Skip to main content

Modi like Trump 'turning' undocumented immigrants into nationalist issue: NYT

By Our Representative
In a hard-hitting editorial titled "Modi makes his bigotry even clearer" in the wake of the new citizenship law, which "helps non-Muslim refugees from Muslim-majority countries but ignores Muslim refugees from other nations", "The New York Times" has said that it is "the first action" that links "religion to citizenship, undermining a fundamental tenet of India’s democracy."

The editorial underlines, "In common with other governments around the world that have turned undocumented immigrants into a nationalist issue, including President Trump’s", Home Minister Amit Shah "has taken to demonizing the primary target of the dragnets, Muslim migrants from Bangladesh, whom he refers to as 'termites'.”
It states, "India’s Muslims, about 14 percent of the population, have proclaimed in the eruption of protests across India after the law was passed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu-nationalist BJP last week", adding, "The devil is in the missing details. Accelerated citizenship is offered to members of the Hindu, Christian, Buddhist, Sikh, Parsee and Jain religions — but not to Muslims."
The editorial says, "The only neighboring countries named in the law are Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan, all majority Muslim. Other neighbors, from Sri Lanka to China, where Muslims do not predominate, are not mentioned."
It believes, "The not-so-hidden message is that the Muslim-majority countries abutting India persecute Hindus and other minorities, and that Muslims from such countries cannot be refugees — even people like the Rohingya, some of whom have reached India after fleeing to Bangladesh from brutal repression in Myanmar."
In fact, according to the editorial, "The law, as India’s 200 million Muslims have correctly surmised, has nothing to do with helping migrants and everything to do with the campaign by Modi and his home minister to marginalize Muslims and turn India into a homeland for Hindus, who comprise about 80 percent of the population of 1.3 billion."
Recalling how last summer, Modi’s government "abruptly stripped statehood and autonomy from India’s only Muslim-majority state, Kashmir, arresting many of its leaders and shutting down the internet", the editorial says, "In August, Modi aggressively escalated a program of citizenship tests in the northeastern state of Assam, leaving nearly two million people, many of them Muslims, potentially stateless."
The editorial says, "Modi has vowed to extend the process, which requires Indians to prove they’re Indian, to the entire country and is building large new detention centers for those who can’t", adding, the citizenship law "has provoked furious protests across India, some of which have been viciously repressed by police and the army."
It further says, "The government has also shut down the internet in several regions, a tactic against dissent used by India more than any other authoritarian-leaning government in the world, claiming it is necessary to prevent violence and false rumours."
India’s Muslims, about 14 percent of the population, have proclaimed in the eruption of protests across India
Asserring that "the reaction to the citizenship law has apparently surprised Modi, who was re-elected by a comfortable margin last May, but he has shown no signs of backing down", the editorial says, "He rose to power by vilifying Muslims, a core tenet of Hindu nationalists."
The editorial underlines, "This is not the way India was meant to be. The vision of Mohandas Gandhi (who was murdered by a Hindu nationalist) and Jawaharlal Nehru after the partition of British-ruled India into a Muslim-majority Pakistan and a Hindu-majority India was to build the latter into a secular and democratic republic, with civil liberties for citizens of all faiths."
Pointing out how, since he took office in 2014, Modi "has actively worked to change that, even rewriting history books to exclude Muslim rulers — who, among other things, built the Taj Mahal — and changing official place names to Hindu from Muslim", the editorial notes how the "Hindu mobs that lynch Muslims are rarely punished."
The editorial supports the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights that called the citizenship law “fundamentally discriminatory,” stating, even the United States State Department has urged India to “protect the rights of its religious minorities in keeping with India’s Constitution and democratic values.”
It adds, however, "That would be far more credible if the Trump administration was treating undocumented immigrants in keeping with America’s democratic values."

Comments

TRENDING

Political consensus? Celebrations, with over 5,000 plus post-vaccine deaths in India

By Rosamma Thomas*  As India fully vaccinated nearly 20% of its population and celebrated the “milestone” of administering one billion (100 crore) Covid-19 vaccine doses, it was time to remember those who died shortly after vaccination . By October 20, 2021 Twitter handle C400T, tracking deaths reported to have occurred after receiving the Covid-19 shot in India, updated the 5,134th death.

Is sacrilege charge against Punjab Dalits any different from Pak blasphemy cases?

Lakhbir Singh, his wife By Vidya Bhushan Rawat*  There is no doubt that Sikhism actually was a revolt against the Brahmanical system and superstition. Guru Granth Saheb is perhaps the only Holy Book which contains matters from different religions as well as those of various Sufi saints, including Kabir, Ravidas, Baba Farid and others. The aim of Sikhism was to create an egalitarian society, and, definitely, Punjab that way is far better than many other States in India, where violence against Dalits is rampant.

'Human rights trampled upon': Activists, litterateurs, academics 'reimagine' India

Bezwada Wilson, Romila Thapar, TM Krishna By Our Representative  The Reimagining India public lecture series, initiated by the civil rights group India Inclusive Collective, has brought together one platform about 50 prominent speakers in order to highlight how, over the last seven years, there have been “consistent attacks” on the democratic fabric of the country, with Constitutional and human rights of people being “trampled with impunity.”

Savarkar 'criminally betrayed' Netaji and his INA by siding with the British rulers

By Shamsul Islam* RSS-BJP rulers of India have been trying to show off as great fans of Netaji. But Indians must know what role ideological parents of today's RSS/BJP played against Netaji and Indian National Army (INA). The Hindu Mahasabha and RSS which always had prominent lawyers on their rolls made no attempt to defend the INA accused at Red Fort trials.

Billion vaccine doses? Devil is in details: 70% haven't got 2nd jab; numbers jacked up

By Prof Ujjwal K Chowdhury*  India has reached the one billion Covid-19 vaccinations milestone. It is indeed a great news and a big salute to the less paid ordinary health-workers in interiors of India for this feat. The government wants all of India's 944 million adults to get vaccinated this year. Around three-quarters of adults in the country of 1.3 billion people have had one shot and around 30 percent are fully vaccinated, the government says.

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

How are Tripura Muslims responsible for attacks in Bangladesh?: 'Concerned' citizens

Counterview Desk  Calling it a “retaliation” of Bangladesh violence, several “concerned citizens”*, including Magsaysay award winning social activist and academic Sandeep Pandey and PV Rajagopal of the Sarvodaya Samaj, have said that the recent attacks on Muslim community in different areas of Tripura is a the reflection of “growing trend of using violence against another community.”

Ease of doing business? Govt of India seeks legal cover to 'divert' forest land

By Gopinath Majhi*  The proposed amendments to Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980 (FCA) vide ‘Consultation Paper on Proposed amendments in the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980’ (F No FC-11/61/2021-FC dated October 2, 2021) must be dropped by the Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change (MoEFCC). 

Uttarakhand, Kerala disaster due to policies favouring India's developmental mafia

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat*  Two of India’s most beautiful regions where thousands of people go to watch and feel the wonders of nature are suffering because of the extremely disastrous rains and floods. The pain that the rains brought to Kerala and Uttarakhand is a warning to all of us. It's nature’s warning to us to mend our ways.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.