As the battleground heats up in the run-up to the Haryana state assembly elections, Jannayak Janata Party (JJP) chief Dushyant Chautala showed his anti-Gujarat bigotry. In a bid to target Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister and BJP President Amit Shah, both Gujaratis, Chautala taunted the entire community by questioning the number of Gujaratis in the Indian Army.
Dushyant Chautala, Jannayak Janta Party: There is no village in Haryana which has no martyr. We are proud of this land that made us strong for this country. Every 10th jawan at the border, be it China border or Pakistan border is a jawan from Haryana. #HaryanaAssemblyPolls https://t.co/a7fle3BUnu
— ANI (@ANI) October 15, 2019
Chautala said that amongst those who have sacrificed their lives for India, maximum of those are from Haryana. “Number of people from Haryana who have been martyred at the border is higher than total number of Gujaratis in the Indian Army,” said Chautala. During the run-up to 2019 general elections, Dushyant Chautala’s JJP had extended support and forged an alliance with Aam Aadmi Party and Arvind Kejriwal.
Unfortunately, this is not the first time the hate opposition leaders have for PM Modi which has manifested into an bigotry towards Gujaratis. Chautala’s hate against Gujaratis echoes that of Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav’s hatred for the otherwise peace-loving people from the land of Gandhi.
— Republic (@republic) May 10, 2017
What is unfortunate here is that such bigotry is not limited only to politicians but even the legends one grew up admiring have fallen from grace ever since Prime Minister Modi won 2014 elections. Earlier this year, lyricist-turned-Internet troll Javed Akhtar displayed his hate for entire Gujarati community by implying that there are hardly any Gujaratis in the defence forces. “We have had so many regiments in the Army like the Sikhs, Marathas, Rajputs. But have we ever had a Gujarat regiment? Since our Prime Minister has great love and pride in the Indian Army of late, I would urge him to raise a Gujarat regiment so the swayamsevaks from the region can join the Army,” Akhtar reportedly said. He had said this way, the people from Ahmedabad and Surat should join such regiment.
It is rather shameful to try and divide the army and their sacrifices including the martyrdom of soldiers on regional lines. But since we are speaking of numbers, as per reports, as of March 31 2017, Gujarat had 26,656 ex-servicemen, of which 6,233 are from Ahmedabad. There are 3,517 widows of servicemen and 39 soldiers have been awarded bravery awards for their service to the nation. A village named Kodiyavada in Sabarkantha has a population of 6,500 people. About 80% of the families in this village has at least one member in the armed forces. And while it may be true that Haryana has more soldiers serving the nation, every Gujarati is grateful for the sacrifices they make.
The irony is that while terrorism and terrorists have no region or religion, politicians want to show that the armed forces do.