Like ‘cow slaughter’, ‘love jehad’ is another favourite pretext of the BJP and Sangh Parivar to stoke anti-Muslim violence and hatred. The Muzaffarnagar violence too was stoked on that same pretext. From Western UP to Karnataka and Kerala, to West Bengal, the Sangh Parivar has launched a drive of separating Hindu women from Muslim boyfriends/husbands, claiming to ‘rescue’ such women from ‘love jehad.’
A recent Cobrapost sting operation has caught BJP and Sangh leaders on camera, admitting that not a single genuine love jehad case exists. Instead, these men openly admit to inflicting violence on women – in the name of ‘rescuing’ them! They also admit to committing ‘Hindu terrorism.’
Contrary to the claims that perpetrators of violence in the name of ‘love jehad’ and ‘cow slaughter’ are ‘fringe’ elements, for whom Prime Minister Modi and his Government are not responsible, these BJP and RSS leaders all explain how these campaigns are done to underline why it is important to bring Modi and the BJP to power.
Meet the ‘crusaders’ against ‘love jehad’ – or the anti-love terrorists who inflict violence on women.
Sanjay Agarwal, BJP candidate in municipal elections in Muzaffarnagar
He admits to have used force, violence and threats to compel girls to give false testimonies against Muslim boys, names senior RSS leaders from the town who have helped convert Muslim girls into Hindus and exposes his deep seated communal mind set when he says “We have to work towards ensuring every citizen of India is a Hindu.”
He explains how they organize meetings in which they spread the bogey of ‘love jehad’ and ‘cow slaughter’, and use that to seek support for Modi and the BJP.
“For example, there is a meeting held on elections, and I have gone on behalf of BJP, so, I start like this, saying, friends our country is in danger. We have to bring Modi ji. Why? Because we need more of Hinduism in this country. These Muslim men are snatching and stealing our girls from us, in the name of love jehad. Our such and such girl from such and such village was taken away and we have brought her back. Today, we have to fight love jihad. Cows are getting slaughtered too! So basically there are many issues, we put forth and place Modi ji as the solution.”
Agarwal also openly admits to bashing up and brutalizing Hindu girls to ‘persuade’ them: “If she doesn’t listen to us, we hit her. We get her beaten up. We misbehave (Poori badtameeze karte hain). Such a girl is treated with a wooden board (bilkul, phatte se bajwate hain). Are we wrong to do so?”
RSS leader Omkar Singh claims to have “saved” 125 girls from the clutches of Muslims. He admits on camera that this is done by filing false rape cases against the Muslim men. “Hum uss ladki ko pehle samjhate hai lekin ladki manti nahi phir ham ladke pe case lagwate hai pharji (We first try to make the girl understand and if they still disagree, we file false cases against their men.)”
BJP MLA Suresh Rana
Rana talks of how they coerced a girl to falsely accuse Muslim boys of rape in a Shamli ‘love jehad’ case:
“Now I will tell you the truth. We charged them with rape, but it wasn’t rape, it was consensual. We slapped a rape case against them to teach them a lesson. The girl wasn’t ready to give a statement against them. If you look at the case in depth, the girl was willing. Three people didn’t take her away by force.”
Rana also casually describes his utter contempt for women and open use of violence to force Hindu women to falsely accuse Muslim men: “A girl is a girl after all. It has always been said about them that they change in five minutes according to the circumstances. …they insist ‘No matter what, I will stay with him. I won’t go without him’. If she is taken aside and given two slaps, then she herself goes and gets the FIR registered claiming, ‘They sexually assaulted me … he has been doing it for a month.’ Then she will tell the whole story and slap a case on him. You can mould a girl the way you want).”
Rana explains the Bajrang Dal’s campaign ‘Beti bachao, bahu lao’: “it was an open invitation to the (Hindu) youth, to join in hands and save our girls [Muslims] and instead get [Muslim] wives).”
