GHAZANFAR ABBAS | Caravan Daily
NEW DELHI: As the NDA government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has entered the last year of its five-year term, a detailed report entitled ‘Dismantling India, A 4 Year Report’, full of data to prove the title and articles written by experts of various fields, claims that working on an agenda just opposite to its pet slogan “Sabka Sath Sabka Vikas” in the last four years, BJP has turned the country into a “republic of hate” and pushed it towards an “agrarian, economic and educational crises”. The 400-page report has put various researches and media reports behind its claim.
“Republic of Hate” against Muslims, Christians and Dalits
Detailing about hate crimes and lynching by self-styled cow vigilantes, the report states, “India is swiftly transforming into republic of hate and fear, especially for its minorities and devastated castes.”
The report cited Spend India’s data base on hate and cow related crimes along with several other media reports to say that since 2010, of such incidents of violence, 97% occurred after BJP came to power in the centre and Modi assumed office in 2014 and 84% of those killed in these attacks were Muslims and 8% Dalits for alleged smuggling, slaughter, and eating of cattle.
In the chapter ‘The Human Cost of Protecting Cow, Cow terrorism against Muslims’, writer Vidya Bhushan Rawat said that the database also informs that ‘2017 was the bloodiest year’ in this regard.
United Christian Forum (UCF) also recorded 216 incidents of attacks against Christians in 2017, including violence against priests, nuns, and shrines. UCF jointly with Alliance Defending Freedom India documented at least 351 cases of violence in 2017 only.
“On an average, 250 incidents have been recorded and verified each year,” it said.
On the occasion of releasing the report at Constitution Club of India here on Saturday, former IAS officer and eminent civil rights activist Harsh Mander said, “Mob lynching is transition of hate into mobs feeling empowered to go out and attack on the people of particular community. And this is most troubling.”
“What unique has been happening in India for the last four years is mob lynching. 97% of these attacks occurred after Narendra Modi assumed office in Delhi in 2014 and 84% of those killed in these attacks were Muslims and 8% Dalits. It is not my claim that Mr. Modi and his ministers are organising lynch mobs but my claim is that they have created an environment in which lynch mob feel encouraged, legitimized and heroic nationalists if they go out and attack a particular community. We find that in every case where BJP cabinet ministers and elected representatives have celebrated lynching, the victim has always been a Muslim, and they have not celebrated lynching where non-Muslims were attacked. Those who celebrate and legitimize lynching have also committed crime,” former IAS officer and eminent civil rights activist Harsh Mander said at the launch of 'Dismantling India – A Four Year Report' in New Delhi on Saturday.
Posted by Caravandaily on Sunday, July 15, 2018
Former IAS officer Harsh Mandar
“It is not my claim that Mr. Modi and his ministers are organising lynch mobs but it is my claim that they have created an environment in which lynch mob feel encouraged, legitimized and heroic nationalists if they go out and attack particular community. We find in every case where BJP cabinet ministers and elected representatives have celebrated lynching, the victim has always been a Muslim, and they have not celebrated lynching where non-Muslims were attacked. Those who celebrate and legitimize lynching have also committed crime,” Mander scathingly said.
Saying that the issue of great anxiety is the silence of majority, he also hit out at a section of media on creating fake news to foster hatred among people.
Eminent author and activist Subhash Gatade has argued in his article “Hindutva Unlimited”, which is included in the report, that laxity of the police and the administrative machinery has rather become a common feature of such violence.
“While the mob attacks the victims under whatever pretext it can think of, the police – the most visible of the state’s arms – normally turns a mute spectator or at times even prods the attackers,” he wrote.
Report also mentioned The Wire’s story claiming that Hindustan Times had established a National Hate Crime Tracker, which listed over 150 hate crimes but all of a sudden it pulled off the tracker and sacked its editor-in-chief apparently under the pressure of the government.
About the hate speeches by the ruling party’s senior leaders, the report stated that 28 sitting MPs and MLAs of the BJP had hate speech cases against them – the highest number of any party.
Author Ram Punyani also cited an NDTV report that claimed “90% of hateful comments made during NDA’s current term are by BJP politicians.”
Exclusion of Dalits and Adivasis
In the Chapter ‘Dalits in NDA Government’ by N. Paul Divakar, General Secretary of National Campaign for Dalit Human Rights (NCDHR) and writer Juno Varghese, the report pointed out, “The allocations of funds under SCSP (Scheduled Caste Sub Plan) for the last four years indicates the government’s lack of will in the economic empowerment of the community. Not a single year has seen allocation of SCC as per the population percentage of the SC and ST communities.”
The allocations to SCC was 8.79% in 2014-15, 6.63% in 2015-16, 7.06% in 2016-17, 8.91% in 2017-18 and 6.55% in the 2018-19 financial year, it further pointed out.
Besides budget allocation, according to NCRB (National Crime Record Bureau) data, the year 2016 witnessed 2541 reported cases of Rape and 3172 cases of assault on Dalit women with intent to outrage their modesty.
As per NCRB data a total 47,064 cases of crime committed against SCs were reported in 2014 as compared to 39,408 cases reported in 2013, showing an increase of 19%. The highest incidents of crime against SCs were reported from Uttar Pradesh (8075) followed by Rajasthan (8028), Bihar (7893) and Madhya Pradesh (4151), they accounted for 17.2%, 17.1%, 16.8% and 8.8% respectively during 2014.
