Socialist India

International Socialist Alternative
Ayodhya: Stop Modi’s escalating communal violence!

Following the completely undemocratic suspension of 141 MP’s and the ramming through of the BNS, BNSS, BSA and Telecommunications Act, the BJP has mounted its crown jewel of communalism in the most lavish and expensive display of chest beating so far. The Ram Mandir is a testament to the undying hatred of the Hindutva right wing and its drive to make India an Orwellian nightmare. It is no coincidence that these events have taken place in rapid succession, as the spectacle of this architectural embodiment of oppression is a supreme tactic to distract from the BJP’s numerous and egregious violations, including the aforementioned suspension of MP’s and complete overturning of the legal system as well as the illegal assassination of Hardeep Singh Nijjar on foreign soil, ongoing weapons deals with the genocidal Israeli regime and the enablement of further ethnic cleansing through scabbing of Palestinian labor permits to Indian non-union workers—and from policies that have, despite all the talks of India’s economic rise, mostly favored the billionaire elite. It’s no coincidence that the ruling class’s two most prominent representatives, Ambani and Adani, were among the guest stars at the temple consecration.  

Despite the spectacle bringing flocks of celebrities like vultures to the rotting corpse of Indian secularism, many poor and working-class Indians are disgusted at the excess of 100 crores spent by the UP government alone on the consecration ceremony, to say nothing of the over 3,000 crores privately collected. One need go no further than the words of Chamar youth activist Adarsh Raj who so eloquently noted “temples only bring beggars…schools are what is important!” In a state where the last census revealed one in three residents cannot read and write, “Yogi” Adityanath insists that the best allocation of the equivalent of over 15,000 people’s yearly income is on a 10-week-long celebration of Babri Masjid’s destruction.

India has erupted in a conflagration of saffron flames as Hindutva mobs have carried out indiscriminate attacks against Muslims across the country. Elderly people have been beaten with sticks, rods and chains, a graveyard was set ablaze, Muslim shops were bulldozed, and peaceful gatherings of minority and Bahujan communities have been interrupted with mass violence and destruction. Among the most egregious violations has been the desecration of houses of worship, both by mobs and the organized violence of the state. Masjids and churches have been pelted with stones and defaced with saffron flags. The Delhi government, seizing the moment, bulldozed not only the 800-year-old Mehrauli Masjid but also the adjacent Bahrul Uloom school for orphans and the masjid’s graveyard, leaving human bodies exposed to the outside to be eaten by wild animals.

Adityanath plans to re-create the Babri Masjid catastrophe with another manufactured crisis in the Gyanvapi Masjid, as his corrupt court slowly wedges the door open to another organized riot. The granting of rights to worship idols in the basement of a mosque is not only one of the most grave forms of desecration possible, but is also purposefully designed to provoke more controversy, more violence, and foment another 1992.

Central to the madness is the one idol above all others: the god-king Modi, who in his lust for power has put himself in the shoes of the temple priests by personally consecrating the still-unfinished temple in violation of Hindu traditions. To a man described as a “king of gods” by his own party, the particulars of Hindu spiritual practice matter little compared to the practical considerations of timing this farce to coincide with the looming 2024 elections and the anniversary of the illegal annexure of Kashmir (Shambuka must be shaking with envy at this inconsistency!). Yet to simply echo the right wing’s chants of “Modi, Modi, Modi” would be a disservice to the numerous, populous and murderous organizations that have contributed to this parade of bigotry. The blame for this incident rests not only on Modi, but the entire Bharatiya Janata Party, Vishwa Hindu Parishad, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, as well as every so-called “opposition” party that did nothing to stop this, including the INDIA Alliance who simply rolled over and played dead as the funeral music sounded for India’s “secular, socialist republic”.

Socialist Alternative condemns the Ram Mandir and everything it stands for: wasting of public funds, celebrating bigotry, reinforcing casteism, and above all the Hindutva ideology and its senseless destruction of all diversity in India. The working class of India must stand united against this and excise the cancer of Hindutva and the toxic capitalist system that has created the conditions for its rise. Together we can build a socialist India and a socialist world!