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  • Partha Samal asked: How did Pakistan become a hotbed for radical Wahhabism? How was liberal Sufism replaced by radical Wahhabism?

    Ashok Kumar Behuria replies: Pakistan's descent into extremism has been widely written about. The most credible accounts come from Pakistani scholars and analysts. It is well-known that the demand for Pakistan had an Islamist ring about it and leaders including and following Muhammad Ali Jinnah have used Islam for political purposes which has given legitimacy to continuing demands for Islamisation over the years.

    Arnab Sen asked: What are the key political objectives of the Muslim Brotherhood movement and which are the countries where they have their branches or political affiliates?

    Adil Rasheed replies: The end of World War I led to abolition of the Ottoman Caliphate in 1924. In the wake of this major setback, an Egyptian school teacher by the name of Hassan Al Banna founded a religious and social movement called Muslim Brotherhood, or Gammat Al-Ikhwan Al-Muslimeen in Arabic, in the town of Ismailiya in 1928.

    Conflicts in Sunni Political Islam and Their Implications

    Traditionally, the Shi’a–Sunni divide and the associated dynamics of the geopolitical struggle for power and dominance, between the minority Shi’as and the majority Sunnis, have defined intra-Islamic relations. Often sidelined were the political differences between and among groups and movements within Shi’a as well as Sunni Islam.

    May 2017

    The End of an Era in Uzbekistan

    President Islam Karimov’s foremost contribution to the region and the world is to shield Uzbekistan from the onslaught of radical Islam.

    September 26, 2016

    Religion as the Foundation of a Nation: The Making and Unmaking of Pakistan

    Religion as the Foundation of a Nation: The Making and Unmaking of Pakistan

    Pakistan owes its origin to the ‘Two Nation Theory’ in the sub-continent’s polity. Leaders of the Pakistan Movement were convinced that Muslims were a separate nation from the Hindu nation and the two could not live together.


    Turkey, Islamic Politics and the ‘Turkish Model’

    In more than three decades, ever since the Islamic-oriented National Order Party was formed in 1969, Turkish politics has been analysed by many in terms of two straitjacketed views: Islamists trying to capture power on the one hand, and on the other hand the secularists or the state elite, with the help of the military, struggling to keep the country’s political orientation towards the West to protect Turkey as a secular state. This image of Turkey has created some confusion among strategic analysts abroad in understanding Turkey and its policies.

    September 2013

    The Islamist Challenge in West Asia: Doctrinal and Political Competitions After the Arab Spring

    The Islamist Challenge in West Asia: Doctrinal and Political Competitions After the Arab Spring
    • Publisher: Pentagon Press

    Following the Arab Spring, the West Asia-North Africa (WANA) region is witnessing interactions between the various strands of Islamism-Wahhabiya in Saudi Arabia; the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and its affiliates in other Arab countries, and the radical strand represented by Al Qaeda and its associated organisations - in an environment of robust competition and even conflict. This work examines these issues in some details. It provides an overview of the political aspects of Islamic law – the Sharia, as it evolved from early Islam and, over the last two hundred years, experienced the impact of Western colonialism. This book draws on a rich variety of source material which has been embellished by the author’s extensive diplomatic experience in the Arab world over three decades.

    • ISBN 978-81-8274-737-1,
    • Price: ₹. 695/-
    • E-copy available

    Domination of Pakistan by Radical Islamists

    The assertions of the new Pakistan government of Nawaz Sharif to de-radicalise the society by engaging the Radical Islamists (RIs) in a dialogue and accommodation with them in reality means, to many observers, a meek surrender to Islamic radicalism of Deobandi variety.

    June 14, 2013

    The State of Islamic Radicalism in Pakistan

    The soil of Pakistan, because of its culture, customs, traditions, values, the temperament of the people and even state policies, provides the ideal ground for Islamic radicalism, extremism, sectarianism and terrorism.

    March 2013

    Mahendra Pande asked: How India views the coming of Muslim Brotherhood into power? Would it give rise to Islamic extremism?

    P.K. Pradhan replies: Ever since the popular protests against the regime of Hosni Mubarak started in Egypt, India has expressed its support for the will of the people of Egypt. Now India is ready to deal with the Muslim Brotherhood in power in Cairo and has shown no hesitation in doing so. After the elections, India welcomed the verdict of the people of Egypt and congratulated its leader Mohamed Morsi. India’s External Affairs Minister S. M. Krishna visited Cairo in March 2012 and chaired the sixth India-Egypt joint commission meeting. He met the top leadership of the country including the Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi. During Krishna’s visit, India and Egypt signed four documents on cooperation in the field of environment protection, cultural exchange, agriculture and standardisation. Both the countries have also identified areas, such as, trade & economic cooperation, science & technology, culture and information technology, to further strengthen their cooperation.

    It would be too early to predict the rise in Islamic extremism with the coming of Muslim Brotherhood to power. It is expected that Muslim Brotherhood will practice moderation and rather conduct itself as a responsible political party than an underground Islamist organisation. The party has promised to build a modern democratic state and is under pressure to satisfy both the conservative elements and the secular-minded sections of the Egyptian society. A lot depends upon the direction in which the party and the leadership would like to take the revolution.