Today, at over 138 million, Muslims constitute over 13% of India 's billion-strong population, and in sheer numbers are exceeded only by Indonesia's and Pakistan's Muslim community.
The community continues to have a paltry representation in the bureaucracy and police - 3% in the powerful Indian Civil Service, 1.8% in foreign service and only 4% in the Indian Police Service. And Muslims account for only 7.8% of the people working in the judiciary.
Indian Muslims are also largely illiterate and poor.
They are also poor - 31% of Muslims are below the country's poverty line, just a notch above the lowest castes and tribes who remain the poorest of the poor.
So why has the lot of Indian Muslims remained miserable after six decades of independence?
For one, it is the sheer apathy and ineptitude of the Indian state which has failed to provide equality of opportunity in health, education and employment.
This has hurt the poor - including the Muslim poor who comprise the majority of the community - most.
There is also the relatively recent trend of political bias against the community when Hindu nationalist governments have ruled in Delhi and the states.
Also, the lack of credible middle class leadership among the Muslims has hobbled the community's vision and progress.
Consequently, rabble rousers claiming to represent the community have thrust themselves to the fore.
But the failure to throw up credible leaders has meant low community participation in the political processes and government - of the 543 MPs in India's lower house of parliament, only 36 are Muslims.
The plight of Indian Muslims also has a lot to do with the appalling quality of governance, unequal social order and lack of equality of opportunity in northern India where most of the community lives.
I know very little about the Muslim community in India, so this article was an eye-opener for me. It is disheartening to know that there is a "lack of middle class leaderpship among the Muslims" in India, but I guess that makes the Indian Muslim community just like most other Muslim communities around the world (whether minority or majority).
This is even more reason for Muslims to take the first step, educate and involve themselves, and put their faith in action. Only then can we demand respect from the rest of the world.