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Home » Opinion » India needs intolerance more than ever

India needs intolerance more than ever

By Sadhavi Khosla
Updated on :
India needs intolerance more than ever

‘Intolerance’ – there’s no denying that it exists in India at present, but then it is no surprise that the very same intolerance is missing on the fronts where it is needed the most.

 

India needs to be intolerant towards minority suppression

There was a time when the previous government’s minority appeasement policies were considered bad. However, today, we are shamelessly enjoying the rule of a government whose policies are centred towards scaring the minorities. From bad, we have travelled to the worse and this scaring of minorities is much more dangerous than appeasing them.

By appeasing minorities, we don’t just widen the gap that already exists between them and the majority of the nation, but we also fuel their desires to have a separate state/nation of their own. How can we forget that demand of Khalistan in Punjab? And, the last thing that any true Indian would want is the creation of an ISIS out of India.

But then, the government fails to understand this and so do we, as the citizens of the nation. What was earlier a division wanted on the basis of religions, has today taken a much uglier form where divisions on the basis of castes have been on a rise.

Ever since Mohammad Akhlaq was lynched in Dadri on 28 September, 2015, there is no dearth of incidents which have shown their atrocities on Muslims and Dalits all over the country. Be it in Daltonganj in Jharkhand, Mandsaur in Madhya Pradesh, Unain in Gujarat, Reasi in Jammu and Kashmir, or Alwar in Rajasthan.

The seeds of casteist hatred that have been sown by Hindutva forces have grown, much to the dismay of India’s unity, and states like UP, Haryana, MP and Rajasthan have become successful in symbolising this hatred.

In a matter of just one month, UP’s Saharanpur has shown the entire world what minority suppression actually means. Many proud upper caste Hindus find pleasure in attacking the lower caste Dalits, portraying the coarsest face of caste violence. Incidences of killing Dalit men and putting several houses of scheduled caste families on fire, in this region of India’s most populous state indicates at a time where there is a crucial need of intolerance towards minority suppression.

 

India needs to be intolerant towards state violence

‘Lynching’ the word wouldn’t have been coined if it wasn’t for India’s rising tolerance towards it. Beating people to death has become a regular affair for the self-acclaimed saviours of the nation. Last week, storming mobs killed four men in Jharkhand, ‘suspecting’ them to be child-lifters, and there is nothing more frightening about the times that we are living in and are slowly creating for our future generations.

What’s even scarier is the fact that police forces were being mute spectators of these lynching acts. Probably, fearing that they could have to bear the same fate as the victims if they intervened. Whatever is the reason of this feebleness on the part of police, we couldn’t undermine the fact that violence has gradually produced monsters who are spewing venoms on any and everybody, and there’s hardly anyone who is being intolerant towards these monsters.

 

India needs to be intolerant towards the hatred and the awful clampdown on voices

How can the nation forget that whenever there has been a change in the country, the civil society played a central role in becoming the change agent? Be it at the time when Mahatma Gandhi fought the British through non-violence movement, or at the time when corruption was engulfing the nation and Anna Hazare movement brought hope and the spirit to bring a change. The civil society never failed to speak.

But, today, its voice has been suppressed.

The rule is simple – you become Modi’s critic, you will be suppressed. This hostility towards civil society groups won’t end on its own. It needs to be ended, but how?

Miles away from India, the country’s superstar, Shahrukh Khan, delivers an inspirational TED Talk in Vancouver. But, can the same superstar dare utter a word in his own country? Not, anymore.

And, same is the fate of another superstar, Aamir Khan. There was a time when he used to deliver talk shows with Hilary Clinton, Bill Gates. However, today the picture is absolutely different.

Reason, you ask? Because they have been tagged ‘anti-national’ by Modi bhakts who label all the ‘critics’ of their government, under the disguise of patriotism.

If that was not it, then there are several Indian civil society organisations whose funds are either being frozen, or they are indirectly being forced to shut down. What for? Not supporting RSS’ ideology? Not being Modi-bhakts?

