Modi using Hindutva ideology to turn India into an ‘autocracy’: Farrukh Habib

Commenting on Indian’s discriminatory attitude towards minorities, he said it was the very reason the Sikh community is demanding separation from India’.

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ISLAMABAD, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Farrukh Habib on Thursday said Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was using the Hindutva ideology to turn his country into an ‘autocracy’.

“Minorities do not feel safe in India due to policies and laws adopted by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government that systemically discriminate against Muslims and other vulnerable communities in the country such as the Citizenship Law, revoking constitutional autonomy in Muslim majority Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK),” he said.

He was addressing at a panel discussion on ‘India: The Largest Democracy or a Fake Union?’ organized by the Institute of Regional Studies, here.

Commenting on Indian’s discriminatory attitude towards minorities, he said it was the very reason the Sikh community is demanding separation from India’.

Referendum by Sikhs, in that regard, clearly demonstrates Sikh community’s resolve to have a separate state for them where they could enjoy religious, political and social freedom, he stressed.

He went on saying that even pro-Indian Kashmiri leadership in IIOJK have expressed their anger over New Delhi’s unilateral action of sabotaging Kashmir’s autonomy.

Farrukh told the participants that the Muslims girls in India especially in Gujrat, Rajasthan, and Karnataka were not feeling secure after the incidents of harassment cases of Hijab wearing girls appeared on media.

‘India’s official news agency, he said has now become a mouthpiece of BJP that consistently spreading false and misleading information about Pakistan’.

He said EU Disinfo Lab, has exposed a vast Indian network of 750 fake media outlets based in 116 countries running a global campaign for the past 15 years to discredit Pakistan internationally.

Prime Minister Imran Khan, he said had played the role of an advocate and courageous ambassador of the hapless Kashmiri people by highlighting the issue at various international forums.

He reiterated the Prime Minister’s commitment to continue to expose India’s belligerent designs towards Pakistan and Modi government’s fascism at every international key forum.

He urged the Pakistani youth, academicians, journalists and people from all walks of life to work in tandem to dislodge Indian propaganda against Pakistan.

Ambassador Asif Ali Khan Durrani said “Article 25 to 28 of Indian constitution provide all its citizens a right to practice his or her own religion.”

He argued that it was India’s constitution that kept the people of India united for a very long time but today the situation has changed altogether.

He said Babri mosque was the symbol of religious freedom and equality in India that was unfortunately succumbed to hyper-nationalist forces.

Durrani warned that rising racism in India would further consolidate polarization in Indian polity and society which ultimately affect the whole region in a considerable manner. “India could be everything but not a democracy, it is an autocracy,” he added.

Assistant Professor at Quaid-e-Azam University , Dr Salma Malik, said “India as union has undergone many changes since the rise of Modi in India that have challenged the very basis of Indian democracy.”

Associate Professor and Head of Department of Peace and Conflict Studies at National Defense University, Dr Arshi Saleem Hashmi, argued that a kind of autonomy that Indian unions were enjoying have significantly gone down in recent years.

“Today, the Centre is overstepping unions’ authority by passing resolutions that constitutionally come under union’s jurisdiction,” she added.

Dr Hashmi warned that the unprecedented rise of corporate-Hindutva alliance that was basically engineered to prevent indigenous revolts against India’s racist policies, was bringing a major shift in political discourse wherein the opposition parties were finding it hard to promote their traditional ideological manifestations.

“India does not have a positive peace and thus cannot claim to be a democracy,” she noted.

She emphasized that the sharp decline in India’s ranking in religious and press freedom, judiciary, and human rights indexes speak volumes about polarization in Indian polity and society.

Director Strategic Defense, Security and Policy at Centre for Aerospace and Security Studies (CASS), Syed Muhammad Ali, said that India’s massive investment in building a global information network in the last fifteen years, has made it able to not only hide but also justify its racist policies to the world.

It was also because of India’s information rampage the US was compelled to realize the Chinese threat to Indian soil which ultimately resulted in enhance military cooperation between Washington and the New Delhi, he added.

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