Sunday, September 24, 2023

Hate Speech Reaches a New Low in India with Ramesh Bidhuri's Derogatory Language Against a Muslim MP In Parliament

By New Age Islam Staff Writer 23 September 2023 1. Muslims are routinely abused on TV and social media. 2. They are showed as an enemy of the society. 3. Their religious identity is under threat. 4. They have been pushed to the wall. ------ BJP MP Ramesh Bidhuri speaks in the Lok Sabha during a special session of Parliament in New Delhi on Sept. 21 (PTI) ---- Samar Halarnkar's article rightly reflects the agony, anxiety and helplessness of the Muslim community of India in the backdrop of the abuses hurled against a Muslim MP, Kunwar Danish Ali by Ramesh Bidhuri, a BJP MP from South Delhi in the new Parliament building named Samvidhan Bhawan. As the nation celebrated the shifting of the legislature to the new building, it had hoped that it will usher into a new era of political thinking. The passing of Women's Reservation Bill in the new building was a positive sign that India was making strides in the right direction. But after only a couple of days, an MP made the nation ashamed and embarrassed by his abusive language in the parliament defying all the parliamentary norms and ethical values of the Indian society. Only a week ago, the South Indian leader had made derogatory remarks about Sanatan dharma which was protested by the followers of Sanatan dharma to which Ramesh Bidhuri belongs but his remarks reflect his sick mentality and a distorted notion of religion in his mind. That he used abusive language in the Parliament shows that he does not also care for the image of India in the international community. Kunwar Danish Ali had not abused Bidhuri or his party but he had simply praised ISRO's scientists for making India proud in the field of space technology. He had also praised the contribution of Nehru, Abul Kalam Azad and the present Prime Minister for jointly and collectively providing support and resources to the scientists. Still, he was abused and humiliated. Danish Ali has become a symbol of a community that has continually been oppressed, humiliated and relegated to the corner. The services of the Muslim community and their sacrifices for the freedom of India and its scientific, economic and technological development has been ignored. Not only that, efforts are being made to prove them an enemy of the nation. Recently, a seven-year-old Muslim boy of Muzaffar Nagar was made victim of the hatred of a lady teacher. A teacher in a school in Delhi reportedly said to the class that the Muslims had no role in the independence of India. The truth points to the contrary. The Muslims being in the minority in India, were in the vanguard of the independence movement. The battle of Shamli in UP was fought by the ulema. The leader of the 1857 revolt was Bahadur Shah Zafar and the first journalist sentenced to death for writing against the British was Maulvi Mohammad Baqar. As the first education minister of India, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad built the roadmap for India's scientific and technological progress. He set up IITs and other scientific institutions of India Scientist APJ Abdul Kalam is called the Missile Man of India for developing India's missile system. In the latest moon mission of India, many young Muslim scientists also contributed considerably. Despite all this, a section of media and political leaders continually make verbal assaults against them and unleash false propaganda against them. The mainstream media has routinely spread rumours, misleading news, and provocative content against Muslims. During the Covid-19 pandemic, the media showed them as spreading corona. The incident in the Parliament is an indication that the Indian society has reached a new low. More than reflecting the Muslim community's condition in India, the behaviour of Bidhuri reflects how the majoritarian politics has thrown all the ethical and moral values of the country to the winds. For the last nine years, the Indian media has been promoting a culture of abuse and the culture of abuse has affected every household. Now this culture has become a new normal. It was promoted under a planning. Many times, the anchors are seen apparently speaking vulgar words by mistake. In fact, it’s not a mistake. It is done deliberately to spread vulgarity in tje society. It is done on TV channels in Pakistan as well under the same culture of vulgarity. The idea behind this culture of vulgarity is that once a nation loses its ethical and moral values, it turns into a community of animals and beasts. This culture of vulgarity was promoted by Radio Rwanda and the world saw its consequences. That those speaking vulgar words on the TV are not removed or punished is proof that the culture of vulgarity is being promoted deliberately. Kunwar Danish Ali may not be the only victim in the Parliament or outside. The MPs and MLAs from the Muslim community will increasingly find it difficult to speak and live with dignity in this communally charged atmosphere. Mob lynchings have become a new normal. Bulldozing of their houses by the state has also become a new normal. So abusing Muslim legislatures may also become a new normal in the country. Muslims will have to face Monu Manesars, Chetan Singhs and Bidhuris in new India. Their contributions and sacrifices for this country will be ignored. Their mosques, Mazars and houses will remain under constant threat. But they will not be able seek redressal, justice and a dignified life in an increasingly hostile society. They need to sit and contemplate on where they went wrong. ---- Ramesh Bidhuri And The Descent Of India By Samar Halarnkar 22 September 2023 In India’s Parliament, Ramesh Bidhuri represents South Delhi, one of India’s most prosperous constituencies, with the income of its people probably higher than that of some states and countries. That they elected him says something about them and their innermost feelings, which in these fraught, divisive times that Bidhuri’s party presides over, are, often, freely, and unashamedly expressed. The feelings of Bidhuri and a great many of his constituents centre on the growing notion that Hindus have first – and possibly the only – claim to this country. Its