File photo | A protest against the passing of Citizenship Amendment Bill in Hyderabad | PTI
File photo | A protest against the passing of Citizenship Amendment Bill in Hyderabad | PTI
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There’s nothing that the BJP and the RSS love more than the violent Muslim. Over the past six years, if not 60, Indian Muslims have shown incredible patience in the face of extreme provocation. That’s been a problem for Hindutva forces, because how do you manufacture Hindu victimhood if Muslims take provocation silently? Simple: you manufacture the violent Muslim.

Every day, Hindutva hate factories manufacture false stories of Muslims taking to violence and anti-Hindu hate speech. Hate factories like OpIndia cook up stories of Muslims clashing with tribal people in Bihar over land for namaz; add false captions to old, unrelated videos saying Muslims are taking to violence against the RSS and Bajrang Dal.

The protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) must come as a relief to Hindutva hate factories, now that they don’t have to Google for images of protests from Bangladesh and Pakistan and pass them off as Indian Muslims protesting.

Last week saw a major turning point in Indian Muslim politics. Muslim youth across the country decided to break their silence and speak up. Since Narendra Modi became Prime Minister in 2014, Indian Muslim all over India have had an incredible consensus of silence. When we speak, they say, it brings about polarisation. When we speak, our words are twisted by the BJP and the media. When Yogi Adityanath was made Uttar Pradesh chief minister, the silence grew louder. You can meet Muslims giving you theological arguments in favour of silence in testing times.


Also read: What explains the Muslim silence in the face of BJP’s aggressive Hindutva?


Pushed to the wall

One lynching after another spread fear amongst poor Muslims. They became fearful of eating even chicken and travelling in trains. Yet, they didn’t complain. Triple talaq was not only made illegal but punishable by jail, and they took it silently. The demolition of the Babri Masjid was illegal, the Supreme Court agreed, only to legalise it by ordering a Ram Mandir to be built on the site. Indian Muslims were relieved they won’t have to apologise for a demolished mosque anymore. From “ghar wapsi” to being equated with Pakistanis, from complete political alienation and marginalisation to the daily taunts on hateful news channels, they take it all with calm, meditative zen.

This was a problem for Hindutva forces, because if Muslims don’t react how will the BJP polarise India? And how will the BJP win elections with Hindu-Muslim polarisation now that the economy has been destroyed? With CAA-NRC, PM Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah are pushing Indian Muslims to the wall.

A Muslim friend recently told me about the discourse on WhatsApp groups of university youth. What is the use of education, they wonder, if we are going to be declared foreigners and put in detention camps? The diabolical mix of CAA-NRC is telling Muslim youth to forget their future. Instead of looking for a job, they should look for their grandparents’ birth certificates. “Producing historical documents couldn’t get us the Babri Masjid land,” my friend tells me of a WhatsApp message, “how will any document save us from NRC when they have decided to get rid of us?”

Amit Shah has openly and clearly explained in rallies and press conferences that the Citizenship Act will be used as a filter to save non-Muslims, and the rest (meaning Muslims) are “infiltrators” and “termites” who shall be “thrown into the Bay of Bengal”. Is there anything left to the imagination?

There’s a growing realisation that silence as a political strategy has not helped Indian Muslims prevent polarisation. Given that the BJP won over 50 per cent vote-share in many states in the Lok Sabha election, what is Muslim silence achieving other than its own dehumanisation?


Also read: Citizenship protests in northeast show Muslims are really on their own in this fight


Political orphans of ‘New India’

I wonder how I would react if I was told that an Orwellian bureaucratic nightmare was being established to make me a stateless person on the basis of my religion.

How would you react to that?

Non-Muslims have the luxury to ponder. Muslims are in panic. They’ve stopped worrying about polarisation and elections. It’s now a matter of life and death. Instead of assuaging their fears, PM Modi is looking at their clothes.

