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Khurshid: India's illustrious new Muslim foreign minister

Published Oct 28, 2012 01:08pm


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Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh appointed Salman Khurshid as his new foreign minister as he brought seven new faces into cabinet on October 28, 2012, in the biggest reshuffle since his 2009 re-election. o -AFP Photo .

NEW DELHI: New Indian foreign minister Salman Khurshid is the latest member of India's most illustrious Muslim family to be entrusted with one of the highest offices in the country.

The 59-year-old Khurshid, who is 21 years younger than his predecessor S.M. Krishna, was the most eye-catching appointment in a cabinet revamp designed to reinvigorate a government which has shown distinct signs of fatigue.

His appointment comes at a time when he is battling accusations that funds intended for an NGO run by his family have been misappropriated.

As he moved into his new office in New Delhi, Khurshid made clear that he would get straight to work and said that he had been briefed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, 80, to bring fresh thinking to his post.

“I have a lot of home work to do ... as I want to take India's foreign policy ahead,” he told reporters shortly after he was officially elevated from his post law minister.

“In the last few years, foreign policy has vastly changed ... We have to do out of box thinking and go beyond theology.

“We have to think of the great opportunities the world offers today,” added Khurshid who is India's first Muslim foreign minister in 16 years.

As for any foreign minister in New Delhi, Khurshid's most delicate diplomatic dossier will be relations with Pakistan.

The two neighbours last year resumed their tentative peace process, which collapsed after a gunmen from Pakistan killed 166 people in Mumbai in November 2008.

One of the most embarrassing episodes of Krishna's tenure came in 2010 at talks in Islamabad with his Pakistan counterpart Shah Mehmood Qureshi who accused him during a press conference of having to take his orders by phone from New Delhi.

The gaffe-prone Krishna also came in for ridicule in the same year when he read out parts of the Portuguese foreign minister's speech at a meeting of the United Nations Security Council in New York.

Analysts said Khurshid, who served as junior foreign minister in the 1990s, was likely to demonstrate a surer footing than his predecessor.

“One thing is clear, the man knows his job,” said S.K. Jha, a professor of international relations at the Jamia Millia Islamia University in New Delhi.

“He has a grip on diplomacy and will not be a cause of embarrassment like Krishna,” Jha told AFP.

Labelled “Mr. Confident” by the media, Khurshid hails from a family which has been at the heart of Indian politics ever since independence.

His father, Khurshid Alam was the first Muslim to serve as a minister in the foreign office and his great-father, Zakir Hussain, was the president of India.

Khurshid junior studied at Oxford University in England before becoming a lawyer in the Supreme Court. He also worked as a teacher.

Khurshid has been in the headlines more recently over accusations that he and his wife Louise had siphoned off funds for a charity for the disabled.

The accusations were first aired in a television documentary and taken up by anti-corruption campaigner Arvind Kejriwal whom Khurshid has accused of wanting to destroy mainstream parties after launching his own political career.


