Letters to the editor

Readers’ comments: We need a mass movement to halt the madness of hatred engulfing India

A selection of readers’ opinions.

Not in my name

This is a bold article and I too believe that only the Hindu majority that believes in an India for all can stem this environment of hatred and discrimination (“Not In My Name: I refuse to cede Hinduism to those who want to make India a Hindu rashtra”). Hindu fundamentalists who have developed such virulent hatred for other religions are emboldened by the people in power to spew venom openly and the silence of the government is deafening. We will need a mass movement to halt the madness engulfing our nation. – Raymond Fernandes

***

While I am deeply saddened by this lynching, I wonder why no such protests are being organised against the lynching of the police officer in Kashmir. The least that could be done is condemn both in the same breath. – Ramesh V

Fatal silence

While the premise and content of this article hit the nail on the head, the title is misleading and polarising (“A story of two lynchings – and the silence of Hindu India”). While you talk about a failure to rouse the collective conscience, the title demonises one religion. Do we as journalists really need to stoke the fire of communal hatred that the government has already lit? It seems irresponsible.

To be fair and for context, had the same incident taken place in the South, there would be mass protests, irrespective of religion. Isn’t the issue about the silence of India – Hindus, the Christians, the Jains etc? – Lakshmi Sivadas

***

Both these episodes are disgraceful. Humanity has been shattered. – Ashok Sharma

***

The headline makes it clear that the author has an agenda that clouds his judgement. If a few people commit a crime, where are all Hindus blamed? One could say this is payback for Islamophobia, but that is illogical. Under no circumstances are these vile acts acceptable. How many Hindu organisations supported the lynching of the 15-year-old? Are these acts related to any so-called Hindu Terror outfits?

The misguided Left of India has long abandoned Marx and has allied itself with the most reactionary elements of theology. The idea of Hindu Terror has been created by of our colonial atavistic scholars to stay relevant.

Before the Left loses all credibility, it must reassess its roots. – Arun Jetli

***

An incorrect and ill-conceived analysis. The media should be positive instead of spreading propaganda. Such an analysis will only cause the ill feelings in society to escalate. These killings are certainly condemnable, but you seem to ignore the good things happening in society. – Iyer Sivaramakrishnan

***

How did this trend begin and who started it? It’s always the so-called secularists or communists who speak up only when Muslims are killed. I am not making excuses of what the men did but one has to accept that Hindus are blamed for everything that goes on. A Hindu is never taught to hurt people or animals. Those who commit such acts work against the real Hindus and are used by politicians. – Sheela Prabhu

***

This are really sad events. I used to praise the Hindu religion to my relatives and friends because of its inclusiveness and support to all faiths.

Muslims across India are living with insecurity. There have no leader, no direction, no defense – no one to raise their voice. Even the media is not supportive. In fact, the media is creating an environment that increases the fear in the community. – Rizwan Patel

***

Kudos to Scroll.in for allowing voices that are ignored by mainstream media, which is either in line with the ruling party’s agenda or motivated by the Opposition to pull it down.

I was deeply disturbed to hear of Junaid’s death at the hands of a mob. But I am also upset at the media’s misreporting of the issue and the playing up of the beef angle because that sells better than an altercation over seats in a train. I am also disturbed by the callous use of such stories for political gains, as is evident by the tweets cited in your article, and the fact that the railway police and co-passengers did not intervene to help the boys.

If Hindus are expecting the Muslim community to come forward and actively denounce act of terrorism committed in the name of jihad, they should also come forward and actively condemn the crime committed in the name of cow protection or imposing food choices in the country. – Prashant Verma

***

It’s gut-wrenching to think of where India is headed. However, it would have been better if the words “silent majority” were used throughout the article as opposed to “silent Hindus”. That’s because our entire population, irrespective of religion, should speak up against such atrocities, but a majority are silent, across religions. By speaking only of Hindus, you are narrowing the responsibility of speaking up to just one group and absolving others.