Expecting Muslims to not react to the threat of being made stateless and put in detention camps is like expecting a patient to feel no pain over a terminal illness. The anguish of these protests is not just about CAA-NRC though, it is a catharsis of the alienation and marginalisation of the last few years.

Note how Congress leader Salman Khurshid was shamed into coming out of his house late Sunday night. Indian Muslims are reacting not just to the politics of Hindutva that seeks to dehumanise them, but also to the expedient politics of so-called secular parties who have stopped speaking up for them. The protests by Muslim youth taking place across the country today are a sign that Indian Muslim youth have finally given up firing from the shoulders of Hindu secular-liberals and secular opposition parties.

These protests are leaderless, not organised by any party or politician, not even the much-maligned Asaduddin Owaisi. The lack of mainstream leadership and political representation of Indian Muslims today is dangerous and unsustainable. Emotional, angry young men and women need to be saved from making mistakes that emotional, angry young men and women often do, and for that they need a leader to speak up for them. “Indian Muslims feel orphaned,” is a line you hear often these days.

Those who want Indian Muslims to not react, need to fix the representation problem, most acute in the lethargic Congress party.


Also read: Assam’s old 1970s fury back with Citizenship Act. This time for a new, young generation


Jamia versus Assam

Stone-pelting and burning buses are unfortunate and condemnable. Everyone must try and prevent violence. These incidents will be amplified to aid the “bad Muslims” narrative. Yet the truth is that the protests have been largely peaceful, even though the police and paramilitary forces have been entering campuses, libraries, toilets and homes and using unnecessary and excessive force. At the behest of their political masters, the police is creating a narrative of violence.

These protests have not been remotely as violent as the ones in Assam, where the homes of BJP-RSS leaders were attacked. Not even the home of chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal was spared. Yet, the few incidents of Muslims getting violent in anti-CAA/NRC protests will be amplified to exacerbate Hindu-Muslim polarisation.

You can tell who the protesters are by looking at their clothes, said the prime minister in poll-bound Jharkhand, and he is not talking about Assamese women in sarees. Even if Muslim youth hadn’t been protesting, PM Modi would still have said something by way of rehearsed dog whistle politics. It is difficult to think of an election in which the prime minister and his home minister haven’t made an anti-Muslim statement.

The situation could go out of hand and if it does, there will be only two men to blame. Like the BJP’s dog whistle politics, we don’t need to say who. You can identify them by their white beards.

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71 Comments Share Your Views

71 COMMENTS

  1. The print or the jihad for you if Muslim is culprit then the news is cooked up,, what a librandu you are,, Muslims are only victims for you actually you people avoid the truth which is inconvenient for you just for trp…

  2. THE AUTHOR DOES NOT SEEM TO BE AWARE THAT IN THE BJP RULED KARNATAKA POLICE HAD LOBBED TEAR GAS SHELLS EVEN INSIDE A HOSPITAL UNMINDFUL OF THE FACT THAT GAS SPREAD ITSELF INTO ICU. WE HAVE SEEN HOW THE NOTED HISTORIAN, RAMACHANDRA GUHA, WAS PHYSICALLY DRAGGED BY THE POLICE WHEN HE HAD NOT VIOLATED SECTION 144 . WHAT KIND OF DEMOCRACY INDIA HAS WHEN AN EX-CM, SIDDARAMAIAH WAS PHYSICALLY PREVENTED FROM GOING TO POLICE FRENZY HIT MANGALURU ? DID NOT MODI COME TO MUMBAI AND HOLD A PRESS CONFERENCE DEPRECATING THE CONGRESS GOVERNMENT WHEN MUMBAI WAS ATTACKED BY TERRORISTS (24/11)? HAS THE INDIAN CONSTITUTION CHANGED SINCE 2014 ?

  3. Even if the situation is now saved, there will be two white bearded men to blame when the next assault comes – on the constitution and on minorities. Meanwhile women suffer rape and worse with only knee jerk reaction after the fact. Meanwhile pollution is slowly killing us all with no coherent policy in sight to contain it. And we have no time to protest all that – we must now protest atrocities in a library. Wah Modi-ji wah! realpolitik learned from your political guru!!

