Skip to main content

Doublespeak? Why India's authorities are silent on anti-Gandhi hate campaigners

Gandhi statue desecrated in US 
By Vidya Bhushan Rawat* 
January 30 was Gandhiji's martyrdom day. He was killed by a fanatic who claimed to be a Hindu and felt that Gandhiji was working against the interest of the Hindus. A fake narrative has been built since then. It was indeed sad to see Gandhi's statue being desecrated in the United States. I don’t think that it served any purpose.
Gandhiji was a political leader who played a big role in bringing anti-colonial forces together in India and led the country’s freedom movement. One may disagree with his views on caste system as well as religion, but one cannot ignore his pivotal role in the freedom movement. It is possible to reject his theories on caste and untouchability as also his socio-economic model. But let us not take away his role as a leader who brought together people from diverse communities and faiths.
The Government of India 'condemned' the desecration of Gandhiji's statue in US. It is strange to see this government is so 'active' to protect Gandhiji's 'honour' in US and elsewhere, but failed to do so in India. After Prime Minister Narendra Modi assumed power, he converted Gandhiji into a #SwachchBharat icon, even as completely ignoring his monumental contributions.
The murderer of Gandhiji, Nathuram Godse, was from a dominant Hindu caste. His lunatic followers even today celebrate Gandhiji's killing. Can anyone imagine a Twitter hate campaign in the United States siding with those celebrating Gandhiji’s killers? Twitter and Facebook showed spine to block president Donald Trump in US for his tweets which they claimed were unsubstantiated.
However, the same social media platforms have shown no responsibility and accountability in India on the manner in which goons continue to use social media for hate campaign, intimidating their opponents with active support of the ruling party.
The collapse of institutions in India has ensured that those who fight for their rights are treated as criminals and face numerous cases filed against them while the goons sponsored by the ruling regime become the 'rashtrabhakts' (ardent nationalists), supported by the police.
Whatever happened in the recent past in the Jawaharlal Nehru University, the Aligarh Muslim University, the Jamia Millia Islamia, around the Rohith Vemula case and during and after the Delhi riots are all examples how police have behaved as the militia of the ruling party. This is surely going to have a devastating impact on our democracy and institutional impartiality.
It is not unsurprising to see the hate campaign against Gandhiji on Twitter and Facebook without any action being taken against them. After all, the leader who termed Gandhiji as 'chatur bania' (clever merchant) is the second most powerful person at the moment.
Gandhiji was not killed by a Muslim, or a Dalit or an Adivasi. In fact, Dr Baba Saheb Ambedkar “saved” his life by signing the Poona Pact, yet none claimed that they saved Gandhiji. But, ironically, Hindutva leaders, who dislike Gandhiji, want to use Gandhiji by chanting his name even as allowing their campfollowers to carry out hate campaign against him. It is hypocritical that those who are seeking to benefit from Gandhism are crying against him.
Today, when the Government of India has condemned vandalism against the Gandhi statue in US, one wonders why it has failed to act not act or did not ask any of the social media heads to take action against those have celebrated Gandhiji's murder. Nobody can beat Indian political leadership at the moment on the issue of doublespeak: Condemn what happened outside India but allow your ‘chelas’ (camp-followers) to abuse. Demagoguery at its best!
---
*Human rights defender

Comments

TRENDING

Australia least prepared to fight Hindu 'extremism', admits diaspora NGO group

Tiranga rally in Sydney: Cause of stir among diaspora By Our Representative  The Australian Alliance Against Hate and Violence (AAAHAV) has said that Australia is “least prepared” to counter the allegedly “rising threat of Hindu far right extremism”. Calling upon politicians, federal and state governments to “urgently recognise the threat far-right Hindu extremism”, it asks “to take concrete steps to address this threat.”

Young environmentalist's arrest 'sinister', even parents not told of her whereabouts

By Our Representative  The Coalition for Environmental Justice in India (CEJI), a civil society network, has said that it is “highly disturbing” that Disha Ravi, a young woman climate activist from Bengaluru was “picked up” in what is referred to as a “closely guarded operation” of the Delhi police. Disha, 21, has been remanded to police custody for five days after she was taken from Bengaluru to Delhi.

Mukesh Ambani's earnings during Covid 'can lift' 40% informal workers out of poverty

By Dr Gian Singh*  The Inequality Virus Report released by Oxfam, a non-profit organization, on January 25, 2021 on the growing inequalities in different parts of the world, sheds light on the growing economic, educational, healthcare and gender inequalities in India. The report has revealed that the wealth of billionaires has increased by 35 per cent during the lockdown period in the country.

US forensic revelation enough evidence to release Sudha Bharadwaj, others: Civicus

Counterview Desk  Civicus, a Johannesburg-based global alliance of civil society organisations and activists claiming to have presence in 175 countries with 9,000 members and working for strengthening citizen action, has sought immediate release of Sudha Bharadwaj, arrested in 2018 under the anti-terror Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and accused of having links with the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist).

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.

Golwalkar's views on tricolour, martyrs, minorities, caste as per RSS archives

By Shamsul Islam*  First time in the history of independent India, the in-charge minister of the Cultural Ministry in the current Modi government, Prahlad Singh Patel, has glorified MS Golwalkar, second supremo of the RSS and the most prominent ideologue of the RSS till date, on his birth anniversary, February 19. In a tweet he wrote : “Remembering a great thinker, scholar, and remarkable leader #MSGolwalkar on his birth anniversary. His thoughts will remain a source of inspiration & continue to guide generations.”

'Bird, take me flying with you too!' Being Devangana Kalita

By Ashley Tellis*  I first met Devangana Kalita in a first year English Honours classroom in which I entered to teach Charles Dickens’ Hard Times in Miranda House, Delhi University, in 2008. She was one of the smartest students in the class – Devangana smiled the most and had the brightest twinkle in her eyes of the girls in the class. A middle class girl – Kalita comes from a family in upper Assam, the Kalitas along with the Brahmins dominate Assam (the Bamon-Kolita nexus as it is called) – in an elite all women’s institution known for a feminist, rebellious history. Like all institutions, it was repressive; like all all-women institutions, particularly so. But Miranda House had met its match in Devangana. She organised, protested, all within the democratic tradition resisted. The seeds of Pinjra Tod, the group Devangana was to eventually co-found, and which now finds her jailed for as absurd a reason as inciting a ‘riot’ were already sown in that first year. By the third year, they

20% of FIRs against journalists in 2020 alone, targeted attacks in 2021 'too many to count'

Counterview Desk  Condemning what it calls “alarming rise in state repression and clampdown on news outlets and journalists” that “expose” the anti-people nature of the establishment, India's top civil society network, National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM) has demanded “immediate release of arrested journalists, withdrawal of arbitrary charges and protection of media persons facing threats.”

Whither right to food? Social security scheme allocation for woman, child 'reduced'

Counterview Desk Pointing out that women and children have been ignored in the Union Budget 2021-22, the advocacy group Right to Food Campaign (RtFC) has said that the Government of India should have taken into account the fact that even after the lockdown was lifted, distress among marginalized communities continues, with people having lower incomes and reduced food consumption.

NAPM extends support to Indian, Aussie citizen groups 'opposing' Adani ventures

#StopAdani action in Australia  Counterview Desk  The civil rights network, National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM), extending solidarity to the global campaign by the Youth Action to Stop Adani (YAStA), held in recently in Australia and India, has said that the effort was to bring more attention to the struggle aboriginal, indigenous peoples, farmers, working class and other oppressed communities against allegedly anti-people multinational corporate conglomerates.