Toronto, Canada Jeffrey S. Ram, Editor August 11, 2023
Fire and smoke are seen against a church in Manipur. Photo: Courtesy Twitter/@MangteC
During Prime Minister Modi’s official state visit to the US from June 21 to 23, vicious gangs of the majoritarian Hindu Meitei community continued to butcher Christian Kuki tribals, rape and gang-rape their women, set their houses and churches on fire in Manipur state. However, the Democrat and Republican leaders and many Indo-American Hindus persisted in cheering authoritarian Prime Minister Modi. Can a riot that started on May 3 last longer than two months without the consent of the state? Americans' bipartisan sycophantic support of Modi’s Hindutva barbarianism for selfish reasons was shameful.
Modi is supported by about forty percent of Indians and opposed by sixty percent. He wins elections because of the first-past-the-post system in multi-party contests. History teaches that right-extremist governments are usually replaced by left-extremist governments and vice versa. Hence, Americans' blindness to Modi’s incitement of savagery against Muslims and Christians and victimization of political opponents, civil rights activists, NGOs, and media revealed Americans’ moral decline and shortsighted foreign policy.
MODI’S SUPPRESSION OF MUSLIMS AND CHRISTIANS
When Modi became the prime minister of India in 2014, he declared the Hindutva war against Muslims and Christians to transform India from a secular state to a Hindu state.
Many laws were passed to trap Muslims, butcher them, set fire to their houses, send them to prison, and bulldoze their houses. Anti-Conversion Laws were passed in Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled states to frame Christians, jail them, and tyrannize them.
Modi promotes hatred and savagery against Muslims and Christians and makes their lives insecure and unlivable.
MODI’S SUPPRESSION OF DEMOCRACY
Modi uses money and state agencies to bribe, terrorize, and bully elected opposition representatives to force them to support BJP governments. Many duly elected state governments have been brought down by such measures.
According to V-Dem (Varieties of Democracy) Institute, Sweden’s 2023 Report, India Is 'One of the Worst Autocratisers in the Last 10 Years.'
Modi also ruthlessly crushed the media. In the Reporters Without Borders (RSF) 2023 Report about freedom of the press, India ranked 161st out of 180 countries.
Americans’ encouragement of Modi’s dictatorial atrocities and savagery was deplorable.
WHILE BRUTAL RAPES AND OTHER BARBARIC CRIMES AGAINST CHRISTIANS WERE BEING COMMITTED IN MANIPUR, AMERICAN LEADERS WERE GLORIFYING MODI
While riots by Hindu extremists against the Christian minorities were taking place in Manipur, American political leaders were praising majoritarian and autocratic Modi. When Modi arrived in the US, about 50,000 people had already become homeless or internally displaced in Manipur, over 300 churches were burned down, hundreds of Christian tribal villages were destroyed and 100 people were murdered. Arson, attacks, murders, and rapes continued in Manipur, and Modi’s supremacist Hindutva savagery continued to be applauded in America.
Notwithstanding Modi’s human rights violations, he was cheered at a joint session of the U.S. Congress, and honored as the chief guest at a state banquet hosted by President Biden. Modi’s totalitarian governance was further endorsed at a luncheon hosted jointly by U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris and Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
U.S. and India need mutually beneficial closer ties as a counterweight to China and for improved trade relations. So, there was no need for the American government and politicians to eulogize the Modi government’s Hindutva savagery.
WHILE MANIPUR WAS BURNING, MANY INDO-AMERICAN HINDUS WERE DANCING WITH JOY
Modi’s suppression of Muslims and Christians pleased many majoritarian Indo-American Hindus. They participated in many rallies in major American cities, danced, and shouted “Bharat Mata KI Jai.” The pro-Hindutva events to support Modi were organized by the Overseas Friends of BJP (OFBJP) USA, and the Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh, an affiliate of BJP’s ideological parent Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh.
Indo-American Hindu minorities enjoy religious freedom, equality, and the rule of law in the U.S. Consequently, their celebration of Hindutva majoritarianism and savagery against religious minorities in India was disgraceful.
MOST AMERICAN CHRISTIANS AND CHURCH LEADERS DO NOT FEEL THE PAIN OF THE PERSECUTED CHRISTIAN MINORITIES
Indian Christians were saddened by the silence of the American Christians at the brutal anti-Christian violence by Modi’s Hindutva brigades. This silence encouraged Modi to continue stoking violence against Christians. The American Christians' indifference was heartbreaking especially because of the riots that were taking place at that time against Manipur’s Christian minority.
The besieged Indian Christians were disappointed because they expected the American Christians to intercede and provide them relief from Modi's majoritarian Hindutva savagery.
SOME AMERICAN PROTESTS
Some Americans did protest against Modi’s violations of human rights and the strangling of democracy. The protesting groups distributed flyers that said “Modi Not Welcome” and “Save India from Hindu Supremacy.” The American media drew the attention of President Biden and political leaders to the Modi government’s targeting of religious minorities, dissidents, and journalists.
Seventy-five Democratic lawmakers urged US President Joe Biden to raise “areas of concern” about religious intolerance, press freedoms, internet access, and the attacks on civil society groups.
Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch organized a screening in Washington of a BBC documentary about Modi’s role in the 2002 Gujarat riots.
The protest by some Americans showed that all Americans do not condone Modi’s Hindutva savagery.
THE FRIENDSHIP BETWEEN THE U.S. AND INDIA SHOULD BE BASED ON DEMOCRATIC VALUES
Americans' support of Modi’s suppression of Muslims, Christians, dissidents, civil rights champions, NGOs, and journalists displayed that they sacrificed their moral values and long-term foreign policy goals to gain Modi’s favor.
The mutually beneficial strategic partnership between India and the U.S. will provide both nations with substantial economic benefits and enhanced security cooperation. There was, therefore, no need to affirm Modi’s autocratic governance. On the contrary, Americans should have urged Modi to reestablish democracy, freedoms, and the rule of law because democracy prevents a violent change of government.
Presidents and prime ministers are temporary; they are here today and gone tomorrow. Long-term Indo-American relations cannot be established with a divided India by approving and encouraging Modi’s Hindutva majoritarianism, totalitarianism, and savagery.
PLEASE REUSE THIS CONTENT/ SHARE THIS POST