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‘Bhakti cult rose to meet egalitarian appeal of Islam’: Vision IAS continues to malign Bhakti movement after its teacher is accused of spreading Islamic propaganda

In its statement, while maligning the Bhakti movement as a 'Cult', Vision IAS stated that Islam has "casteless theology and social order", conveniently glossing over the fact that Islam not only has different subsections such as Shia, Sunni, Ahmadiyya and more, but they also practice a high order of discrimination amongst themselves.

Vision IAS, a training institute for Civil Services aspirants, has issued a statement after videos of its teacher went viral where she was teaching Islamic propaganda to the students while demonising the Bhakti Movement. Calling the propagandist teacher an ‘esteemed faculty’, Vision IAS alleged that the video only presented ‘a small part of a discussion’. It said, “The said discussion, which is currently not available on any official Vision IAS platform, has led to divergent opinions and reactions.”

It further added that the intention was not to ‘hurt anyone’s sentiments’. Calling the Bhakti Movement a cult in its statement as well, Vision IAS said, “The discussion in point is only focused on one possible reason for the rise of the Bhakti Cult and that too in a particular time period. What the speaker underscores is the dynamic response of followers of Sanatana dharma and its inherent strength which took the form of Bhakti cult meaning “loving faith in God” and “love for fellow human beings” to meet the egalitarian appeal of Islam, that is the appeal of its caste less theology and social order.”

Notably, in its statement, Vision IAS propagated that Islam has “casteless theology and social order” while conveniently ignoring the fact that Islam not only has different subsections such as Shia, Sunni, Ahmadiyya and more, but they practice high order of discrimination amongst themselves. For example, Ahmadiyyas are often not considered Muslims in countries like Pakistan.

It further added, “It was never the intent of the Vision IAS family to hurt anyone’s sentiments. The discussion in point is only focused on one possible reason for the rise of the Bhakti Cult and that too in a particular time period. What the speaker underscores are the dynamic response of followers of Sanatana dharma and its inherent strength which took the form of Bhakti cult meaning “loving faith in God” and “love for fellow human beings” to meet the egalitarian appeal of Islam, that is the appeal of its caste less theology and social order.”

While talking about the reference of a replica of the first mosque presented by PM Modi to Saudi King in 2016, the statement said, “Her reference to PM Modi’s presentation of the replica of the first mosque outside the Arabian Peninsula that was built in Kerala to the Saudi King further serves to highlight the syncretic character of the Indian civilisation and its strength.”

The institute stood by the misleading statement made by the teacher by calling the Bhakti Movement a ‘cult’ but said, “Having clarified our stance, we also sincerely apologise if anything said or done by us has served to hurt the sentiments of any community or member thereof. Vision IAS firmly believes in the ethos and values enshrined in the Indian Constitution, and any sentiments hurt, is unintentional and deeply regretted.”

‘Bhakti Movement was a cult’ – Netizens criticised Vision IAS faculty for misleading students

On Sunday, a video of a faculty of Vision IAS went viral on social media in which she was teaching the students about the rise of the Bhakti Movement. She propagated that Bhakti Movement was started due to the spread of ‘liberal ideas’ of Islam where they talked about ‘equality’ and ‘caste-less’ society. The video was initially shared by a user @sillypuneer on Twitter.

In the video, the female teacher, identified as Smriti Shah, asked the students about the purpose of the Bhakti movement. When the students said it was “equality”, she said, “Islam arrived in India in the seventh century. It was very liberal and talked about equality. There was no caste system either. PM Modi gifted a miniature of Cheraman Juma Masjid to the Saudi King, which was the first mosque built in India. Islam had not arrived in India yet, but it had started showing its influence. It was free from any rigidity and casteism. There was a speciality of Islam that talked about complete devotion to one God (Allah). They were talking about the concept of one God.”

She further added, “As Islam said, there was only one God, and he created all, it means everyone was same. Islam talked about the universal brotherhood that attracted people. Those who belonged to the lower class started to convert to Islam to raise their status. That was the time when Hindu civilisation felt threatened. As a result, the Bhakti cult was started. They wanted to tell Hinduism is the same religion as Islam, and there was no difference.”

