The politics and its methods have evolved over time, the politics we understand today is far different from what it used to be; and definitely not what is desirable for the country. The country has witnessed various methodologies and ideological trends with different governments coming into power.
The 2014 parliamentary elections marked a turning point in India’s electoral history, with the electoral success of the BJP. Soon after the BJP government known for its Hindutva ideology came into power, many cases of riots started being reported from across the country.
A study conducted by Yale University’s Political Scientists on “Do parties matter for ethnic violence? Evidence from India”, revealed that “riots produced ethnic polarization that benefits ethnoreligious parties.” Analysing the effects of riots on the vote share of Hindu nationalistic parties, the paper maintained that “a percentage increase in vote share was recorded following a riot in the previous year before an election”. (Economic times)
On the other hand, often controversies are created to cover up governmental failures, for example when the economy crashes and the people start questioning the government, and they certainly don’t want to be held accountable, the communal card is used to divert people’s attention.
While the major challenges India faces revolve around:
Poverty, Pollution, Illiteracy, Corruption, Inequality, Gender discrimination, Terrorism, Communalism, Unemployment, Regionalism, Casteism, Alcoholism, Drugs Abuse, Violence & Crimes against Women and its worst Economic Crisis, Indian Rupee Hitting Record Low, Rising Food Inflation, Power Crisis, Farmers Crisis and Agricultural Distress;
There isn’t any discussion on these major concerns by the governing party and aided by the Godi media not questioning them. Controversies that never existed before in the society are sparked using communal politics causing tensions which further lead to incidents of violence and riots, taking over all the coverage, public interest and outrage.
The few who raise their voice against the government, hold it accountable and demand justice, are slapped with sedition charges and made to spend months in jails without a trial.
The Godi media does its job of diverting the public attention and keeping them entertained with communal issues, holding ridiculous debates and spreading misleading messages to the masses.
Some of the incidents that lead to the spread of communal hatred are:
- The revocation of Article 370 from the Indian Constitution.
- The introduction of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in 2019. Portraying Muslim minorities as second-class citizens, the party has generated fear among Muslims.
- Hate Speech :
Dec 2021, a three-day Dharam Sansad was held in Haridwar, Uttarakhand, a BJP governed state –where a series of hate speeches targeting Muslims and open calls for genocide were made, with several prominent BJP members in attendance.
The hate speech videos from Sansad went viral on social media creating tension. Meanwhile, No leaders from the BJP nor the PM showed condemnation towards this incident.
- Hijab row :
The Hijab is a part of the Islamic faith that had commonly been worn by Muslim girl students in educational institutions and no other communities opposed it until the BJP led Karnataka state institutions declared a ban on it in classrooms. Creating a row and depriving an already vulnerable minority community of the right to education for Muslim girls.
- Loudspeaker row, beef ban, Bulldozer Politics and so on.
- After the increasing hate attacks against the Muslim minorities, violent attacks on Christians were reported throughout the country during the Christmas season.
While India has aspired to be a democratic and secular country since gaining independence in 1947, with secularism enshrined in its constitution. The BJP government has broken that fate and legacy of India. The rising communal violence against religious minorities has threatened India’s secularism and made India a more intolerant country. It is time for the opposition and regional parties to unite for a broader secular alliance to defeat the BJP’s Hindu majoritarian agenda.
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