BJP’s IPL team for the 2014 Lok Sabha tournament has been
declared. The elevation of Narendra Modi, Uma Bharti, Amit Shah and Varun
Gandhi in BJP signals the return of the aggressive Hindu nationalism in the
Last time when the Hindutva wave gripped the country was in
1990 when L K Advani took out a Rath Yatra from Somnath to Ayodhya to build a
Ram temple at the place of Babri mosque in Ayodhya. The yatra tore apart the
secular fabric of the nation forever. In just a week after December 6, 1992
when the mosque was demolished, communal riots claimed more than 1200 lives.
The demolition of Babri masjid also gave birth to Islamic terrorism in India.
The mischievous Ram janmabhoomi movement took hundreds of
lives over the years and changed the lives of millions. But this made BJP a
very strong force at the Centre. It stormed to power at the Centre and lost it
at the same speed. One may wish that the nation learnt a lesson. But a little
more than two decades later the nation is in danger of being a hostage to the
hate-politicians once again! The ‘mastermind’ of Advani’s Ram Rath Yatra, Modi
wants to be the prime minister now. For the last 11 years, he has managed to
evade the law after the widespread communal violence in Gujarat
Gujarat became a laboratory
of the Hindutva experiment. Many who contributed to the making of brand Modi
are in Gujarat jails. Modi’s ex-minister Maya
Kodnani was convicted of orchestrating the massacre of 95 people in Naroda
Patia in 2002. She was sentenced to 28 years in prison.
After 2002, there was a series of ‘encounters’ in the state
where ‘jehadi terrorists’ were killed by the ‘brave’ Gujarat
police. These encounters kept the agenda of Hindutva alive in the minds of the
voters by keeping the communities polarised. In the investigations ordered by
the Supreme Court and the High Court of Gujarat, many of these encounters
turned out to be cold blooded murders of innocent or petty criminals. As many
as 38 police officers, including six IPS officers, are behind bars for staging
fake encounters. And these are not the final numbers as investigations are on.
Brand Modi became bigger with every encounter because all
the FIRs said that these ‘terrorists’ had come to kill Modi. The media played a
significant role in the spread of this false story.
You see how perceptions are created. A huge part of the
population believes Tulsiram, Sadiq Jamal, Ishrat Jahan and Kauserbi were
terrorists and deserved to die in spite of having no or little evidence. But
prime accused Amit Shah, against whom there are several evidences, is seen as
innocent by the people till the courts convict him. This is the power of the
Hindutva brainwash of civil society.
Kejriwal and company made people believe that the biggest
threat to the nation is corruption and not communalism. Since the inception of
the movement, I didn’t hear them utter a single word against communalism.
The ‘apolitical’ movement to bring the Jan Lokpal ended in
Kejriwal forming a political outfit. This movement eventually created a fertile
ground for the communalism virus to grow.
BJP has often criticised the dynasty politics of the
Congress, especially the Nehru-Gandhi family. Now Varun Gandhi is elevated to
general secretary’s post. The message is, BJP is fine with dynastic politics as
long as you do a bit of Muslim-bashing.
Looking at the completely polarised atmosphere, VHP’s
international working president Pravin Togadia says that by 2015, it will
declare Gujarat a Hindu state. Isn’t this a
vulgar misuse of freedom of speech granted by our constitution directed against
the very spirit of the constitution? And the irony is that they call themselves
The Congress party, too, sensing the Hindutva wave carried
out the death sentences of Ajmal Kasab and Afzal Guru in quick succession
without letting the opposition to reap political benefit from the delay.
In the given circumstances, I see no light at the end of the
long dark tunnel of the Indian politics, especially when the impressionable
youth have little politics but a lot of adrenaline- just the right proportion for
hate to be harvested.