Hindutva refers to a 100-year-old Hindu supremacist movement that aims to turn a constitutionally secular India into an exclusive Hindu state. The movement is led by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the ideological fountainhead of India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and dozens of other Hindu right-wing groups across the country.
Everyone talks about the ‘Gujarat Model’ and ‘Uttar Pradesh model’ when it comes to Hindutva atrocities, but in south India it is actually the ‘Karnataka model’ which has now spread to the rest of the country.
Over the last few years, Uttar Pradesh, India’s most populous state governed by the Militant Hindu Monk Yogi Aditya Nath, has made headlines for its anti-Muslim policies, including extra-judicial encounters, demolishing homes and businesses, and arresting people for exercising their freedom of speech.
Before Uttar Pradesh, it was the “Gujarat model” that was widely seen as having first spread the Hindutva movement across India with its large-scale violence and apartheid-style segregation of Muslims, cunningly crafted by Narendra Modi himself.
In 2002, Modi’s government was accused of a state-sponsored pogrom of Muslims following the burning of a passenger train, in which Hindu pilgrims, were killed. While officials said more than 1,044 Muslims were killed and 2,500 injured and 223 missing (till this date) in the massacre that followed, activists claim the toll was twice as high.
However, the “Karnataka model” has garnered relatively less attention. Yet, since the 1990s, this highly developed and urban region has not just participated in but also led the Hindutva project nationally.
In the last two weeks alone, there have been at least three religiously motivated murders in coastal Karnataka, including two Muslim men and a member of Hindutva youth wing.
A state minister of Karnataka from Hindutva parties, said openly, southern state would “go five steps ahead of Uttar Pradesh” and was ready to even carry out extrajudicial killings of the accused.
Hijab Ban, Boycott Meat Sale, Muslim Trade Boycott, Interfaith Marriages Ban, Arresting Muslim Youth and Activists, Unknown Killing of Muslim youth.
For close observers of Karnataka’s politics, these events are no coincidence.
None of these issues erupted sporadically … The Sangh Parivar has worked on all of these issues meticulously over decades in this region.
Sangh Parivar, family of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh" or the "RSS family" refers to India’s many Hindutva organizations controlled by the RSS.
Karnataka is the only southern state where the Hindutva (BJP) is in power - a political success that came after decades of communal polarization and Hindu consolidation.
The local media, for example, refers to Muslims and Christians as “anya Bharatiya” (the other Indians) or “anya komu” (the other religion).
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Source: Al Jazira
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