India Under P.M. Modi
Since the leader of the Hindu fundamentalist party, BJP Narendra Modi became the Prime Minister of India; Indian society is rapidly radicalizing, as unprecedented rise of Hindu extremism, persecution of minorities, ban on beef and cow slaughter, inclusion of Hindu religious books in curriculum and creation of war-like situation with Pakistan have been accelerated. These nefarious moves have put questions about India under P.M. Modi.
While, the constitution declares India to be a secular state, granting equal rights to the religious minorities, but in practice, ideology of Hindutva (Hindu nationalism) prevails. Hindu politics and culture, dominated by the fundamentalist parties such as BJP, RSS VHP, Bajrang Dal, Shiv Sena and other extremist outfits have been propagating Hindutva. Provocative utterances of their extremist leaders have resulted into unending violence against the Muslim and Christians including other minority groups.
Radicalization of India by Hindu fanatic parties could be judged from various recent developments. On May 28, 2014, Rashtriya Hindu Andolan, a Mangalore-based Hindutva outfit and activists from various right wing groups organized a protest in Mangalore in front of the office of Deputy Commissioner by demanding the authorities to ban the morning Muslim call to prayer (Azan) across the country. Besides, forcing the Muslim employee in a Parliament Canteen by BJP leader to break his fast by stuffing piece of bread in his mouth, statement of Deputy Chief of Goa, declaring India as a Hindu state, opposition to declaration of Sania Mirza as Ambassador of Indian state by calling her daughter-in-law of Pakistan might be cited as example.
In this regard, in September 13, 2008, the communal riots in Uttar Pradesh killed more than 200 Muslims. In one of the most tragic incidents in Assam, Hindu extremists burnt alive six members of a Muslim family.
Similarly, in the recent years, assaults on Christians, their churches and property have been executed by the Hindu mobs in various cities of India. In this respect, at least 100 Christians have been assassinated by Hindu extremists, mostly in the state of Orissa. In the recent past, frequent incidents of gang rape, specially the rape of elderly Nun shows the ugly face of India, under Modi.
Other anti-Muslim incidents like the discovery of the unmarked graves of thousands of the innocent Kashmiris, killed by the Indian security forces in the Indian-held Kashmir, pre-planned destruction of the Babri Masjid (mosque) in 1992, and participants of the Indian high officials in the events especially be cited as instance. Particularly, brutal killings of innocent Kashmiris by Indian forces –an Israeli pattern followed on instructions of Modi/ BJP continues unabated.
It is mentionable that forced conversions of other religious minorities into Hindus also continue. In this regard, Bajrang Dal, an offshoot of the RSS, converted at least 57 Muslim families (200 people) into Hindus at a ‘Purkhon Ki Ghar Vapsi’ (Coming home of the ancestors) or Shudhi (Purification) ceremony in Agra, Uttar Pradesh.
Previously, in early September 2014, Christians were also forcefully converted to Hindus which created unrest among Christian clergy. Four months ago, a similar event in Aligarh saw Christian families converting to Hinduism. However, since installment of BJP government in the center, RSS and its offshoots have accelerated their efforts for minorities’ conversion into Hindus.
As regards persecution of minorities in India, Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission Testimony by Human Rights Watch presented before US Senate Committee (2014) on atrocious attitude of Hindu majority has highlighted the plight of minorities in India.
It is of particular attention that on November 7, 2011, leader of the VHP, Pravin Togadia, in his furious speech questioned the past of Muslims and Christians, and further gave a call to Hindus to capture the Islamic holy places in Arab and Vatican of Europe.
But, it is strange that US government denied visa to Modi on the basis of his involvement in Gujrat pogrom, however, after his election as Indian prime minister, American changed to his favour. Undoubtedly, more than 2500 Muslims were massacred in 2002 in the BJP-ruled Indian state of Gujara where Modi was Chief Minister. Therefore, someone has rightly called him as ‘Butcher of Gujrat’.
In relation to that massive genocide, both Human Rights Watch in 2002 and Amnesty International in 2003 charged the “Gujarat state administration” for involvement in “a massive cover-up of the state’s role in that massacre” and pointed out numerous police officials—specifically ministers, high officials and leaders of the VHP, BJP and Bajrang Dal as participants.”
It is noteworthy that particularly, on the basis of anti-Muslim and anti-Pakistan slogans, BJP got a land sliding triumph in the Indian elections 2014, and enabled BJP hardliner, Narendra Modi to become Indian prime minister who is implementing his party’s agenda. Therefore, he is also giving impetus to Hindu chauvinism against Pakistan, as under his direction, New Delhi has intensified unprovoked firing at the Line of Control in Kashmir and Working Boundary across Pak-Indian border.
Besides, Modi refused to wear a cap presented by Muslims during election campaign. But, during is trip to the United Arab Emirates, he visited a mosque, while putting on Muslim prayer cap, which shows his ‘hypocrisy”.
Notably, Indian Defence Minister, Manohar Parrikar, while using the Hindi phrase “kante se kanta nikalna’ (removing a thorn with a thorn) assertively said on May 23, 2015, “We have to neutralize terrorists through terrorists only…why does my soldier have to do it…the issue could not be discussed beyond this…there are certain things that I obviously cannot discuss here.”
In this context, while addressing a ceremony during his Bangladesh tour, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi openly stated on June 7, this year that Indian forces helped Mukti Bahini to turn East Pakistan into Bangladesh. He elaborated that former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had played an active role in separating Bangladesh from Pakistan, and he had also come to Delhi in 1971 to participate in the Satyagraha Movement, launched by Jana Sangh as a volunteer to garner support for the Mukti Bahini members. But, Indian former Army Chief Gen. VK Singh confessed that during his tenure, he supervised special army unit, Tactical Support Division (TSD) on the instructions of the then defence minister to sponsor subversive activities in Pakistan, particularly Balochistan, and to bribe the Kashmiri leaders.
Recently, Modi played his role in the release of Swami Aseemanand, a Hindu right-wing leader who had already confessed during a court hearing that he and Indian Lt. Col. Purohit, including several RSS preachers were directly involved in planning, financing and executing Malegaon, Samjhauta Express, Ajmer and Mecca Masjid blasts. Especially, Modi governmet nurtures cold blooded murderers who burnt alive innocent Pakistanis in Samjhota Express.
In fact, Modi who was also a volunteer worker of the extremist Hindu terrorist outfit RSS since 8 years of age is a natural born Hindu extremist, while RSS involved in Muslim genocide, rape of women, demolition of mosques and alive burnings of the innocent persons.
However, these blatant admissions clearly prove that New Delhi has been sponsoring worse kinds of terrorism inside Pakistan, and India. Hence, it is the right hour that the West and especially the US must abandon its double standard by taking appropriate steps against India. Otherwise, dangerous radicalization of India by Hindu extremists, under Modi’s rule may cause World War 111 or clash of civilizations in wake of global war against terrorism.
Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: US vs Islamic Militants, Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations