[INDOLOGY] Ananya Vajpeyi on Hindutva, caste, and Brahminical values

Nityanand Misra nmisra at gmail.com
Fri Oct 9 04:36:10 UTC 2015

On Oct 9, 2015 12:12 AM, "Veeranarayana Pandurangi" <veerankp at gmail.com>
> one paragraph of this USCIRF report looks interesting

I read the USCIRF annual report. There is not much data or statistics in
the report. I found just one paragraph (on page 151) which presents
statistics, but from 2013:

“According to India’s Union Home Ministry, in 2013 there were 823 incidents
of communal violence nationwide, ... According to Muslim and Christian NGOs
that track communal incidents, 2014 statistics, yet to be released by the
Ministry, will be likely higher.”

The NGOs’ prediction did not come true. The number of communal violence
incidents in India in 2014, as released by the Government in the
Parliament, was 22% lower (668) compared to 2013 (823), and was the lowest
in three years. Here is the source:


This is just to show that views of the sources cited by the USCIRF report
need to be taken with a pinch of salt. Similarly, the following statements
in the report are accusations and/or claims which need to be corroborated
rather than taken at face value:

1) “Religious minority communities frequently accuse ...”

2) “Christian communities ... report an increase of harassment and violence
in the last year, ...”

3) “The Evangelical Fellowship of India has documented ...”

4) “Catholic communities in India also have documented ...”

5) “The Muslim community in India also has experienced increased harassment
and violence ...”

The statement below, which is not traced to any source and not corroborated
by any specific incident, is highly dubious (I do not recall any news
source reporting incidents of this type ‘often’):

6) “Sikhs are often harassed and pressured to reject religious practices
and beliefs that are distinct to Sikhism, such as dress, unshorn hair, and
the carrying of religious items, including the kirpan.”

The statement below is also notable, though it needs to be subject to the
same level of scrutiny as statements (1) to (5) above:

7) “There are reports that some evangelical groups use tactics that are
unethical and insulting to Hinduism and Hindus, which exacerbate religious
and communal tensions.”

The statement below being a half-truth is misleading, since Mr. Modi has
been absolved by the courts of India of the longstanding allegations. A
balanced statement would add that the allegations have not been proved in

8) “This statement is notable given longstanding allegations that, as Chief
Minister of Gujarat in 2002, Mr. Modi was complicit in anti-Muslim riots in
that state.”

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