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Thread: 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

  1. #1
    Abdülmecid I's Avatar ¡Ay Carmela!
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    Default 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

    During the last week of February, an inter-communal riot had shaken Delhi, with over than fifty victims. Violence between Hindus and Muslims is not a very rare occurrence in India, with the latter almost always being most affected by the pogroms. Unfortunately, the situation doesn't seem to improve, as militant Hinduism has been become trendier lately, while this tendency is actively encouraged by the authorities. Actually, the tolerance of the state authorities for violence against religious minorities, especially under the currently ruling Indian People's Party is particularly worrying.



    Party leaders were heavily involved in the attacks, while the initial spark was ignited by an IPP counter-demonstration against those who protested against the Citizenship Amendment Act. Said legislation facilitates the acquiring of citizenship by Christian, Zoroastrian, Buddhist and other refugees from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh, with Muslims being a glaring exception. Rather unsurprisingly, the law has been accused of being discriminatory on a religious basis. Meanwhile, both the police and the health services have been criticised for their behaviour during the riots, with the former being filmed torturing victims of the attacks, some of them eventually dying from their wounds. Keep in mind that the Delhi police, unlike those of the autonomous Indian states is controlled directly by the government. Of course, the prime-minister himself has been often implicated in turning a blind eye to Hindu supremacist, as his record was already spotted during his governorship in the north-eastern province of Gujarat.

    Meanwhile, he openly promotes a vigorous policy of Hindu nationalism, which has actually benefited him greatly during the elections, as he has successfully constructed an idealised profile as India's determined defender, at the expense of perceived threats, foreign or domestic, against Indian prosperity. In my opinion, Modi's right-wing populism is not going to deescalate in the foreseeable future, given its obvious efficiency and that Modi's financial reforms are viewed much more controversially by pious Hindus. His liberalisation of economy, by endorsing privatisation, promoting international investments, curtailing labour rights and relaxing environmental requirements has been praised as responsible for the growth of Indian economy. However, it has also caused unrest, as trade unions inevitably disagreed, while unemployment and income inequality actually increased. As a result, empty appeals at the glory of a Hindu, Indian identity can serve as a valuable red herring to distract voters from more pressing matters, at the expense of course of the weak scapegoats: Poor Muslims, whom their Hindu neighbors are manipulated to blame for their ills.

    For a quick summary, Patrick Cockburn provides as usual an enlightening piece.

  2. #2

    Default Re: 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

    Nationalism is not necessarily a corrosive force, but it appears it has taken a turn for the worse. Modi made a lot of promises on his way to office and it appears that time has begun to run out for the Prime Minister. It's not too late to unite the country, but I suppose the question is whether Modi is really a Hindu supremacist or not.

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    Default Re: 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

    India's economy and politics really are a mess. On the one hand India's economy needs serious reforms if it's to provide opportunities for the next generation beyond the hellish social darwinist ratrace and suffocating environmental disaster that currently awaits them (even the working class Hindus, let alone minority groups). On the other hand, Modi is really a worrying figure, surrounding himself with charlatans and thugs. But the leaders of Brazil, Russia, China, plus Turkey, the Philippines and South Africa are all perpetrating such shocking crimes it's no wonder India, at the best of times an inward-looking and largely ignored part of the world, is hardly worth a mention in most of the Western media.

    I wonder if Modi actually entered with good intentions (as much as is possible with such a checkered man) and then realised just how gargantuan a task it is to modernise and yet maintain stability in a country containing 1/7th of the entire species. Nobody except the Chinese have ever had to rule such a vast number of people - the British Empire at its height contained not much more people than the USA today. And the Indian premier does not have the advantages that the Chinese have, of being a unified civilisation with virtually no significant minorities to speak of, and an authoritarian state with no need for democratic support.
    Last edited by Copperknickers II; March 11, 2020 at 03:54 PM.
    A new mobile phone tower went up in a town in the USA, and the local newspaper asked a number of people what they thought of it. Some said they noticed their cellphone reception was better. Some said they noticed the tower was affecting their health.

    A local administrator was asked to comment. He nodded sagely, and said simply: "Wow. And think about how much more pronounced these effects will be once the tower is actually operational."

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    Default Re: 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

    Quote Originally Posted by Love Mountain View Post
    Nationalism is not necessarily a corrosive force, but it appears it has taken a turn for the worse....
    This is a toxic mix of intolerance on a number of fronts, religious primarily, some racism, some nationalism. The narrow association of one religion (Hinduism) with the nation, and the demonisation of Islam (the other minority religions are tolerated for now but there's been some intolerance in the past) is classic populism.

    Quote Originally Posted by Love Mountain View Post
    I suppose the question is whether Modi is really a Hindu supremacist or not.
    As with Erdogan I think the effect is more important than the cause. Modi incites Indians to massacre other Indians as a way of securing political control. He's a corrupt and evil ruler. The widening wealth gap in India suggests he serves Industrialist billionaires (and the corrupting influence of Indian business is legendary, reaching into Australia for example through the Carmichael mine debacle, as well as "state capture" in South Africa).

