The great, noble and valiant son of Bengal, Swami Vivekanand said that the fall of Bharat did not begin with the arrival of Muslims, but from the day when the word "mlechcha" (untouchable, barbarians) was introduced.... What a beautiful statement!
We would be misunderstood if anyone interprets our words as if we want demise of religion. We sincerely speak our mind that we have to play the tune of the infinite accepting our finite realm. While devoting ourselves to our own faith we must be able to stretch our open arms to warmly embrace everyone. Those who truly faithful to their faith naturally experiences this universal love. All the sensitivity toward touchability or untouchability actually prevails among whose faith are devoid of sincerity and love about their own faith. We have to expose the ugliness of their soul by removing their pretentious masks.
It makes me remember a story. One day we climbed aboard a rail car. There were several "mala-chondondhari" Hindu gentlemen in that compartment. As soon as we entered the compartment - seeing our caps and/or turbans - they immediately withdrew to the other side so that they do not come into our physical contact. At the other end of the same bench was a pundit who was reading to them Veda or another scripture. As soon as he saw us and observed our uneasiness, he came forward, warmly held our hands, and make us sit right beside him. The eyes of those Hindu gentlemen were about to pop out. When we were somewhat at ease, we asked him as to how, as a pundit and customs-conscious Brahmin, could he embrace us, while those gentlemen leaped to a distance of ten feet! Smiling, he said: "My sons, because I love Hinduism and believe in it as the truth, I have come to love everyone and respect other religions. As I have firm faith in my own religion, I can have the strength to have faith in and warmly embrace others. Those who hate or demean other religion or people, they themselves are lowly; they hardly can claim any religion. The outward exhibition you see is merely to futile effort to mask their lowliness and meanness."
This is a true story, not fiction.
"Chhutmargo" ["The cult of untouchability", in The Nazrul Rochonaboli, Vol. 1, p. 822-824]
Note: There are other stories from Nazrul that relate to bad treatment of Hindus in the hands of Muslims.