The term ‘rogue state’ has long been an essential part of the U.S. diplomatic lexicon. American policymakers used the term “rogue states,” to refer to a group of aggressively recalcitrant authoritarian countries which are ruled by irrational or crazy leaders who are inherently belligerent. The term also refers to the states which brutalize their own people, display no regard for international law, threaten their neighbors, and reject basic human values. Although, from an American perspective, the list of rogue states included Iran, Iraq, Libya, and Syria but if logically assessed, today’s India, under the Modi government, fits the definition.
Today a revisionist India is not only governed by a fundamentalist leadership that neither respects international law nor basic human values but it also continues to brutalize minorities and pursue military expansionism against its neighbors. The Nazi-inspired regime is also the custodian of one of the world’s fastest developing nuclear weapons programs.
In 1994, the U.S. National Security Advisor Anthony Lake advocated a systemic approach of containment and isolation of the so-called rogue states and compel a behavioral change. Ever since, this strategy has been adopted in the American foreign policy, there’s apparently no sign that the U.S. shall identify India’s rogue behavior but the country’s drift into extremism and Hindu fundamentalism may ultimately provoke such a response.
Modern India is currently ruled by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the political arm of Nazi-inspired Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). Their leader, the present Prime Minister is commonly known as the “Butcher of Gujarat” for the Muslim massacre once he was the Chief Minister. RSS indirectly governs India and is responsible for killing at least 1,000 Muslims and inflicting over 3,000 injuries in anti-Muslim riots. According to a citizens’ tribunal report the death toll exceeded 2,000. Christians are also not safe in today’s India. Persecution of Christians rose by over 40 percent in 2020. Likewise, as per report, ‘Quest for Justice’, by the National Dalit Movement for Justice, crimes against Dalits increased by 6% with over 3.91 lakh atrocities being reported in last two years.
In 2020, BJP forced Indian Supreme Court to grant bail to 14 criminals involved in the Gujarat massacre. These murderers now roam freely in India. It was Nathuram Godse, a Hindu extremist, who killed Gandhi for his efforts to reconcile Hindus and Muslims. RSS acknowledges he was a member and even today, RSS calls him a hero. This is the mentality that prevails in India these days.
Belligerent and irrational leadership
The horrors of India, rushing to become an extremist Hindu state, don’t end here. India’s liberal aura suddenly diminished when Narendra Modi stepped into the power corridors as the PM of India. While Muslims in Gujarat were butchered, Modi was the Chief Minister in that state. According to a senior police officer’s sworn statement in India’s Supreme Court, Gujarat Chief Minister Modi deliberately allowed anti-Muslim riots in the state. Sanjiv Bhatt says he attended a meeting at which Mr. Modi said that the Hindus should be allowed to vent their anger. As a result, Modi was banned from entering the U.S. and even denied a U.S. visa in 2005 on violations of religious freedom.
Today, PM Modi runs the political circus in India. Interestingly, the No.2 in Modi’s government, Home Minister and former BJP president Amit Shah, is also associated with the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), RSS’ student’s wing. It also explains the influence of RSS ideology on government policies. More importantly, out of 53 ministers from the BJP in the Modi government, 38 have RSS background — a whopping 71 percent of the total. These ministers are directly or indirectly involved in India’s nuclear weapons decision-making.
No respect for the international law
The BJP-RSS nexus is fast turning India into a pariah state which has no regard for international laws and norms of the civilized world. In a complete disregard to the UN’s multiple resolutions, it has stripped Indian occupied Kashmir of its disputed status, while people’s rights are being suppressed through stringent laws. Modi scrapped the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) special status guaranteed by India’s constitution decades ago and turned the country’s only Muslim-majority state into a federally controlled territory.
In occupied territory, India has done brazen violations of human rights, turning the whole valley into a Nazi-inspired concentration camp. The BJP-RSS nexus has passed a discriminatory Citizens Amendment Act. BJP is following Nazis’ footsteps. It is not just Muslims, but low caste Hindus, Christians and other minorities are all bearing the brunt of Hindutva fascist ideology.
Threatening the neighbors
India has territorial disputes with its neighbors. It is in direct conflict with not only China and Pakistan but also has disputes with Nepal, Bangladesh and even Sri Lanka. This indicates India’s revisionist approach. It follows coercive and threatening policies to intimidate its smaller neighbors. Its military adventurism is threatening regional peace and stability.
Modi’s India is nowhere near the western ideals of liberty and freedom. In fact, India is now home to a fascist ideology that has even divided Indian people on the basis of caste and religion. These threatening developments clearly support the notion that India is becoming a rogue state. Unfortunately, the Biden administration is yet to assess Indian hawkish and aggressive policies at home and abroad.
Though Indians have found their way in the U.S. polity while some as part of the present U.S. administration, the U.S. being the custodian of human rights, values and ethics worldwide cannot turn a blind eye to the dangerous developments in India. Turning a blind eye on Indian fascist ideology will cost Western democracies dearly. A Hindutva-dominating India along with its fascist ideologues needs to be assessed carefully before it goes out of control and threatens the world community. Time is running out and the international community has to act fast.