Ever since I have stopped supporting Modi, I have been named anti-national, anti-Hindu, Jihadi, and what not. And, I am not alone. There are many like me who have to bear tags and names for not supporting the Modi government, in all that it does.

It’s about time the civil society came forward and shouted for the nation. We need to learn from the people of the US and come together for the unity of the country, for the love of the country. If need be, there shouldn’t be any reluctance to come on streets and fight for peace. There is need to be intolerant towards the rising hatred in the nation.

Today, the fight is not between BJP or Congress.

It is the fight between united India and divided India.

Even if you don’t agree with Congress, it is absolutely alright. You don’t have to. But, what is important is to speak for the country, and save it from extremism.

Right now, it is not about defeating Modi, it is time to defeat the ideology of hatred.

 

India needs to be intolerant towards biased media

Today, all we hear is ‘Har Har Modi’, and dare someone speak against him, they will be tagged anti-national in a jiffy. Media has failed to fetch the attention of millions towards this ‘rule’. Some media houses have stopped showing this picture because of the fortune they make for not doing so, and some are plainly scared. But, for how long? How long will they be crushed by money or fear? Till we all come forward and stop this from happening!

But, do we have the courage to do so?

Perhaps, it’s time to introspect, what this land of brave freedom fighters has become today.

 

India needs to be intolerant towards cow vigilance and beef lynching

On 1st April, 2017, Pehlu Khan, a 55-year-old Muslim man, was put to death by a mob of hundreds of cow vigilantes in Rajasthan’s Alwar. What was his crime? He was allegedly transporting cows and that’s the biggest crime in this country of cow vigilantes. The reality differed later, when it was found that he was taking the cows for his dairy farm. But, he didn’t stay alive when the reality came out in the open.

Lynching has become a routine on this land of Hindus who are self-righteously willing to kill anyone who gives even the slenderest hint of being a cow killer.

I want to ask that if eating beef is a sin for Hindus in our country, then which Hindu scripture says that killing those who eat or slaughter cows is not a sin?

The powerful, advanced and highly enlightened, Internet Hindus who are sitting in America and other countries, are willing to work in restaurants there, clean the dishes that contain beef, or even serve and cook those dishes, but it is not a sin there. Perhaps, it is a sin only in India. You can cook/eat/serve/clean beef in other countries, as long as it is not India. Hats off to the hypocrisy!

Why don’t these Hindus go to the White House and demand exclusive restaurants for the Hindus which don’t cook and serve beef? Why don’t they demand banning of beef there? What are they afraid of? Will RSS not help them there?

India needs to understand that our beauty is in our diversity. We have always been known as the citizens of a country which has many religions. So, why don’t we respect all of them? Why don’t we respect the choices of other religions? Why to force our beliefs on to others?

Recently, when Yogi Adityanath banned slaughter houses after taking charge as the new chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, he also banned chicken and meat shops, which is fine. But, isn’t it the duty of the very same CM of the state to arrange for the livelihoods of these people whose shops have been banned? Why didn’t he first give them legalised jobs to help them make ends meet?

Hinduism, one of the most peaceful religions in the world, which never believed in forceful conversions and coercions of any kind, has come to this stage today!

For how long are we going to tolerate all this?

For how long Hindus are going to stay tolerant towards their religion becoming a means for fanatics to have their rule?

We have to stop our country from becoming another Taliban. There is a growing need of being intolerant towards radicalisation. And, we must do that.

 

India needs to be intolerant towards history being distorted

BJP is re-writing India’s history and defaming freedom heroes. India needs to be intolerant and not let them re-write the history and change the facts.

But, can we do so?

We will have to.

We are doing grave injustice to our country by keeping quiet. We owe this intolerance to our land, our forefathers and freedom fighters who gave their lives to keep this country united.

India has to be intolerant. And, it must be.

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