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From raping to lynching

India, as nation, is putting on unusual names for all wrong reasons. For the frequent sexual assaults on women across the country, it earned the acrimony of being a rape country—rapistan. Delhi, where sexual assaults on women are more common is termed as rape-capital. With one more heinous crime—lynching—becoming common in the country one more title is added to its litany—the lynchistan. It is not going to overboard to say that India is losing its face in the eyes of international community as a country that has descended to medieval madness. The worst of it is that the government, which is responsible for protecting and projecting the positive image of the country by taking on the elements of sabotage, does not show even a modicum of concern over what is going around. Since the way these horrendous crime is committed its political angle cannot be ignored. Last month, at least 11 people were done to death by lynch mobs on different occasions across India. Most of them were beaten to death on fake charges and mere rumours. What is distinctive about these horrible deaths is that 80 percent of them happened in BJP-ruled states. Not a single statement of condemnation or concern has so far been expressed by any of the BJP leaders or ministers. The cogent reason is that the lynch mobs mostly belong to Hindu extremists, who are the supporters of the present government. It is anybody’s guess that BJP would not annoy its supporters by talking or acting against them. It all started with attacks on Muslims by the extremist and communalist Hindu groups with complete patronage from the state. Muslim individuals were targeted under the manufactured allegations of eating or carrying beef or slaughtering or ferrying a cow for slaughter. Around two dozen Muslims were killed by these lynch-soldiers on false pretexts. The lynching has however been marked by silence from the Bharatiya Janata Party, which rules all the states where lynching has taken place. The attempt to create an equivalence about these lynchings is revealing. Instead of recognising that a sickness is spreading through Hindu society, the silence grows, revealing how most Hindus—instead of standing up and saying this must not happen in our name—either choose to be ignorant, find justifications or are complicit. Many have few qualms in saying this is what Muslims deserve. By now the lynchings have become part of what is now known as the normalisation of hatred, the process of becoming immune or deadened to atrocity because there is so much of it. The creation of the new normal is well underway among those in India’s Hindu right, which barely reacts to the killing of Muslims. Over the past some time, the attacks by lynch mobs is not restricted to Muslims only. Many a Hindus belonging to lower sections of the society too have become the target of these extremists. Most of the latest killings have occurred due to rumours on social media of child-lifting. Innocent people are being beaten to death by an angry mobs blinded by rage and powered by rumours of child-lifters circulating on social messaging platforms, that is, WhatsApp. Some time when some Congress workers slaughtered a cow in Kerala, a hue and cry was made by the BJP people in and outside power but when innocent people are lynched; they maintain criminal silence, more so, if the victim is a Muslim. The lynching of Pehlu Khan in Rajsthan was done in full public view and videos of which went viral on social media but still no action was taken against the killers. Some of them arrested for the crime were released after three months with claims of lack of evidence.  This is making a new India where .