Inventing history to inculcate hatred

Print edition : September 01, 2017

Inside a house at Gulberg Society in Ahmedabad in June 2016, 14 years after a mob attacked it, killing 69 people, including former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri. Photo: Vijay Soneji

RSS activists taking out a march through a street in Bhopal on October 31, 2004. From its foundation in 1925 until 1947, the RSS worked as a Hindu communal organisation with an openly fascist ideology, with no intention to take part in the national movement. Before and after Independence it conducted bitter propaganda against Muslims and against Gandhiji, with its slogans of “Hindu Rashtra” and “Hindutva”, the latter term borrowed from V.D. Savarkar. Photo: PTI

Dr S. Radhakrishnan , philosopher and India’s second President. Secularism all over the world is invoked to ensure that religious beliefs are excluded from affecting the policies and laws of the state, but Radhakrishnan’s contention is that “religion” still remains a “relevant” source. Photo: The Hindu Archives

December 6, 1992: The demolition of the Babri Masjid. Photo: SANJAY SHARMA/INDIAPIX NETWORK

At the scene of riots between two communities in the Old City area of Hyderabad on March 29, 2010. Photo: Mohammed Yousuf

As secularism and reason are driven out, prejudice and ignorance extend their sway with disconcerting rapidity. A serious task awaits parties that are committed to a different future for the country, envisaging a truly secular democratic India, where reason and science might serve to sustain a welfare state.
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