By Latheef Farook –
Gujarat’s Chief Minister Narendra Modi has successfully manipulated to emerge as Bharatiya Janata Party, BJP, Prime Ministerial candidate for the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections.
His ascendency in the corrupted, criminalized and communalized Indian political scene remains an unprecedented insult to all accepted norms, human decency and values. It also demonstrates India’s decadency towards Hundutva fascism which could tear apart this great ancient country with all its glorious past.
The reason being tea boutique owner turned RSS activist turned chief minister Modi is a man of intense anti Muslim mindset. As chief minister he used all state machineries to commit genocide on Gujarati Muslims in February 2002.
On the day his election as prime ministerial candidate was announced his BJP colleagues in Uttar Pradesh were busy slaughtering Muslims in Muzaffaranagar where scores were killed and more than 10,000 Muslims were displaced.
Under a well planned February 2002 anti Muslim pogrom his Hindutva thugs burnt Muslim localities, some areas electrocuted, and butchered thousands of harmless Muslims besides raping and killing Muslim girls and women in some of the most gruesome manners unworthy of Hinduism which they claim to promote.
Scattered charred bodies of Muslim men, women, children and the aged, rape of unmarried Muslim girls and women in the presence of their loved ones in some of the most gruesome manners remain testimony for Modi’s fascist mindset and Hindutva philosophy.
In any civilized society Modi would have been ostracized and even condemned to death. However this does not happen in India where anti Muslim have become common occurrences and the perpetrators have been hailed as heroes.
However this very same Modi was re elected twice .The Congress led Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s government, dismissing the sentiments of Muslims, awarded him for excellent performance.
Describing his heartless nature Mahatma Gandhi’s granddaughter Tara Gandhi-Bhattacharya said on Sunday 23 September 2013 that she did not find any trace of anguish on Modi’s face when he spoke about the 2002 post-Godhead riots in his state.
Talking to reporters in Indore Tara Gandhi said, “Once I watched Modi speaking in Gujarat from a distance. I can’t judge him. But when he mentions the excesses of the Gujarat riots, I do not see any anguish on his face,” she said. “I am surprised as to how Modi, being in politics, being a human being, and being from Gujarat, can speak about the riots and that phase of violence without showing any pain.”
Talking about the conditions at refugees’ camps in Gujarat which were set up after the riots, she said, “I was so pained (upon seeing them) that I could not sleep for the next six months.” About Modi’s infamous “puppy coming under the wheels of a car” remark, she said it was a case of use of “indecent language”. Asked whether Modi becoming the Prime Minister would pose a danger to the democratic values of the country, Tara Gandhi said: “I won’t name anyone, because by singling out one person, others cannot be condoned. Whoever comes to power, must have compassion and courage.
Coming out strongly against Modi, Nobel laureate Amartya Sen said he does not want him to become India’s prime minister.
“No, I don’t approve of it… I don’t think the record is very good. I think I don’t have to be a member of the minority in order to feel insecure… We Indians don’t want a situation where the minority feel insecure and could legitimately think that there was an organized violence against them in 2002. I think that is a terrible record and I don’t think Indian Prime Minister as an Indian citizen… Of who has that kind of record? No, I do not.”
Dr. Sen said physical infrastructure in Gujarat may be good but Mr. Modi has not done enough for minorities or for the majority.
Jnanpith awardee and acclaimed Kannada writer Dr U.R. Ananthamurthy has said he will not live in a country with Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister who would create fear among people . Ananthamurthy said, “He (Modi) will create fear and if a fearsome man is sitting there, people will just bow down to him because a bully creates cowards.”
Reiterating Amartya Sen, Padma Shri awardee author Amitav Ghosh said that he will not vote for Modi who he described was someone culpable for the Gujarat riots of 2002. The acclaimed author said that it was horrifying for him to see the way Hindu nationalism was being merged with politics, “The politics of Hindu nationalism is destroying Hindu religion. For someone with that past to occupy the highest position in this land would be. I think, deeply destabilizing.”
Numerous reports were prepared by several independent organizations on Godhra genocide providing vivid details of the atrocities committed by Modi and his blood thirsty gangsters. One such report was prepared by Women’s organizations in India to seek gender justice. The report published in the website Kractivist.org and was also published in the Sri
Lankan daily Ceylon Today stated as follows;
Despite the graphic nature of the quotes and instances cited in a combined report, there is nothing worse than the fact that Modi and others responsible for these acts are still not brought to justice for the crimes against humanity. It must be remembered that Modi sanctioned, fuelled, and later, justified the pogrom as a ‘chain of action and reaction.’
Narendra Modi is a member of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, a shadowy all-male organization drawing inspiration from Hitler and Mussolini that trains militia-like groups of men and indoctrinates them into ideologies of racial cleansing. The ideology of racial cleansing includes moral sanction for the rape, impregnation and murder of non-Hindu women, and the prevention of the biological reproduction of the other race.
The RSS killed father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi and was responsible for more than 40,000 anti Muslim attacks since independence in 1947 destroying Muslim localities besides indiscriminately killing Muslims. Raping Muslim women has always been integral part of these attacks.