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Comments (121) Closed

Ashish Oct 30, 2012 02:19am
Listen we do not hate the Muslims in your country. We just hate the terrorists and the terrorist ideology (ours is the only true God etc.).
Ahmed Sultan (India) Oct 30, 2012 04:08am
Not two presidents but three.
VK Menockie Oct 28, 2012 02:23pm
He is an Indian and that's why he is India's foreign minister. What religion he follows is his personal choice.He is also not free from allegations of corruption.He has not come clean out of it.Will know more about it soon.
Ahmed Sultan (India) Oct 30, 2012 04:13am
Just waiting for that day when pakistan will have its first hindu, sikh or christian president may be I have to wait till end of this world
Ahmed Sultan (India) Oct 30, 2012 04:14am
Its nothing for us, muslims have held highest post of president also. What is the religion of a minister doesn't matters to us
Ahmed Sultan (India) Oct 30, 2012 04:11am
That may be a typing mistake, Zakir sahab was his grand father.
james Oct 29, 2012 10:41am
oh DAWN i am disappointed. you should have made review on how many eminent Muslims held very high posts in India in political and bureaucratic fields. can you cite a few examples in Pakistan?
ABlitzer Oct 29, 2012 01:04pm
Let's hope that the Indo-Pak peace process shows better progress than before in the months ahead.
ROHIT PANDEY Oct 28, 2012 08:20pm
Muslims in India are not INTENTIONALLY marginalized. Muslims don't seem to have the devices to forge ahead in education,adoption of modern secular values and cannot seem to learn to treat women as equals to men.- in India,Pakistan or anywhere else in the world. The Malala episode,the burning of schools.and rampant violence in the name of religion in Pakistan is testimony to this. Pakistan with it's 97% Muslim population trails behind India in education,in science and technology. And,Pakistan was created to supposedly protect Muslim interests and prevent marginalization- Pakistan has marginalized itself in the international community. In India,for all the help the government gives to minorities,the Muslims have not fared well at all...Christians,in the meanwhile,run very prestigious educational institutions and have done exceptionally well in education. Hope some of your readers can throw some light on this?
zoro Oct 28, 2012 02:08pm
Ahhh the paper has missed his remark on Kajriwal about coming back alive from his constituency ... this was said he being a Law minister of the largest democracy !!! (sic)
Faulitics Oct 28, 2012 07:59pm
There are serious allegations of corruption against Mr.Khurshid and that too involving diverting money meant for handicapped people to his personal account. But in India the corrupt get rewarded. I would not even be surprised if that guy who siphoned off money meant for the commonwealth games is given a minister ship. He is already out of jail as the first step. Next step is induction into the cabinet. Congress party is corrupt and the opposition parties are also corrupt. So there is no choice really.
hari Oct 29, 2012 07:54pm
Having people of particular religion at the top bureaucracy and political positions does not reflect country's tolerance towards that religion. tolerance is rightly seen by welfare parameters of that religion and nontarnishable record on human rights. when you call yourselves worlds greatest democracy and a secular state you should be equally concerned about the about the plight of the people which salman khurshid represents. So that many young muslims of india can achieve what salman khurshid has.
Tony Oct 28, 2012 02:41pm
Currently India has a Sikh Prime Minister (Dr Manmohan Singh), a Muslim Vice President (Mr Hamid Ansari), a Christian Defence Minister (A K Antony), a Sikh Chief of Army Staff (Gen Bikram Singh), apart from the External Affairs Ministry led by two Muslims - Salman Khurshid (Cabinet Minister of External Affairs), who will be assisted by E Ahmed (Minister of State for External Affairs). Also, the largest ruling party of India has a President, who is a Catholic, Sonia Gandhi (who also happens to be the most powerful person of India). Since independence, India had three Muslim Presidents, who were also the Supreme Commanders of the Indian Armed Forces (Zakir Hussain, Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed and A P J Abdul Kalam, the missile man of India) and also a Sikh President (Giani Zail Singh). General Officer Commanding 15 Corps in Kashmir (up to June 2012) was also a Muslim (Gen S A Hasnain), who is now the Secretary in the Indian Military. These are just a few examples of true secularism followed by the Republic of India!
M.Qureshi Oct 28, 2012 09:50pm
A great achievement by a muslim in India that is also showing maturity of Indian democracy and nation.
Aprophet False Oct 28, 2012 09:49pm
He steals from diabled children charities, and now he is promoted to foreign ministry. He is a great example that India is open and non-discrimatory to anyone who wants to be corrupt and rob from their fellow country men and children!
Sandip Oct 28, 2012 09:10pm
