The horrific acts of violence that were witnessed in Leicester’s neighbourhoods are said by the British media to have been precipitated by a recent cricket match between India and Pakistan in Dubai. To face the actual challenges at hand in this East Midlands city would need some digging into the terrible history of colonial violence and imperialism, which many would prefer we forget. That narrative is far simpler to sell than the genuine concerns at play in this city.
Last week several masked Hindu men marched recklessly along Green Lane Road in the East Midlands city during peak shopping hours while being led and guarded by police officers. This comes after a series of threats, which have recently included chanting outside mosques, attacks by mobs specifically targeting Muslims, and destruction of homes and businesses. Following this, groups of young people from both communities protested in the streets, which led to fights that continued for a while. Although their slogans were threatening and scary, why did the police permit this march to go ahead? The police and media have minimised the involvement of Hindutva activists who support Modi.
On ground, this Hindutva group does not appear to have any obvious public leaders or demands, unlike other far-right and fascist organisations in the UK like the English Defence League or the British National Party. On such rallies in Leicester, there have been no speakers, posters, or public appeals to participate. However, it is obvious that they are well-organized. It takes preparation, resources, time, and money to covertly mobilise hundreds of armed and disguised individuals without the awareness of the local population.
What kind of attacks and marches are these?
Intentionally playing loud Hindu religious music outside mosques and homes for Muslims. Intimidatingly advancing into Muslim-dominated regions- Encouraging and inciting racial and ethnic animosity. Before starting strikes, determining whether a target is a Muslim primarily toward Muslims, chanting “jai shri Ram” expecting to elicit a response, and intentionally seeking a conflict. Keeping all these incidents in mind, do these people not represent the Leicester’s Hindu community?
The media has depicted this violence and hostility as being purely connected to cricket, as being just a matter of India vs Pakistan. But that is ridiculous. “What the Hindutva goons have done in the UK is replica of what India is doing in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) and with Muslims in India,” said Fahim Kayani, a leader of British Muslim community. “Muslims are not involved, nor a party to these incidents. Muslim community is victim of this broad day light attack and the Hindutva goons have clearly said it in their rally that the Muslims should leave the country,” said Kayani, who leads Tehreek-e-Kashmir UK lobby group.
The fascists and Nazis of Germany served as an inspiration for the RSS and the BJP, who support the racial superiority of Hindus. Human rights organisations around the world have been concerned about the human rights violation in India for a number of years. The safety of the nation’s religious minority is a concern. India has denied the accusations and reaffirmed its dedication to upholding human rights.