Even though the elections are over and the new government is formed at the centre, the political pot is still boiling in Mamata’s Bengal. And the three words that trigger Mamata these days are ‘Jai Shri Ram’. Mamata Banerjee today took to social networking site Facebook to let the world know that she will continue to oppose ‘Jai Shri Ram’ slogans as they are a deliberate attempt ‘to sell hatred ideology’.
In a Facebook post, Banerjee said that the BJP is using religious slogan Jai Shri Ram as their party slogan in a misconceived manner by way of mixing religion with politics.
“We do not respect this forcible enforcement of political slogans on others in the name of so called RSS which Bengal never accepted. This is a deliberate attempt to sell hatred ideology through vandalism and violence which we must oppose together,” she said. She has even sent cops to arrest those chanting Jai Shri Ram alleging that they were ‘abusing her’. Amusingly, those who were chanting Jai Shri Ram slogans were ordinary people not really associated with the BJP.
‘Jai Shri Ram’ chants seem to be the flavour of the season to build a narrative that taking Lord Ram’s name is the most communal thing one can do. In the past ten days, at least two incidents have emerged where Muslim men alleged they faced hate-crime and were asked to forcefully chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’. Police investigation in both these incidents revealed the men had just cooked up story.
In her Facebook post, Mamata further says that it is high time action is taken ” to restrain political workers not to indulge in activities of creating unrest, chaos, violence and disruption of normal life by taking recourse to misplaced ideologies in the so called name of religion to create divide among the people.”
She further said that she will continue to oppose the ‘Jai Shri Ram’ chants to “keep the secular character of the country.”
Her post in its entirety is reproduced below:
We wish to inform the people that some BJP supporters are trying to spread hatred ideology through one section of media – so so called BJP media and so so called fake video, fake news, misinformation and disinformation to create confusion and to suppress truth and reality.
So far as media is considered, we have no problem as it is their choice and prerogative.
From Ram Mohan Roy to Vidyasagar to other great social reformers, Bengal has been a seat of harmony, progress and forward thinking. But now, the misconceived strategy of BJP is targeting Bengal in a very negative manner.
I have no problem, regarding any particular slogan of political parties in their rallies, and for their party purpose. Every political party has their own slogan. My party has Jai Hind, Vande Mataram. The Left has Inquilab Zindabad. Others have different slogans. We respect each other.
Jai Sia Ram, Jai Ram ji ki, Ram naam Satya hai etc have religious and social connotations. We respect these sentiments.
But BJP is using religious slogan Jai Sri Ram as their party slogan in a misconceived manner by way of mixing religion with politics.
We do not respect this forcible enforcement of political slogans on others in the name of so called RSS which Bengal never accepted.
This is a deliberate attempt to sell hatred ideology through vandalism and violence which we must oppose together.
One can fool some people sometimes, but cannot fool all the people all the time.
This is high time that proper action is taken to restrain political workers not to indulge in activities of creating unrest, chaos, violence and disruption of normal life by taking recourse to misplaced ideologies in the so called name of religion to create divide among the people. If all other political parties start resorting to these sort of divisive and disruptive activities, then the entire environment would become highly vitiated and counterproductive.
We have to and would oppose such moves of BJP very strongly in order to keep secular character of the country as enshrined in our constitution.
I appeal to all the people of the country and the state to give a befitting reply to hatred politics and show respect to our country’s glorious culture and heritage.
Let us all be proud of our culture and heritage.
Jai Hind, Jai Bangla, Joyo He.