  4. Appeasement politics does no good to the people in whose name it is done. All the parties did appeasement to Muslims, and now Modi has taken it to a new height by appeasing Hindus.

  5. If all unwanted element are doing this then LET ALL HINDUS COME TOGETHER AND TEACH LESSON BUT WITH RULES AND REGULATION WE ALSO CAN SEAT AT FAMOUSEE PLACE AND DO DHARNA

  6. A suggestion for the next article from Shivam: why are there so few young Muslim leaders who speak for the community? How are they bringing the community towards modernity? Why so few comments from them in the Print?

    Surely it’s not all the fault of Modi and Hindus? Are well-meaning people like you keeping them back?

    Why not put pressure on them to change? Many of the girls in the Jamia protests had their heads covered. Is that ‘normal’ in a modern city like Delhi? I don’t think so. Covering the head is a religious act. How does that square with the ethos of a secular India? You can’t expect change in a remote village to happen overnight. But surely it should happen in Delhi?

    • Heheheh…good suggestion. The Muslim women in Europe who are covered in tents from head to toe with only eyes protruding need that advice. And in such outfit some of them wanted to become school teachers. School said no way — they would scare the kids in that batwoman costume.

    • This is a question that has always plagued me. Progressive people like Irfan Habib, Naseeruddin Shaw have kept quiet. The hindu secluarists regularly bad mouth the hindus. We need to have a uniform civil code. It need not be thrust upon Muslims like it was done to hindus in 1955. But a dialogue has to be started to convince people. This has never been done. Believe me, estrangement between Muslims and Hindus is tragic. There is widespread hatred against Muslims. They are blamed for partition. Even if they were why should we continue to play the blame game after 70 years? It is time for both Hindus and Muslims have to move on. During the Punjab problem, I used to read in the papers that hindus have been pulled out of buses and shot. Emperor Kanishka went down in Atlantic. In this case, only a small subset of a much smaller population than Muslims caused so much mayhem. On the whole the Muslims in India have behaved admirably. They have died for India in all the battles India has fought after the freedom movement, whether it is 1965, 1971 or Kargil. I feel that the hindu migrants have to be helped. I don’t mind allowing Muslim minorities who are persecuted. They are microscopically small like Shias, Ahmediyas and Bahais. I don’t know if Shias are persecuted to the extent the hindus are. Pakistan has a common border with Iran and they may not want to provoke them.

  7. Kya Kate Bhrata, vo to react ke naam par seedha phat hi jate he. They have very explosive personality. The kind of personality that burns you from within and from out.

  8. Shivam you have wrote this for fame ?looks you have not lost your keen murdered by this Muslims tell me why this community runaway from their own islamic countries to Europe and rest of world and trying enforce sharia law and biggest problem by marrying 5 women they have become children manufacturing units and bothers those countries you call this religion killing innocent people like mosquitos shame on your knowledge and your self are you half muslim and half suwar ?

    • And you are half rakshas.

      Idiot, have you asked yourself why so many Hindus go to the US and Mid East every year? It’s the same reason why Muslims migrate.

      As for them having 5 children, that’s also a lie.

  9. nice analysis. like the girls in jmi who surrounded a boy on the ground to protect him from police beating, so must we, right-thinking non-Muslims, shield with our bodies our Muslim sisters and brothers. time has come to show our patriotism – jai hind!

  10. Dear Mr Alim
    Satan is not a metaphor or a nebulous concept but resides in real people like Modi and his henchmen.
    For six months I was involved with the RSS, I attended their Shaka.
    They are evil, I’m convinced that one must never converse with the RSS- if you do that, you’ll be lost,
    They are more intelligent than most of us. But if you are more intelligent they will always find someone in their organisation at par to talk to you.
    They pretend to be polite your friend – their political leader Modi hides carefully behind his crafted public image That’s how he enters your mind. But it ends badly if you don’t realise what is happening , the brainwashing. The manipulation of our baser instincts towards evil. The pretence of them being a self help cultural organisation, all the while they turn you against your own community.
    Looking back at my experience with them in Kerela, it felt as if I was amongst the children of Satan and I thank god I left and returned to my adopted faith Christianity.