What has Khurshid being muslim has to do? Is Pakistan protector of all Muslims within the world? Secondly article makes statement "they are one of its most marginalised communities" is this compared to Pakistan? It also mentions "The percentage of Muslims to hold jobs and the level of literacy lag well behind those of other major religions such as Hindus, Christians and Buddhists, the census found". As you have claimed to be protector of all muslims any reason that literacy levels are so low.
Kabir Oct 28, 2012 03:22pm
we Indians don't label our public figures as Hindus or Muslims or Christians or Sikhs or Buddhists or Jains or Jews or Harijan and we don't call our country as Hindu Majority India.. its India and the public figures and common man is referred to as Indian.
Satish Kumar Chadha Oct 28, 2012 02:49pm
Surprisingly, in entire reporting the focus is on religion of the Minister and his pedigree. Will it work to solve the problems between two nations .. ?
Abraham's Son Oct 29, 2012 12:27pm
Parties and Politics does not belong to religion. Not in India, Not in Pakistan not in this world. They are against our religion of One God.
Owais H. Shaikh Oct 29, 2012 10:33am
Many comments from mostly Indian friends vent out disgust, frustration and disappointment at the caption of this news story. Almost all of them, with the exception of a few sensibly worded comments, went on to imply that such a thing is simply unthinkable in Indian media. Folks, FYI, that's not true, and you know it! Firstly, this is not a news report by DAWN. It is by AFP. Know AFP? It is Agence France-Presse. On their website, I could not find a single Muslim or a Pakistani as part of AFP Management. Obviously they have not mentioned who wrote this piece. Could be anyone. A Hindu, a Christian, a Jew, a Jain, A Muslim, Salman Rushdie or may be Hafiz Saeed. Secondly, I am not associated with DAWN, I am not associated with print media, I am not even associated with media. I just have common sense and have been reading newspapers to know how news is presented. If many f us had known how it is done, we might not have wasted our (which most importantly includes mine) time getting disgusted, frustrated and disappointed over something which Hindustan Times published yesterday (DAWN! HT does it faster than you guys!!). Just google this news title. But most interestingly, there are only three comments on the HT website and none of them complains about the religious over- or under-tone in the caption. When it is HT it is simply a news item. When it is DAWN or Pakistani media, it is a manifestation of religious intolerance and extremist expressions. Wow. Disgusting, frustrating and disappointing. But not unexpected!!!
jayesh Oct 28, 2012 10:21pm
I wish I copuld read a similar news on Time of India where a Hindu Cabinet Minister has been appointed in Pakistan......will that ever happen??????
Mr, B. Habib Oct 28, 2012 10:34pm
Dr. Zakir Hussain was held in very high esteem and I hope Mr. Khurshid displays similar family traits in trying to forge better foreign policy especially with regards to Pakistan. Many Pakistanis would like to visit India as tourists because of similar cultural background so I hope he can do something to ease visa processing. I wish him the very best of success.
Tharik Oct 28, 2012 03:13pm
Quite unfortunate that you let your article to be viewed from a community angle, against the values that Dawn otherwise champions.
Cheetah Oct 28, 2012 10:42pm
OMG!!! Can Pakistan ever think anything out of "Muslim Perspective".
SecularIndian Oct 29, 2012 10:31am
Please, lets not get into Hindu this and Muslim that mode. Absolutely no difference to us Indians, who cares about what religion any of our leaders are? salman Khursheed is where he is because he desreved it and is competent for the job, thats it. As for marginalised muslim minorities in India, so many educated ones are doing so well and contributing to the country, thank you. yet its the vast numbers of others who put no priority on education, unlike other minorities like christians and sikhs etc. Its some Muslims who dig a hole and sit there tight, that stay where they are and dont progress. Its their problem totally. They need to be more progressive in their thinking and get out of their narrow mindset of religious dictates. India gives equal opportunities to all, regardless of religion. AAnd there is enough visible proof that this policy is working remarkably well.
Naseer Oct 29, 2012 10:25am
So what ??????He is an Indian first .Muslim next!!!!
Traveler Oct 28, 2012 03:12pm
He is a foreign minister, can you guys please see him more than a muslim? Thanks.
roco Oct 28, 2012 11:37pm
no matter S M krishan has done some embarrassing thing because of his old age but he is not corrupted during his all politics life...! he was behind india's IT idustry and make banglore IT hub
Roh Oct 29, 2012 09:32pm
Here u don't get the point. If khurshid excels in his duty he will be deemed as a successful MUSLIM with pride by the Pakistanis. If not then they'd say he is partial towards Pakistan.
Syed-S Oct 28, 2012 11:47pm
