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Opinion: On the flood of atrocities, PM and others’ conspicuous silence

In this festive season from Dussehra to Diwali, an Indian seer of life in America notices a small but interesting trend: the apparently widespread of Hindu (and other Eastern) prescriptions for calming the mind during an emotional storm. Acceptance.

It is no longer a surprise when a TV ad on a mainline US channel features a white American, male or female, seated Padma Or lotus pose with eyes closed and face calm. Nor is there any shock when a non-Indian is seen expanding wonderfully, without contact, Hi Best wishes. Our Covid times have caused this gesture to spread beyond the shores of India to other races on the planet.

In this favorable global climate, the Hindu world of India sadly presents some sickening images. Like her yeti Which is located near Delhi in western UP, is associated with a historic temple, apparently has a huge following on social media, and which apparently asks for nothing less “Removing Muslims from the face of the world”.

Hindu India also recently featured a video of one of its priests in Ayodhya, apparently enjoying the fervent local support, who threat of To self-immolate by a certain date (about which he fortunately exhibits flexibility) if India is not declared Hindu Nation And Muslims and Christians are not stripped of their citizenship.

Then there are images of real and brutal extinction, such as 24-year-old Arbaaz Mulla from Karnataka, whose mutilated body was recently found on a railway track between two small stations (Desur and Khanapur), some 30 km away. Is. Belagavi city. Arbaaz paid the ultimate price for that primitive human stupidity: falling in love. The message was that “Hindu India” will not only allow a young Muslim man and a young Hindu woman to fall in love. It will discourage that shamelessness in an unforgettable way.

Deadly prevention of human love is a shoddy advertisement for any religion or nation. It becomes the essence of immortal tragedy and is the source of poetry, music and social change through the ages. It has also been a hallmark of tyranny for centuries. Hurt by this, shall we use it as fuel for reform?

I will say more on this last point, but first let me point out that the police in Karnataka have arrested many people in connection with Arbaaz’s murder, and that Clearly FIR has been lodged against yeti In question, even if not necessarily for his wild statements about Muslims.

Also, let us acknowledge that the Hindu extremists I mentioned are not on the same page with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who perhaps faces more hostility than a staunch champion of a Hindu. Nation He does it to political parties in opposition to the BJP. Politics involving religion, whether it is Hinduism in India, Islam in Pakistan, Buddhism in Myanmar, or anything else, invites sharper hostility from “inside” than from secular opponents.

India’s government and security forces can undoubtedly remember Pakistan’s bloody conflict in July 2007 between the forces led by Musharraf and the extremists who captured Islamabad’s Red Mosque. madrassa For Muslim girls. That operation resulted in hundreds of deaths and attempted assassination of Musharraf. The Modi government would not like to allow any possible construction towards that kind of situation.

Our frequent conversationalist and famously fluent Prime Minister is silent when innocent lives of farmers, Dalits, Adivasis and Muslims have been snatched away, a dismay expressed by some and felt by many. However, in this column I aim to point to a more specific silence: the silence of Hinduism. gurus And owners. In an earlier era, India mercifully found some Hindu thinkers who condemned untouchability and insisted that the shamanic practice violated Hinduism’s central mandate about the equality of all human beings. In 1916, Gandhi told the Chennai audience: “All the suffering we endure in this holy land is a fitting and just punishment for this great and indelible crime. [of untouchability] that we are done.” Two years later, he added, “if slave owners can be called fit SwarajyaSo maybe we are.”

Among other things, such explicit acceptance made untouchability illegal in the Constitution of independent India, even if the practice continued in subtle forms. In an earlier era, thank God, the heinous was attacked by brave Hindu intellectuals like Pandit Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar sati Ritu.

Before and during this Diwali, there will be innumerable celebrations, sermons, songs and open performances featuring the victory of good over evil. Children will play with enthusiasm. Gifts will be exchanged, and new clothes will be worn with joy. The lessons learned will be offered on neighborhood platforms and on TV. In the midst of all this, will Some Hindu voices from Some Hindu forums – from religious, spiritual, non-political forums – condemn atrocities against helpless and besieged human beings? In plain, unmistakable language? Calm, calm, silent faces that avoid seeing the brutality, or turn a blind eye to it, can only discredit Hinduism at a time when the global climate seems to be conducive to it.

(Rajmohan Gandhi is currently teaching at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.)

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are the personal views of the author. The facts and opinions displayed in the article do not reflect the views of NB and NB assumes no responsibility or liability for the same.

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