Skip to main content

RSS love for 'killer' Myanmar junta behind Indian military presence at Tatmadaw Day?

By Shamsul Islam* 

If a shameful act means an action which is criminal and nauseating, it would be an understatement to describe the attitude of the present RSS-BJP rulers of India towards the demolition of democracy and large-scale killing of the people of Myanmar by the military (tatmadaw) junta which took power through a coup on February 1, 2021 after renegading the election results in which the party of Aung San Suu Kyi, National League for Democracy, was a clear winner.
The ruthless rule by the military in Myanmar (formerly Burma) is not a new phenomenon. Last time it lasted almost for five decades, from 1962 to 2011, and now has resumed in 2021.
According to the latest tally by the renowned nonprofit Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, at least 500 people, mostly young, have been killed in Myanmar since the military coup on February 1. At least six children between the ages of 10 and 16 were among those killed on Saturday, Myanmar's Armed Forces Day. So far more than 43 children have been killed by the military firing squads.
How military rulers were killings with impunity was made clear by a joint statement of Alice Wairimu Nderitu, UN Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, and Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights which demanded that the Myanmar military must "immediately stop killing the very people it has the duty to serve and protect." The UN Special Rapporteur for Myanmar said the army was carrying out "mass murder" and called on the world to isolate the junta and halt its access to weapons.
A number of human rights activists and political analysts have reasons to claim that RSS-BJP rulers of India are not doing even minimum to stop the mass slaughter of the Myanmarese. It seems to be the continuation of the support which was offered during the genocide of the Rohingyas earlier.
According to a leading English daily of India, two months after the coup India joined Russia, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Laos, Thailand and the two sworn enemies, China and Pakistan in sending a high-level military delegation to participate in the celebration of the ‘Tatmadaw Day’ (Military Day) on March 27, 2021. It is the most prominent state function of Myanmar.
India joined the celebration exactly on the day which witnessed maximum killings of the common people, most of them youth, since the coup. It is not that the Indian government did not know about the critical situation in Myanmar. A day before the annual parade in which the Indian military delegation joined the celebration, military chiefs of USA, Australia, Canada, Germany, Greece, Italy, Japan, the Kingdom of Denmark, the Kingdom of the Netherlands, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea and the United Kingdom had released a statement which read:
“As Chiefs of Defence, we condemn the use of lethal force against unarmed people by the Myanmar Armed Forces and associated security services…a professional military follows international standards for conduct and is responsible for protecting -- not harming -- the people it serves”.
The presence of Indian military delegation at the killer Myanmar army’s annual day was not sudden or unexpected. India under Prime Minister Narendra Modi developed a close relationship with the Myanmar military. In October 2020, Army Chief General MM Naravane and Foreign Secretary Harsh Shringla had visited the country to enhance bilateral ties. They had met not only the country’s then state counsellor, Aung San Suu Kyi but also the military leadership.
In fact, the Indian Army chief, speaking at a seminar in February, had spoken about the proximity of the military of the two countries resulting in growing cooperation and “synergy between the soldiers on ground with reasonable operational dividends”.
It is true that the Indian government released press notes on Myanmar. On February 1, stating:
“We have noted the developments in Myanmar with deep concern. India has always been steadfast in its support to the process of democratic transition in Myanmar. We believe that the rule of law and the democratic process must be upheld. We are monitoring the situation closely.”
It took more than a month for India to come out with the second statement. On April 2, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi at a media briefing stated: “Let me be very clear, we condemn any use of violence…We believe that the rule of law should prevail. We stand for the restoration of democracy in Myanmar.” He also demanded release of political prisoners.
The Indian Army chief, speaking at a seminar in February, had spoken about the proximity of the military of the two countries
When asked whether India would allow people from Myanmar to cross over through the border between the two countries, he said India was dealing the matter “as per laws and humanitarian considerations”.
There was no call to stop immediately mass killings and burning of villages and localities of the protestors. The foreign ministry spokesperson indulged in jugglery of words. Shocked by the brazen denial to the persecuted Myanmarese to take refuge in India, leading academician Pratap Bhanu Mehta wrote:
“By sidelining even the most basic humanitarian impulses in its response to Myanmar crisis, India will neither realise its ideals nor its strategic objectives. The Chief Minister of Mizoram, Zoramthanga, was correct in writing to the Centre that India cannot ignore the humanitarian crisis unfolding in our backyard, and remain ‘indifferent’ to the suffering of those crossing the border. The Manipur government has, thankfully, withdrawn a shameful circular that would have prohibited providing meaningful assistance to victims of political persecution.
“This circular, if enacted, would have been terrible for India’s image. But how we deal with the victims of this crisis should not be just driven by an exercise in image management, but take the larger humanitarian and political view. The humanitarian case for providing some kind of safe haven for refugees is too obvious to be stated. Surely the real test of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ is not opportunistic displays of noblesse oblige, it is adherence to basic norms of decency…”

The RSS-BJP rulers who miss no opportunity to declare their love for the dictum ‘world is a family’ have refused entry to mass of Christians, indigenous tribes (who worship tribal gods/goddesses) and some Buddhist refugees forced to leave Myanmar due to military repression. The Government of India ensured the Indian police and army manning the Myanmar borders thwart any attempt by the refugees to seek shelter in India. It was heartening to note that Mizoram chief minister refused to oblige.
Importantly, the persecution in Myanmar exposes the huge chinks in the much-hyped Citizenship Amendment Act 2019 which gave right to Indian citizenship to persecuted non-Muslim minorities in the neighbouring Muslim countries. It, shockingly, betrayed persecuted Tamilians in Sri Lanka and now India would not come to the rescue of non-Muslim minorities in Myanmar.