A sentence copied from the above article, 4th last paragraph. "His father, Khurshid Alam was the first Muslim to serve as a minister in the foreign office and his great-father, Zakir Hussain, was the president of India.' He has a father and a great-father? What is a great father? Good luck to such a personality to speak out for the Indians who don't like to speak to him like the ilks of L K Advani, Modi, BJP .... Hoping against hope.
Ranjith Oct 29, 2012 09:56am
The current CHIEF Justice of Supreme court in India is Muslim too, just in case you didnt know .. There have been several ministers from the Muslim community .. There maybe some discrimination against minorities in India, and tensions too between different communities .. But by and large India is secular ..
chand Oct 29, 2012 02:39pm
Actually three! Zakir Hussain, Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed and Abdul Kalam. Oct 29, 2012 09:32am
India is the only country ( irrespective of the fact that there are more than 80 Islamic countries in the world) in the wold where all sects of Islam are practiced without any fear or Govt. intervention. these are the words of Mr. Javed Akhtar. Muslim is the second largest majority in India and second largest in number in whole world. The statics for both Hindus and Muslims are same as far as education, health and poverty are concerned in India. Yes minorities are doing better than these two majorities and its not Govt but the shortcoming and stubbornness of Hindus and Muslim that come in the way of development of them. Mr. Kalam is the most respected figure in India as the President of India. Even the hard core hate mongers in India can not speak against him, yes, we do have haters in India. In any field you will find Muslim let it be Govt, Industry, Business, Entertainment, sports and there are some fields where muslims are even in monopoly leave apart majority. THEY ARE INDIANS NOT INDIAN MUSLIMS. We don't hate Pakistan but there is a lack of trust due to historic events which can not be denied.
advaitya Oct 29, 2012 06:38am
Gun Shy?? He was not shy even while fighting case for SIMI in Indian Court...
ROHIT PANDEY Oct 29, 2012 08:47pm
Indira Gandhi was a Brahmin of Kashmiri descent. Was married to Feroz Gandhi,a Zorastrian that is Parsi. The Chief of Staff who led the 1971 war against Paksitan was Sam Manekshaw,again a Parsi. Under him was Jagjit Singh Arora, the man who accepted the surrender of Pakistani forces in then East Pakistan...the was ably aided by JFR Jacob a Lt General ...he was born in Calcutta of Baghdadi Jewish parents. And,that is INDIA, and you bet, we are very,very proud of her!
Shaik Hanief Oct 29, 2012 06:14am
He is not the first but the third Foreign Minister of India. Mahommedali Currim Chagla in 1966 and Sikander Bakht briefly in 1996 were the first and second Muslim foreign ministers of India.
Raghu Oct 29, 2012 06:47am
I must appreciate dawn for not filtering any of the comments. Try doing this on 'Times Of India'....any criticism is flagged as "inappropriate"
Ram Narayanan Oct 29, 2012 03:04pm
Will there EVER be a Hindu Foreign or Defence Minister in Pakistan? I don't think this will happen at all. This shows the closed mindset of the Pakistanis. In this regard, India must be commended. There was a time in India when the Hindu majority country had a Sikh (Gen. JS Arora) as Army Chief, a Muslim (ACM IH Latif) as AF Chief, and a Christian (Adm. L Pereira) as Navy Chief, AT THE SAME TIME. Besides, a Muslim headed India's missile defence (ex-President Kalam) and now a Christian woman heads it. Nothing like thie will EVER happen in Pakistan.
Javaid Oct 28, 2012 02:21pm
One can clearly see the copy / paste in action in this article. This is a hastely put together article done in minutes to fill up the space in Dawn columns. Whatever happened to journislitic integrity and professionislm.
AS Oct 29, 2012 09:31am
The greatest problem with the Muslim world is to look at things thru the prism of religion and Dawn has fallen prey to that. The debate in India on Kurshid being made FM has been whether the congress has overlooked the corruption allegation against him rather than his religion. And regarding muslims being more marginalised community the image is sought to be conveyed they have been kept marginalised by outside forces. That may be true to some extent but if muslim look at the issue dispassionately they would realise the marginalisation is due to the excessive reliance on religion in muslim life that prevented majority of them from shunning modern education and thought and thus being left out of the modern development cycle which is being driven by knowledge and capability.
Kunal Oct 28, 2012 06:10pm
Now , all major three nation in South Asia Pakistan , India and Bangladesh have Muslim foreign ministers.will Hindus do something to break their nexus .
John Rishba Oct 28, 2012 06:16pm
Why this adjective 'Muslim ' Foreign minister ? Mr Salman Khurseed is an Indian and his being a Muslim is incidental . The presence of Indian Muslims as Presidents , as Senior ministers, as election commissioners or top scientist , or in the field of sports or Bollywood only shows the all encompassing outlook of secularism of India. Their constitution does not exclude minorities to any office of the State. I find many Pakistanis here in the U.S. admiring India for this and for the strides in education and economy.
