In this episode, Emma Park speaks to Gita Sahgal, a human rights activist and Honorary Associate of the NSS, about secularism in India, and the threats it is facing from the Hindutva (Hindu nationalist) movement endorsed by Modi’s government. Modern India has been a secularist state since its foundation in 1947. But since the first election of Modi’s government in 2014, as Gita explains, Indian supporters of secularism, pluralism, and the rule of law have been targeted, silenced, and in some cases imprisoned or killed; and the coronavirus pandemic has been used as an opportunity to clamp down on them further.
Gita and Emma also consider how the ideology of Hindutva is bringing its version of Hinduism closer to a monotheistic religion, and how this reinforces its intolerant stance towards Indians who are not Hindus, in particular, the large Muslim minority. Finally, Gita discusses her current work with One Law For All, which is campaigning against Sharia law and other religious laws in the UK.
Watch this episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tWXaP6g8QgA&feature=youtu.be
The Constitution of India
How Hindu supremacists are tearing India apart – The Guardian, 20 February 2020
Gita Sahgal’s lecture highlights rise of Hindutva in India and Britain
One Law For All
Make a stand for freedom, fairness and human rights by adding your voice to the call for a secular democracy. Join the National Secular Society today https://www.secularism.org.uk/join
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