Why arrest only the foot soldiers, when the actual masterminds sit untouched? The Hindutva rulers who insist on heaping provocative, threatening, communal, gutter abusive taunts are part and parcel of the political machinery!
Yes, today it’s the likes of Anurag Thakurs, Kapil Mishras, Parvesh Vermas. Yesterday there were many more – mind you, none of them even bothering to somewhat camouflage or conceal their hate for the ‘other.’ All out in the open!
At the very start of 2019, Ananth Kumar Hedge came up with this revengeful one-liner- “hands that touch Hindu girls should be chopped off!” Earlier it was this particular provocative sentence from him –“Till Islam is in the world there can be no end to terrorism!” yet he remains untouched.
In 2018, the right-wing MP, Vinay Katiyar, went on to say clearly that Indian Muslims ought to go to Pakistan! In 2017, Sakshi Maharaj and several others issued statements conveying that Muslim men marry four times and produce 40 children! In 2016, the communal speeches of BJP’s MP from Fatehpur Sikri, Babu Lal, and also that of BJP MP from Agra, Ram Shankar Katheria, who was then Minister of State in the HRD Ministry (GOI), hit the headlines and nothing happened. Nah, no ‘terrorizing’ charges against the duo, even as they seemed hell-bent on publicly humiliating the minority community, going to the extent of calling Muslim ‘demons …descendants of Ravana!’ Then Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti went to the extent of heaping abuses along the ‘Haramzada’ strain for the entire Muslim community. Sangeet Som’s communal speeches in Western Uttar Pradesh, threatening to once again ignite violence in that belt can’t be forgotten (if you recall, Sangeet Som has been implicated in the Muzaffarnagar riots of 2013 and he was also accused of stoking communal tensions in Dadri’s Bisada village after the killing of Mohammed Akhlaq.)
Within days of that came in Vijay Goel’s comments on the hijab! Also, BJP MLA from the Goshamahal constituency in Hyderabad, T Raja Singh, could get away even after mouthing death threats to all those who come in way of the construction of Ram Temple. “If there is anybody who has the guts to say he would stop the construction of Ram Mandir at Ayodhya, let him come forward. I challenge that I will behead him…Until now, Uttar Pradesh had witnessed timid governments. Now, you have a powerful government. Baap ki sarkaar!” He had said.
And just days after declaring that India would become a Hindu nation by 2024, Uttar Pradesh BJP MLA Surendra Singh came up with his next communal onslaught - those who desisted from saying ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’ are Pakistanis!
This list of hate speeches is long, of today’s rulers who seem hell-bent on threatening the very existence and survival of the Indian Musalmaan in the country. Though the likes of Sangeet Som, Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, Giriraj Singh, Katiyar, Sakshi Maharaj, Togadia, Hedge, Yogi Adityanath have been openly and blatantly threatening, abusing, taunting sections of the minority community, yet they move around all too freely and gleefully!
Another disturbing dimension of this chain of hate speech is that an entire new generation of Muslim haters is getting trained, nurtured, tutored to come out with the chanting of- ‘Gooli maron saloon ko!”
I have been writing about the arms training camps organised by the Hindutva brigades for its cadres. But before that, children are exposed to communal texts at the school level. I had first heard details about it many years ago when the former Delhi University Professor Nalini Taneja talked in an open forum about the communally laced, twisted history taught in the RSS run schools.
In fact, she had even read aloud several of the provocative passages from the textbooks taught in the RSS run schools. There was enough poison in each of the sentences to inculcate hatred in young minds for the ‘other’ - the Muslims of the country. As an activist summed it up - “Their history texts are nothing but unadulterated illustration of the RSS’ view of history and use of history for its sectarian agenda - Aryans are the original inhabitants of India, Indian civilization is essentially Aryan civilization, the ancient period of history when Hindu rulers ruled was golden and India had enormous advantages during this period. The coming of Mughals brought darkness, cruelty… Hedgewar, Gowalkar, Savarkar are amongst the greatest freedom fighters. Muslims as a community are traitors. Hinduism is synonymous with nationalism. Also, caste, child marriages and sati are defended. Muslims, Christians and Parsis are called foreigners. Urdu is referred to as a foreign language.”
In 2016, the former IIT Mumbai Professor, Ram Puniyani, detailed the teachings in the RSS-run schools during an interview.
To quote him - “RSS has single teacher schools, Ekal Vidyalaya and bigger ones as Shishu Mandirs. The pattern of authoritarianism between teachers-taught, senior-junior is very rigid. The main values which are promoted are those of conformism. Along with this, the books in these schools are structured around the mythical history of the superiority of Hinduism, that all was well with Hindus till Muslim aggressors came, caste is presented as having given stability to society, Muslim Kings are presented as cruel and so on. The hatred for religious minorities is drilled into the children.”
Not taking you back into history but till about last month - January 2020- when likes of Anurag Thakur, Kapil Mishra and Parvesh Verma openly threatened the minority community, no action was taken against them except banning them for a while from campaigning when they should have been arrested and stopped from contesting elections.
Why should I, an Indian Muslim, be called a traitor and a rapist and a bastard and a terrorist by the rulers of the day! These men- yes, please do call them terrorists if you please - remain untouched. They are not arrested. They continue to terrorize me yet they are not declared terrorists!
In a damning contrast, the police pick up and arrest a JNU student leader Sharjeel Imam, on the basis of video footage. On that basis, Imam, the student leader has even been declared terrorist by the godi media! It doesn’t matter to them that with this they have ruined the student’s entire life!
Another blatant case is that of the particular Muslim management school in Karnataka’s Bidar - where the entire school staff and management and children and even parents were subjected to sheer harassment by the police force because of that one play they staged where prime minister Narendra Modi was criticised in the backdrop of the CAA. Seditions charges for that!
And here in this capital city, New Delhi, hundreds and thousands are getting abused and criticised and threatened every single day …threatened to be riddled with bullets and killed and raped and done away with, and yet nothing against those ‘star’ Hindutva culprits! Well, after all, they are today’s political rulers of ‘Hindoostan’! They can get away with anything! Double standards holding sway as never before!
The views expressed in the article are author’s own.