Mohan Kochicheril Oct 28, 2012 10:07pm
It is impossible to find a uncorrupted leader in Indian National Congress. Hence, it is OK to appoint Mr. Salman Khurshid as Minister of Foreign affairs. Moreover, it will be an eye opener for Pakistan to give importance to their minorities too.
Farah Oct 28, 2012 03:54pm
I like how India's stand as a secular state reflects well in the choice of its leaders. Good luck to Salman Khurshid holding this office.
Rao Oct 29, 2012 12:16am
Salman Kurshid got his job because he is a more confident man than his predecessor SM Krishna, not he being a Muslim
sam Oct 28, 2012 04:29pm
He is a SECULAR (Agnostic) NOT a Muslim......This whole family is a SECULAR family......NOT Muslim...
Reza Adham Oct 28, 2012 04:24pm
This is the difference....while we see him as a Indian first you are portraying him by his religion.....think beyond religion and i am sure you would see better development in your country.
Surendran Oct 29, 2012 07:55am
Foreign Minister is Muslim, his two deputies are E. Ahmed and Ms. P. Kaur, a Muslim and a Sikh , and the Foreign Secretary is Ranjan Mathai a Christian, but they are all Indians and that is what matters. I think the report should have mentioned the above fact proving that religion of a person is not important while serving your whatever capacity including as an ordinary citizen.
rich02 Oct 29, 2012 07:59am
agree with u, but he is still s FM first muslim second Richie
Dev Oct 29, 2012 09:02am
We all are Indian first, hindus, muslims, sikhs, christians, jains etc afterwards.
bolkalia Oct 29, 2012 12:16am
No one is more marginalized then the minorities in Pakistan.
Kolsat Oct 29, 2012 01:17am
Pakistan should take a lesson from this appointment. Indian Hindus have always respected its non Hindu and Muslims citizens of whom two were Presidents. This would never happen in Pakistan because Islam forbids giving equal status to non Muslims. So far in Pakistan non Muslims do not hold important posts in Government let alone as Ministers. I am proud to be Indian Hindu.
Ravi Oct 28, 2012 04:50pm
Salman Khurshid's religion has nothing to do with him becoming the FM.
Ahmed Saeed Oct 29, 2012 09:08am
Comments from Indian are worth reading. Its not some Pakistani who has taken charge of Indian Foreign Affairs. Dawn news probably appreciates the Indian Congress for selecting a Muslim as a FM. Its good to see India accommodating Muslims.
Debraj Oct 29, 2012 09:05am
And his wife is not a muslim.
Jahir Oct 29, 2012 12:16am
They are much more secular than us in Pakistan. They had two President's, Army General's, External Affairs Minister's, several Chief Ministers, all Muslims. We have "zero" hindus in any big office in India and the very few left are running overseas.
pradip Oct 29, 2012 08:44am
Mr Khurshid is well qualified oxford graduates.No matter he is Muslim but understand the subject. Now we should raise above these types of subject of religion & strictly religion should be followed in the house only.
Dudenator Oct 29, 2012 08:45am
Please note that the official spokesperson for the ministry of external affairs is also a Muslim Mr. Syed Akbaruddin.
ROHIT PANDEY Oct 29, 2012 08:29am
He is an Indian.Period. India is extension of the wisdom of a very ancient civilization called Indus Valley Civilization and it has several thousands behind it and so,full of wisdom of a seasoned civilization.
ROHIT PANDEY Oct 29, 2012 08:32am
We can live in peace if adopt secularism and offer rights and protection to all minorities.
Roney Indian Oct 29, 2012 08:30am
Not sure why Dawn is highlighting him as a "Muslim", India is a secular and democratic country, the former president - Mr Abdul Kalam, current vice president Mr Hamid Ansari, many more muslim ministers in the cabinet and political parties are examples of religious harmony and equality unlike Pak. Can someone give hindu and christian ministers in Pak ? Oh sorry they all have been force converted or chased out of the country..
imran Oct 28, 2012 04:22pm
why are u obsessed with religion yaar...we don even consider it that way..
india love Oct 29, 2012 08:23am
Previous was 80 years old, just imagine. No country put that old man in minister office except great India, lolzzz
manu Oct 28, 2012 04:08pm
Excellent choice by Indian Government!I am proud of India's democracy. Although we have religious conflicts due to some fanatics, uneducated or just plain low brain ideologists with twisted ideologies, India is still a great country where many religions exist and orginated. I am also proud that India gives opprotunities to all minority religions to the highest Govt. and private company positions that it has to offer. Hope fully, one day, India and Pakistan live together as two cohesive nations with open borders, open commerce and a peaceful region with progressive outlook.
Lalit Oct 29, 2012 11:38pm
Then why your country is Islamic Republic ? and other community peoples are not "allowed"(not eligible) to attain higher posts !
