Monday, November 30, 2020
Home Opinions 'New secularism' of Indian liberals is a scary kind of fundamentalism

‘New secularism’ of Indian liberals is a scary kind of fundamentalism

A few years ago, Al-Shabab, the radical Islamist group in Somalia, made a decision to put a ban on samosas. The reason? All of a sudden, it was suggested that the triangular shape of the samosa might symbolize the Christian Trinity, making the samosa “un-Islamic.”

This is just an example of the level of foolishness that can result when hatred is taken to extreme levels. You start seeing ghosts everywhere.

How different is Al-Shabab’s 2011 war on samosas from what I call the “new secularism” that is practised by Indian liberals of today?

Untitled.png

How is Scroll’s fear of casteist rasam any different from Al-Shabab’s worries over the Christian Trinity Samosa?

Or take the New York Times article from last year about sarees being a symbol of Hindu nationalism. Suddenly, commonplace acts, such as the Government holding Banarasi textile exhibitions or Cabinet Minister Smriti Irani wearing sarees, were under a cloud of liberal suspicion. With much paranoia and horror, the New York Times informs its readers that Banaras is also

“…. one of the holiest cities for Hindus, who consider it the eternal home of Lord Shiva, the Supreme God.

Presumably, therefore, the Banarasi saree becomes a symbol of Hindu nationalism. Again, how far from the Christian Trinity Samosa?

Indian secularism has always been built exclusively on the backs of Hindus. But in the last few years, it appears to have become a different beast altogether. This mutant form, which I call “new secularism” is much more aggressive than anything seen in the last few decades. With an Al-Shabab like mentality, this “new secularism” seeks not only to end Hinduism, it also seeks to wipe out every form of art, food, clothing or expression that might be remotely reminiscent of Hindu culture.

A journalist is making a routine trip through Noida when her eyes fall on a couple of guys with an “Angry Hanuman flag.” Her antennae go up instantly. Why is this Hanuman not smiling? Is this Hanuman threatening us? Oh my god! This is the kind of thought that can only occur to somebody with Hinduphobia so acute that she probably stays up at night worrying to herself … The Hindus are coming…. oh dear… The Hindus are coming.

The journalist dashes off an article to warn her fellow liberals about this brand new threat. Although the flags, posters and stickers she refers to have been viral on India’s roads for some years now, the wave of panic spreads quickly through the liberal community. One liberal in Bangalore declares she won’t ever step into an Ola or Uber with the Angry Hanuman sticker, for fear of sexual assault. Another liberal who works for one of the new liberal websites declares thus:

Untitled.png

It was always just that, a sticker. Then one day a liberal saw it and decided to associate it with Hindu militancy. Another decided to associate it with rape. This one wants to block everyone with that DP.

This is “new secularism,” a radical fundamentalist ideology that is scared of the mere existence of Hindus.

Like fearing the saree or fearing rasam, there is no end to what these fundamentalists fear.  An Indian American writer arrives from New York to talk about her book at a literary fest in India. She gets freaked out because the lamp and the flame in it are too “Hindu-looking.” The fire itself has become suspect.

Someone the other day brought to my attention this gem of an article in The Wire.

Untitled.png

Take a note of all the other things that the article decides to demonize besides Bharatanatyam.

Sindoor? Danger!

Ganesh Utsav? Danger!

Greetings of “Jai Shri Krishna”? Danger!

Bhajan Sandhya? Danger!

The thing that distinguishes fundamentalists from mere partisans is that irrational fear. A partisan would be happy as long as his favourite political formation rules the country. A fundamentalist is different. A fundamentalist goes around looking for things to fear: bowls of rasam, Banarasi sarees, Hanuman stickers, Bharatanatyam, lamps with flame in them, Sindoor or Bhajan Sandhyas.

And fundamentalists don’t stop…or rather they can’t stop until they have wiped out the object of their hatred. Hindus beware about his “new secularism”.

  Support Us  

Whether NDTV or 'The Wire', they never have to worry about funds. In name of saving democracy, they get money from various sources. We need your support to fight them. Please contribute whatever you can afford

Abhishek Banerjeehttps://dynastycrooks.wordpress.com/
Abhishek Banerjee is a math lover who may or may not be an Associate Professor at IISc Bangalore. He is the author of Operation Johar - A Love Story, a novel on the pain of left wing terror in Jharkhand, available on Amazon here.  

Related Articles

Trending now

As Punjab ‘farmers’ hold the national capital hostage, here is how the central govt was snubbed every time they tried to reach out

From Prime Minister's national radio address to Home Minister's appeal, the central government has made various attempts to speak to the agitating 'farmers' from Punjab.

With an information overdose on social media and deluge of OTT platforms, it is time to be digitally ‘Atmanirbhar’

Getting 'cancelled' or ostracized on social media may seem harmless, but as these technologies weave themselves tighter into our day to day lives, the impacts of such cancellations can be far-reaching.