Most importantly, by using the term Hindu, you run the risk of alienating the mainstream Hindu population by clubbing them with the extreme Right, which I would like to assume is still a minority in India, and thereby playing into the hands of extremist forces. – Anindya B

***

This is a strong and poignant analysis (“Why 200 people did not see a dead Muslim teenager on a railway platform in North India”). The need of the hour is to stand up for the rights of the minorities and the rule of law and to disassociate from inhuman ideologies. – Rosa

Statehood demand

The article is right – the power to create states and redraw state boundaries lies solely with Parliament (“Pressure Modi, not Mamata: The Gorkhaland agitation is directed at the wrong regime”). The case of Telangana’s creation shows that state governments need not even be consulted. Moreover, the Darjeeling Hills fufill all the basic criteria for the creation of states, on linguistic, cultural, ethnic or even geographical bases. – Vivan Eyben

***

Krishna Ananth has very justifiably highlighted the century-old aspiration of Gorkha people for the creation of Gorkhaland. Prime Minister Modi, in his last visit to Darjeeling, had supported the community and their aspirations. Gorkha people all over India are eagerly and impatiently looking forward to their long-cherished dream coming true. – SN Pradhan

***

If Gorkhas are really serious about the demand for Gorkhaland, they should press the Centre to give them some land within the National Capital Region, which will ensure a much better future and more prosperity. JK Chakrabarty

Snob club

This incident highlights the plight of our North Eastern brothers across India (“Delhi Golf Club asks Meghalaya woman wearing traditional dress to leave for ‘looking like a maid’”). Culturally, India takes great pride in its diversity, but when it comes to the North East, we have considered them outsiders. The recent interview with Matin Rey Tangu (from the movie Tubelight), where he was asked if this was his first visit to India, further emphasises the situation. This calls for immediate recognition and acceptance of the North Eastern culture. – Girish Nair

Vote issue

Is the Andhra chief minister trying to threaten people (“Won’t hesitate to ignore villages that don’t vote for TDP, says Andhra Pradesh CM Chandrababu Naidu”)? This is a democratic nation and it is not correct to threaten to neglect those who don’t vote for one person or party. People will vote if you do good work for them. – Harish Vucchuru

Modi-Trump embrace

This piece misses an important point – the strategic challenge faced by the world in assuring that failed states (like Syria) and nuclear-armed states like North Korea and Pakistan do not disrupt world peace (“Modi-Trump meet: Why some Americans have a grouse against India’s business-friendly prime minister”).

The convergence of India’s interest those of of the US, China and Russia for developing strategies to deal with Jihadist elements in Pakistan is the greatest under Prime Minister Modi. None of these major powers alone is in a position to stop Pakistan from playing them against each other. With a large Muslim population, India has the potential to assist the US, China and Russia in defining positive strategies for the well-being of the Muslim civil society and thereby the world.

As US President Trump urgently needs to define and execute strategies to deal with these nation states, not discussing this topic would be an important omission. – Harish Mehta

Majority wins

I strongly agree that there are millions who stand against a Hindutva state (“Never mind the lifeless opposition. The real challenge to Modi and Shah comes from ordinary Indians”). Sadly many of us are branded anti-nationals for speaking up against the government, while there are in fact people who deserve that tag. This country needs massive reforms not just to its economy but also to its functioning. It needs a party that is unlike the Congress or BJP or any other that exists at present. – Pranav Kumar

***

I don’t see how intellectuals and the media can challenge the Modi-Shah duo. After the politically motivated award-wapsi, intellectuals and artists have no credibility left. What you say in this article is just wishful thinking. You may want non-political people to stand up to the BJP, and they may do it too, but it’s hard to see that making any impact on the ground. – Akash

***

This article very forcefully puts forward the author Ramchandra Guha’s views but one thing he forgets is that the monsters were created by the corrupt Congress regime and its policies. If Hindus feel safe under the BJP, why the saffron party?

Nehru did give direction to nation but failed miserably on Kashmir, China, Pakistan and Tibet. No generation can pardon him for his follies. Guha has also forgotten how the Congress has undermining the roles of other freedom fighters by only highlighting the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty. – Vishwas Wadekar

Breaking boundaries

Not just this year but every year on Eid, black bands should be worn as a sign of protest (“Why Indians who still believe in morality must wear black bands this Eid”). This article makes strong arguments and should make all Indians, irrespective of religion and caste, shed the narrow and limited view of themselves and others. I would like all of us to remember a simple truth about all our actions, which is that we cannot escape their consequences. – Manu

***

I couldn’t agree more with the author, Ajaz Ashraf. It’s a beautifully written appeal. We saw Partition happen as a result of the divisions created by the British. Let us not do the same to one another. People of all religions and castes have the right to live in peace, liberty and happiness in India. – Umi Sinha

False case

Thank you for highlighting the truth at a time when it is running scarce because of arrogant and corrupt politicians and governments (“‘I was scared’: MP man says police made him sign false report saying Muslims celebrated Pakistan win”). Unfortunately the victims are the poor and innocent people. Where is my India heading? – Tahseen Mohammad

***

I feel deeply pained and ashamed by this. I belong to the first generation of free Indians and can say without any hesitation that this was not the society we struggled to build. – Yashwant Thorat

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