Haifa was searching for a rented house, and she was rejected by homeowners because she is Muslim.
Haifa shared two screenshots on August 16 of her Whatsapp conversation with the house owners on Twitter. She wrote, "If everyone is done celebrating the 75th anniversary of independence, here is how I spent my Aug 15th."
In Karnataka, several house owners turned down a Haifa looking for a house to live in due to her religious beliefs.
Since Modi came to power, religious discrimination has become the new normal in Indian society, but this shouldn’t go unvoiced.
When the broker learned that the customer seeking a residence was identified as "Haifa," he noticed a problem in offering her the place. "Property is available, but the owner wants a Hindu family," he wrote in a WhatsApp chat, making the Muslim woman ineligible to occupy.
"What an irony that I am not finding a house in my own "home country," she wrote.
Her social media post attracted over 11K likes and several comments. Netizens poured in mixed reactions to the incident.
A Twitter user shared his experience with house hunting. He wrote, "Faced the same in Mumbai. One uncle said, "I don’t have any issue with Sikhs, but I have an issue with non-veg," without even asking if I eat non-veg or not."
The comment on Haifa’s post is proof that these things happen more often than we hear of.
Non-vegetarian food might be one reason for such discrimination. But institutionalized discrimination against Muslims is growing in Indian society.
According to the India Housing Report, from 2017 to 2019, revealed the nature of rental housing discrimination against Muslims in Delhi and Mumbai. A study discovered that rental discrimination is neither localized nor episodic but deeply systemic.
Brokers often explicitly reject Muslim tenants. But they also do so in subtle ways by steering Muslims towards Muslim-concentrated localities. One broker in Delhi said that, "I say to Muslims that I do not have houses. I do not like to involve myself in problems. I am not saying every Muslim is a terrorist, but who can take a risk. Having Muslims is a problem. A hundred questions come in for verification. I do not want such problems.
Another broker in Delhi’s Inderlok neighborhood told us that he decides where to direct tenants based on their names—a clear reference to their religious identity.
A Facebook group called "Indians Against Discrimination’ was set up in 2015 after a young Muslim woman was asked to leave her flat a week after she moved in, because of her religion.
The city is getting increasingly ghettoized as a result, weakening our social fabric and polarizing us further.
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Source: Times of India | Free Press Journal | First Post