India is a secular state where the people from all religions live harmoniously. There is no official religion in India. Muslims in India are a minority community. However, the third largest Muslim population of the world resides in India. The largest population of Muslims is in Indonesia followed by Pakistan. Most of the Muslims in India are Sunnis. Muslims in India are the second largest religious community with a population share of 14.23 per cent of the total Indian population. In spite of socio-economic disadvantages faced by them as by other disadvantaged and backward communities, Muslims are catching up fast. Indian Muslims have largely shielded themselves from global extremists such as the IS.
Muslim Population in India
India’s population in 2018 is estimated at 1.368(as on 20 November 2018) billion based on the most recent United Nation’s data. Out of which Muslims are an estimated 193 million. But this is only an estimate as there is no official data for 2018 available. The last official census data for religious communities were collected in the 2011 census. According to the 2011 census Muslims population was about 17.22 Crores. The majority of Indian Sunnis follow the Hanifi division.
Religious Population in India/Census data
|Other Religion||0.66%||79.38 Lakhs||–|
|Not Stated||0.24%||28.67 Lakhs||–|
|All Religion||100.00||121 Crore||35|
Source: Census 2011
Muslim Population Growth: Some Facts
The decadal population growth rate for Muslims in India was recorded at 24.60 (2001-2011 decade) which was a sharp fall from the previous rate of 29.52% (for the decade of 1991-2001). However, this is the fastest population growth rate for any religious community in India. The national average for this period (2001-2011) was 18%. Their population has risen from 13.4 per cent to 14.2 per cent of the total population of India in the same period.
According to the Pew Research Center, by 2050, India will have the world’s largest Muslim population. By 2050, Muslims in India will grow to 311 million, making India the country with the largest Muslim population. Muslims will grow from 14.4% to about 18.4% of the total population at midcentury. This population of Muslims (311 million by 2050) will be about 11% of the global Muslims. According to this research data young median age and high fertility rates are the reasons behind the increasing population of Muslims. Not only in India but globally they are the fastest growing religious group. In Asia, they constitute the largest religious group. Globally Sunnis the constitute majority among the Muslims.
In Which States/UTs Muslims are in Majority
Muslims are in majority only in 2 states/Union territories. The Muslims are in majority in Lakshadweep (UT) and Jammu & Kashmir. Among all states in India, the state of Jammu and Kashmir has the highest Muslim population at 68.3 per cent of the total population. The percentage of Muslims is sizeable in Assam, West Bengal, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.
A schism emerged in the Muslim community after the death of the Prophet Muhammad in 632 AD. Sunni Islam is also known as Wahhabism and it controls Islam’s holiest shrines, Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia. On the other hand, the Karbala, Kufa and Najaf in Iraq are revered shrines for the Shias globally.
Some Holy Places of Islam in India:
- Jama Masjid, Delhi
- Ajmer Sharif
- Hazratbal Shrine, Srinagar
- Dargah Qutub Sahib, Delhi
- Sheikh Salim Chisti’s Dargah at Fatehpur Sikri
- Char Minar at Hyderabad
- Haji Ali Dargah, Mumbai
- Nizamuddin Dargah, Delhi
- Haji Pir Dargah, Kutch
- Taj Ul Masjid, Bhopal