After her video surfaced on social media, the netizens objected to the type of propaganda-filled content being shared by the coaching centres against Hinduism.

Film-maker Vivek Agnihotri said, “Wonderful Vision IAS! You have opened a shop for brainwashing [students].” Tagging Minister of Education, Dr Dharmendra Pradhan, he added, “Dr Pradhan Ji, please note. Is this kind of radical propaganda of religion at the cost of another allowed by your ministry? Every Indian must help stop this brainwashing of students.”

Twitter user NagpurKaRajini sarcastically said, “Ghazanavi, Babar were not only the most secular but also liberals. They taught Indians what is secularism, liberalism and got rid of Bhakti Movement in India. You Vision IAS are right.”

Twitter user Rishi Bagree said, “She clearly neither understands Bhakti Movement nor she commiserates with Islam.”

‘Nimbu mirchi and nariyal’ – the hate continues

In another video, the same faculty talked about Hindu traditions and mocked Hindus for their centuries-old traditions. She said while Hindus have accepted the new amenities like a car, they are still stuck to the old traditions like hanging lemon and chillies or breaking a coconut before using a vehicle, thinking the vehicle would remain safe from damages. “They break the coconut. Thank God they do not break it on the car! The idea is, you accepted the peripheral value by owning a car, but the core value that is tradition is still there.” She also mocked ‘bhakts’, a term used for BJP followers, and said, “Everyone has Bhakts, I am talking about God’s followers”, which was followed by giggles in the classroom.

‘Joint families satisfy sexual gratification’ – the deep-rooted hate for Hindu community

In yet another bizarre statement made by Shah during another class, she claimed the joint family system in Hindus “satisfy sexual gratification”. She said, “Your sexual desires are also satisfied a family. You need to understand. In a family, you get into a relationship if you are not a blood relative then through marriage. And marriage is the institution that serves the purpose of sexual gratification. Once your sexual needs are gratified, it results in to reproduction.”

Notably, this was not the first time someone has raised a voice against the anti-Hindu propaganda being spread by the same teacher. Back in 2021, a Twitter user Naina had shared a video of her where the Vision IAS faculty said, “Beliefs generates emotions. Believes are not related to emotions. The emotions are generated based on your beliefs. ‘I believe India is a Hindu Rashtra’which generates an emotion of antagonism and hostility toward other religious minorities. And then it might generate the action tendency of being violent or attacking them. So it all starts with belief.”

‘It is not an apology’ Netizens pointed out lack of ‘apology’ in Vision IAS’s statement

The ‘apology’ statement by Vision IAS did not go well with the netizens. Pointing out the lack of the so-called apology in the statement, Supreme Court Lawyer, Shashank Shekhar Jha said, “This is a statement and not an apology! Posted at 2:30 with Comments Closed, Vision IAS missed apologising for ‘esteemed’ where 1. She referred to Bhakti Cult as Pejorative. 2. Another video where she used Hindu Rashtra jibe and labelled Hindus as violènt & attackers.”

Twitter user GauriB said, “A clarification that is worse than the video. Blatantly distorting a narrative is not hurting sentiments, it is endangering lives. To call Islam egalitarian is to further the lies. Islam is blatantly misogynistic, irrational and contemptuous of human creativity and depth.”

Misleading and wrong lessons of History in Indian education system

There have been voices against the misleading and factually wrong lessons of History in the Indian education system on several occasions. Netizens have raised the issue and demanded overhauling of the education system to ensure the future generation has the right information. A 2020 RTI had revealed that NCERT has no evidence to prove that Mughal emperors had rebuilt temples destroyed in wars, even when it claims the same in its history textbook. In July 2021, the research produced by Public Policy Research Center (PPRC) director Sumeet Bhasin, researchers Chandni Sengupta, Deepa Kaushik and Sanket Kate, titled “Distortions and Misrepresentations of India’s Past: History Textbooks and Why they need to change“, had highlighted that NCERT textbooks have deliberately overstated the contributions of Mughal rulers to India.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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