  11. 30 % Muslims in British India , forced the demand of partition on 70% non-muslims through violence and communal riots.

    Hindus obviously learn no lesson then and then when again Muslims perpetrated genocide of Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists in Pakistan.

    Hindus will pay a heavy price again.

  12. It seems the author is leaving in a fools paradise, totally cut off from the ground realities. All the violence in the name of religion and ideology imported from outside is not visible to the author. People from majority community have been listening to this kind of propaganda since independence which is being done by author and his cabal. If we make such analogy for majority community i.e. releasing pent up anger , than God knows what will happen to so called ROP.

    • Bang on target. But a shameless, openly anti Hindu and anti India yellow paper like The Print would not worry too much about being shown the mirror. If they think people will fall for their third rate propaganda aka journalism, they are sadly mistaken.

      • No sir. We’re not falling for 3rd rate propaganda. What we are listening to, with our mouths open, is the very high level comments from the likes of you and PS. As soon as I read comments like these, I wonder why India has won so few Noble prizes. All the fault of that Italian woman.

  13. The many headed serpent of the Sang Parivar has poisoned India.
    This filth has spread right into the DNA of those who worship and those who have been misled by this facist ideology.
    The nightmare of the communal slaughter that Savakar bestowed India will be soon amongst us.
    Modi This goat of mendes, this henchman of Satan the manifestation of Kali, the butcher of Gujarat will cause the rivers of India to flow with blood.
    Shivram Vij is amongst the few to warn us about the Spectre that now looms over the land foretelling our destruction.

    • This government by the Jamia action has finally given you a small glimpse of state terror. Something Kashmiris have been dealing with for 30 years. Imagine what these men in uniform get away with under AFSPA . If it was not Delhi but some obscure place in UP, the police which such bloodlust would have used bullets.

        • Well if you are going to indulge in the game of Whataboutry.
          Then lets start with 1947 the organised massacre of 200,000 Muslims in Jummu, vultures flew to the region from all over India’s, to feed on the corpses. Entire empty villages with the dead.
          kindly google this it all on the internet.
          This mass genocide was organised by the RSS and abetted by Hari Singh who wanted to change the religious demographics of the state.
          The area of Jummu was ethnically cleansed by those RSS cadre who believed in the writings of Savakar with over a million refugees from the Jummu region.
          I do not say two wrongs make a right. But you seem to be saying the brutal treatment of ordinary 6 Lakhs Kashmiri Muslims are OK because 200 pundits tragically and wrongly died.

          • Thanks for reminding us of our sordid past. Those who have blood on their hands, irrespective of religious affiliations, would obviously want to rewrite history.
            It might be instructive to remember religion is essentially a matter of personal faith but history shows us it has time and again been hijacked by religion as a divisive ideology that proclaims “my god is better than yours.’ Isn’t it ironic that the Almighty needs us mortals to fight for him!?

          • Let us start with 1947. In 1947 non-Muslims constitute 30% of population in present day Pakistan today it is less than 3%. Thanks to Nehru who did not threaten Pakistan with dire consequences . So Pakistan got away with ethnic cleansing and start lecturing us. Their moles like Harsh Mande, Burka Dutta, Tarun Tejpal, Justic Sachar all Punjabis refugees from west Pakistan now lecturing us.

