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Communalism Hate Speech

BJP dumps spokesperson Nupur Sharma, Naveen K. Jindal in damage control move

Action comes after outrage from Gulf nations, days after Sharma Jindal made derogatory remarks about the Prophet

Sabrangindia 06 Jun 2022

Nupur Sharma, Naveen K. Jindal

On May 26 Bharatiya Janata Party’s star national spokesperson Nupur Sharma made derogatory remarks about the Prophet Mohammad and Islam at a prime time debate on Times Now anchored by Navika Kumar. Nupur Sharma continued with her anti-Islam slurs and was allowed to do so by Navika Kumar who did not interject to stop the hate mongering. The BJP however, DID NOT issue any statement or explanation on the abuse spewed by its national spokesperson. This led to other BJP supporters repeating the same abuse on social media. Social media outrage ensues.  

May 28: Mumbai Police registered an FIR against Nupur Sharma based on a complaint made by Irfan Shaikh, joint secretary of the Mumbai wing of Raza Academy. However, she has still not been arrested. The BJP, once again chose to remain silent on the issue.

May 29: The BJP’s Uttar Pradesh government instead of cracking down on hatemongers, arrested the president of Shibli College students union Abdul Rehman in Azamgarh district for protesting against Nupur Sharma’s offensive remarks.

June 1: Attacks begin on Alt News co-founder Mohammed Zubair who was the first to expose the communal hate speech by Nupur Sharma. He has shared on social media platforms s that he has been named in multiple first information reports, in Uttar Pradesh, accusing him of allegedly hurting religious sentiments when he exposed communal hate speech. He continues to be threatened and abused online.

June 3: After a protest march is taken out to protest the offensive remarks violence breaks out in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, in a clash with police after Friday prayers.

June 4:  Vice President of India (HVPI) M Venkaiah Naidu arrived in Doha on the third leg of his 3-nation tour. He was accompanied by Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Dr. Bharati Pravin Pawar and Members of Parliament, Sushil Kumar Modi, Vijay Pal Singh Tomar and P. Ravindhranath. He was received by Soltan bin Saad Al-Muraikhi, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and was welcomed by the  ceremonial with a Guard of Honour.

June 5: VP Naidu called on Father Amir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, met the Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz Al Thani at Amiri Diwan and top ministers.

June 5: Sunday witnessed a massive diplomatic outrage from Gulf countries. This is what  led to and the ruling BJP ‘punished’ its spokespersons over their derogatory references to Islam and the Prophet. Meanwhile Qatar, Kuwait and Iran had summoned India’s ambassadors posted in their countries, and many calls were posted on social media urging “a boycott of Indian products”. The BJP has only suspended its national spokesperson Nupur Sharma, but has expelled its Delhi media head Naveen Kumar Jindal over their communal comments.

This symbolic action too has come after massive public outrage from the Gulf nations who have  condemned and denounced the BJP members statements insulting Prophet Muhammad.

 

 

BJP is in damage control mode

The BJP is now in damage control mode, perhaps for the first time in response to a communal abuse, and issued a statement asserting that it “respects all religions” and “strongly denounces insults of any religious personality”. In a note now circulating on social media, BJP's disciplinary committee said Nupur Sharma had violated its constitutional rules and was “suspended from the party and from your responsibilities, assignments if any, with immediate effect,”till “further inquiry’.” Jinadal has , expelling Jindal, who had echoed Sharma's sentiments the party stated his views on social media could “vitiate communal harmony”

Nupur Sharma was forced to post her personal ‘apology’ on Twitter claiming she had been upset with 'insult and disrespect' of Lord Shiva, “I have been attending TV debates for the past many days where our Mahadev was being insulted and disrespected continuously.” Interestingly these ‘apologies’ are not displayed on the BJP’s official website yet, but are only available on social media, or have been released to the news agency ANI by the party.

 

 

Naveen Kumar Jindal too was quick to delete his remarks and ‘apologise’. He claimed his “intention was not to hurt anyone's sentiments. We respect all religions. I made another tweet today afternoon in which I have written that one should respect all religions. My question was to those people whose mentality is to constantly talk nonsense about Lord Shri Ram, Goddess Sita, Goddess Janaki, Lord Hanuman and Goddess Saraswati. I asked the people a question. It doesn't mean that I want to hurt anyone's sentiments. That's why I want to say very clearly that one should respect all religions. I do not wish to spread hatred amongst people. No religion propagates hatred."

 

 

Both Nupur Sharma and Naveen K Jindal have claimed they are ‘victims’ and are being trolled and allegedly threatened for their remarks, even as they now continue to ‘explain’ those offensive remarks. The apologies have so far not been seen as effective or even meaningful. That the party is in mere damage control mode has also been called out.

