Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Questioning patriotism, terming others as 'Pakistani': Hate preachers are real anti-nationals, dividing India on religious lines

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If you don't like someone or find their views contrary to your own political beliefs, then just term the person as 'anti-national'.

This is the latest and disturbing trend in the world's biggest democracy.

No longer it is about so-called 'fringe groups' of the grand Hindutva parivar, but the senior leaders of the ruling party of India are issuing these firmans.

They are terming actors, writers and fellow Indians as 'anti-national' or 'Pakistani'.

The term 'Pakistani' [the manner in which it is used in India] is nothing less than hate speech, because it questions a person's patriotism and declares him (or her) a 'traitor'. It is racist hatred [directed at Muslims]. Hence, it is criminal, and law must be invoked to prosecute those who use the term and attempt to divide society.

The latest statement is about BJP's senior leader Kailash Vijayvargiya terming Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan, 'anti-national'. In a series of tweets, Vijayvargiya wrote that Khan's heart lies in Pakistan.

This comment coming from a senior leader is extremely objectionable, as it is clear hate speech. The use of term 'Pakistani' is manifestation of hate towards Muslims. The self-styled nationalists [right-wing] feel that Muslims are pro-Pakistani.

This is just one of the umpteen statements that keep coming day after day. Sadhvi Prachi is a Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) leader and she also made a similar charge against Khan. Earlier, BJP leader and union minister Giriraj Singh has also used similar terminology to run down the opponents.

The list is long--from Sakshi Maharaj to MA Naqvi. Yogi Aditya Nath has also made similar comments and used abusive, threatening language against Muslims. Words like 'Pakistani agent' are thrown at India's leading actor whose family members participated in freedom struggle.

It has become a routine practice for BJP leaders in India to term anyone as a Pakistani and threaten to send adversaries to Pakistan.

In fact, no one seems to think more about Pakistan, than the BJP leaders and the politicians aligned to right-wing.

Interestingly, the right-wing BJP is the political baby of Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS), which didn't play a role in India's freedom struggle.

Yet, it tries to position itself as a patriotic organisation, and claims to be more nationalistic than others.

[The two messages have been circulating on Facebook and Twitter. Not sure, as to who created them, hence, credit not given along with these two pictures.]