It was reported in the Hindustan Times today that Mohan Bhagwat on Sunday in Tripura said that “The Muslims in India are also Hindus” and that “Anybody living in India is a Hindu.” Section 153A of The Indian Penal Code punishes whoever by spoken words promotes on any ground whatsoever, disharmony or feelings of enmity, hatred or ill-will between different religious, racial, language or regional groups or castes or communities. Such a person shall be punished with imprisonment which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both. Bhagwat’s statement is designed to promote enmity of anyone who does not consider themselves a Hindu and is living in India. Those of us who are atheists and living in India will have to get up and assert that we are not Hindus, and if we do so then Bhagwat’s followers and Bhagwat himself may well blame us for not being a Hindu, making us again feel we are enemies. Muslims also will have to now get up and assert that they are not Hindus, and if they do so then Bhagwat’s followers and Bhagwat himself may well blame them for not being a Hindu, making them again feel they are enemies. Bhagat’s words are criminal and he should be punished for his crime.

If he is not then Narendra Modi, who is the Prime Minster, where the buck stops for enforcing the Rule of Law in this country, should be found guilty of depriving the citizens of India of their rights under Article 14 equality before the law which is the article that protects the right of the citizens of India to the rule of law. The concept of Rule of Law is that the state is governed, not by the ruler or the elected representatives of the people but by the law. A country that enshrines the rule of law has a basic and core law from which all other law derives its authority. Thus the Constitution and the rule of law is the supreme authority of the state. The powers of the State are limited by the law and the State is responsible for upholding the rule of law and the Constitution. The Prime Minister and the Sangh Parivar organisations are not the law but the law is supreme and under the Constitution extends to the right of citizens to have the law upheld. Thus by proposing these bullshit religious interpretations that all Muslims are Hindus and Anybody living in India is a Hindu Mohan Bhagwat opens himself up to the charge of promoting enmity between religions and communities under 153A IPC; and if Narendra Modi does not ensure that the State jails Mohan Bhagwat for his crime then Narendra Modi should be asked to charge Mohan Bhagwat and if he says Mohan Bhagwat should not be charged then Narendra Modi should be charged under Section 153B IPC because he will have represented and made an imputation that the citizens of India be deprived of their rights under Article 14 of the Constitution namely the right to equality before the law which is the right to the Rule of Law. The right to the rule of law means the right to have a charge of promoting enmity between communities against Mohan Bhagwat made, and investigated at the very least.

Judicial magistrate in Tripura should urgently open an investigation under 156(3) CrPC to see whether Mohan Bhagwat has committed a crime. The criminals in power in India including Mohan Bhagwat and Narendra Modi must be tried for perpetrating their hate crimes. If not there will be no reversal of the fascist rule under which we are suffering today. Let us put a stop to hate speech by Sangh Parivar organisations now.

Anandi Sharan was born in Switzerland, lives in Bangalore and last year worked in Araria District Bihar, India. She works on trying to find the best money system to help people adapt to climate change especially in India.

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One Comment

  1. K SHESHU BABU says:

    The phrase ‘ everyone is an Indian’ is losing out to ‘ everyone is a hindu ‘ which is a danger to secular democracy. The right wing has violated constitution by issuing public statement