        • Well if you are going to indulge in the game of Whataboutry.
          Then lets start with 1947 the organised massacre of 200,000 Muslims in Jummu, vultures flew to the region from all over India’s, to feed on the corpses. Entire empty villages with the dead.
          kindly google this it all on the internet.
          This mass genocide was organised by the RSS and abetted by Hari Singh who wanted to change the religious demographics of the state.
          The area of Jummu was ethnically cleansed by those RSS cadre who believed in the writings of Savakar with over a million refugees from the Jummu region.
          I do not say two wrongs make a right. But you seem to be saying the brutal treatment of ordinary 6 Lakhs Kashmiri Muslims are OK because 200 pundits tragically and wrongly died.

          • Only 200? How about many people left overnight with whatever possessions that they can carry.
            Their Musllim neighbours bought their houses and property at a pittance. Dying is a relief compared to these.

    • Mohamad Alim when u and ur jamaat dreams of Ghazwa, then all of us will become manifestation of Maa Kali and like Lord Krishna put end to Kansa and like Bheem dealt with Dushshasan we will deal with you and your jamaat.

    • Dear Mr Alim
      Satan is not a metaphor or a nebulous concept but resides in real people like Modi and his henchmen.
      For six months I was involved with the RSS, I attended their Shaka.
      They are evil, I’m convinced that one must never converse with the RSS- if you do that, you’ll be lost,
      They are more intelligent than most of us. But if you are more intelligent they will always find someone in their organisation at par to talk to you.
      They pretend to be polite your friend – their political leader Modi hides carefully behind his crafted public image That’s how he enters your mind. But it ends badly if you don’t realise what is happening , the brainwashing. The manipulation of our baser instincts towards evil. The pretence of them being a self help cultural organisation, all the while they turn you against your own community.
      Looking back at my experience with them in Kerela, it felt as if I was amongst the children of Satan and I thank god I left and returned to my adopted faith Christianity.

    • Keep fighting, but peacefully. I know it’s difficult in face of provacation. But take Mahatma Gandhi as your example.

      Unfortunately, too few Hindus are raising their voices. Hope it will change.

    • What has poisoned India is the Wahabi cult imported from Saudi Arabia. First, it drove out Hindus from the Valley, then forced conversions of Hindus to Islam on Indian soil and then terrorism. Sangh Parivar has gathered popular support because of Wahabi terror. Didn’t the mosques in Valley ask Kashmiri Hindu men to leave their women behind and leave or convert to Islam? When you Muslims indulge in such acts, there will always be a Modi among us to turn the tables.

  14. I am ashamed at my fellow citizens. Look at the filth that passes for opinion. Except for a few, what we see is bigotry, prejudice, fear and insecurity coming out as mindless drivel. That has been the greatest achievement of the BJP, especially the ruling duo. They have made it ok to air such opinion in public. This would have been frowned upon some years ago.

    I am not a “Librandu”, ” Khangress” sympathiser, “Pappu” Lover or into Italian bartenders or MILFs. I am just disgusted at how low the political discourse has fallen. The more Modi Shah duo come up with hair brained schemes that inflict unnecessary pain on the country, the more the Indian public and the Middle class seem to love them. I never dreamt that the country was so much into sado masochism.

    We live in interesting times…. that is the only charitable thing I can about this country. It breaks my heart when I realise that the nominal per capita GDP of India is nearly 1.5 times lesser than that of war torn Ukraine, the poorest country in Europe, not to mention the quality of life. 😔

    • Without peace and social harmony, maintaining law and order will become a Herculean task. Without cohesiveness and trust, there will be no national progress. Sad but true.

    • Who cares about your fine feelings! (With my sincere apologies.)

      We have to take back our chaotic, beloved India from these rascals. Equal for all religions.

  15. As some other reader has pointed out, this reads like an article written in a swanky office rather than one who understands ground reality.
    Manufactured article to the core

    • Kisan khet mein hal chalate hain, patrakar office mein kalam chalate hain. ( Main iPad istemaal karta hoon. ) Iss mein galat kya hai.

  16. “Over the past six years, if not 60, Indian Muslims have shown incredible patience in the face of extreme provocation.”

