4 January 2023: Muslims in India have been undergoing a critically adverse situation since 2014 when the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) came to power at the Centre under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The community has been facing hate speeches, mob violence, economic boycotts, discrimination, malicious campaigns, political oppression, crushing dissent, biased media trials and discriminatory laws during the last 8 years.
The year 2022 witnessed all these types of incidents at different points in time.
The year 2021 culminated with major anti-Muslim events that continued in 2022.
In December 2021, a Dharam Sansad (a gathering of Hindu seers) was held in Uttarakhand’s Haridwar where controversial Hindu priests including Yati Narsinghanand Saraswati incited violence and made genocide calls against Muslims.
The year 2022 started with a hate campaign through the Bulli Bai app. On 1st January, hundreds of Muslim women were put out on online auction when their pictures were uploaded on social media outlets through the Bulli Bai app.
Earlier, a similar sinister act was done through the Sulli Deal apps. After the Bulli Bai attempt, the police arrested four accused who were influenced by Hindutva ideology. Two of the accused are out on bail.
In January itself, a major issue of hijab ban in Karnataka schools and colleges came to light. Muslim girls were hounded for wearing hijab and in one such incident Muskan Khan was harassed by a Hindutva mob inside her college. The issue caught international attention, but Karnataka High Court upheld the hijab ban in schools and colleges.
Muslim women’s education is affected by the Hijab ban.
In March, a controversial movie named The Kashmir Files on the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits was released. The movie caused hate speeches and mob attacks on innocent Muslims. The movie has faced severe criticism. The International Film Festival of India (IFFI) jury head described the movie as “vulgar” and “propaganda”.
In April, various states including Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka and others witnessed massive anti-Muslim violence during festivals. Mosques, Muslim houses, shops and vehicles were set on fire. Two people died and many others were injured. Following the violence, the state government in Madhya Pradesh demolished houses mostly belonging to Muslims.
In May, derogatory remarks made by two BJP leaders, Nupur Sharma and Naveen Jindal, against Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) caused major international outrage. Around 16 countries issued statements condemning the outrageous remarks. Following the global outrage, the BJP suspended Sharma and expelled Jindal and claimed that the party respects all religions.
In May itself, the wuzu khana (place to make ablution) of the Gyanvapi mosque located in Uttar Pradesh’s Varanasi was sealed by the authorities after Hindu petitioners claimed that they water fountain as ‘Shivling’ during a survey conducted after the court order.
In August, the Gujarat government released 11 men convicted of gang rape and murder in the case related to Bilkis Bano. A BJP MLA, who was part of the committee formed to release them, called these rape and murder convicts “sansakari” which means civilized and decent.
In October, BJP MP Pravesh Sing Verma along with other Hindutva leaders called for an economic boycott and violence against Muslims at an event held by Vishwa Hindu Prishad (VHP) in Delhi.
In November, the brutal murder of Sharadha Walker by her live-in partner Aftab Poonawala came to light. Hindutva supporters used the murder to spread hatred against the minority community using the religious identity of Aftab.
Six similar murders occurred, and all of the perpetrators belonged to the Hindu community, and some of the victims were Muslims. But none of this is being covered by the media, which is solely focused on Aftab Poonawala.
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Source: KM News