minorities, especially Muslim, should live as second-class citizens and at the sufferance of Hindus, who can say and do what they want to demean, insult, attack and degrade. Islamophobic views and violence have steadily grown in India since Bidhuri’s boss was first voted to power in 2014, sparking a flood of hate speech and lynchings, but every time we think the bottom has been reached, someone from the Bharatiya Janata Party or its allied Hindu-extremist ecosystem conjures a new low. We have never in Indian history heard a member of Parliament call another a “pimp”, a “terrorist”, “Katwa” (circumcised), “Mullah Ugrawadi” and “Mullah Aatankwadi” (Muslim terrorist) because he is Muslim. The target of Bidhuri’s abuse was Kunwar Danish Ali of the Bahujan Samaj Party. Weary and resigned as Muslims have been to their deteriorating situation, the attack on a Muslim MP for merely being a Muslim indicated hatred’s long journey – from WhatsApp to street to television studio to Parliament, two days after its new building, meant to represent the best of India, was inaugurated. Unless it is arrested, there is an inevitability, an inescapability to India’s perilous descent, and there is no sign that Indian society or politics is currently capable of stopping the fall. “… the fact that it happened in a new Parliament building under your leadership is heartbreaking for me as a minority member of this great nation and an MP,” Ali wrote to the speaker, Om Birla, whose response was to “warn” Bidhuri of “strict action” if he repeated such behaviour. “People keep saying “nothing even shocks us anymore” and yet there’s something this country and its leaders do every now and then that comes as a gut punch,” journalist Fatima Khan said on X, her anguish, like that of many Muslims, escalating into new despair. “This country is not for Muslim politicians, or Muslim activists, or Muslim citizens. This country is not for Muslims.” That Birla – known for suspending opposition MPs for far less, even switching off their microphones –lightly admonished Bidhuri reflected not just partisan behaviour but how Islamophobic abuse and violence have become normalised in Hindu society. The easy acceptability of anti-Muslim feelings at the highest levels of government was made clear as former BJP union law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and former BJP union health minister Harsh Vardhan spontaneously grinned and guffawed at Bidhuri’s tirade. Obviously, they did not see anything wrong. To taunt Muslims is now a national sport. Bidhuri’s tone is not unique. Similar language is frequently used by his party compatriots and allies, with no consequences. The same week, Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma suggested that Congress chief Sonia Gandhi’s house be “burned down”. The Congress filed a first information report against Sarma in Assam, but do not expect the police to act with alacrity or at all, in contrast to the swift manner that they repeatedly have against Muslim activists who called for peace during protests. If attitudes such as Bidhuri’s are to be combatted, the battle must be initiated by his political opponents. There are those who stand against such virulence, as indeed did Mahua Moitra, Trinamool MP, who first posted the video of his rant on social media. Moitra was right when she said that “most now see nothing wrong with it”. Accusing the prime minister of reducing “Indian Muslims to living in such a state of fear in their own land that they grin & bear everything”, Moitra said, “Sorry but I’m calling this out, Ma Kali holds my spine.” Many more must call out Bidhuri’s invective, in particular the Congress, India’s leading opposition party, which in recent times has all too often vacillated, waffled or stayed silent over abuse and violence against minorities. In Karnataka, which the Congress now runs, serial Islamophobe Pramod Muthalik – once banned from entering Goa by a BJP government – feels emboldened enough to threaten a mosque invasion to install a Ganesh idol there, “if Hindu society was provoked”. Nothing stops the Congress from filing criminal cases and arresting people like Muthalik, using some of the laws that BJP governments routinely deploy against minorities, random political opponents and dissidents. A day before Bidhuri screamed at Ali in Parliament, Fernand de Varennes, United Nations Special Rapporteur on Minority Issues, told a US Commission on International Religious Freedom Hearing, that he and a number of UP special rapporteurs had expressed “grave and growing concerns regarding the deteriorating situation in India”. “We have, in the last decade, issued numerous communications and press releases…They show a steady and alarming erosion of fundamental rights, particularly for religious and other minorities from the review of communications from 2011 to now,” said Varennes. “By 2022, almost all of them involve grave allegations of denial of fundamental rights, particularly targeting religious minorities.” “Let me repeat: India risks becoming one of the world’s main generators of instability, atrocities and violence, because of the massive scale and gravity of the violations and abuses targeting mainly religious and other minorities such as Muslims, Christians, Sikhs and others. It is not just individual or local, it is systematic and a reflection of religious nationalism.” Bidhuri’s attack on Ali shows that the time for strategic political silence against hate speech is gone. The language of senior BJP leaders and their allies has gone beyond dog whistles, as Sarma’s call to burn down Sonia Gandhi’s house indicates. If the Congress continues to largely ignore and not stand against what Hindu extremists say and do to Muslims and other minorities, there will not be much of a country left to contest. ----- Samar Halarnkar is the editor of, a website that focusses on issues related to the rule of law and democracy in India. Source: Ramesh Bidhuri and The Descent of India URL: New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia News, Indian Muslim News, World Muslim News, Women in Islam, Islamic Feminism, Arab Women, Women In Arab, Islamophobia in America, Muslim Women in West, Islam Women and Feminism

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