Insiders, not invaders

Discussion in 'Religion & Culture' started by Daredevil, Nov 2, 2009.

  1. Daredevil

    Daredevil On Vacation! Administrator

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    Insiders, not invaders

    Muslims across India are predominantly south Asian in origin, concludes a major forensic study. Prasun Chaudhuri reports

    When Ikramul Haque was studying biology at the Aligarh Muslim University, he was deeply intrigued by the questions raised on the genetic ancestry of Indian Muslims. Those were the turbulent mid-1980s, when religious zealots were describing Muslims across the country as the “descendants of foreign invaders” and “rank outsiders”. By the time he completed PhD in life sciences in 1989, he nursed a secret ambition to piece together the paternal and maternal lineage of Indian Muslims by analysing samples of blood — the ultimate repository of ancestral DNA.

    Years later, while working as a DNA expert at Calcutta’s Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL), Haque got the chance to embark on his long-cherished dream. “I knew a DNA study on Muslims around the country would provide a persuasive answer to the age-old question raised about their genetic heritage,” says Haque.

    According to him, historical evidence suggests that some Indian Muslims could be descendants of either Iranian and Arabian invaders who married local Hindu women or locals who converted. “We therefore sought to examine contemporary Indian Muslim populations for the occurrence of Middle Eastern genetic signatures (in their DNA samples), expecting them to be manifested in the male line,” reports Haque in a recent issue of the European Journal of Human Genetics (EJHG). “For this, we chose six Muslim populations from three different geographical regions of India that witnessed several human migrations, military invasions from the Middle East and proselytising of native Hindu populations,” he adds.

    So Haque and his co-researcher Muthukrishnan Eaaswarkhanth analysed blood samples collected from Dawoodi Bohras (in Tamil Nadu and Gujarat), Iranian Shias (Hyderabad), Indian Shias (Uttar Pradesh), Indian Sunnis (Uttar Pradesh) and Mapplas (Tamil Nadu). “It was for the first time that a research group was extensively examining the genetic patterns of nearly 500 Muslim individuals across India,” Haque told KnowHow. To pin down the telltale genetic footprints, the DNA experts looked into three components of the blood samples. To trace the father’s ancestry, they zeroed in on the DNA on the Y-chromosome, which like the patrilineal surname passes down unchanged from father to son. Maternal lineage tests were derived from mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), which is passed from a mother to her child. In addition, they used a unique genetic marker — called LCT/MCM6 lactose tolerance gene variant — which appears to have arisen in Arabs and is associated with the consumption of camel’s milk, an important survival trait in desert nomads.

    “Our extensive genetic analyses revealed the greatest affinity of the Indian Muslim populations with indigenous local non-Muslim populations [or the Hindus],” conclude Haque and Eaaswarkhanth in the paper. “In this study, no significant excess of paternally transmitted genetic signal was found, unlike the Muslim communities in China and Central Asia which show a marked presence of Western Y-chromosomes. However, detectable minor frequency of sub-Saharan maternal and Middle Eastern paternal lineages were found to be present in some of the Indian Muslim communities.”

    The most interesting finding is that the Dawoodi Bohras, a Muslim community following the Shia faith and speaking Gujarati, are a distinct genetic entity with sub-Saharan African and Arabian maternal lineages, suggesting that some of their ancestors migrated from Yemen, an Arabian country with strong links with sub-Saharan Africa. The sub-Saharan African / Arabian-specific paternal lineage was also found in the Shia Muslims of Lucknow, the erstwhile state of Awadh. The Iranian Shias — recent immigrants from Iran who settled in Hyderabad — too have close genetic affinity with the people of West Asia. “We propose a scientific model according to which the spread of Islam in India was predominantly cultural conversion associated with minor but still detectable levels of gene flow from outside, primarily from Iran and Central Asia, rather than directly from the Arabian Peninsula,” write Haque and his colleagues.

    “The findings seem to corroborate archaeological, historical and linguistic evidence that the majority of Indian Muslims are descendants of local people who converted,” says Amalendu Mukherjee, a former professor of history, Calcutta University. “For that matter, many of the military invaders, such as the first Mughal ruler Babur’s forefathers, were also converts — they embraced Islam just a few generations before he was born.”

    According to Mukherjee, DNA imprints are the latest evidence in the arsenal of a historian. Another eminent historian (who doesn’t want to be named), however, doesn’t support studies on religion based on DNA. He says, “I don’t think there is any need of DNA profiling of the followers of a particular religion. In any case, they’ve found something very obvious.”

    On the contrary, Susanta Roychoudhury, one of the pioneers of genetic anthropology in India, believes that such studies can dispel any doubt regarding the history of human migration in the country. “The study is unique and addresses an important issue,” says Roychoudhury, deputy director of the Indian Institute of Chemical Biology, Calcutta. “It proves once again that there is a fundamental genetic unity in the seemingly diverse ethnic India and that there is no Hindu or Muslim identity in the genetic realm.”
     
