Asking people to leave India for opposing anything favoured by the ruling party seems to be the latest fad among politicians. These politicos make it to the headlines and their tasteless comments are the focus of discussions on social media.
Controversial BJP lawmaker Yogi Adityanath has asked people opposing yoga and ‘surya namaskar’ to leave India or drown themselves in the ocean.
It’s a no-brainer to deduce whom the comments were aimed at – they came as a reaction to minority groups opposing a move to make yoga compulsory in schools, claiming that the sun salutation goes against the Islamic law that prohibits bowing before anyone other than Allah.
Home minister Rajnath Singh sought to clear the air , saying there is no compulsion on performing yoga in schools during the International Yoga Day on June 21.
The trend of asking people opposed to the politics of the NDA to leave India was probably kicked off by senior BJP leader Giriraj Singh in April last year. He had blatantly asked people “opposed to Modi” to go to Pakistan since they would have no place in India.
Last month, minister of state for minority affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi asked those who want to eat beef to leave India and
go to Pakistan
Naqvi’s comment was an attempt to defend a beef ban in BJP-ruled states such as Maharashtra and Haryana. Beef, for many, was a staple food available at cheap prices.
For many, these comments reflect how vehemently the BJP-led government is pursuing the agenda of the Hindu right-wing.
Well-known Pakistani columnist Raza Rumi reacted to Adityanath’s comment by tweeting: “How many people will leave India? By this rate few would be left :)”
How many people will leave India? By this rate few would be left :) https://t.co/WZbJw2Kihd— Raza Rumi (@Razarumi) June 9, 2015
In March last year, Rumi survived an assassination attempt in Lahore by a Taliban-affiliated terror group and left Pakistan for the US.
Like Rumi, a celebrated film director, a journalist and a prolific writer have left India on their own, troubled by the disturbing state of affairs.
Discussing the reasons behind their departures might be more useful than frothing over the comments of insensitive politicians.
Anurag Kashyap, a poster-boy of independent cinema in Bollywood, left India to settle in Paris because he wants to make films where people have fewer boundaries.