Karnataka right-wing group mobilises support against Halaal meat, triggers polarisation
The statements come at a time when Muslims across Karnataka have been at the receiving end of various bans called for by right-wing groups, adding to the growing polarisation in the southern state under the Basavaraj Bommai-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government.
A Hindu right-wing group in Karnataka on Monday announced that they are starting a campaign against the purchase of Halaal meat, fuelling the already growing communal tensions in the southern state.
The Hindu Janajagrithi Samithi said that meat that is culled under Islamic practices cannot be offered to other gods.
“During Ugadi, there is a lot of buying of meat and we are starting a campaign against Halaal meat. As per Islam, Halaal meat is first offered to Allah and the same cannot be offered to Hindu gods,” Mohan Gowda, the spokesperson for the outfit told HT on Monday.
The statements come at a time when Muslims across Karnataka have been at the receiving end of various bans called for by right-wing groups, adding to the growing polarisation in the southern state under the Basavaraj Bommai-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government. “Each time Muslims cull an animal, the face is turned towards Mecca and some prayers are uttered. The same meat cannot be offered to Hindu gods. In Hinduism, we do not believe in torturing the animal and it is culled by (electric) shock,” Gowda added.
The campaign is the latest in a series of attacks against Muslims in the state who have faced the wrath of Hindu religious groups over the Hijab ban which has since manifested into restricting members of the minority community from participating in religious fairs associated with the majority.
The same group had also met with officials of the Karnataka endowments department on Thursday and submitted a memorandum that near whichever temples come under the department, non-Hindus should not be given an opportunity to set up shops.
Residents of districts like Chikmagaluru, Dakshina Kannada and even Bengaluru witnessed communally charged incidents as right-wing groups continue to impose restrictions on Muslim traders, adding to tensions in the state in which its prowess in technology and start-ups continue to be overshadowed.
JC Madhuswamy, Karnataka’s minister for law, parliamentary affairs and minor irrigation on Wednesday informed the legislative assembly that these laws were made in 2002 when the Congress was in power.
“Under rule no 12, any nearby land, building and housing included, none of them should be given to anyone from other communities,” Madhuswamy said on Wednesday in the ongoing budget session of the state legislature in Bengaluru.
Right-wing groups have run riot since the beginning of the week, banning Muslim shopkeepers from setting up shop near temples, emboldened by the state government’s stand.
The Bommai-led administration has been accused of giving right-wing groups a free hand to operate against interests of minorities by the opposition political parties as well as activists.
On Wednesday, right-wing groups forced the closure of shops around the Anjaneya Swamy temple in the busy Majestic area of Bengaluru, citing that it was illegal for them to set up commercial establishments there.
Gowda said that these shops had been sub-leased by whoever won the auction and that there were two shops inside and four outside the temple premises.