Sagarika Ghose, the self-proclaimed champion of liberalism, is well known for her advocacy of ‘secular’ cause. She has been an ardent supporter of ‘Kerala model of development’, and is a fan girl of state’s ‘secular’ and ‘democratic’ traditions.
Yesterday she shared a tweet with an infographic from The Economist– the British magazine which is well-known champion of liberalism- which reads, “Three of the world’s ten fastest-growing urban areas are in India, with another three in China.”
Sagarika pointed out that, all these cities are in Kerala, to further her agenda that the ‘Kerala model of development’ is the best for the country.
Sagarika probably thought that the list is about the fastest growing cities in terms of economic indicator, but the graphic was about the fastest growing urban areas in terms of population. The graphic was prepared with data from UN Population division, and depicted that top 10 fastest growing urban are in developed world, and centered in Asia and Africa.
The three urban areas from India are in Kerala. But, all the three fastest growing cities in Kerala are due to Muslim population. Malappuram, the city in North Kerala, which recorded positive percent change of 44 percent in 2015-20 forecast, has 70.24 percent of Muslim population, as per 2011 census. Hindus constitute only 27.60 percent. It is among the few districts of the country where Hindus are in minority.
If Sagarika Ghose had known this fact that the population of Malappuram is growing at this rate due to Muslim factor, her “secular” commitments would not have allowed her to share the tweet.
The second city from India to feature in the list- Kozhikode- is also in North Kerala, and Muslim dominated too. The city’s population grew by 34.5 percent in 2015-20 period.
As per 2011 census, the percentage of Muslims in Kozhikode district is 39.2 percent. The Muslim population in the city of Kozhikode is even higher.
As per a report by Swarajya, Muslim constituted only 30 percent of total population in North Kerala – the region where both of these Muslim dominated cities are- in 1901, but their percentage increased to 43.5 as per 2011 census. In post-independence period, the percentage of Muslims in the area increased by 12 percent.
In Kollam, the third Indian city to find a place in the list, the population increased by 31.1 percent. As per 2011 Kollam city census, the city has 22.5 percent Muslim population and 21.17 percent Christians population, and Hindus constitute only 56.35 percent of total population.
Had Sagarika known that the list is about the population growth not economic growth, and the ‘secular’ reasons behind this population; she would not have shared the tweet.