Recent communal violence in several parts of the country has not augured well. Hate politics is on the rampage. Some of the issues that are of great concern, such as the recitation of Hanuman Chalisa in public places, the use of loudspeakers in religious centres, the demolition of a temple in Alwar, the running of bulldozers, and so on, have created a rift between the two communities.
Taking cognizance of clashes between two groups in recent times, more than 100 former bureaucrats have written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and requested him to call for an end to the ‘politics of hate‘.
Former national security advisor (NSA) Shivshankar Menon, ex-foreign secretary Sujatha Singh, former home secretary GK Pillai, former lieutenant governor of Delhi Najeeb Jung, and former PM Manmohan Singh’s principal secretary TKA Nair are among the 108 signatories to the letter.
Concern over political situation in Country
In the letter to the PM, they raised concerns about the political situation in the country and said they “believe that the threat we are facing is unprecedented and at stake is not just constitutional morality and conduct; it is that the unique syncretic social fabric, which is our greatest civilizational inheritance and which our Constitution is so meticulously designed to conserve, is likely to be torn apart.” Your silence, in the face of this enormous societal threat, is deafening. ”
They appealed to the PM to call for an end to the politics of hate. They said, “We appeal to your conscience, taking heart from your promise of Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, and Sabka Vishwas. It is our fond hope that in this year of ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’, rising above partisan considerations, you will call for an end to the politics of hate that governments under your party’s control are so assiduously practising.”
They said they were compelled to write to the PM as “the relentless pace at which the constitutional edifice created by our founding fathers is being destroyed compels us to speak out and express our anger and anguish.”
Raising the issue of communal violence against minority communities, they wrote, “The escalation of hate violence against the minority communities, particularly Muslims, in the last few years and months across several states, such as Assam, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, and Uttarakhand—all states in which the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is in power, barring Delhi (where the union government controls the police), has acquired a frightening new dimension.”
“The ‘hate and malevolence’ directed against Muslims appears to have embedded itself deep in the recesses of the structures, institutions, and governance processes in the states where the BJP is in power,” they wrote.The administration of law, instead of being an instrument for maintaining peace and harmony, has become the means by which minorities can be kept in a state of perpetual fear.“
The likelihood of our becoming a country that systematically makes sections of its own citizens, including minorities, Dalits, the poor, and marginalized group, targets of hate and knowingly deprives them of their fundamental rights is now, more than ever, frighteningly real.
Writing about the recent cases where illegal houses in violence-hit areas were demolished, they said, “No wonder then that the bulldozer has now become the new metaphor for the exercise of political and administrative power, literally and figuratively. The edifice built around the ideas of ‘due process’ and ‘rule of law’ stands demolished. As the Jahangirpuri incident shows, even the orders of the highest court of the land appear to be treated with scant respect by the executive.“