Media

#RightSideUp: Bonds of Silence, 'Civilisational Justice', 'Vegetarian Manifesto'

A weekly round-up of voices from the right.

New Delhi: If there’s any glee in general about the state of affairs in India, with a whole lot of defending and celebrating every move made by the Narendra Modi government – never mind if it desperately warrants criticism – it is right-leaning websites these days. For them, it’s all rainbows and butterflies in India, and Modi is about to usher in India’s golden years, it seems – that is if readers decide to digest such blatant propaganda day in and day out.

Right wing Twitter also displayed a particularly hateful moment this past week with the floating of the beyond unappetising hashtag #BoycottAllMuslims. This actually became the top trend of the day with many suggesting ways to discriminate against Muslims – it is illegal under Section 153A of the Indian Penal Code to promote enmity and hatred against a community – and several of the accounts that were responsible for making it trend turned out to be followed by various ministers in the present BJP government, including the prime minister himself.

Moving on to an even darker note, political detainees in Kashmir, who are being released after months of detention, are being forced to sign a bond which forbids them from speaking about recent events in the aftermath of Article 370 being torn to shreds.

The bond essentially says that the signatories undertake to “not make any comment(s) or issue statement(s) or make public speech(s) hold or participate in public assembly(s) related to recent events in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, at the present time, since it has the potential of endangering the peace and tranquillity and law and order in the state or any part thereof for a period of one year”. They wold have to deposit Rs 10,000 as “surety” and undertake to pay another Rs 40,000 as “surety” for any violation of the bond – which could also land them back in detention.

Despite the clear trampling of the right to free speech as guaranteed by the constitution of India, right-leaning websites cheerfully reported this move.

For The Frustrated Indian, Akshay Narang writes of how the Modi government displayed caution by not allowing “separatist leaders in the state and pro-Pakistani elements” to “resort to obnoxious propaganda in an attempt to incite hatred and anti-India sentiment in the Valley”. Talking of how many such leaders are now being released, he lauds the fact that the Modi government “remains conscious of the security threats”, and has thus decided to release detainees upon signing such a bond.

He writes:

“The left-liberal cabal went up in arms after the reports of the potential detainees signing the aforementioned bond came out. They indulged in anti-Modi propaganda on expected lines. However, the fact remains that this step has been taken keeping in mind the sensitive security situation of the valley.”

“With this move, the Modi government has given a strong message to the effect that it is clear that it is not going to succumb to the agenda-driven propaganda of the left-liberal cabal and the Modi government will continue to take all possible steps in order to combat the nefarious elements within the Valley.”

Also read: #RightSideUp: India’s Merry Mood, Aarey Protests, ‘Reactionary Right vs Vikas Right’

‘Civilisational justice’

It’s been an all and all exciting week – with a round of assembly elections and various bypolls included – as the hearings in the title suit of the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid case came to an end. In an article, Swarajya editorial director R. Jagannathan argued why giving Muslim groups “a right to build a new mosque elsewhere in Ayodhya” would be a bad deal because it would not be “civilisational justice”.

“By apparently giving in on the Ram Janmabhoomi site, the Muslims get rights to not just build one mosque, but ensure investment in several other mosques, not to speak of being allowed to grab many other mosques now under ASI control. Many of these mosques were built over destroyed Hindu temples, and giving them back to Muslims would mean that for the sake of one Ram Mandir, scores of other mosques similarly built over Hindu places of worship will be deemed to be legitimate.”

He then makes his most “important point”, that the whole point of the issue has not been “whether Hindus get possession of the Ram Janmabhoomi site or not, but the complete refusal by ‘secularists’ and Muslim parties to acknowledge that Islamic iconoclasm caused huge damage to the Hindu psyche”.

In a reminder to Muslims about the supposed past sins of their ancestors in India, he writes:

“While it is fair to say that blame for what an Aurangzeb, Sikandar Butshikan, Alauddin Khilji or Tipu Sultan did should not be laid at the door of today’s Muslims, surely history should not deny this reality? If the Muslims of today are not told what happened in the past, what is the guarantee that communal amity will reign in future?

If every German is told of the damage done by Nazism, why should Indian Muslims be shielded from learning about the iconoclasm and destructive tendencies of past Islamic rulers?”

Jagannathan then tears into “India’s left historians” for having done “enormous damage to “Hindu-Muslim relations by seeking to hide the truth and building false equivalence between the consistent and repeated damage done to temples by Muslim rulers and the occasional case of vandalism by Hindu rulers”.

Also read: #RightSideUp: Modi 2.0 Report Card, Netflix in the Red

A ‘vegetarian manifesto’

Organiser last week published an article which advocates that the political leaders of our country take note of a recent judgment of the Tripura high court which banned animal sacrifices in the state’s temples – disrupting a five-century old practice.

The bench, comprising Chief Justice Sanjay Karol and Justice Arindam Lodh, deliberated on whether the state offering animals for sacrifice in temples could be called a secular activity and if prohibiting it would infringe upon fundamental rights as envisaged under Article 25 (1) of the constitution.

The Organiser article, written by Ratan Sharda of Mumbai, tried to interpret the judgment. According to him, the bench has loosely made a call for a “vegetarian manifesto”.

“I hope the government uses this great humanitarian judgement to introduce vegetarianism in the Indian society. It should be cited for introducing various legislations that can implement the court’s observations in its true spirit and be implemented universally; irrespective of caste, creed or religion. This sacrifice of Hindu traditions will then be worthwhile and can truly bring about revolutionary changes in our environment and social life.

I hope these observations are taken up seriously by the law makers and a law be made to stop Shias from perpetrating violence on self by adults and on children during Muharram; and also a law to stop children from witnessing ‘qurbani’ during Bakri-Eid. We have seen umpteen videos on social media how children cry when their favourite goat is sacrificed. We have seen children being taught to slaughter by training them on toys for this purpose.”

Also read: #RightSideUp: ‘Howdy, Modi’ Hangover, Greta Thunberg, ‘a Liberal Puppet’?

Modi, the great leader

Here’s a quick glimpse about what the News Bharati staff writers had to say about Prime Minister Modi picking up trash at a Mamallapuram beach – an event which was slammed for Modi’s use of a plastic bag for the job:

“Walking barefoot along the seashore, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, this morning, signified true example of ‘practice as you preach’ .

Have we ever seen such a simple leader who picks up trash without any hesitation? A Prime Minister doing this is not mere imagery, it’s a message for all of us that ‘Why we can’t if he can?’… Clad in a black kurta-pajama, Modi was seen with a large plastic bag in hand during his early morning walk as he picked out plastic litter, water bottles strewn on the sands.”

Also read: #RightSideUp: ‘Howdy, Modi’ Wins Hearts; ‘Vicious Fangs’ Exposed at Jadavpur