RSS friendship with Myanmar junta

Mussolini and Hitler alone have not been favourites of the RSS ideologues. In fact, diverse totalitarian ideologies and regimes of the 20th century have been their favourite. One of the most ruthless ruling gang, the junta which is ruling Myanmar today, has always been their darling. According to a report in the official organ of the RSS, “Organiser” (February 28-March 5, 2000), filed by its own correspondent in Burma:
“The 50th anniversary of the Sanatan Dharma Swayamsevak Sangh (SDSS-The RSS counterpart in Myanmar) was held at the National Theatre on Mayoma Kyaung Street, Yagnon, recently. Secretary-2 of the State Peace and Development Council, Lt. Gen. Tin Oo attended the meeting. The programme was attended by ministers and senior military officers. Minister for Commerce, Brig. Gen. Pyi Sone; Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement, Maj. Gen. Sein Htwa; Minister for Health, Maj. Gen. Ket Sein were among the prominent persons who attended the function.”
This report appeared with three photographs. In one photograph five military Generals, including the second in command of the military junta, Lt Gen Tin Oo, are seen standing on the stage in the midst of SDSS leadership wearing khaki shorts (the RSS attire, which is changed to brown trousers now). In the other photograph, leading lights of the Burmese military junta were seen sitting in the front row of the auditorium.
The Vishwa Hindu Parishad website describes Sanatan Dharma Swayamsevak Sangh as its main Hindu organization in Myanmar. The other being Central Hindu Board.
With these old links with the Myanmar military rulers the inimical attitude of the RSS-BJP Indian rulers towards the persecuted Rohingyas in Myanmar was neither accidental nor sudden. The Indian government led by Modi falling in line with the Myanmar rulers refused to admit that genocide of the Rohingyas is taking place. Thousands of persecuted Rohingyas who escaped to India to save themselves from genocide are being forced to leave India.
---
*Formerly with Delhi University, click here for Prof Islam’s writings and video interviews/debates. Facebook: https://facebook.com/shamsul.islam.332, twitter: @shamsforjustice, blog: http://shamsforpeace.blogspot.com/

Comments

Does-not-matter said…
What about liberal's love for killer naxals?
Anonymous said…
what about black lives matter - what about nazis and jews - what about tribe vs tribe in africa - what about muslims and others in CIS - let us all kill each other.

TRENDING

Communal rhetoric? Hindutva preached by RSS-BJP is 'monolithic', not Hinduism

By Prem Verma*  I am a devout Hindu but not a believer of RSS Hindutva form of Hinduism which brings about hatred of other religions. My Hindu religion has not taught me to look down on other religions and neither has it instilled in me to go about converting others to my religion because my religion is superior.

India sees 62 journo deaths, 4th highest, amidst pandemic: Swiss media rights body

By Our Representative The Switzerland-based media rights body Press Emblem Campaign (PEC) has noted that India is the fourth most affected country as far as mediapersons’ death on account of Covid-19 is concerned. According to Blaise Lempen, secretary-general of PEC, the global tally of casualties among media persons in the Covid-19 pandemic has reached 1,036 journalists in 73 countries till date.

Buddhist shrines massively destroyed by Brahmanical rulers in "pre-Islamic" era: Historian DN Jha's survey

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".

Gross 'injustice' to children: Rs 5000 cr cut in education budget; 15 lakh schools shut down

Counterview Desk  More than 100 dignitaries, including educationists, academia, social activists, teachers’ union, civil society organisations (CSOs), various networks and people working on child rights, in a letter to Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman have sought reversal of reduction in allocation for education in the Union Budget 2021-22, even as demanding substantial increase in it.

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.

Chhattisgarh’s Apra riverfront imitates Sabarmati: 'Devaluing' water, environment

Sabarmati riverfront By Mansee Bal Bhargava*  This year’s #WorldWaterDay (March 22) focus was on ‘Valuing Water’. My school friend, Pragati Tiwari from Bilaspur, Chhattisgarh, called that day knowing my interest in water matters. We were remembering our childhood days as how we used to play on the banks and the bed of the Arpa Nadi (River) during the summer holidays and as how the river would swell like Anaconda to flow happily during the monsoon.

Bihar massacre on Holi day: Brahminical, casteist mindset behind 'uneasy' silence

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar By Vidya Bhushan Rawat*  Several people were killed in Bihar amidst Holi festivities, but not much response has come in from the media. The silence of the government and the society as a whole is also appalling. We seek to romanticise these festivals, yet we forget that every year they take so many lives. This despite the fact that Holi appears to be the best time for 'avenging things'.

India's draft migrants policy: Whither concern on job restrictions imposed by states?

By Anil Kumar*  India’s Niti Aayog has prepared a Draft Migration Policy. The draft policy acknowledges migration as an integral part of development, and it calls for positive government interventions that facilitate internal migration. With a rights-based solution to migration, the draft states that the policy should “enhance the agency and capability of the community and thereby remove aspects that come in the way of an individual’s own natural ability to thrive”.

Recalling Jallianwala martyrs' communal amity as BJP 'warns' of Sitalkuchi everywhere

By Shamsul Islam*  The RSS-BJP rulers declare India to be a battle-ground between Hinduism and Islam. Muslims have been declared as ‘internal threat’ by RSS ideologue MS Golwalkar (“Bunch of Thought”, Chapter xvi). Behaviour of many of their leading cadres, including those who hold high constitutional posts, is such that they seem to be conspiring over-time to ignite a civil war between the two communities. They are under the impression that this would help divert attention from failures of the Hindutva rulers on developmental front.