The Last Nail

India’s secular image has been placed in a coffin which will soon be buried by the Hindutva ideology.

By Dr. Ahmed Saeed Minhas | February 2020

India needs no enemy under its Modi-led fascist government. The severely discriminating Hindutva ideology has tainted Modi’s acts, one after another and are inching India towards its ultimate break-up. There are optimists within the Hindu community, mostly the elite caste, who think that India will rise as the most glorious Hindu state of the world with the daring steps taken by the incumbent BJP government as it has the capacity to impact the new world order and share global power. There is, however, general pessimism about Modi’s acts of discrimination, especially against its over 200 million Muslim population. The pessimists belong to not only the domestic but also the international community. They believe that the Indian Union, which had a unique bondage of secularism that mainly kept it in its present geographical shape, has been challenged from within. The Indian constitution does not allow any kind of discrimination on the basis of religion. Even at the time of Independence, Nehru proudly claimed that India was a secular state or, in simpler terms, ‘home of all religions’ while Pakistan was occasionally criticized for being religion-based.

Under the present domestic unrest in India, it appears that while India was being internationally criticized for its blatant human rights violations in Indian-held Kashmir by an unprecedented abrogation of the Indian Kashmiris’ identity, the BJP government, under the evil-minded Modi, decided to play with yet another fire - discriminating against the Muslim population by denying them Indian citizenship. Perhaps, Modi believed that the punishment of one or hundred murders remained the same so he tried to enforce the citizenship act simultaneously as it would equally bear political resistance, thereby avoiding global focus on Indian-held Kashmir.

An objective analysis must be made of the evolving situation, impact on the region and response options from Pakistan.

The controversial Citizenship Amendment Bill has been enacted as law by the Indian Parliament. It specifically denies citizenship to those Muslims who migrated to India from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan, besides placing the onus on all the Muslims living in India to prove their identity as pure Indian citizens, failing which they would be detained in camps for the rest of their lives. The discriminating enactment of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) segregates the Muslims from other non-Hindu minorities. The discrimination has naturally caused a tectonic effect on the Indian fibre of a secular societal identity, especially in the north-eastern Indian state of Assam where Modi has tried to implement the law in quick time.

The unprecedented act of doubting the native Muslims’ identity has erupted violence-prone protests all around India. The situation is getting worse with every passing day and the over 200 million Indian Muslims are being viewed as aliens. The Muslim population, their heritage, educational institutions and values are being challenged and they are facing the wrath of extremist Hindus.

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The writer is a strategic and security analyst and is also on the faculty of the DHA Suffa University (DSU) in Karachi. He can be reached at
ahmedsaeedminhas81@dsu.edu.pk

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“As a parent and a citizen of India, I am deeply saddened by the unrest across various educational institutions of our country. I hope and pray for peace to return as soon as possible. Great teachers learn from their students. I salute the world’s youngest democracy.”
Hrithik Roshan,
actor

“I strongly condemn the violence that the police have shown in dealing with the students. In a democracy, citizens have the right to peacefully protest. I also condemn any kind of act of destruction of public property. Violence is not a solution for anything!”
Rajkumar Rao,
actor

“This has gone too far. Can’t stay silent any longer. This government is clearly fascist and it makes me angry to see voices that can actually make a difference stay quiet.”
Anurag Kashyap,
film director

“There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest. With the students and their democratic rights to protest! I condemn violence against protesting students.”
Manoj Bajpayee,
actor

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