Assault on Muslims | By Deedar Ali Bangwar


Assault on Muslims

Hindu extremism is rapidly flourishing in India, mainly anti-Muslim variety, and nasty scandals and speeches have heightened since Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist “Bharatiya Janata Party” came to power in 2014.

A series of video clips from the occasion displayed religious leaders and at least one member of India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party exhorting Hindus to arm themselves against India’s largest minority group.

Whether it is cow slaughtering or any other Muslim act. Hundreds of right-wing Hindu activists and monks rose in unison at a meeting this week to seize an oath: They would whirl India, constitutionally a secular republic, into a Hindu nation, even if performing so needed dying and killing.

A prominent leader of Hindus Annapurna stated that “Nothing is possible sans weapons. If you like to destroy their community, exterminate them. Be prepared to slaughter and be prepared to go to prison.

Even if 100 of us are ready to assassinate 20 lakhs of them ‘Muslims’, then we will be triumphant, and go to jail, “Like Myanmar, our police, our politicians, our Army and every Hindu should carry weapons and perform a Safayi Abhiyan ‘ethnic cleansing’. There is no other alternative remaining”. Videos of the incident have went viral on social media in India this week.

Yet Mr Modi has maintained a characteristic silence that analysts say can be interpreted by his most extreme supporters as a tacit signal of protection. Multiple episodes of violence against Muslims have been reported during election season, including assaults by mobs striving to shut businesses possessed by Muslims.

Since partition, the Muslim community has been subject to and engaged in violence in Gujarat. In 2002, in an event described as an act of “fascistic state terror,” Hindu extremists carried out acts of violence against the Muslim minority population.

The 2020 Delhi riots, which left 53 dead and more than 200 seriously injured, were triggered by protests against a citizenship law seen by critics as anti-Muslim.

The riots have been referred to by some as a pogrom. Leaders of many far-right Hindu sects have ordered for the genocide of minorities in India, especially the country’s 200 million Muslim population. A three-day ‘hate speech conclave’ was organised by the controversial Hindutva leader Yati Narsinghanand from December 17 to 19 in Haridwar city of India’s Uttarakhand state.

There have been several instances of religious violence against Muslims since the partition of India in 1947, repeatedly in the form of violent assaults on Muslims by Hindu nationalist gangs that form a pattern of sporadic sectarian mayhem between the Hindu and Muslim nations.

Around 10,000 people have been exterminated in Hindu-Muslim collaborative riots since 1950 in 6,933 instances of collective mayhem between 1954 and 1982.

The bases of anti-Muslim violence can be traced to incidents in Indian history – bitterness towards the Islamic conquest of India during the Middle Ages, divisive policies created by the colonial government during the era of British rule (mainly after the suppression of the Indian Rebellion of 1857, which saw Hindus and Muslims cooperate in revolt against the East India Company), and the partition of India into an Islamic State of Pakistan and an Indian state with a Muslim minority.

All democratic forces in India that are usually quiet over intiminority mayhem in the country, must utter against the extremists of the country.

Apparently, as the incidents, cited have shown, the Hindu extreme right intends to foment anti-Muslim violence totally on hierarchy

—The writer is contributing columnist, based in Kandhkot, Sindh.