Every time there is an act of terrorism by Islamists, one of the leading charges that gets thrown around is – ‘where is the outrage from the wider Muslim community?’, or, ‘why aren’t the common Muslims condemning these attacks?’. In fact, I will admit that I, myself have asked these questions in the past.
Now of course, the shoe is on the other foot – or rather, on my foot – for it is my co-religionists who have been indulging in religious terrorism.
For the past month or so, we have seen increasing acts of violence on the Christian community in Orissa and then in Karnataka over the issue of conversions. I am staunchly against conversions, especially the ones that are induced by certain sects of Christianity such as the Pentecostals (as a side note, the US Republican VP nominee, Sarah Palin is a Pentecostal and that is just scary because of their beliefs). But the bottom line is that violence is not the answer to these conversions. If the Bajrang Dal feels so strongly about these conversions, they should try and get to the bottom of these conversions and find out why it is happening. What is it that Christianity is offering these people that is not being offered by their current religious beliefs! After centuries of treating the people at the lowest rung like dirt, these Hindu fanatics have all of a sudden become so passionate about the religious beliefs of these people.
And while all this has been going on, I have not heard of any outrage from the Hindu community except a smattering from here and there. Certainly, there have been no statements from the BJP (I Googled and checked their website – be careful in opening their website; it is so poorly designed that it will crash your Firefox, use only Internet Explorer) and searching through the blogs reveals that there is no sense of outrage from the larger Hindu community as well. India is supposed to be a free country where people are free to chose their religion.
If the Bajrang Dal is passionate about protecting the Hindu identity then there are many things that it can do to fix that. How about starting with cleaning up that great symbol of the Hindu identity – the river Ganga – which is nothing but an open sewer nowadays? How about cleaning up the river on whose banks Lord Krishna grew up (the Yamuna)? Or how about leading an effort to safeguard all stray cows on the roads, after all, as Hindus, are we not supposed to treat cows as our mothers? How about attacking and beating up those people who engage in female infanticide? Aren’t girls supposed to be Lakshmis? How about opening up schools and social service centers to help those who are converting and getting these services from the Christian missionaries? Of course, they will not do any of these things because they require effort and long term commitment. Much easier to pick up your weapons and beat up a group of hapless people – that gets them the headlines and votes of many morons. And this from a group that takes its name from the Hindu god who is the protector of the meek and the helpless. If for nothing else, Hindus should be outraged just for this desecration of Lord Hanuman’s name – where the hell is that outrage?