His family called our children ‘illegitimate’ because I didn’t convert to Islam’: Late music composer Wajid Khan’s wife reveals

Wajid Khan's wife has stated to Times of India that the late music composer's family never accepted her wedding under the Special Marriages Act because she had refused to convert to Islam.

7 March 1990: When Khalistani Sikh extremists killed 22 Hindus and ruined dozens of families

Abohar is a town in Fazilka, Punjab, near the India-Pakistan border.

Farmer thanks PM Modi for mentioning him during Mann Ki Baat, narrates how the passage of Farm Bills helped him

PM Modi's Mann Ki Baat speech came just as the issue has been raked up once again as ‘farmers’ from Punjab and Haryana have marched towards Delhi to protest against the farm bills.

SFJ ads appear on YouTube offering $10m support for farmers, in return, wants Sikhs to join ‘Khalistan movement’: Details

Amid ongoing farmers’ protests in Punjab, Haryana, and Delhi, it is evident that Khalistani supporters have hijacked the protests and now, they are running ads on YouTube

Recently Popular

Wife of late Wajid Khan writes on her sufferings in an inter-faith marriage, says anti-conversion law should be nationalised

Wife of late music composer Wajid Khan wrote how her husband and his family had been forcing her to convert to Islam after their marriage

Actor Deep Sandhu disappoints Barkha Dutt after she provides platform to ‘distance himself’ from OpIndia report that he supports Khalistan

Barkha Dutt lamented after actor Deep Sidhu refused to condemn Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale and to call him terrorist on her YouTube channel

Who is the man in farmer protest video, lying about ‘govt snatching farmland’: Profile of an actor and Khalistan supporter

Khalistan supporter Punjabi actor Deep Sidhu has been seen spreading the lie that govt will snatch farmer's land using the new farm laws

Indian man proposes to his Australian girlfriend during Ind vs Aus cricket match, here is what happened next

While India's performance has been below par, netizens found happiness in the unusual proposal that became the highlight of the match.

‘Will not say Jai Hind, will teach lesson to Modi like we taught Indira’: Khalistani protester in presence of AAP MLA Amanatullah Khan

Sikh protester threatens to teach Modi a lesson in the save way they taught Indira Gandhi in the presence of AAP MLA Amanatullah Khan

As Iran vows to avenge their nuclear scientist Fakhrizadeh’s murder, read how 62-member squad planned and carried out his assassination

The killing of Fakhrizadeh is the latest in the serious high-profile assassinations of people belonging to Iranian regime since the assassination of General Qassem Soleimani.

Singapore: Woman who was infected with Covid-19 during pregnancy gives birth to baby with Coronavirus antibodies

The Singaporean woman was infected with Coronavirus during first trimester of pregnancy, and her newborn child has antibodies

Indian Idol contestant reveals how she faced opposition from conservative Muslim society as singing is ‘not allowed’

The Indian Idol contestant revealed how women in her society are looked down upon if they try to excel in any field.

As Punjab ‘farmers’ hold the national capital hostage, here is how the central govt was snubbed every time they tried to reach out

From Prime Minister's national radio address to Home Minister's appeal, the central government has made various attempts to speak to the agitating 'farmers' from Punjab.

Kerala: 2 years after she lost her baby after CPI(M) leader kicked her stomach, Jyotsna Jose to contest panchayat elections on BJP ticket

Kerala will hold local body elections on December 8, 10 and 12. The results will be declared on December 16.

With an information overdose on social media and deluge of OTT platforms, it is time to be digitally ‘Atmanirbhar’

Getting 'cancelled' or ostracized on social media may seem harmless, but as these technologies weave themselves tighter into our day to day lives, the impacts of such cancellations can be far-reaching.

His family called our children ‘illegitimate’ because I didn’t convert to Islam’: Late music composer Wajid Khan’s wife reveals

Wajid Khan's wife has stated to Times of India that the late music composer's family never accepted her wedding under the Special Marriages Act because she had refused to convert to Islam.

7 March 1990: When Khalistani Sikh extremists killed 22 Hindus and ruined dozens of families

Abohar is a town in Fazilka, Punjab, near the India-Pakistan border.

Farmer thanks PM Modi for mentioning him during Mann Ki Baat, narrates how the passage of Farm Bills helped him

PM Modi's Mann Ki Baat speech came just as the issue has been raked up once again as ‘farmers’ from Punjab and Haryana have marched towards Delhi to protest against the farm bills.

Rebellion inside Rahul’s Congress grows, Anand Sharma defies party line, hails PM Modi for visit to Coronavirus vaccine hubs

A day after Congress criticised PM Modi's visit to Coronavirus vaccine hubs, senior Congress leader Anand Sharma has defied the party line

From support for zamindars to ‘protest will help overthrow Modi govt’: A saga of clueless people at farmer protest

A series of interview of protestors by the team of Know the Nation reveals how many of these protestors are completely clueless about why they are there

Connect with us

245,563FansLike
491,013FollowersFollow
20,200SubscribersSubscribe