2 former department heads, others demand action against Haridwar communal event

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New Delhi: As news of an event in Haridwar attended by Hindutva leaders that saw open calls for genocide of Muslims spread through social media, several prominent citizens – including two former chiefs of staff – underlined the lack of action against those who launched such calls. Many others have pointed to the silence of the mainstream media about this incident.

In his report on the conclave entitled “Dharma Sansad” or “Religious Parliament”, the Wire noted the presence of “a large number of great religious leaders, right-wing activists, hard-core fundamentalist activists and Hindutva organizations” between December 17 and 19.

Retired Admiral Arun Prakash, former Navy Chief of Staff, was among those who tweeted about the lack of response to what he described as a clear threat to the national security of the ‘India.

“With our jawans facing enemies on two fronts, do we want a communal bloodbath, internal turmoil and international shame? He asked on Twitter.

Admiral Prakash’s tweet received multiple responses, including one from retired General Ved Prakash Malik, former Army Chief of Staff and Army Chief during the Kargil War.

General Malik wrote that such speeches harm national security and also called for action.

RTI activist and congressman from Trinamool, Saket Gokhale, tweeted that he had filed a complaint against the organizers and speakers of the event and that if an FIR is not registered at the police station in Jwalapur, he will file a plea with a judicial magistrate.

Many social media commentators have used the hashtag “Haridwar hate assembly”. Economist and Congressman Salman Soz noted that the police, bureaucracy and the judiciary must act.

In a similar call to end the violence, actor Swara Bhaskar tagged the DGP in Uttarakhand.

Many pointed to the disparity in responses to hate speech, with one commentator asking if singer Rihanna should be tweeting about the incident in order for it to be broadcast in the news. During the farmer protests earlier this year, a tweet from Rihanna sparked a chain of incidents.

Reports and tweets about the Haridwar event – as well as a similar event in Delhi where right-wing participants vowed to “fight, die and kill if necessary”, to make a dream of a “Hindu nation” come true – have also been commented on by international participants. , including tennis legend Martina Navratilova.

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