India may face communal tension before the Lok Sabha elections in May, America’s intelligence chief Reported early in 2019. “Parliamentary elections in India increase the possibility of communal violence if BJP stresses nationalist themes,” Dan Coats, Director of National Intelligence, told the US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence in a written statement. BJP policies during Modi’s first term have deepened communal tensions in some BJP-governed states, and Hindu nationalist state leaders might view a Hindu-nationalist campaign as a signal to incite low-level violence to animate their supporters,” Coats told the committee. He also said that cross-border terrorism and strained ties may continue at least till the elections. Same happened before the general election of 2019. During last five years while the Indian government was led by Narendra Modi and the right-wing Bharatiya Janata Party – or BJP – several Muslims were lynched on allegations of eating beef or even just transporting cattle for slaughter. As the number of attacks on Muslims grew, Modi mostly remained silent.
Professor of civil engineering department in Karnataka namely Wathar, attempted to vent out his frustration on social media. In a Face book post, he had used expletives to refer to India’s ruling party and said it had endangered millions of lives. Two days later, right-wing Hindu group students/activists gathered outside his office, and forced him to apologize for his “anti-national” comments. He was even forced to beg for forgiveness. In a related activity, Sathiyaraj Balu, a member of a local pro-Tamil party, who posted a picture of Modi with a begging bowl on Face book, was arrested in Tamil Nadu in January 2019.Reports suggest that BJP President Amit Shah during (September 18) poll gatherings in North Eastern states, has been openly calling Muslims and other migrants in Assam etc. as ‘Termites’. Modi-led BJP government also passed controversial Citizenship Amendment Bill to facilitate citizenship rights to Hindu migrants only whereas; the Muslim migrants were deliberately ignored. His remarks attracted criticism from the US, as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had expressed concern that “even some of our friends, allies, and partners around the world have human rights violations”. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been able to make a significant part of the population of the country to forget the collapse of the economy—the crisis in agriculture, the stagnation of industry—11 million jobs lost by it over the past five years, and the hollowness of the grandiose promises, he made to them when he came to power.
( The author is a freelancer from Central Kashmir’s Budgam district. Views are his own)