News Analysis |
In a horrific incident, a Muslim man was burnt alive in Rajasthan by Indian extremists for being in a relationship with a Hindu girl. This latest barbaric murder emphasizes a campaign of terror aimed at the Muslim community inside the Hindutva dominated state of India.
The fanatics also made a video of the barbaric act and uploaded it on social media. The crime was committed allegedly in the name of ‘Love Jihad’. Police has identified the man as Muhammad Afzal who is the resident of West Bengal. According to Indian media, the main suspect of the heinous crime has been detained. The murderer, a man who has now been identified as one Shambhu Lal Regar, a resident of Rajsamand has been taken into custody.
Hindutva fundamentalists use the threat of “Love Jihad” as one of the many perceived perils to the Indian Hindu community.
Though police are yet to confirm the motive of the murder, the “love jihad” claim surfaced after Regar posted a video on social media justifying his action. He said he killed Afrazul to save a woman from ‘love jihad’. The cause of murder could be old enmity between the two men, police have said.
In November, three Muslim clerics were attacked by a group of men with sharp objects aboard a train in India’s Uttar Pradesh province on Thursday. This latest attack only heightens fears for the minority community that already feels under siege since the rise to power by Hindutva fundamentalist Narendara Modi.
According to media sources the three clerics were attacked by six to seven men who also allegedly tried to throw them off the train. The clerics reportedly had an argument with their assailants over covering their heads and then were attacked with iron rods and sticks as they got off the train.
The fanatics also made a video of the barbaric act and uploaded it on social media. The crime was committed allegedly in the name of ‘Love Jihad’.
The victims Maulvi Gulzar, Israr, and Abrar have all been admitted to a hospital according to reports. The three men who boarded a passenger train at Delhi last night were on their way to a village in Baghpat when they had a tiff with some youth who allegedly beat them up, Superintendent of Police Baghpat Jaiprakash Singh was quoted as saying.
Earlier in the same month, a Muslim man was shot dead by alleged cow vigilantes, and his body was thrown onto railway tracks in Rajasthan’s Alwar. The victim was found dead on the Railway lines between Ramgarh and Jadoli Ka Bas on November 10th. Although the police are still awaiting the post-mortem reports, the case looks like a shoot-out and eventual decapitation after a train ran over the dumped body.
According to media sources, the victim Ummar Khan and two others were transporting cows to Fahari village near Alwar’s Govindh Gadh when they were attacked. His companions were also attacked and sustained injuries.
Ummar Khan’s uncle filed a complaint with the Alwar police, identifying one among the attackers, who is a member of the “Gau Raksha” group. Ummar Khan’s acquaintances, Tahir Ali and Javed Khan survived the attack. Critics blasted the Police for being biased towards the killers.
In November, three Muslim clerics were attacked by a group of men with sharp objects aboard a train in India’s Uttar Pradesh province on Thursday.
In June, 16-year-old Junaid Khan died and his cousins were wounded after an assault on a train near Delhi by a mob of 20 that shouted abuse and called them “anti-nationals” and “beef-eaters”. The police had said that the dispute started over seats, and the man who argued with Junaid came back to the train with a mob from his village.
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India’s descent into brutal mob attacks under the BJP government has disturbed many. The fact that most of the victims belong to minorities points to religiopolitical machinations. For the last 30 months, a climate of fear and insecurity is created by repeated, deliberate, divisive and provocative statements. Empowered Hindutva fundamentalists are seeking to impose a single uniform ethic in diverse domains such as food, dress, culture or thinking.
The lynching of minorities in north India has been marked by silence from the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Hindutva fundamentalist party that rules all the northern states except Punjab and Delhi. In fact, there has been a conscious attempt to divorce Islam and Muslims from the national ethos. This year’s President’s Ramadan Iftar party was notable for the complete absence of Hindu state ministers.
The police had said that the dispute started over seats, and the man who argued with Junaid came back to the train with a mob from his village.
With the rise of the Hindutva fundamentalist BJP to power in 2014, Hindutva militants have become prominent in most parts of India. These brutal militants have enacted savage murders of mainly Muslims on various reasons such as “Gau Raksha” (Cow protection) and “Love Jihad”.
Love Jihad has become an integral part of Hindutva lexicon. It refers to the marriages between Muslim men and Hindu women. Its appeal to communal sensibilities by demonizing the matrimonial relations of Muslim men and Hindu women and thus synchronizes with the communal slogan of “Hindu Khatre mein hay” (Hindus are in danger). Hindutva fundamentalists use the threat of “Love Jihad” as one of the many perceived perils to the Indian Hindu community.
It is through such perceptions that often Hindutva militants get away with horrific atrocities and eventually are hailed as “guardians” of Indian Hindus.