Krishna Sena founder Shiv Kumar Sharma
Sharma too explains how the communal polarization after riots would help Modi come to power: “Because of riots all Hindus are united right now. They are celebrating in the name of [now Prime Minister Narendra] Modi. The percentage of Hindu votes [in favour of the BJP] would sure increase this time around.”
Sharma explains how his organization stokes riots in the name of ‘love jehad’ rescue operations: “We create a lot of chaos and rioting, and employ every trick.... We take help from lawyers and sometimes the girl turns out to be a major … it often happens … and she says she loves the boy and has married him and would go with him. In that case, we try our best to find out some way to separate them. We use false documents to declare her a minor or not in right frame of mind so that the girl is handed over to her family.”
Sharma also reveals the pleasure he gets in being a “Hindu terrorist” who kills Muslims:
“Actually we used to run a Hindu Dharm Sena, a Hindu terrorist group. We used to kill Muslims, throw bombs at mosques and basically did everything they do against the Hindus. We also used to place a pamphlet taking full responsibility of such acts and put forth our five demands: make India a Hindu Rashtra, build a Ram temple at Ayodhya, revoke Section 370 from Kashmir ….
“I’m like that since my child hood. I have cases pending against me since long... in 1996–97 when we used to kill Muslims, we used to roam around at nights, hunting them down. At times when we could not kill one, we used to feel life worthless, as if nothing had happened... if we killed a Muslim, we used to celebrate the occasion, and if we managed to kill a Maulvi, then our happiness would know no bounds.”
Ravish Tantri, Chief of Hindu Unity Forum in Kerala:
Tantri openly threats to kill inter-faith couples: “When the girl goes from the ‘conversion centre’ to the court, we warn her that if she does not give a statement on her parents side and does not marry the guy prescribed by us, then the moment she and her husband step out of the court, they will be killed by our people.” He claims that the Congress and the CPIM also support them at times.
BJP MLA candidate Umesh Malik
BJP’s MLA candidate from Bugana in the Muzaffarnagar district, Umesh Malik says about the VHP-BJP division of labour in the campaign of stoking violence in the name of ‘love jehad’: “BJP mein iss prakaar ki koi niti nahi hai, BJP ka movement ham log hai, panchayat hai, ye BJP ke logon ne ki thi. Baki jo pamphlets vagairah baantne, patther marne iss prakar ki ghatnaye VHP vagairah ne ki (BJP doesn’t do any such kind of work. The BJP’s movement mainly includes conducting panchayats. Distributing pamphlets and pelting stones is done by the VHP).”
BJP MP Hukam Singh
BJP MP from the same area Hukam Singh advocates moral policing by Hindu fathers to prevent Hindu women from falling in love with Muslim men. Admitting that their project becomes difficult because the girls tend to stand their ground in police stations and declare that they have gone voluntarily with the Muslim boys, he says the best strategy is to ensure that BJP comes to power. “The strategy is: let Modi come to power, then no Mohmmedan will dare look at any of Hindu girls let alone touching them.”
BJP Central Minister Sanjeev Balyan
On January 29, 2014, Sanjeev Balyan addressed a panchayat meeting in village Phugana in Muzaffarnagar where he incited people to not cooperate with investigations in the rape cases related to the riots and admitted giving a communal colour to events preceding the riots.
Radhey Shyam, a VHP worker in Muzaffarnagar
Radhey Shyam openy incites riots over ‘love jehad’:
“Love jihad happens because you are weak. You just need to shoot a few people and it will stop the next day. If you see their boy with our girl, just shoot them... If 10 of our boys die, how does it matter? It won’t matter if our community is saved. 10–20 sacrifices are needed, and without sacrifice nothing can be achieved.”
