Islamophobia Watch: India From Partition to Persecution
Categories:Past Event Articles
Thursday December 10 2020
MEND Leicester conducted an interview with world-renowned journalist CJ Werleman and human rights activist and film producer Dr. Manisha Nathaniel Maganji unraveling the situation on the ground for Muslims and other minorities in Modi’s India.
Dr. Manisha who is co-founder of the group International Network Of Democratic Indians Abroad( I.N.D.I.A ) and co-producer of the Film, Covid-19 The Blame Game, spoke of why she felt the need to highlight the plight of minorities in India. She emphasised the politicisation of the (peaceful) Hindu religion to fulfil the government’s Hindutva narrative and how othering minorities was a tactical strategy. She described the poverty index and illiteracy index as being unacceptable in India and with many other problems exasperated by the pandemic they were scapegoating the minorities for their problems.
This sentiment was echoed by CJ Werleman explaining that Modi was part of the international populist train where nationalism is the most important thing and to appeal to nationalist sentiments other groups, usually minorities are otherised and more often demonised.
They both spoke of horrific incidents of attacks and murders with the formation of vigilante groups working with impunity and some cases alongside law enforcers with C J declaring that he believed that” 200 million Muslims in India are on the brink of genocide”.
The interview went into some depth about the role the media had played in creating such a toxic environment and how many media outlets appeared to be a mouthpiece for the ruling BJP party.
Horrific videos and photos were shown of both police and public brutality towards both Muslims and Dalits with Dr. Manisha also explaining that many Christians have been targeted too.
The show went on to explore ways people can support those that are being persecuted in India. They emphasised assisting established organisations like INDIA and support the work being done by CJ financially.
To raise awareness in this country by contacting your local MP and putting pressure on our government to raise concerns with their counterparts in India.
Finally, the show went on to discuss what lessons could be learned for those of us living in the west to ensure we or our children do not suffer a similar fate. How standing to wrong regardless of who it is committed against is a civil and moral duty if we do not wish to suffer a similar fate. The importance of working with and challenging, when necessary, governments on their policies to ensure civil liberties are not slowly eroded.
Overall, a fantastic thought-provoking, sometimes depressing but mostly inspiring event that shone a light on the atrocities being conducted against minorities in India but a larger light on our responsibility to all the oppressed peoples of the world.
To watch the webinar please follow the link.