On 11th June 2016, I read an article on IndiaTimes that said, and I quote: Blaming the decrease in Hindu population in India on impotency of men, Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Pravin Togadia has urged Hindu men to “go home and worship your manhood.” Addressing a gathering in Gujarat on Friday, he asked Hindu couples to have more children to counter the growing number of Muslims in India. Togadia also blamed “love jihad” and conversion to Christianity for slipping percentage of Hindu population… He also questioned the Narendra Modi government’s policies of development without offering protection to Hindus. The VHP leader said, “You are making bullet trains, smart cities, but who will travel in the trains if there is no Hindu?” On 20th July 2016, I read in The Huffington Post: On Tuesday, members from the Punjab unit of the Shiv Sena allegedly stopped trucks on their way to Jammu and Kashmir and forced the Muslim drivers to chant ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’… Of the many things ultranationalists have been attempting to enforce in India, the raising of the ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’ slogan, or even the willingness to raise it, is probably seen by them as a definitive test of patriotism. In many instances, vigilante groups have used the slogan, an ode to ‘Mother India’, to target and marginalise minorities. The chant, however, was not used to inspire a sense of brotherhood, quite the opposite. The report claimed that the same was done to “pay back” Kashmiri Muslims for allegedly harassing Amarnath pilgrims. According to the paper, some drivers were even beaten up for refusing to chant the slogans. On 31st July, I read in Scroll.in: Dalits who were found with dead cows or cow meat deserved to be beaten, BJP MLA from Hyderabad Raja Singh said on Saturday. “Jo Dalit gaye ke maas ko le ja raha tha, jo uski pitai hui hai, woh bohut hi achhi hui hai [Those Dalits who were taking the cow, the cow meat, those who were beaten, it was a very good thing to happen],” Singh said in a video uploaded on Facebook. Singh was referring to the incident in Una, Gujarat last fortnight, where four Dalit men were assaulted by cow vigilante groups when they were found skinning a dead cow….. He then asked if it is necessary to kill cows, or eat their meat. “Yeh bahut galat hai [this is very wrong],” he said. He claimed that because of such “galeez [filthy]” Dalits, others in the community who are patriotic and religious are getting a bad name. Singh then said he supports those who take it upon themselves to teach the Dalits “a valuable lesson”. He also warned “every section of society, not just Dalits”, that they will be taught a lesson in the same way should they kill cows. He also told other gau rakshaks (cow protectors) that while the task ahead of them is difficult, they must overcome them, and not stay silent “till the cow mother is mother India”. On 1st August, I noticed in NDTV, the much respected defense minister of our country saying, “One actor had said that his wife wants to live out of India. It was an arrogant statement…” The report further noted: Mr Parrikar alleged that the controversy around the actor’s comments saw people withdraw from an e-commerce portal he endorsed – he did not name Snapdeal either – and said the controversy cost Mr Khan the contract… “Such people who speak against the country need to be taught a lesson by the people of this country,” Mr Parrikar said, also talking about Delhi student leader Kanhaiya Kumar of the Jawaharlal Nehru University. Do I need to say anything? I actually think that these four quotes sum up what I want to say. Yet, on the beef issue, let me explain something more sinister – the interesting case of the Maharashtra beef ban. What has gone unreported or properly reported by media: 1. Possessing beef is not a crime (India is amongst the world’s largest beef exporters, and many of the exporters are Hindus, who obviously possess the beef for exporting) 2. Slaughtering cows is not a crime. (Jains own some of the biggest slaughterhouses for exports) 3. Exporting beef is not a crime (Again it’s the rich Jains/Hindus who are amongst the largest exporters) 4. Importing beef is not a crime (It comes from Goa, where the population is non Muslim) So what is a crime? Selling beef internally within the state. Who suffers? The individual poor slaughterhouse owners and employees who used to sell locally. Who are they? About 500,000 Muslims. They lose their daily livelihood. Whose staple diet was beef? Muslims and equally importantly Dalits. (Go to any place where beef is available in Delhi, you will observe it’s packed even during Ramadan… so who is eating? The Dalits whose primary source of protein is beef).
In fact, as per the latest NSSO census quoted by a July 2016 Live Mint report, 7% of Hindu beef eaters are upper caste Hindus ; amongst the remaining Hindu beef eaters, “more than 70% of the beef-eating population is SC/ST, 21% is other backward castes” quotes the news report. So there are interesting laws coming out in this land where selling a cow for slaughter has been a key source of earning for none other than Hindus, given that the moment the cow stops giving milk, every Hindu sells it off knowing fully well that it’s going to be slaughtered for beef. But today, thanks to the new rule that is trying to ban not just the slaughter of those cows which give milk, but as they say gauvansh or some such thing like that which means you can’t slaughter the bull, the male calf and even the cow that has stopped giving milk, what we have are thousands of cows being left in the vast lands of Bundelkhand to die, because no one wants to own or feed them anymore. So much for Gau Mata. In effect, today, the Dalits’ and Muslims’ main source of protein is in scarcity, while the cows die as they can’t be slaughtered. And the price of beef is now at Rs 140, almost the same as that of chicken… In fact, given this, I wonder what was Raja Singh and Shri Togadia’s fear? There is no fear anymore for Hindus… We will starve the Muslims and ‘Filthy’ Dalits dead if necessary and throw them off their livelihoods. Am sure everyone knows that I have no love for religion and hate the very existence of religion and the concept of this imaginary Pokemon called God. I am no Muslim sympathizer. Nor a Hindu hater. I just feel for those being marginalized. I have been one of those, who, at the cost of being labeled as sold out to Modi, had totally supported his bid for the nation’s leadership and even seriously considered an invitation to join the party; besides writing tens of articles in The Sunday Indian as well as in other national dailies supporting his candidature. Why? Because I thought that finally, we have a leader who can speak. Despite my being an anti-theist, I thought, so what if he is from a Hindu party; he has the courage to say “toilets before temples”! He can speak. He can lead. Dear Sir, people in your party and its support group are hell bent on forcing us to go to the toilets you wanted to be built. Not for the reasons you wanted, but to go there to worship our own linga… apart from additionally worshipping the Shiv linga in the temples. So that we can counter the Muslim threat to this great nation. They are hell bent on proving your toilets before temples slogan right. Only in a wrong sense. They want us to say Bharat Mata Ki Jai to prove our patriotism. They are using beef to hunt down Muslims and Dalits. If you say India is becoming intolerant, they want to teach us a lesson. Therefore, I don’t have the courage to put any conclusion to my article. I am just waiting to hear your man ki baat… to know what you want and what you conjure of it all. I am waiting for a roaring speech that sets them all right. Unless this is what you really wanted to happen in the country.