I urge AIIA to avoid publishing any articles which are of such poor quality in content and credibility as this one titled “Saffron Terror and Hindutva Ideology” published on 20th October 21. The whole article reeks of prejudice, misinformation and wrong assertions or misquoted references from social media pages.
I do not want to comment on the first paragraph which starts quoting Samuel Huntington. I consider this paragraph (which includes reference to Rohingya Muslims) as the one which is out-of-context to the topic title.
The next paragraph starts with a conclusive statement amounting to sweeping generalization “In recent history, a genocide perpetrated against minorities in India has been overshadowed by crimes against humanity elsewhere in the world”. Where has the author got this conclusion from? Rest of the paragraph is only a rhetoric without any data. Did the author visit any place in India recently and experience anything of this sort?
This paragraph is a genocide of the scientific research methodology.
In the next paragraph the author mentions “The founding members of RSS were besotted with Benito Mussolini’s fascist ideology and aimed to implement his same approach to eliminate religious minorities in India”. Where did this conclusion come from? The referenced page does not have the word Benito or Mussolini? It appears the author has based the arguments on hearsay and; therefore, cites irrelevant references just for the sake of it?
The author goes on to say , “RSS has abandoned the Indian national tricolour in favour of the saffron flag, known as bhagwa dhwaj”. This is false. This is the flag of the organization. RSS has their flag as much as every organization have their flag. The author is suggested to do some research and find out the flags of different political parties in India and in other democratic countries.
The author should be questioned for her intellectual impropriety for making such un-informed conclusions.
In the same paragraph the author mentions, “ According to RSS ideology, all religions in India other than Hinduism are considered foreign religions, and their adherents should either leave the country or convert to Hinduism in order to achieve the Hindu renaissance”. I challenge the author to provide the reference to this conclusion. The author should also suggest what is the process of “conversion to Hinduism” which she is referring to? This is a blatant falsehood that the author is promoting.
The reference to Gujrat Pogrom in 2002 does not mention the point that Modi underwent a judicial and extra-judicial (through media) inquiry on the event for 15 years – and finally – all such inquiry exonerated him of any complicity. The Pogrom was an unfortunate event in Indian history as any of such events that have occurred in the country over centuries.
The author cites a report from Assam and concludes that, “ When minorities, particularly Muslims, are assaulted by saffron terrorists, they are often forced to recite “Jai Shri Ram,” a slogan raised for the glorification of Hindu lord Rama, or else are offered a life-or-death choice: to accept Hinduism as their religion or be killed” This conclusion at the start of the paragraph has no relationship with the reference cited at the end of the paragraph. The Assam event was an anti-encroachment drive by the local administration and reporting that as anti-religion event is a travesty of journalistic ethics.
Citing such reports without understanding the context and portraying that as anti-religious is against any intellectual scholarship.
The author says, “Even places of worship are not safe in today’s India”. She does not mention that Indian has more than 300,000 mosques[i] and 10,000 churches[ii]. This is more than many Islamic and Christian countries in the world. Readers should also note that one of world’s oldest church and oldest mosques is in India because the Indian community has always been multi-faith.[iii] Babri Mosque was a temple which was converted to a mosque. This place been awarded to Hindu community through a legal process spanning 20 years.
In summary, I would urge AIIA to protect its own credibility and credential by allowing such poorly researched and wrong articles to be published on their website.
As for the author, I am happy to have a debate on all the points that she has mentioned.
[i] List of mosques in India – Wikipedia
[ii] number of churches in india – Google Search
[iii] St. Thomas Syro-Malabar Church, Palayoor – Wikipedia, Cheraman Juma Mosque – Wikipedia