Rao Oct 29, 2012 08:33am
Success of IT industry in Bangalore is not because of SM Krishna. As Chief Minister of Karnataka, he failed to improve infrastructure in Bangalore, which is bursting at its seems. IT industry prospered because of off-shoring from large firms in the western world.
Rakesh Oct 28, 2012 05:10pm
Muslims in India are marginalized not because of any systematic gov policies but by their own illiteracy and backward thinking. Just like most of the Muslim communities around the world, Indian Muslims relegate their women into subservient positions only. However, some progressive Muslims are ruling Bollywood and others winning talent contests.
Naresh Sharma Oct 29, 2012 09:34am
Congress just want to impress Muslim votes in next elections...
Proud Secular Indian Oct 29, 2012 08:33am
Salman Khurshid is not a practising Muslim. He is totally secular. His wife Louise is a Catholic. India is a secular nation and a majority of Indians do not care about religion. Salman Khurshid is one of them. This show how far India has progressed as a democratic and secular nation, unlike Pakistan.
Waltair Oct 28, 2012 05:04pm
An article written by Westerners for Westerners. What has Pakistan and being a Muslim have to do with his appointment? Hopefully he his the right man or the job who is available at the present time.
Indian Oct 28, 2012 05:05pm
For us he is Just a Indian foreign minister ,neither Muslim nor Hindu..
Foreign Leg Oct 29, 2012 01:11pm
Who reads ToI these days, online or on print?
M Y Raza Oct 29, 2012 09:39am
Pakistan did have 'Baghwandas' as its Chief Justice of its Supreme why is it disappointing to see a Muslim getting into top brass of Indian foreign ministry?? As news says, he would bring some 'fresh' thinking in Indian camp.
taranveer singh Oct 29, 2012 02:56pm
bhagwan das is only Hindu who reached a high post acting chief justice. India has countless Muslims who got high posts. India s current chief justice is Muslims. and he is 4th Muslim cj of India.
Annu Oct 29, 2012 08:49am
Sunil, please India media highlight the religion affiliations of the one someone more than any media. If any, Dawn is congratulating for appointing a minority to an important post. So please stop with this nonsense. Thanks
ahmed Oct 29, 2012 02:57pm
As a Pakistani I would agree with you Muslims backwardness can only be attributed to the local culture and mostly self inflicted. We believe the uneducated mullahs and self serving politicians who love to blame somebody else just as in India Hindus love to blame quote system and minorities for their backwardness and lack of achievement of a good status in the society. Any one can achieve anything anywhere as Indians and Pakistani minorities have done in Europe and North America.
muthu Oct 28, 2012 04:55pm
The title of the article emphasises on the fact he's a muslim. No need to highlight his religious affiliation.
Roney Indian Oct 29, 2012 11:05pm
Mate, people have expressed their views and concers when they read the article, they don't necessarily would want to know the back ground of the author etc before they read, they see it as an article from dawn instead. So don't get diffensive.whatever people have expressed cannot be ignored as its very well known how minorities are treated in pak and how India is secular and diverse and where both countries stand in terms of GDP, economy, liberal values democracy etc. so no one is proving anything to anyone. We are all educated to judge these things relax..
Pavas Ambashta Oct 29, 2012 06:54am
Why religion always ,dawn!! Muslims have been appointed on almost all the topmost positions in India including President, chief justice , cabinet ministers in central government, chief ministers of different states , governors and other top ranking administrative and military officers..You know why?? Because here in India people are appointed on topmost positions on basis of their capability not on the basis of their religion..It is surprising to see the word "Muslim" in headlines..Not expected from dawn!!
anupam Oct 29, 2012 03:40pm
Dont know why the appointment of Khurshid is being used to make comparison between India & Pakistan.While the former is a Secular state,the latter announces itself as an Islamic Republic to the world at large..debates between secular & religious states aside,both the countries are just following their declared official policy!!
Dharmaraj Oct 29, 2012 05:22am
All world community knows India's foreign policy driven by Jawahrlal Nehru..and it is pakistan and china also now a days USA centric..
hari Oct 28, 2012 02:49pm
can you guys think things outside of religion. Always seeing we (muslims) and others.
Ashish Oct 30, 2012 02:05am
Too Late. All dead!
Masud Zaidi Oct 29, 2012 06:54am
That is the best approach. People should be selected on merit alone and must not be biased on account of ones religion.
Rajesh Oct 28, 2012 01:44pm
I am very happy that we have a very qualified man handling this important portfolio
Asif Oct 28, 2012 01:44pm
