Connect with us

South Asia

Modi Government Has Stroked Tensions In World’s Biggest Democracy – Economist

Published

on

The Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in India has “stoked divisions in the world’s biggest democracy,” according to an article published in The Economist.

The cover of the weekly magazine shows the BJP’s election symbol, a saffron lotus flower, growing out of barb wire. The article addresses the recently passed controversial citizenship law and the growing intolerance in the country.

India has been witnessing extensive protests against the law, since it was cleared by the country’s Parliament and got presidential approval on December 12. It guarantees citizenship to non-Muslims of three neighboring countries Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh. Critics see the new law as unconstitutional and discriminating against Muslims.

“Last month India changed the law to make it easier for adherents of all religions, except Muslims, to acquire citizenship. At the same time BJP wants to compile a register of all India’s 1.3bn citizens, as a means to hunt down illegal immigrants,” says the article.

The article stated that the law targets the Muslims of India specifically as “many of the country’s 200m Muslims do not have the papers to prove they are Indian, so they risk being made stateless”. Referring to the law as part of a “decades-long project of incitement”, the publication states that the BJP has used it as “electoral nectar”.

“What has been electoral nectar for BJP is political poison for India.” The report further adds that Modi’s latest initiatives threaten Indian democracy and is “likely to lead to bloodshed”.

The publication adds that creating division over religion and national identity will likely benefit the ruling BJP and such moves “also distract attention from awkward topics such as the economy, which has struggled since the BJP’S thumping election victory last year”.

“Modi seems to calculate that a sizeable minority of Indian voters are sympathetic to his constant insinuation that Muslims are dangerous fifth-columnists, always scheming to do Hindus down and sell out their country to Pakistan. That is enough to keep him in office,” added the publication.

“This imperils the inspiring idea of India as the world’s largest democracy. Modi’s policies blatantly discriminate against his Muslim compatriots. The citizenship row is only the latest in a series of affronts, from BJP’S celebrating of vigilantes thought to have killed Muslims to collective punishment of the people of Kashmir valley, who have suffered arbitrary arrests, smothering curfews and an internet blackout for five months.”

The political system is now at risk in India as since Independence in 1947, “India has confounded predictions that its democracy would crumble by accommodating its many constituencies of language, ethnicity, caste, and religion”.

The report further stated that a secular and impartial government, even if flawed in many other ways, protects all these groups. “The deliberate and sustained persecution of one of them constitutes an implicit threat against all—and so puts the political system at risk.”

It warns that many Hindu nationalists are true believers of the right-wing ideology and are not easily restrained even if Modi is “only cynically exploiting religious bigotry”. “He may not want to take things too far—he has a country to govern—but they [Hindu nationalists] will have no such compunction.”

“Happily, many Indians have already had enough, as the recent protests show. SC, which this week declined to suspend the citizenship law, should heed this, show some unexpected spine and declare it unconstitutional. And rather than stoke hostility between two of the world’s great religions, Modi should look for other paths to voters’ hearts.”

Advertisement
Advertisement

Facebook

FEATURED

Maldives Maldives
Asia Pacific3 hours ago

Maldives Could Relinquish Control Of An Island As Chinese Loan & Pressure Mounts?

The Maldives government is now alarmed at the amount of debt it owes to China. With the coronavirus pandemic, the...

j20-vs-tejas j20-vs-tejas
Expert Reviews3 hours ago

Chinese J-20s Outgun Rafale Jets In Simulation Drills But What Will Happen In A Real-Life Air Battle?

China has been trying to intimidate India with its fifth-generation, stealth, J-20 fighter jets with the indigenously produced warplanes shooting...

World-Economic-Forum World-Economic-Forum
Featured4 hours ago

India-China Cyber War: China Second Most Powerful Cyber-Power & India Could Face The Chinese Brunt

As India and China are engaged in prolonged border tensions, India is boosting its capability to deal with cyber-attacks given...

china-detention-camps china-detention-camps
Asia Pacific4 hours ago

China Releases White Paper To Explain Its Commitment Towards Xinjiang & Uighur Muslims

Many Uighurs – around 1 million to 1.6 million, according to the World Uyghur Congress – have left China to...

INDIA-CHINA INDIA-CHINA
Asia Pacific6 hours ago

China Confirms PLA Soldiers Were Killed In Galwan Valley Clash; Claims India Suffered More

China has finally admitted that its soldiers indeed suffered casualties in the barbaric India-China border clash in Galwan Valley. The...

Trillion-Dollar-Infra Trillion-Dollar-Infra
Featured8 hours ago

Russian Mig-29 Jets Steal The Show In Donald Trump’s Fundraising Campaign For US Army

A fundraising campaign for U.S. President Donald Trump directed at gathering support for American soldiers actually displays Russian-made defence equipment...

CHINA-TAIWAN CHINA-TAIWAN
Asia Pacific10 hours ago

Is China Really Monitoring Prominent Indian Personalities Including PM Narendra Modi?

Chinese Embassy in India has outrightly rejected Indian claims that a Chinese firm has been monitoring over 10,000 Indian individuals...

China-Taiwan China-Taiwan
Americas10 hours ago

Taiwan Is “Quenching Its Thirst By Drinking Poison” – China On US-Taiwan Arms Deal

The visit by Keith Krach, an economic representative of the US, defies China's opposition to formal exchanges between the US...

russia-japan-tourism russia-japan-tourism
Featured21 hours ago

Poland Seeks The Arrest Of Russian Air Traffic Controllers For Crashing Their Plane

Poland is seeking to arrest Russian Air Traffic Controllers (ATC) for the 2010 crash at the Smolensk-Severny airport that killed...

CPEC-Project CPEC-Project
Featured22 hours ago

Did Indian Army’s “Muslim Regiment” Refuse To Fight Pakistan In 1965 War?

Social media platforms including Twitter and Facebook are buzzing with posts claiming that a “Muslim Regiment” of the Indian Army...

Advertisement