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  3. Vinod2070

    Vinod2070 मध्यस्थ Stars and Ambassadors

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    “Our extensive genetic analyses revealed the greatest affinity of the Indian Muslim populations with indigenous local non-Muslim populations [or the Hindus],” conclude Haque and Eaaswarkhanth in the paper. “In this study, no significant excess of paternally transmitted genetic signal was found, unlike the Muslim communities in China and Central Asia which show a marked presence of Western Y-chromosomes. However, detectable minor frequency of sub-Saharan maternal and Middle Eastern paternal lineages were found to be present in some of the Indian Muslim communities.”

    “The findings seem to corroborate archaeological, historical and linguistic evidence that the majority of Indian Muslims are descendants of local people who converted,” says Amalendu Mukherjee, a former professor of history, Calcutta University. “For that matter, many of the military invaders, such as the first Mughal ruler Babur’s forefathers, were also converts — they embraced Islam just a few generations before he was born.”

    On the contrary, Susanta Roychoudhury, one of the pioneers of genetic anthropology in India, believes that such studies can dispel any doubt regarding the history of human migration in the country. “The study is unique and addresses an important issue,” says Roychoudhury, deputy director of the Indian Institute of Chemical Biology, Calcutta. “It proves once again that there is a fundamental genetic unity in the seemingly diverse ethnic India and that there is no Hindu or Muslim identity in the genetic realm.”

    I think it blows away the "pure" foreign lineage claims of some!

    Hope this is done across our Eastern and Western borders too and blows away some more myths.

    the vast majority of Indians have the same roots irrespective of religion. The narrow sectarianism that led to partition should be shunned like the plague.
     
  4. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    This article was posted by Ray Sir in some other thread. Don't remember which one.
    I think it was in relation to pakistanis trying to associate themselves to Arabs.

    But the moot point, all the people on the sub continent and let us consider just India are of the same lineage. Only the faith may be different. And that is no reason to divide or discreminate or seggregate.
     
  5. SHURIDH

    SHURIDH Senior Member Senior Member

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  6. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    I have read this report before but not sure if it's posted here. I Remember Ray Sir bad sent me a link.
     
  7. devgupt

    devgupt Regular Member

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    This was expected...this conclusion can also be drawn from many previous genetic studies of sub continent people
     
  8. Sukerchakia

    Sukerchakia Regular Member

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    Not entirely unexpected. While there are "genetic enclaves" in the subcontinent like the groups mentioned in the article, most Indians are a fairly mixed lot.
     
  9. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    The precise thing is -

    Muslims are not invaders, 99% they were natives of this land too. But the idealogy of Islam is foreign. It is Arab.

    Islamic history thus is always viewed through the lens of arabic history and hence many muslims themselves have a pseudo-arab mentality.
     
  10. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    The last thing on my mind is being Arab and least of all camel sex :rofl:
     
  11. SHURIDH

    SHURIDH Senior Member Senior Member

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    me too yusuf bhai.i am not so interested about arab.
     
  12. SHURIDH

    SHURIDH Senior Member Senior Member

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    only 14%world muslim population are arab.
    it is not so long ago.even in 80s and early 90s you hinduvta people describe indian muslim as decendar of forgien race.only after gentic result in last few years you people change your stand for indian muslim as forgien race in 80s to they also hindu in 2011 from rss chief.
     
  13. Mad Indian

    Mad Indian Proud Bigot Veteran Member Senior Member

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    :lol:

    Its the Arab wannabes who first called themselve glorius decendents of Arabs and Mughals- Case in point being Pakistan.


    On a side note, then you will have no problem with accepting Hindutva? Since you are of Hindustan origin:eyebrows:

    MOD: Edited
     
  14. SHURIDH

    SHURIDH Senior Member Senior Member

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    but you can't deny the fact hinduvta people always describe indian muslim as forgien race till early 90
     
  15. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    Hindutva is one badly abused word. Nothing different from "Islam" being used by vested interests. One day it's way I life, another day it's about the religion Hindu and then we have people talk about Islamic invasion and Muslims being invaders and foreigners.

    Those using the word Hindutva should make it clear what they mean.

    No Muslim will have anything against "Hindutva" the way of life as it encompasses the whole culture of being an Indian and Indian Muslims are very much part of that culture. Religion and culture is not the same.
     
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  16. Sukerchakia

    Sukerchakia Regular Member

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    Its a two-way street. Many Hindus have a heightened sense of Hindutva and view a religion born in Arabia as foreign along with the people who practice it.

    Honestly this debate about a religion being native or foreign is pointless. Even religions born in India like Sikhism, Hinduism, Budhism are different from each other in many ways.
     