    Just too good. This writer should join comedy circus. There limits to even pulp fiction. Godhra, 1993 serial blasts, bomb blasts by HuJi, SIMI, Indian Mujahedin were all fictional bestsellers.
    Taking offence at the most trifle of things and immediately burning down whatever is in sight, instigating riots, etc have been the hallmark and documented with numbing regularity.

  17. The author is delirious. Not sure which country he is talking about. Having bought up in Hyderabad I know how Muslims behave, how they trap Hindu girls. I know at least half a dozen incidents as such. But not the other way. Also what’s wrong in CAB or NRC. Why should we provide asylum to Muslims when they have their own Islamic countries in the neighborhood. Morons like you are the reason why we are having all these agitations. BTW, you know what happened to all the secular journalists in our neighboring countries. The same will be your plight and your ilk when the Muslims become majority in the country. People like you are goading Muslims to agitate. I wish the partition made us a Hindu republic and expelled all Muslims. Since they have their own country anyway. Hindu domain is shrinking day by day. In Hyderabad even in my childhood Hindus could not venture into some Muslim areas during the day. I heard that it’s the same case in Some areas in UP, Kerala and other states now.

    • Author may not be delirious, but acting deliberately to malign the ultra-tolerant Hindus and glorify the mulzims. The Print is reputed to be anti Hindu and anti India.

  18. It is excruciatingly painful to witness the fall in humaneness of my fellow Hindus , this is a fall my fellow countrymen history is witnessing. Every country has its stains , South Africa apartheid, America it’s treatment of blacks , Germany Holocaust, Pakistan ahmadiyas and Hindus , sure we are not alone ,but do want to belong to this August company?

  19. country is slowly slipping out of control via ruling dispensation. Rather than adressing fear among muslims, Modi decides to target Muslims perhaps to please his core voter base. Every right thinking citizen of the country have to come together and speak up. Burden of saving constitution, cannot be left to shoulders of young Muslims only every one has to come out and support them. Hopefully new mulsim leadership emerges of this chaos.

  20. Shivam Vij ask how the Hindus felt when all political parties would go to any lenghts for the bloc Muslim vote and do everything to appease this vote bank — even at the cost of antagonizing the majority, smug in their belief that the majority was too splintered to be bothered as long as we got the caste thing right. Well, that has changed a bit now. Thankfully.

  21. This is what happens if you sit in an ivory tower, let your imagination run wild while drinking your latte and come up with a bunch of malarkey to fit the narrative you want to push on your readers to fill your daily quota. Your narrative is at serious odds with my personal experience of growing up in rural India.

  22. I have been praying hard that Muslims, especially young males, do not react with anger and fury to the rising wave of provocations. President Bush told his wife, while introducing Dr Singh, India has one of the largest Muslim populations in the world, not one person has joined al Qaeda. Nowadays one does not have to hijack an aircraft to bring down a tower. One crazed individual getting behind the wheel of a truck or a bus can mow down a hundred pedestrians before he is neutralised. May good sense prevail on all sides.

      • A hecuva paid commentator! Authorities? What authorities? Modi and Amit Shah are shaking in their pants at these riots which are fast ripping through the country!

        • So far, there hasn’t been a street response by Hindus to Muslim rioting. Of course, it isnt going to stay that way forever, is it? As for Shah & Modi, violence by Muslims will always be an opportunity. Firhad Hakim, Kolkata’s Mayor, clearly knows the implications of what you are suggesting.

    • You forgot the butcher knife. (Okay, ordinary kitchen knives will do as witnessed in London a week ago.)

      Thats why France, Germany, UK, and scores of cities in Europe have experienced this type of violence. You know why? Coz’ they are persecuting Muslims like anything.

    • Wrong prayer! You should be praying so that patience of young Muslim men is not tested! Another wrong thing is the quote of president Bush.How would the Muslims reacting with anger and fury make them al Qaeda? Then what would you call Hindus reacting with anger and fury?

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