India Champions Islamophobia

India human rights violations (handcuff) | OPED COLUMN Magazine

India has crossed all the limits in terms of hatred towards ‘Muslim as a community’ and ‘Islam as a religion’.

Yead Mirza | Oped Column Syndication

Islamophobia has been increasing globally for the past two decades and its ugliest manifestation could be seen in today’s India.

While Israel had championed hatred towards ‘Muslims as a community’ and France championed the hatred towards Islam and its prophet, the Islamophobia of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s India has crossed all the limits, in terms of hatred towards both ‘Muslim as a community’ and ‘Islam as a religion’.

In India, the derogatory remarks against Islam are made — and demonizing of and violence against Muslims are taking place— on a daily frequency now. What’s worse, Muslims are systematically deprived of meaningful protection from judiciary, police and other legal authorities.

It is well-documented that millions of Muslims and other minorities in India’s Northeastern states have been stripped from their citizenship of India. Such blatant prejudice and discrimination against the minorities!

Yet the so-called international community only notices the Gulf monarchs’, Iran’s and China’s imprisonment and confinement of opposing voices, but turns a blind eye to the killings of Indian minorities, a growing trend backed by even India’s latest institutional policies.

The Gulf monarchs’, Iran’s and China’s handling of opposing voices are certainly violation of human rights, so too are the killings of Muslims by the police in Assam and the persecution of the innocent teenagers in Kashmir at the hands of the Indian para-militaries — which are well-documented with video evidences.

Although the human rights violations committed by India as well as the Gulf monarchs, Iran and China are condemnable equally, the magnitude and degree of violations demand different magnitude and degree of condemnation. There is certainly a big difference between the general trend of secret tortures and the general trend of open killings. These two are certainly not equal in magnitude and degree.

Someone representing the so-called international community should explain how the “lynching to death” of Muslims in “broad daylight” with police watching (in India) has same magnitude with the “tortures” of Uyghurs in the “secret” concentration camps (in China).

The Indian government and the current ruling party have been systematically and institutionally marginalizing and discriminating India’s 200 million Muslims, the world’s largest Muslim minority that accounts for approximately 14 per cent of the country’s population. For this, the criticism of the Modi government and his BJP party was long overdue. Yet the governments of the Muslim majority countries preferred, for economic and strategic reasons, not to take a stand against the Islamophobia of Modi’s Hindutva version of Hindu nationalism.

It took an insult against the most influential person of a religion, the prophet of Islam, for the Gulf, the West and the United Nations to condemn India and its institutionalization of Islamophobia.

Although many states and global institutions released statements condemning the latest infamous remarks made by the BJP’s spokespersons (who are now suspended from the party) against the prophet of Islam, it is the Qatar’s Assistant Foreign Minister Lolwah al-Khater’s statement that fits-in with the total picture.

Hence, it would be appropriate to close this article with his statement:

“The Islamophobic discourse has reached dangerous levels in a country long known for its diversity and coexistence. Unless officially and systemically confronted, the systemic hate speech targeting Islam in India will be considered a deliberate insult against 2 billion Muslims.”

Yead Mirza is a blogger, writer and observer of global current affairs.

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