Agriculture, Economy, and Education
Agriculture growth has been fairly volatile over the last four years falling to a low of -0.2% in 2014-15 from 5.6% in 2013-14. It rose to 0.7% in 2015-16, 4.9% in 2016-17 at 2011-12 basic prices and the Economic Survey predicted a growth of 2.1% in 2018-19.
Farmers’ suicides have continued unabated. Suicides by farmers rose 42% between 2014 and 2015. Over 36000 farm suicides were reported in the first 3 years of BJP government. Three BJP ruled states Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh accounted for over 50% of all farmers’ suicides.
Renowned economist Dr Arun Kumar said, “This NDA government gave very big shocks to the Indian economy with its two decisions, Demonetisation and GST (Goods & Services Tax).”
“Demonetisation has damaged the unorganized sector and led to more unemployment. Now GST is also damaging the unorganized sector very badly because it gives 94% of the employment. There are more crises in the farming sector. So we are heading towards economic crises,” he warned.
He said that due to authoritarian attitude of the government, teaching and research are also getting affected.
“Some kind of crony capitalism is going on. How can an institute that does not exist be declared as Institute of Eminence,” he questioned over the Ministry of HRD’s latest decision to grant the tag of ‘Institute of Eminence to the proposed Jio Institute of Mukesh Ambani’s Jio Foundation.
Mentioning the schemes like Make in India, Skill India, Digital India and Startup India, the report giving year-wise data also said that the economic policies of the Modi government have hit laborers and failed to create jobs as promised by Narendra Modi himself during the 2014 election rallies while projecting himself as Prime Ministerial candidate.
Women Safety & Politics
Referring to numerous cases of assaults on women including the most highlighted recent cases of rapes that happened in Kathua (Jammu), Unnao (Uttar Pradesh) and also the rallies taken out in support of accused by BJP leaders (as in Kathua gang rape an murder case) or attempt to protect BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar (in Unnao Gang Rape Case), UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s controversial decision to withdraw case against BJP’s former union minister Swami Chinmayanand, accused of raping a woman in his Ashram, the report termed as farce the saffron party’s slogans from “Bahut Hua Naari Par Vaar, Abki Baar, Modi Sarkar” given during 2014 general elections campaign to “Beti Bachao, Beti Padao” after coming to power.
The report also mentioned an investigative journalistic piece published in Outlook magazine about how Sewa Bharti, Vidya Bharti, and Rashtriya Sevika Samiti affiliated to BJP’s patron Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), trafficked 31 tribal girls from Assam to Gujarat and Punjab in June 2015 to turn them RSS cadre, which was later confirmed by the Anti-Human Trafficking Unit of the Crime Branch of Delhi Police, Assam State Commissioner for the Protection of Child Rights (ASCPCR) and other agencies.
“Finally in 2018, 19 of these girls could return to their parents,” the report said.
Identity under threat
Former member of Planning Commission Syeda Hameed, while speaking on the report launch event said, “Today my identity has been restricted to a Muslim woman only while earlier I had multiple identities like a woman, an Indian, a South Asian too. But Babri Masjid demolition (1992), Gujarat riots 2002 and Muzaffarnagar riots 2013 have been three big stages that deepened my identity more.”
“We don’t think that whose hands are stained with bloods of Muslims can ever be savior of Muslim women,” she said.
About the effect of cases of lynching of Muslim men she said, “Whether Alimuddin, Junaid, Qasim or Akhlaq etc, vulnerability of the women in their families has been increased thousands of times.”
She also questioned the claims of the Modi government regarding women welfare because it has not heeded to the draft on women policies sent to the cabinet one year ago, seeking reservation for women at every level.
Indian Culture in Darkness
In the report, former civil servant, renowned Hindi poet and former chairman of Lalit Kala Akademi, Ashok Vajpeyi expressed concerns about the vanishing of the Indian culture and traditions.
“Besides the new culture of violence, the most harm I see is the degradation of language. Now public communication has become abusive, threatening and quarreling. Now from top to bottom lie is being told. Whatever is happening is not just against soul and constitution of India but also against Indian culture, History and Hindu religion too,” he said while speaking at the event.
Referring to cabinet minister Jayant Sinha’s felicitation to the Alimuddin Ansari lynching convicts, he said, “Such shameless cultural policy has been adopted just to divide the society.”
Modi’s Neibourhood Policy
Ex. Diplomat and senior Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar explained in the report as to how Modi government has failed in maintaining relations with neighboring countries including Bhutan, Nepal, Maldives, Sri Lanka, China, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
“The relations with Nepal have become bad,” he said while citing the interference of PM Modi in Nepal’s internal affairs.
“We are not nearer to the resolution of any issue with Pakistan then we were on 26th May 2014 (when Modi became PM),” he mentioned in the report.
The report Dismantling India has been compiled by eminent civil rights activists Dr John Dayal, Shabnam Hashmi and Leena Dabiru.
Dr Dayal said, “Almost half of the report is the documentation of hate crimes. This was not an easy report to compile as to collect data is very difficult task.”
Adding to that Leena Dabiru told that research team found that several online articles and videos of hate speeches have been removed in last four years.
Shabnam Hashmi said, “The difference between earlier governments and the present government is that this government has reached the 50% mark of the 14 points which qualify Fascism. If they come to power in 2019 again then Fascism will be at its peak.”