    Modi's methodology is that of a classic populist. If there were another scapegoat eg international communism became a threat perhaps he could find some pinkos to persecute? Muslims are his scapegoat of choice, which makes him essentially a bigot.
    Jatte lambastes Calico Rat

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    Default Re: 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

    I wonder what Gig’s perspective on this is (or Ishan, if he’s ‘bout)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Himster View Post
    The trick is to never be honest. That's what this social phenomenon is engineering: publicly conform, or else.

  6. #6
    Gigantus's Avatar I am thinking more about running away now then I did as a kid, but by the time I put my teeth in, my glasses on and find my car keys I forget why I am going.
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    Default Re: 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

    You summoned me?

    Having lived in India for the last 20 years it's impossible to ignore the changes towards more radical Hinduism. I hesitate to use 'Nationalism' because Muslims are the target. Muslims that have been Indian citizens since long before India became a Nation (it goes back to the Mugal's period). 'Saffronizing' is mostly used in this context, referring to the sacred color of Hinduism.
    In my eyes the only obstacle for this stance to become official policy is the constitution which clearly states that India is a secular state. Question is how long influential persons like Modi will be deterred by that, or worse, will be able to repeal it. The protests that quickly became riots due to a lack of crowd control (intentional or not) are a direct response to an attempt to get a legal foothold for that stance as far as I can discern. Modi isn't called India's Nero (not to be confused with Nehru) for nothing, although I think he prefers a sitar over a harp or fiddle.
    Given the problems that come with the stupendous population increase here (they were about to touch one billion when I got here, its 1.4b now) I do not hold much hope that underlying issues will get addressed, rather they will get used and deflected on a scapegoat - given the prevailing perpetuation of 'Muslim are to blame' attitude since the partition it's no surprise what is happening, only how fast it is moving at the moment.
    Last edited by Gigantus; March 25, 2020 at 11:13 PM.




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    Default Re: 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

    Well damn.

    I can see why people disliked Tulsi Gabbard for hanging around Hindutva people. Is there any particular reason or catalyst for what I see as being sectarianism increasing. Is Modi the chicken or the egg.

    And how long until people want to a. Secede from India or b. Form defensive militias or even worse c. Form offensive terrorist groups.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Himster View Post
    The trick is to never be honest. That's what this social phenomenon is engineering: publicly conform, or else.

  8. #8
    Gigantus's Avatar I am thinking more about running away now then I did as a kid, but by the time I put my teeth in, my glasses on and find my car keys I forget why I am going.
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    Default Re: 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

    Quote Originally Posted by Aexodus View Post
    Is there any particular reason or catalyst for what I see as being sectarianism increasing. Is Modi the chicken or the egg.
    Reason? Successive governments incapable (in large part due to corruption) of improving living standards to such an extent that an external thread is required to keep said governments in power. Modi is simply a catalyst, albeit a good one. Trump could learn a lot from him, starting with the proper pronunciation of namaste and ending with being subtle when subverting the constitution. Donald has a handicap anyhow: it's way easier to get to your goal when you can use religion instead of politics. The less rational, the faster the results.

    All of that is nothing new where history is concerned, new is the sheer size of the country and it's nuclear capability. Mix that with the 'eternal' enemy next door and you want to renew your Valium prescription.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aexodus View Post
    And how long until people want to a. Secede from India or b. Form defensive militias or even worse c. Form offensive terrorist groups.
    There has been splitting off of some regions recently to calm the peasantry (and enable more corrupt politicians), bringing Kashmir officially into the fold after all these years might yet prove disastrous in the long run.
    Last edited by Gigantus; March 26, 2020 at 06:57 AM.




  9. #9

    Default Re: 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

    Hindutva wants to bring Sikhs from Afghanistan based on the CAA already. Problem is, Sikhs are largely against the CAA because they think it discriminates against Muslims. But makes me wonder the impact of Sikh immigration to Punjab could have on Khalistani sentiment further down the road. Sikhs are the next scapegoat, and they know it well.


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    Default Re: 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantus View Post
    Reason? Successive governments incapable (in large part due to corruption) of improving living standards to such an extent that an external thread is required to keep said governments in power. Modi is simply a catalyst, albeit a good one. Trump could learn a lot from him, starting with the proper pronunciation of namaste and ending with being subtle when subverting the constitution. ...
    Yep Trump may be offensive but he's minor league compared to the Muslim-bashing in India, the Jew-bashing in Tehran or the "White"-bashing in Zimbabwe.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantus View Post
    ...Donald has a handicap anyhow: it's way easier to get to your goal when you can use religion instead of politics. The less rational, the faster the results..
    Bush got the US into two Vietnams on the back on 9/11, neither one of them was in Saudi Arabia where the leadership, money and ideology behind the attack were all from. Trump barely got elected bashing Mexicans so your point is quite persuasive.
    Jatte lambastes Calico Rat

  11. #11

    Default Re: 2020 Pogroms in India and the Role of the Central Government

    Looks like Kali is beating the out of Allah.
    But in all seriousness, the conflict goes back centuries, when Islam was brought into region with fire and sword. Pakistan backing local equivalent of ISIS on India's territory also doesn't help.

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