S. (1990). Indian muslims: Who are they.