Rabid mobs ruling India’s roost, but Modi govt denies us a law on lynching

Centre says it will bring a law on mob lynching if needed, perhaps waiting for the day when mobs will start killing in every state and on street over a person’s name, dress or profession


Tasleem Khan

The day the Supreme Court told the government that a law should be made to prevent mob lynching, Swami Agnivesh, a veteran social activist, was thrashed black and blue by a saffron mob comprising mainly activists from the Yuva Morcha, BJP’s youth wing. The issue of Swami Agnivesh’s brutal beating had not even died down, when Rakbar in Alwar, Rajasthan, was killed brutally. Amid these incidents of lynching, the ministers of the government, leaders from the BJP and RSS are saying that if one wants to be alive, they should stop eating beef and rearing of cows.

A matter of serious concern is that, amid all this, a minister says openly that incidents of mob lynchings as popularity of PM Modi rises. In a way, this is admitting the fact that there is a direct connection between mob lynchings and popularity of the BJP and PM Modi.

When the opposition tries to raise this issue in Parliament, the honourable speaker gets annoyed. She said it clearly on Tuesday on mob lynching, “What can we do if it’s happening?”

Speaker Sumitra Mahajan was so unhappy over the issue being raised by the opposition, that she took the opposition to task. “All leaders speak on this only. Let it be discussed today, but not every day,” stated Mahajan

Her anger did not evaporate at this, as she did not allow the issue to be raised at all. The entire country knows that this brutal violence across the country is politically motivated, but the speaker says, “Do not politicise everything. The Home Minister has already given a statement on this last evening. Even then, if you want, I will tell the home minister to issue another statement,” said Mahajan.

Speaker Sumitra Mahajan was so unhappy over the issue being raised by the opposition, that she took the opposition to task. “All leaders speak on this only. Let it be discussed today, but not every day,” stated Mahajan.

When a leader from the opposition said that the incidents of mob lynching were taking place on a daily basis, she responded, “What can we do if they are taking place every day?”

The speaker’s anger was very clear when Leader of the Opposition Mallikarjun Kharge started speaking on this issue. “You speak. It doesn’t matter (though). You should also be satisfied…”, she said.

What kind of a language is this, leave alone the attitude?

And whenever the issue of mob lynching comes up, the home minister is reminded of ’84 riots. But he doesn’t feel the need to frame a law when the incidents of killing people in such a brutal manner are constantly rising. He casually said on Tuesday,“If need be, then a law will be made.”

It is clear, the government’s intention on this is not right. They see loss in taking strict action to prevent the violence in the name of cow vigilantism, because there is a scope for polarising people by creating Hindu-Muslim noise in the name of protecting cow which can prove to be beneficial in the elections.

Not only this, the media, which is dancing to the tunes of this government, is also exploring new topics of discussion. The focus of the debate on every TV channel is not on the prevention of mob violence, but whether it is right or wrong. The question instead should be—why is this violence not being curbed?

It has gone to the extent that the Chief Justice of India finds the social media responsible for these incidents and says that the people are only responsible for preventing this violence. CJI Dipak Misra said during a function on Tuesday, “There is a recent surge in mob lynchings. Please don't misunderstand me. Because I have authored the judgement, there is a sense that there is a recent surge in mob lynching based on viral texts on the social media and this leads to mobocracy, and loss of life in certain cases.”

He further added, “The blatant reliance on social media needs to be checked by the citizens themselves; to ensure peace and order in the society.”

So, do we understand then that the BJP leaders, ministers and office-bearers of the RSS are not the citizens of this country? Do they not have any responsibility towards preventing this violence?

As if Modi’s ministers were not sufficient to add fuel to the fire, now a Yogi government’s supporter, Shia Waqf Board’s chairman Waseem Rizvi, has also started speaking openly about it.

“Muslims should stop eating beef. Killing of cows should stop. Meat of cows is haram in Islam as well. You can't stop mob lynching. Security can't be deployed everywhere. So, a law should be made awarding strict punishment to those killing cows,” said Waseem Rizvi.

This statement amounts to saying that Muslims are killing cows and eating beef, so they have to change. Violence by the mob will not stop, do whatever you like. Why, after all, is this happening?

The ministers of the states are saying it in black and white that the mob lynching won’t stop; the union ministers are saying that there is a direct relation between Modi’s popularity and mob lynching; the speaker in the Parliament gets angry when the issue of mob lynching is raised and the country’s home minister doesn’t feel the need to have a law to stem the growing tide of mob lynchings.

It’s clear then that under the present regime, mobocracy is getting the better of democracy. The mob has the right to kill anyone. Period.

The common people seem to be angry at this bigotry of the government machinery. This Facebook post by a senior journalist Ajit Anjum notes the seething anger:

Be happy today/ That from parliament to the streets, you are just part of the crowd. (Khush ho lo aaj/ ki sansad se sadak tak bheed ho tum.)

Rabid mobs ruling India’s roost, but Modi govt denies us a law on lynching
A screenshot of senior journalist Ajit Anjum’s Facebook post

(Translated into English by Pragati Saxena).

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