In a surge following Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) inspired Narendra Modi’s re-election as the Prime Minister of India in 2019, anti-Muslim and fascist sentiments in India became ever more apparent.
Shortly after the elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi unilaterally abrogated articles 370 and 35A, which gave Kashmir a special status, spearheading the process of changing the demographic of the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir. The Indian state authorized a crackdown against politicians, activists, and media houses – essentially everything it considered to be or have the potential to become a source of dissent in the region.
The new regime continued with its draconian measures and commenced gerrymandering operations, sought to politically efface the region’s Muslim majority and install a Hindu Chief Minister in the region.
The moves garnered international criticism, which delayed Indian efforts to subdue voices of dissent within the country. However, the anti-Muslim and fascist sentiment continued to creep in as the state carried forth its relentless pursuit to target Muslims across the country, shaping the rise of Hindu nationalism in the country.
In the most recent bid, the RSS inspired (Bharatiya Janata Party) BJP government held an arms training camp for Bajrangdal members in Kodagu district of Karnataka – a state in southwest India. It is pertinent to mention that the event was organized by “Ragu Sakleshpur Bajrangdal leader well known for Hate Speech.” The 8-day-long event was concluded on 13th May, and “Trishul” was distributed amongst the participants.
Kodagu: Arms training for Bajrangdal members last week. pic.twitter.com/0LDBMXocgT
— Mohammed Irshad (@Shaad_Bajpe) May 14, 2022
Read More: Hindus, Muslims clash in New Delhi
According to sources privy to the matter, the police had not been given prior notification of the training camp, and it received information only after pictures of the event had gone viral on social media. When questioned why the police had not taken any action against the camp, it responded that it had not received any complaints. Currently, the police have lodged an investigation into the event.
Speaking about the event, a Bajarang Dal worker, requesting not to be named, said, “We conducted the camp like every year. We give training during such camps. A similar camp also happened in Chitradurga in 2019,”. Netizens, however, believe the arms training camp sought to instigate resentment against the Muslim community in India, and some even termed it a “terror camp.”
Communal clash inevitable
Last week a video believed to be shot in Kavalande, a village in Karnataka state, broke the internet as some bystanders watching Muslim men chant “Takbeer” – a Muslim slogan that signifies greatness and the unity of God – dub the village as “Chota Pakistan.” In the video, Muslim men believed to be returning from the Eid prayer can be heard chanting “Naara E Takbeer, Allahu Akbar. ” The video garnered a lot of attention and went viral within hours of posting. Indian columnist Chakravarty Sulibele shared the video and questioned whether there was a “Volcano erupting “.Reacting to the video, Karnataka chief minister Basavaraj Bommai said that he would ask the SP to investigate the matter and follow it up by taking necessary action.