Religion is one of the indicators in the Indian elections. As the country is based on casteism, ethnicity and identity and politicians’ campaign on the name of religion. The religion is emotionally attached with a human and makes him blind, sometimes on the name of nationalism, casteism, identity and popularity. Some politicians used the communal method (Including religion) by creating emotional hysteria among the followers. However, such hysteria is like a strain and does not last long.
Such kind of hysteria is not only found in India but also existing in other south Asian countries. The Indian sub-continent is one of the best examples of communal hysteria. Within the communal hysteria, the elite class are being benefited and rest remains the same as they are. There is a need to understand that communalism; would neither benefit politically and economically, it impacts not both, but its worst victim becomes a common man.
Asghar Ali Engineer provides several examples that make us understand that communalism is merely an instrument, which benefits only the elite section and rest remain puppets as usual. The example of the 1981 Ahmedabad riots can serve as an eye opener. The present government of BJP realised that elections cannot be won in the name of secularism and socialism only. In 1984, the slogan was Gandhian secularism and socialism; however, they lost it badly. Later they started Ram Mandir Issue and organised Rath yatra from Somnath to Ayodhya to garner votes.
The slogan mandir wahi banega became the manifesto of BJP and it created mass hysteria among the Hindus and a sense of insecurity among Muslims. BJP icon L.K Advani became a hero after the demolition of Babri Masjid. Some leaders mushroomed hatred and bigotry against Muslims and called Congress rule as Mughal dynasty. Overall, the BJP influenced the public opinion on communal lines and came into power with the other allies.
In 2014, the party nominated Modi as the presidential candidate and the manifesto of BJP stated; Party would construct Ram temple, sab ka Saath sab Ka Vikaas, return of Kashmiri Pandits, jobs and so on. However, with the passage of time, BJP failed to fulfil these promises. And when people started questioning the Ram temple, jobs, and development, the party started the movement once again after 14th February. The party took the issue of terrorism in their speeches; two things remained dominant Pakistan and Kashmir.
The BJP framed their policies in such a way that people started giving certificates of anti-national to those who are against BJP. The airstrike on 26th February paved the way to create hysteria ‘Only Modi can save India’. However, the capture of Wing Commander Abhinandhan on 27th gave a confidence to the opposition parties to question about the security of the nation.
The 2019 manifesto of BJP is based on national security, nationalism and removal of article 370 from Kashmir. News channels, Twitter and other social media are being used by the party to create the hysteria of communalism, as it remains the constant tool of politics. On one side BJP is talking about the elimination of terrorism and on the other side, party is giving tickets to those persons, who were accused of terrorism or having criminal cases. The recent Bhopal ticket was given to Sadvi Pragya, who is accused of Malegaon bomb blasts in 2008, in which 6 people died and 80 others were injured.
The question arises, why BJP is adopting people like Pragya in their party? The BJP is campaigning the 2019 election on the plank of abrogating Article 370 and imposing “inhumane” laws in Kashmir valley by banning socio-religious organisations, highway ban, closing LoC trade to justify their claims.
(Author is a Research Scholar)