The intellectuals and artists who have been shouting intolerance for the last one year were nowhere to be found when Muslim protesters enraged by the image of a piggy bank launched attacks on the offices of Lokmat, a popular paper in western India. The mob was angry that the cartoon had depicted a story of the Islamic State finances coming from different parts of the world. Despite these attacks no intellectual, television channel, or the artists came forward to criticizes them, give news bytes, or take a stand against what is clearly a communal attack on a subject which had nothing to do with the sentiments of the Muslims in the country.
While the intellectuals leave no chance of demeaning PM Modi, and the BJP for fostering right wing, and diluting secularism in the country. Another low which hit the country was Lokmat has been forced to apologize for this offence for which it should have stood up. Another joke being played is that pseudo-intellectuals are asking India to learn from Pakistan, a failed state which was deemed as a model country by it’s founders. Can India be compared with Pakistan which has persecuted the Mohajirs, Ahmadis, and Balochs who happen to be muslims.
No actor, artist, writer, politician has attacked these double standards like it does when a Hindu party, group is involved. The lack of any opposition to the acts of omission and commission by the Muslim groups encourages them to increase the heat, and pressure more and more, while India as a country is getting hurt as wedge between the two communities increases.
The reason for this failure to counter the Islamic onslaught writes columnist Sadanand Dhume is that India has been ruled by a left, socialist class lead by Congress whose view on religion, secularism, have become national views. Dhume writes members of India’s 150 million-strong Muslim community are always and only victims of violence, never its perpetrators.
He further writes that curbs on discussing religion which were enforced by British in India were amplified by the Indian politicians which has ensured that this issue has always remained in the closet. Also accepting that who is behind terrorism in this country is considered to be deviant, and those who prefer to remain silent are considered refined.
Religion has also been added to political calculations, and in Maharashtra the recent attacks against Lokmat were carried out by a Congress leader. While politicians use secularism to an urbane concept on the street it is used to whip Muslim resentment, writes Dhume.
He further writes: “The failure to stand up to the mob only encourages bad behavior.The studied silence of India’s mainstream about Islamic extremism opens up space for those on the far right. The only people willing to talk about the problem now are those who are prone to painting it with too broad a brush. “