V.D. Savarkar, founder-hero of RSS, derides Hindu kings for not raping Muslim women in conquered areas. Note that Hindutva leaders build up hatred and fear of Muslim population growth, with the Muslim woman portrayed as reproducer of the race. This is evident in Modi’s infamous comment on the Gujarat relief camps: ‘Relief camps are actually child-making factories. Those who keep on multiplying the population should be taught a lesson.’ (The Hindu, 10 September 2002). It is a mistake, therefore, to think that violence against women is spontaneous. It was planned, organized and ensured through ideological indoctrination.
Hindutva propaganda mobilized mobs through false claims that Muslim men had raped Hindu women, and incited Hindu men to rape Muslim women. The acts of violence against women included inserting iron rods and swords into the vagina, cutting women open to extract the foetus, vaginal mutilation and burning women alive after rape.
In the language used by the violent male mobs, rape was directly tied to male strength. As one witness said, Hindu men, exposing their penises, said: “Your men are weak, we’re strong, and you’re not strong enough to f*** your own women.” Another Ahmadabad witness testified that a policeman led a mob in unzipping his trousers, while the crowd shouted: “Where are the terrorists? Come out now. Call your God.”
The rape of Muslim women was a weapon to humiliate and to feminize Muslim men, who were described as not ‘real men.’ A young man, who had worked in a retail shop for five years, was taunted by his co-workers who said they had raped the wives of Muslims: “Will you become a terrorist or will you just stand and watch like a hirja [eunuch]?”
In many instances, rape was explicitly cited as a means to impregnate Muslim women, and to create a new generation of Hindus from Muslims. Rape was an act carried out as part of the RSS ideology of ethnic elimination of Muslims as a group.
As head of the state, Modi is culpable for the immunity enjoyed by the police in perpetuating violence against women. Many witnesses from Baroda said, the police hit the stomachs of pregnant Muslim women, shouting, “Kill them before they are born.” In SN’s account from Baroda, the District Police Commissioner, entered a house, beat up small girls and hit women on the breasts and private parts. Pregnant women were specially targeted as policemen, like the Hindu mobs, said Muslim children should not be born. In other cases, the police simply watched the violence, and according to a lawyer from Anand, refused to record complaints.
Women victims said many were afraid to seek comfort and support from their male relatives. There is no mechanism to address the problems of post-traumatic stress disorder, mental disturbance, depression and lack of emotional support.
Women have been forced into silence about rape and sexual violence because that is the price the community has agreed to pay in order to be allowed back into their homes, villages and neighborhoods. The situation has been particularly difficult for young unmarried girls because making their suffering public makes it harder for them to be married. In a patriarchal system, the woman becomes a source of shame to their family and community.
One consequence of this has been the panic marriage of single girls, as in Godhra, where 150 girls were married off. Single girls are now subjected to a new conservative ideology within the Muslim community, including early marriage, restriction on mobility, withdrawal of girls from schools, colleges and work.
Women victims have faced discrimination in accessing what was due to them and in gaining basic relief. Women who have never worked outside the home have become dependent on charity, or economically destitute. Widows are especially affected. In one locality, the report compilers met a dozen women whose husbands had been killed, houses destroyed, crops burnt and who had no means of livelihood.
While minority groups fear physical violence in Gujarat, women face the heightened fear of sexual attacks. Modi’s supporters celebrated their election victory by telling women: “Now this is our government. We will make this whole area Hindu.”
Prior to and following the 2002 pogrom, the Hindutva groups had been targeting Hindu women, who had married or had any relationships with Muslim men. A Hindu woman married to a Muslim man in Anand District, reported that she was publicly gang-raped by men who said she would be killed if she filed a police complaint. Dragged out of her home by a mob of 200-250 people, she was carried to a dump, held down, stripped and raped by nine men, while the mob was saying, “Cut her to pieces, don’t leave her alive, we don’t want her alive in the village.”
Not only Modi, but India is also in violation of international laws.
Gujarat’s former Child Welfare Minister Mayaben Kodnani is seen greeting Modi. Kodnani ,MLA was later sentenced to 28 yrs in jail for aiding and abetting the mob. She supplied swords to mob and supervised vaginal mutilation of Muslims girls and women alike.
The judge described Kodnani as the “kingpin of entire riots” and observed that “she led the mob and incited them for violence.
A special court described the Godhra riots as “a black chapter in the history of Indian Constitution”. Additional Principal Judge Jyotsna Yagnik dubbed communal riots as “a cancer on constitutional secularism”
This very same Modi is BJP prime ministerial candidate. This is disaster in the making for India in general and the Indian Muslim in particular.
Sri Lankan government started wooing RSS-Shiv Sena BJP combine in the hope that Modi would win the next Lok Sabha elections. In doing so the government has discarded the feelings and fear of the island’s besieged Muslims who are watching carefully the anti Muslim agenda in India.
In an article in the Ceylon Today of Wednesday 25 September 2013 under the title Mahinda making overtures to Modi, columnist Upul Joseph Fernando stated that” Mahinda Rajapaksa presumably under the impression that anti-Muslim fundamentalist stance of the government matches well with that of Shiv Sena’s anti Muslim role and therefore they enjoy an affinity of some degrees. He could, therefore, be thinking that the BJP goodwill is a winnable target.
Under such circumstance the question is whether the Sri Lankan government can afford to antagonize the Muslim minority. Indications are that the entire region is heading towards disaster and a river of Muslim blood is likely to flow.