"All persons are equally entitled to freedom of conscience and the right to freely profess, practice, and propagate religion subject to public order, morality and health."
-Article 25, Indian Constitution
The silence of the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi was appalling and the silent Hindu majority of Hindu could be termed as necrotic on the spate of lynching and beef killing in modern India. Tremulous voices were heard on social media that consisted of feeble voice sandwiched between over aggressive extremists condoning such attacks that gave a false sense of entitlement or belief on one hand and on the other hand, citizens irrespective of religious belief coming together to condemn attacks on Muslims, traders, and consumers of meat. The dichotomy lies in the fact that beef is not religious centric.
|Image credit: Google/India.com|
It reached a point of saturation when reasonable citizens, irrespective of their religious identities, decided to put an end to the break-down of law after 16-year-old Junaid was assaulted and dealt with death in a train on the eve of Eid. It was the time for Indians cutting across community and caste lines to say No to the heinous killing in the name of the Gau Mata.
Since the coming to power of the BJP, the law of the jungle reigned supreme with this idiotic and dim wit Gau Rakshak running loose to brutally assault citizens. We have one Mohammad Akhlaq who was brutally murdered in Dadri, UP for allegedly keeping beef that turned out to be goat meat. It gave us the impression that the voice of reason has lost its might and we failed to recognize the secular India, which seems to loom away by the day and disappearing like dust in the distant past.
The time for action is now for citizens to engage and say No to such killings in the name of religion. A movement was born as an alternate power to protest in the right direction, #notinmyname. It bears resemblance and was strikingly similar to the Nirbhaya movement where women fearlessly trudged in the open and boldly faced police brutality. It didn't take long to mount pressure on the Government.
Today, PM Modi condemned such attacks in the name of religion and claimed that such killing and intolerant behavior shall not be tolerated. For the first, I saw the PM who somehow got lost in globe-trotting showed that he means business and that he is the Pradhan Sewak for everyone.
He spoke like a strong statesman and sent a strong message to the warmongerers. I recognized my PM speaking and shall give credit where it is due. It was needed on his part at a time when so many of us were lingering on the verge of insanity and lives were falling. We helplessly saw our country fading into oblivion, our secular values of respecting faiths crumbling and contrarian views bearing the brunt of intolerance. It is the top most priority to instill the fear of law in those terrorists and murderers.
The worse thing is that those extremists are giving a bad name to Hinduism and rewriting the Hindu scripture to make it the book of violence. It's extremely dangerous considering that Hinduism as a way of life has always celebrated peace, stability, tolerance, and growth of humans to cohabit together as enshrined in the Indian constitution and is being misinterpreted by a bunch of extreme voices. Today, Islam is facing the same issue where few bad and rotten apples are spoiling a religion and its adherents.
The power lies with the people to thrust the Government into action to safeguard and protect rights of both the majority and minority. The mass protests #notinmyname gathered steam and showed the power of an enraged nation coming together in mounting pressure on the political power. It reached the ears of the state which propelled Shri Narendra Modi into action. It was no asunder script where voices were lost. There is the government, the media as the fourth estate and like someone rightly said, the power lies with the people to say no to the forces of terror. India is the biggest democracy on earth which is facing testing times. It was a confrontation with the power of the day but with a legitimate reason. India cannot afford to remain silent when innocents are slithered to death on account of their religious beliefs with demented fools hijacking the country.
Non-peaceful method is one way to confront the forces of evil and one shouldn't be cowed down by the veiled threat of violence raging its might to silence voices. The demented goons hiding behind a religion and assaulting women cannot be my religion. I am born a Hindu. You don't do it in my name. My religion never believed or advocated violence and for instance, the Vedas is a gem that has always preached peaceful living, divinity, and spirituality. Till now, this mob culture gave an impression that their action received a legitimate nod from the Government of the day and the PM where they fearlessly went on a killing spree. Truth is they lack spine on the face of apathy where the state apparatus failed till now to protect the victims. Rise my countrymen and women against such heteronormativity!
There is a perception that the PM hands are fettered by the dangerous forces of Hindutva agenda and it’s extremists agents in the form of RSS and its ilk, VHP, Ram Sena or Bajrang Dal. Today, the PM affirmed his might in holding the reins of the country and in a way, thwarted occult forces of Hindutva to overcome this ‘perception’. For the first time, I saw the PM, the one whom citizens want to see so that the rule of law triumphs above everything. It is the voice of reason and its citizens that make a nation the shining beacon of democracy.
However, the irony lies in the fact that long after the PM broke his deafened silence, a meat trader was beaten to death and his vehicle perished in flame set by ruffians and mob made of more than 100 people. It's unacceptable in today's India. The supporters of the Government and of this flawed ideology are as guilty as the murderers. We cannot condone such acts. The perpetrators should be brought to the book. Time for the PM's strong words to translate into action. Let the voice of reason rise against such killings and the movement of citizens as a watchdog should never stop till democracy gets back its sheen and voice of sanity so that we become a model to the world.
"King Piyadasi (Ashoka) dear to the Gods, honours all sects, the ascetics (hermits) or those who dwell at home, he honours them with charity and in other ways. But the King, dear to the Gods, attributes less importance to this charity and these honours than to the vow of seeing the reign of virtues, which constitutes the essential part of them. For all these virtues there is a common source, modesty of speech. That is to say, One must not exalt one’s creed discrediting all others, nor must one degrade these others Without legitimate reasons. One must, on the contrary, render to other creeds the honour befitting them.”
-Plural India in Ashoka's inscription of 3rd century BC
I abide by the Constitution of India, respect of law, plurality and tolerant values