Fundamentalist Politics in India

By Titas Biswas, blogger at

The mainstream media has been going wild about Yogi Adityanath ever since the BJP hinted that he was to be the next chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, a state that has one of the lowest HDI rankings in India and is quite infamous for the high number of female foeticides and honour killings.

The “Yogi” however, has been hitting straight sixes from the moment he had been offered a chance to step into the limelight. He started off with how to lock up Hindu women in the bedroom for days and that each family should have five-six kids in a country like India, where the GDP rate has been reducing to half of the original growth rate due to severe population pressure.

Then, he just slayed it on the stage by claiming the way in which Muslim women in India should be raped by bringing them back from their graves. And this was not a joke, nor a rhetoric that meant something graver – it was said to mean what it literally means. And guess what? Just a day later, an incident of a dead Muslim woman rapes was reported near Meerut in the district of Ghaziabad. Two days later, a market that sold non-vegetarian food in UP was completely demolished by RSS thugs.

Meanwhile, when the secular and sane population of the country is busy trying to curb the shock that these incidents subsequently impart, the fundamentalists have started taking full fledged attempts to ruin the educational institutions throughout the country and especially the institutions that consist of the elite freethinking intellectuals and the extremely bright and meritorious economically downtrodden. The top institutions associated with Arts and Humanities in West Bengal, Tripura and South India have been able to viably resist this low until now. The institutions located at the heart of Delhi,namely Jawaharlal Nehru University and Delhi University could not.

Since October 2016, a student pursuing post graduation in the field of Biotechnology went missing from JNU. Najeeb Ahmed’s family had to go through immense trouble and were beaten up by the police in front of the public, on the road, in proper daylight. Najeeb is still missing and had previously been threatened and even beaten up by ABVP (RSS backed student organisation) goons right inside the university campus, says a student from the International Relations Department of the same institution.

Back in 17th January, 2016, a Dalit PhD Scholar who had joined the Hyderabad University without opting for a caste certificate but belonged to the Dalit community nonetheless committed suicide. The media frenzy directed the entire incident towards human resource minister (who never enrolled for graduation) Smritirani Irani’s “confusion” that was induced only to distract the youth from the real part of the story,the institutional murder of Rohith Vemula. Surprisingly, this reminds us of the portrayal of suicides as observed in ‘3 Idiots’ (2009).

What would sound even more intriguing is that an article published in India Today, on April 18th, 2008 shows us that every 90 minutes, a student tries to commit suicide in India.

On 14th March this year, yet another Dalit PhD scholar from JNU – Rajini Krish committed suicide.

In one of his last posts made on social media, he writes “Dear UGC acting chairman please give chance to the first generation Marginals, otherwise, he/she will misunderstand Maths means enemy! Education means depression! He/she will misunderstand university means discrimination! Please change, please give a chance! Then all calculation of the life will be all right, and the totalities of all the calculation is our history, please calculate the future of the intellectuals in this country, now you understand …

History is Maths – Tn=a+(n-1)d”

The discrimination research costs have been cut drastically,and no one talks about it. The MPhil and PhD seats were cut by 83% in JNU at a go and academicians suspect these austerity measures to affect all the institutions tremendously in the coming decades. But meanwhile, the media is busy trying to prove the imagined and crafted links that Najeeb maintained with the IS and the connection of the same with him now been missing for more than six months. Najeeb’s family has sought to move to high court against The Times of India for making such claims.

If nothing is done soon, we will soon have only regret and remorse left with us. It is either now or never.

Recently published in the London Economic