Sectarianism and Modi’s silencetext_fields
The parliament has been disrupted for the last few days and the Prime Minister has not yet broken his silence over the matter which caused a huge hullabaloo all over the country.
The Opposition stalled proceedings in the Rajya Sabha and put pressure on the government demanding the PM to make a statement on the religious re-conversion row, the latest bone of contention among the parties. Modi’s silence on the matter clearly reiterates that he has succumbed to the external pressures and that all these are part of the Sangh Parivar agenda. The BJP had earlier critisised the Manmohan Singh government for his silence. But it seems that the current premier too is tagging along Singh. The ‘Ghar Vapasi’ has hogged the national headlines for the last few weeks since the conversion of around 100 people to Hinduism took place in Agra. People belonging to Muslim community were re-converted to Hinduism in a ceremony organized by the Banjrang Dal and the Dharma Jagran cell, an offshoot of RSS, consisting of rituals that included tying sacred threads on their writs and putting the ‘tilak’ on their foreheads. The people were mainly slum dwellers who earned their lives by trash collecting. The incident termed ‘Purkhon ki ghar vapasi’ invited huge criticism and caused uproar from all sides. The government abstained from the matter saying that the law and order was a state subject.
The constitution guarantees religious freedom. It is the responsibility of the government to take up the matter and ensure the safety of the lives and the sentiments of the people. But the Modi government had always played it safe by not making any statements. He has not made any clarifications in the matter yet. His silence, when the senior Ministers of the ruling party made provocative remarks and carried out actions that hurt the sentiments of the religious minorities, was immensely critisised.
The HRD Minister Smrithi Irani created a controversy when she said that the CBSE schools would have to be remained open on Christmas. She denied the reports on the matter later clarifying that Christmas was a holiday. Another senior Minister sadhvi Niranjan Jyothi invited sharp criticisms when she used expletives at a BJP public meeting in Delhi asking the people to decide whether they want a government of followers of Ram or a government of those who were illegitimate. She later apologized and was retained in Ministry despite the Opposition parties demanding her resignation and an explanation on the matter. Yogi Adityanath, the controversial BJP MP also made a hate speech recently that “provoked feelings of enmity”. Same was the case with Giriraj Singh who commented that those who opposed Modi should be going to Pakistan.
The conversion row that has struck the parliament stalling its proceedings has not made any effect on the government. That the dangerous communal provocations come amidst the election propaganda is not a mere coincidence. It arouses suspicions whether Modi is keeping silence due to the Jharkand and Jammu Kashmir elections. The Prime Minister is well aware of the happenings around him and should therefore clarify his stand on the various sensitive matters disrupting the communal peace. The BJP with its sectarian views and communal agendas began carrying out its strategies of transforming India into a Hindu nation since the Modi government came to power. But India is a secular democratic republic and Modi should be keeping up his promises proclaimed during his I-Day speech.