BJP MLA Sangeet Som
Som, who visited Dadri to promise a repeat of the Muzaffarnagar riots unless those accused in the Dadri lynching were freed, is caught on camera saying that the threat of rioting makes police cooperate with the communal forces, no matter whether or not BJP is in the Government:
He says, “This is Hindustan and it does not matter which party is running the government. In a democratic country like this, there are many other ways to get things done. The police knows it well that we will do picketing, hold demonstration and all this will lead to rioting. So, they perforce co-operate with us.”
Som also boasts of how they exert emotional pressure on Hindu women to make them renounce Muslim husbands: “Most importantly we exert on her emotionally that her mother will die, her father will die and brother might even commit suicide as he would not be able to face the society.”
Compliant Lawyers, Police, Judiciary
BJP leader Sanjay Agrawal boasts of the fact that right-wing leaning lawyers act as their informants “A lot of advocates are swayam sevaks. They keep an eye to see if a Hindu girl registers at the city magistrate or the SDM’s office for marriage and the date given. They find out who her lawyer is and if she is in the lawyer’s chamber. Then they call us. We go there with our whole team... 50, 60, 70 people.”
And the entire police and judicial machinery cooperates with the Sangh group to intimidate the Hindu woman into getting separated. Agrawal explains how this works: “We don’t let the girl appear in court for days. We say that the girl is not listening. They [police] say it’s alright, we will see her tomorrow. If she isn’t listening even tomorrow, they say it’s alright. They help us a lot. They send her mother to her to talk. We are not allowed to do that. They help us a lot. Judges help us, so does the SSP (senior superintendent of police).” And judges help the cause by decreeing to handover the girl to her parents: “The judge gives the girl to us in his judgment. He hands her over to her parents. Once she is under her parents’ control, we can get her married in three days.”
Mangalore: Police and Sanghi Terrorists Hand in Glove
Jagdish Shenava, Lawyer and VHP’s Mangalore district working president openly admits that slapping illegal and false cases is part of their strategy: “Legally it is right but in that there is no legality for us. We won’t allow.” He also boasts of how the police is under their thumb: “Here we have our organisation, it’s so powerful that in spite of being the Congress government they are scared of us because we are so powerful here.”
BJP MLC Captain Ganesh Karnik claims to have infiltrated the police force with RSS workers: “We have tried to send some of our boys into police. So when we need help there are a lot of karyakartas, RSS. Sixty percent of the young constables are our students.”
A Durga Vahini woman leader adds, “That’s the job of the Bajrang Dal, whatever it is. Be it the police case or beating up someone, that’s their job).” Police accompany the Sanghi mobs on such ‘raids’: “Yes they go prepared, also accompanied by police).” And the Hindu women are ‘rescued’ by force: “Nahi, usko pehle toh zabardasti leke ana padta hai (No, we need to bring her here forcefully.”
Kerala: Drugs Used to Coerce Women
In Kerala, the Hindu Helpline has taken to administering drugs to girls who have been “rescued”. These drugs cause temporary amnesia and are used to bring the girl under control if she is “being too aggressive”, says Cijiith from the Hindu Helpline in Ernakulam, Kerala. He claims that parents bring their daughters from as far away as Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra for ‘treatment’ in Ernakulam, where the women are held captive and drugged in a hospital.”
Cijith asserts, “I don’t know how to say it, we are successful in creating fear….We have to create a true fear in the society, about Muslims.”
Cijith explains how his organization stokes riots all over India:
“We cannot initiate a riot. …What I can do is I can make all the circumstances ready. I can just initiate the people, I can just irritate the people. And the incident has to happen itself….When we create a consciousness amongst the community about this, the whole Muslim people came into an accused state. All the Hindu people are saying that Muslims are doing it. The element of hatred comes there. Then society is ready for a riot. …no riot has happened (in Kerala) because law and order situation is more under the control of the government. But then the same incident is happening in UP, there people are armed. They are not controlled by the government. So there when the same incident happened, people took arms and the riots happened. That’s the mindset. That’s how we can make the society ready for riots.”