[dropcap]P[/dropcap]rime Minister Narendra Modi appears unusually relaxed during his visit to Japan. The irony is the images on television as he meets with Japan Prime Minister Abe, feeding fish in the Imperial palace grounds as well as meeting with the mayor and posing for tourists in Kyoto so belie the unease that is ‘birthing’ in India.
Not for a moment does anyone grudge the Prime Minister a relaxed foreign visit, especially to beautiful Japan but even as the PM pitches for Varanasi as a heritage city on the lines of Kyoto, back home more controversies are breaking out with what is increasingly being perceived as a definite agenda of the BJP to change India from a secular country to one of a theocratic state.From the theory of ‘love jihad’ by which the BJP has been propagating the theory that Muslim men are marrying Hindu girls by feigning love and the need to re-convert converts to Hinduism a very different India appears to be emerging.
An India which does not try to answer the questions its earlier leaders asked
Pandit Nehru was known to ask himself, what he was heir to. He dwelt on being an heir to all that humanity had achieved over tens of thousands of years, to its cries of triumph and its bitter agonies of defeat. He wrote on the wisdom of India’s past, on its great inexhaustible spiritual heritage, and on the vital necessity to apply it intelligently and reasonably to the present and the future. Toleration and peace were the whole essence of the Indian outlook. He was confident that his countrymen would adjust, without too great difficulty, to a new scheme of things. The times they are a changing !
An Indian Express report Citing ‘love jihad’, Sangh groups in UP unite to ‘fight’ saysanother Sangh Parivar-linked organisation, the Dharma Jagran Manch, recently started a similar campaign to appeal to Hindus to curb the practice of ‘love jihad’.“We have so far re-converted only Muslim and Christian families to Hindusim. Individual Hindu girls converted to Islam through ‘love jihad’ have not been re-converted by us. If any organisation like ABVP or HJM comes to us with such ‘love jihad’ victims, we will re-convert the girls to Hinduism,” said Rajeshwar Singh, organisation head of Dharma Jagran Manch in western UP.
A delegation of Christian leaders on Sunday expressed concern over two incidents in the last one week connected to the “reconversion” of people from Christianity to Hinduism.
Pastor at the Central Methodist Church Father Yousuf Das and another prominent local pastor Father Jonathon Lal said that the core issue was not about conversion or reconversion but about insecurity generated by the threat posed to church properties by such intimidatory acts.
The first incident took place in Asroi village in Iglas tehsil of Aligarh on Tuesday last and the second incident of mass “reconversion” took place in a village near Hasain in Hathras on Thursday.
Some Christian leaders including priests from New Delhi visited the shrine at Asroi village yesterday and performed prayers at the church property.
In faraway northeast India such ‘agendas’ one dare adds is alien and especially more so in Nagaland where thus far ‘religious bias’ has not corrupted the air. But authorities dare not remain complacent. Nagaland’s border’s remain volatile and vulnerable to ethnic disturbances as recently glimpsed. The tragedy of the ‘love jihad’ theory is that it is beginning to sound more like a weapon to further Hindutva. The hope is ‘love’ will triumph and neither jihad nor forced conversions rule over us.