“Voices of Hindutva: Creating and Exploiting Religious Binaries” by Sameer Malik, non-profit leader

In 2002, Gujarat, India experienced a traumatizing episode of communal violence in which Muslims, a religious minority, were actively targeted. It is widely believed that the state government, run and influenced by extreme Hindu Nationalist (Hindutva) groups, is at least partly responsible for this. Although the extent of their logistical involvement is debated, the rhetoric of many Hindutva organizations creates and demonizes a religious other. In contrast to the majority of Hindus and the majority of Indians, leaders of a number of Hindutva elements use language that creates pervasive religious binaries, which are instrumental in the recurrence of violence. The political success of Hindutva groups in Gujarat therefore complicates peace-building efforts, as illustrated by the dynamics of responses by local non-governmental organizations (NGO’s) to the violence.

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One Response to ““Voices of Hindutva: Creating and Exploiting Religious Binaries” by Sameer Malik, non-profit leader”

  1. Josh Stanton says:

    The question that came to my mind about the article was how to incentivize the moderate stance of the INC and other moderates over that of the BHP. Is it possible for the international community to provide explicit benefits — say through trade, etc. — to moderates? That might help them “re-brand” as those who truly have India’s economic interests at heart.

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