Can't see this being positive for India Pakistan relations. He will always be gun shy in making bold decision due to fear of backlash from the majority hindu community, A hindu foreign minister's motives would be less questionable in the eyes of the Indian public hence making him more effective.
sk Oct 29, 2012 06:56am
Absolutly true...
wally walter Oct 29, 2012 07:19am
What is this ? Muslim foreign minister ???? A common Indian hardly gives any importance to these kind of attributes. Seriously. We have had umpteen non Hindu leaders in past and they will continue in future. So there's nothing novel about a Muslim taking this office
sunil Oct 29, 2012 07:09am
i wonder, what pathetic thinking process has gripped the pakistan and it's media. why you people always relate each and every event in this universe to religion. where are your senses.. for GOD sake.. not expected from Dawn seriously. :(
Ajaya K Dutt Oct 28, 2012 02:04pm
"New Indian foreign minister Salman Khurshid is the latest member of India
Lalit Oct 29, 2012 11:35pm
Really ?
aviratam Oct 29, 2012 07:29am
Et tu, Dawn: " MUSLIM Foreign Minister." Disappointing.
Dudenator Oct 29, 2012 07:36am
Really poor reporting from Dawn. You guys had to bring religion here too. Not a single media outlet in India commented on his religion. Such a lowly comment could have only come from the Pakistani Media. But out of all the Pakistani media, I never expected Dawn to make such irresponsible statements highlighting his religion. Please get over your obsession with religion and learn to see people as simply human beings.
Arun Oct 29, 2012 09:48am
Pakistan would never appoint a Hindu as a foreign minister. Dawn just wants its Pakistani readers to know that India can and has appointed a foreign minister who is Muslim. However, even if Jinnah's Pakistan were dominant, I don't believe I would see a Hindu foreign minister in Pakistan. With Zia's Pakistan dominant, forget it!
Pramod Oct 29, 2012 09:52am
Yes you are riight. He had a great role in making bangalore an IT hub and he had a very clean image. But as FM he could not anything substantial. Khurshid on other hand is corrupt like many congress leader.
ROHIT PANDEY Oct 29, 2012 08:25pm
Chief of Staff Indian Air Force...Norman Anil Kumar Browne aka "Charlie" Browne is an Anglo Indian...descendent of mixed Indian and European bloodline. And we Indians don't give it a thought!
Roney Indian Oct 29, 2012 11:37am
is he the only one you can site as an example while there are scores of muslims in Indian politics, film, judiciary and various feilds ? grow up mate...
Yogesh Oct 29, 2012 04:40am
This article talks about Muslims as marginalized community and other religions as major in India. Correction required that Islam is the second biggest religion in India and Muslims are not marginalized. They hold key positions in companies, very successful business owners and so on. Further, India is way above religion as don'd think before recruiting or working for someone his religion is looked at.
Girish Oct 28, 2012 02:00pm
Do you know that this illustrious Muslim fellow runs one NGO for disabled people in UP. DO you know that he siphoned off the money given Govt of India to this NGO. He stole money earmarked for disabled people. He has been made minister only to appease Muslim vote bank. This is state of affair in India under UPA regime. People are not fools. They will teach UPA a lesson in next election.
Niranjan surana Oct 29, 2012 06:30am
There can not be any comparison in treatment with minorities in India and Pakistan.This article may be for its Pakistan readers who can be surprised .
Ajaya K Dutt Oct 29, 2012 03:36am
One correction since it is not posted as yet. "New Indian foreign minister Salman Khurshid is the latest member of India
Truthsayer Oct 28, 2012 02:40pm
This is the first significant appointment by an Indian goverment of a person with a Muslim background. The post of "President of India" doesn't count as it has no policy making power in the Indian constitution. Now before any Indians start commenting here that "Pakistan has had no Hindu foreign minister or the like", I will respond in advance. Yes, Pakistan should also lift up its minorities and if a person of Hindu background qualifies for a high post, it should be honored. A case in point has been the honorable judge of the Supreme Court of Pakistan, justice Rana Bhagwan Das, who was also the acting Chief Justice of Pakistan for a while. I am proud of such honest and honorable Pakistanis as Bhagwan Das, and I am sure there are plenty more. Another important point is that Indians should not compare the situation in their country to Pakistan because the percentage of minorities is only about 4% in Pakistan whereas in India it should be around 20-25%, a significant percentage indeed. And no....we Pakistanis did NOT kill them off as some of them claim. The confusion arises when any census before 1971 reveals a higher percentage of Hindus and is compared to the meagre 2% figure of today. They should know that it is because any census of Pakistan taken before 1971 also took into account the huge Hindu population in what is now Bangladesh (former East Pakistan). When Bangladesh seperated, that percentage naturally came down and not due to "ethnic cleansing"!
