Home South Asia India Protesters raising “Pakistan Zindabad” slogans should be killed, Indian Minister

Protesters raising “Pakistan Zindabad” slogans should be killed, Indian Minister

India’s de-democratization project is underway under the leadership of the incumbent prime minster. How will a shrinking public space affect India’s Muslims who now believe that Jinnah, father of Pakistani nation, was right? Is a new crisis in the making?

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An Indian minister said on Monday that anti-nationals or those who raised pro-Pakistan slogans should be shot at sight. The development comes a few days after an Indian protester raised “Pakistan Zindabad” slogans at an anti-CAA (Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019) rally.

According to CAA, six minorities including Jain, Sikhs, Hindus, Christians, Parsis, and Buddhists from three neighboring countries Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh are eligible to get citizenship of India if they have lived for six years in the country. These lists exclude Muslim immigrants who have entered the country the same way as other non-Muslims immigrants. This bill amends the citizenship acts of 1995. It is the first time that India has used religion as a legal basis for determining nationality.

Karnataka agriculture minister B.C. Patel said that a law should be passed in India which allowed people raising pro-Pakistan slogans to be shot on sight, saying that it was “much needed”.

He said that those who “speak ill of India” should also be shot. “The Centre must promulgate a law that enables authorities to shoot those who do anything that is seen as anti-national and chant pro-Pakistan slogans,” he stated.

Saying that the protesters were “enjoying the food, water and air in India” called upon Indian Prime Minister Modi to introduce a stringent law for people who raised anti-India slogans.  “In China, people are scared to talk against their country. I request PM Modi to bring in a tough law to deal with traitors,” said Patel.

Read more: Female students tortured in India over anti-CAA protests

A couple of days ago, an Indian girl named Amulya Leona shouted “Pakistan Zindabad” slogans at an anti-CAA rally in Bengaluru. The All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi was also present at the rally.

Soon afterward, police slapped a sedition charge on Leona and sent her to prison on a 14-day remand. A couple of hours later, miscreants pelted stones at her house, damaging the windows.

Muslims Vulnerable in PM Modi’s India

Since the electoral win of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, the country has been undergoing a massive socio-political change and moving towards an extremist Hindu state. Media reports suggest that freedom is under threat in India where secular values are being replaced with extremist Hindu ideologies. In PM Modi’s India, religious minorities enjoy little space to practice their religion freely.

Muslims are the most vulnerable target for the extremists in India who offer them two options; become Hindu or leave the country. “First, a campaign was launched to convert religious minorities to Hinduism. The right-wing groups called it ‘home-coming.’ Now, they are demanding bans on certain books and beef-eating. Those who don’t listen to these groups are being targeted every now and then,” Rakesh Batabyal, an associate professor at the Centre for Media Studies in New Delhi, told an international media outlet.

Read more: Indian police harass primary school children for sedition

Senior leader of Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP), Muzaffar Hussain, last year expressed his anger and warned Indian leadership of one more partition if atrocities against Muslims are not halted. “I want to tell Prime Minister Narendra Modi that he should put an end to the killing of Muslims in the name of cow slaughter. This country has once been partitioned into two, and there can be more partitions if killings of Muslims are not stopped immediately,” Mr. Hussain stated.

Markandey Katju, a former Indian Judge, has recently stated that Indian democracy is under threat not because of Muslims or Pakistan but solely because of the sitting Indian Prime Minister who is transforming secular India into an extremist Hindu state.

Hindu Taliban Rule India

PM Modi before his election focused on economic development and re-imagination of Hinduism. Previously, India was theoretically a secular multi-nation state but Modi’s induction to power exposed ground realties of Indian society. Now political analysts are convinced that it might be a democracy on paper but the reality is totally different and largely disappointing. Anish Kapoor, a sculptor, wrote an insightful piece back in 2015 when Modi was first elected to power. He maintained that social cohesion of India would soon be challenged since there was going to be a Hindu Nation with an imaginative glorious past.

Hence, the BJP is, if anything, a revivalist Hindu nationalist party following a fascist political ideology to implement a religiously dominated idea of Hindu culture. “The country’s openness to social and religious minorities (more than 500 million people) and regional differences is at serious risk. Of late, Modi’s regime has effectively tolerated – if not encouraged – a saffron-clad army of Hindu activists who monitor and violently discipline those suspected of eating beef, disobeying caste rules or betraying the “Hindu nation”, wrote Kapoor.

Read more: Only Terrorists cover their faces: India seeks complete ban on Burqa

He further feared: “This alarming erosion of democracy is a slippery slope that may end up targeting not just minorities and “outsiders” but any dissenting “insiders”. What I’ve seen happening is a spirit of fear taking hold, which threatens to silence activists, artists and intellectuals alike. We’ve never known that before. A Hindu version of the Taliban is asserting itself, in which Indians are being told: “It’s either this view – or else.” A friend told me: “There is huge oppression of anyone who’s different.”

It is yet to be seen how the world and international civil society react to the rise of religious extremism and gross violation of human rights taking place in India. Sir Anish Kapoor fairly urged the liberals living outside India that “In Britain we have a responsibility to speak out against it”. Pakistani PM has informed the International community of the dangerous situation that is brewing up in the region. He said that if the international community does not step in to solve this grave issue, the world would have to experience negative repercussions.

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