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  17. SHURIDH

    SHURIDH Senior Member Senior Member

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    @mad indian hinduvta does not have support of 25 %indian hindu.why indian muslim than will accept hinduvta.
    i belive in indian nationalism no need for hinduvta.
     
  18. devgupt

    devgupt Regular Member

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    What does secularism mean in Indian concept? Is it Gandhi's secularism which is different from Nehru's secularism? The latter again different from his grandson Rajiv's version of secularism and yet all three belong to same organization.

    Unlike Science, social terms always have a certain amount of fluidity.
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012
  19. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    AFAIK, no Indian Muslim considers himself an "outsider" in the way groups like VHP e.t.c. want to make it. Even people who do have legitimate migrant stories like people from Arab, Persian or AFghan background consdier themselves as Indian Muslims. Just like Parsis who have Persian background or some other Punjabi and North Indian castes like Jats who have a Central or West Asian gene trait who consider themselves as Indians. (Ethnic India: A Genomic View, With Special Reference to Peopling and Structure)
    The US ( or Australia e.t.c.) basically built on recent migrants from around the world but they don't question the loyalty based on which country they migrated from and are able to tap into their respective talents and base to achive such a dramatic level of development and transformation.

    Consider Maulana Azad who was born of a Bengali father and a Meccan mother in Mecca and spent 11 years in prison to fight British rule, worked for Hindu Muslim unity and was an Indian nationalist till the end. OR Khan Adbul Gaffar Khan a Pashtoon who held similar positions and went to prison numerous times and whose followers fell down to British bullets in non-violent struggle for Indian independance.
    Even Sarvarkar was a champion of HIndu-Muslim unity and praised the first war of Independnace. He didn't consider Islam as "foreign". Atleast before his arrest by the British and subsequent turnaround .

    A quote from his book in the early 1900s shows how proud he was about the unity of Hindus and Muslims fighting together against the British. during that period.


    And on Bahadur Shah being declared the "Emperor of Free Hindusthan" he said

    The entire book is filled with such sort of inclusive patriotism. http://www.savarkar.org/content/pdf...dependence_1857_with_publishers_note.v001.pdf


    Finally, if the numbers decide where a religion "belongs", then Islam would quite naturally be an Indic religion. Consider that Christianities founding and sites of importance are all in the Middle East from Palestine to Syria. Jesus himself was bascially a middle easterner. But Christianity today dominates in the West particulary the US and EU.
    Now Muslims in historic India consists of 1/3 of the global muslim population. Some of the most important shrines of the Muslim world are located in India. Some of the most widely followed Islamic schools of thoughts are INDIAN Islamic schools like the Deobandis and Barelvis.

    So this classification of us vs them doesn't really make any sense. So basically, what I am trying to say in this post is that even if the genetics were of foreign origin, it shouldn't matter. Your race or religion is not correlated with how patriotic or loyal you are.
     
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  20. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    This is what happens when people have a prejudiced view against RSS. They hear what they want to hear.

    RSS has never said the Muslims as a people are foreign to this land. (If they indeed said that, I absolutely dont agree to that). But the idealogy of Islam is definitely foreign and it will always be, unless in some future generation Arabia gets joined with India due to tectonic shifts.

    Also some Muslims are also responsible for that...when they eulogise MBQ or Ghazni or Babar or Aurangazeb as Islamic Ghazis who delivered them from the rule of Dhimmis. I see the mentality even today among them. I can't fault them...they are made to look at everything from a religious pov and strangely identify with and support invaders who were foreigners who wreaked havoc on the native folk, who, ironically, included the ancestors of the Muslims themselves !

    Look at the Iranians...they dont give two hoots for anything other than Persian..For them Cyrus is better than Nader Shah or Nowruz is as important as any other Islamic festival.


    Hindus , increasingly now, do have a heightened sense of Hindutva, only because of various factors starting from the 90s and continuing even today. If you are interested I will list it in the next post. Hindutva is a reaction, not an action. And only the political parties that profess bleed red secularism are to be blamed for that.

    Re, religion's origin being pointless, much of history is pointless...are we not discussing it ?
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012
  21. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    Ejaz I dont see why you are cherry picking some instances in order to prove any one's patriotism ? No one's (atleast not most's) patriotism was questioned or their ancestory.

    It was only their (again not all) warped religious pov which makes them strangely identify with a foreigner over the natives or their cultures.

    As far you claim of Islam being an Indic religion, I can only laugh at that. In the quote of Savarkar you gave he very clearly refers to Mohammedans (Muslims) and not to Islam. One can very well argue what was the motive for the Muslim rulers to join the revolt -whether as a nationalist spirit drove them or the sense of vengeance to reclaim "their" land from British..but that is moot.

    As I said no one said Indian Muslims are outsiders (atleast the most as some genuinely have some outside blood), but saying Islam is Indic is throwing facts into the gutter. Islam was/is an Arabic idealogy. No more no less.
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012

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