Mahesh Verma Oct 29, 2012 03:56am
It is all politics behind to make this corrupt a minister.
deva Oct 29, 2012 04:27am
it's india's bad luck..he is corrupt and kind of don(few days back he has threaten to kill Arvind Kejriwal)..not against because he is Muslim..but definitely not a good guy
Khurram Oct 29, 2012 04:29am
Why it's a news in pakistan? This person syphoned out money ment for physically handicap people by forging signatures. He doesn't even deserve to be called a muslim.
wonderer Oct 29, 2012 04:56am
",,,,,, of the highest offices in the world
ROHIT PANDEY Oct 29, 2012 08:27pm
And a former chief of IAF used to go by the name of IDRIS HASSAN LATIF.
Tamilselvan Oct 28, 2012 02:35pm
India is a secular democratic country with all it's flaws. Country does not discriminate and we have had several Presidents, army chief, industrialists, actors, scientists, writers, musicians, thinkers etc unlike Pak or several countries where one has to belong to a certain religion or sect to have the highest position in the country. So this article is meaningless as Mr. Khurshid credentials are more important than his religion.
hinduismglance Oct 29, 2012 01:32am
Highest post was given to the President of India A. P. J. Abdul Kalam by BJP. He deserved the post but Khurshid doesn't deserve it.
imran Oct 29, 2012 01:50am
Congrats to him. Lets hope he has the capacity to promote peace in this region for a change.
Sid Oct 29, 2012 01:55am
He is a corrupt man , Pakistanis will understand him as he is similar to all political people who win elections from rural areas ,as would anyone from outh Asia, using musle power and family connections..when caught with his hand in the cookie jar he threatened voilence against the activist. And he has only one great quality, synchopancy,for the ruling Gandhi family. As you would understand,a must in the political culture of sub continent for progeny of powerful to perpetuate their rule
Vaqar Oct 28, 2012 06:52pm
Will we still call him a 'show boy', like we called Maulana Abul Kalam?
Vinod Oct 28, 2012 02:07pm
Muslim foreign minister ???i. Is this how you see the word. Please do not insult Muslims living in other countries. He was chosen foreign minister because he was considered very capable for this post.
Tarun Oct 28, 2012 02:19pm
I seriously don't undertsand the world "Muslim" in the headlines. Our president was a muslim.There is no discrimination in India on the basis of religion. Though it's really hard to see any hindu or christian holding a mojor post or any post in Pakistan government which surely rings bells..!!
DKG Oct 28, 2012 02:02pm
In india, things are not seen the same way as they are seen in pakistan. For you, he may be muslim first or only muslim but for us, he is our fellow indian first who is there because of his proven worth and we all expect him to work for our beloved nation - india as an indian rather than muslim or else. So your analysis brings me laughter that your thinking (even of those so-called educated people like the reporter/ editor of this article itself) is still backward and how can you move forward if you are looking backward. best of luck to you!!
Sanjay Oct 29, 2012 10:34am
What is this not again muslim agenda. he is an Indian first then muslim so don't overhelm. he also put india first in forign policy and speak about indian intrest only like an indian
Cyrus Howell Oct 28, 2012 05:29pm
59 years young.
raja hindustani Oct 28, 2012 05:32pm
@Dawn: Please don't put Khurshid appointment as foreign minister in religious context. Salman Khurshid is very senior congress leader and he elevated as foreign minister is simply on merit; not because of his religion.
Pman Oct 29, 2012 06:40pm
You said, "... went on to imply that such a thing is simply unthinkable in Indian media" and went on to say that AFP is French. Yes such an article would not really be printed in India because of the title. Since AFP cannot be considered Indian media I don't know what you are on about.
momtaz Oct 30, 2012 11:34am
What is the Hindu population in Pakistan? In India,muslims are about 150,000,000 and so should have a voice in its government
Espad Oct 28, 2012 05:35pm
To the West and Pakistan, the news of Salman Khurshid, a Muslim being appointed India's Foreign Minister is news of the "man bites dog" category !! Just read the leavening of this news with the homily that Muslims despite being regularly appointed to high offices, remain "marginalized" in this Hindu majority country !! Can AFP cite any example where in any Western nation, persons from a minority religion or community attained such high offices in such large numbers as in India ? As for Pakistan, its benighted minorities, Hindu, Sikh, Christian or even from Muslim sub sects like Ahmedias and increasingly even Shias fear for their lives, liberties and very existence. For them even to dream about getting appointed to any office, however lowly, is pure fantasy. Let the West and Pakistan not pass snide remarks about the status of Indian Muslims. They are vastly better off than their counterparts in every Western nation and most certainly Pakistan.