Social media is not everything, but it is definitely something. And if reactions on social media are anything to go by, I do not remember a time in recent history when BJP supporters were so hurt as they are now. And why not?
The act of temple vandalism in Chandni Chowk has broken the hearts of BJP supporters. The images of the vandalized temple and the broken idols have gone viral on social media and in the hearts of the people.
Again, why not?
Yesterday, I wrote about how attacks on temples in Delhi bring back the worst of our civilizational memories. It reminds us of one thousand years of constant subjugation and humiliation.
But our ancestors did not live in a democracy. They did not have a voice but we do. And this is not what BJP supporters voted for.
Not surprisingly, the “liberal” crowd did not particularly care about what happened in Chandni Chowk. See how the HuffingtonPost tries to play down the incident itself as some kind of conspiracy theory.
And the PTI reported that the idols were “defaced slightly.”
What a way to use journalism as some kind of performance art to blur out the seriousness of the situation. Liberals, however, would never hold back from using the strongest possible slurs, including references to Nazism and Communist North Korea, when referring to any incident, real or imagined, when it suits their narrative.
Of course, these things hurt, but only so much. BJP supporters have long learned to take such reactions from liberals in their stride, dismissing them with bitter humour. The otherwise outspoken CM of Delhi is silent on this, but so what? There is no joke bigger than him anyway.
The real hurt among BJP supporters over this incident goes much deeper and for very different reasons. Because this is not what they voted for when they gave 303 MPs in the Lok Sabha, a solid majority two times in succession.
When BJP supporters voted in overwhelming numbers, it was not for a party but for a cause. A cause that they felt was bigger than themselves. What happened in 2019 was quite spectacular: Hindus coming together and sinking their caste differences to achieve a grand reconciliation that would pave the way for a grand Hindu revival. A rebirth of the Indian consciousness, a reclaiming of the soul of India.
This Hindu revivalism was much reviled in liberal outlets, both in India and abroad. The peaceful Hindu was hit with every slur possible: Nazi, Taliban, ISIS everything. The peaceful Hindu brushed off these insults and waited patiently to have their say when the EVMs would be opened.
And then to see a repeat of our worst civilizational memories play out before our eyes in the heart of Delhi…
BJP supporters are broken, disappointed and distressed. Their voices are hoarse. Their energy is spent. They are uncertain of what lies ahead.
All they need is for the powers that be to look them in the eye and tell them that they are still with the cause.