 

 

CJP was among first to call out Times Now’s bias towards BJP’s Nupur Sharma

The Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP) was perhaps among the first organisations to raise the issue and write to Times Now about their News Hour debate show ‘The Gyanvapi Files’ that aired on May 26, 2022. The CJP wrote to Times Now on June 1, soon after studying the issue in detail, after Mohd Zubair of ALtNews had tweeted exposing the story on May 27. The Times Now debate seemed one-sided and partisan, and had thus violated “the basic principles of journalism and those laid down by the esteemed News Broadcasting Digital Standards Authority (NBDSA),” wrote CJP. The letter highlighted how anchor Navika Kumar appeared biased towards Nupur Sharma and did not even attempt to intervene even when Sharma made remarks about Prophet Mohammed. The narrative of the show appears to suggest that it intended to spread hatred, stigmatise and demean the Muslim community on national television, on a channel that is accessible and within the reach of a large number of people and has a huge societal influence.

Nupur Sharma, then the BJP’s national  spokesperson said, “They (Muslims) should be told to shut up and stop insulting our (Hindu) religion. Otherwise, we are also capable of hitting them where it hurts. They may call it a fountain as much as they want, but the reality is that even the Supreme Court ordered immediate protection of the area…” She then went on to make even more comments targeting Muslims asking, “Claims made in the Quran about your flying horses… that the earth is flat …should I make fun of it?” But the shocker was when she alleged that Prophet Mohammed, revered by all Muslims, married and defiled a child.

Gulf trade powers BJP reaction to its own communal hate offenders

That the BJP’s took action, perhaps the first of its kind in recent times, has clearly been taken keeping in mind the nation’s relationship with the Gulf nations. There is also a massive Indian expat population that lives and works in the Gulf countries. VP Naidu in his ongoing visit to Qatar called these “deep rooted centuries old ties”. He also acknowledged that nearly 40 per cent of India’s gas requirements are met from Qatar and called for a “need to move beyond buyer-seller relationship into a comprehensive energy partnership” reported Indian Express.

Now the spokespersons of his party have done major damage to his image, and to that of the party.  Qatar and Kuwait summoned the Indian ambassadors on Sunday, reported The Telegraph, as did Iran. India’s ambassador in Doha, Deepak Mittal, reportedly “expressed regret and called any insult to the Prophet of Islam unacceptable”. However, the Narendra Modi led government has said the comments were made by  “fringe elements” ignoring the fact that Nupur Sharma and Navin K Jindal, were representing the BJP as spokesperson. Nupur Sharma continues to be a member of the party.

Qatar’s foreign ministry has stated that it expected a public apology from the Indian government.

 

 

Reports of photographs of the Indian prime minister on garbage bins have been circulating widely on social media since Sunday. Prime Minister Modi had visited UAE and Kuwait in January 2022, the latest of his many visits since 2014. Soon calls went out on social media asking that the Gulf nations boycott Indian products The Grand Mufti of Oman was among those who called for a boycott.

 

 

According to the news reports quoting official data “nearly 6.5 million Indians live in the region” and according to India’s Embassy in Saudi Arabia, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) — which is headquartered in Riyadh and includes Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and UAE — has “tremendous significance for India”. The IE reported that, “in

2020-2021, the total value of India’s trade with GCC nations was worth over US $87 billion, which included total imports worth nearly US $60 billion.”

 

Related

Student leader, Abdul Rehman arrested for protesting against hate-monger, Nupur Sharma

Hate Watch: Couldn’t NKTV have stopped BJP’s Shiladitya Dev from making anti-Muslim comments on air?

Three FIRs registered, 500 booked as police personnel stay alert: Kanpur violence

Violence in Kanpur, clash with police after Friday prayers

After Times Now debate Nupur Sharma gets online threats from trolls

 

BJP dumps spokesperson Nupur Sharma, Naveen K. Jindal in damage control move

Action comes after outrage from Gulf nations, days after Sharma Jindal made derogatory remarks about the Prophet

Nupur Sharma, Naveen K. Jindal

On May 26 Bharatiya Janata Party’s star national spokesperson Nupur Sharma made derogatory remarks about the Prophet Mohammad and Islam at a prime time debate on Times Now anchored by Navika Kumar. Nupur Sharma continued with her anti-Islam slurs and was allowed to do so by Navika Kumar who did not interject to stop the hate mongering. The BJP however, DID NOT issue any statement or explanation on the abuse spewed by its national spokesperson. This led to other BJP supporters repeating the same abuse on social media. Social media outrage ensues.  

May 28: Mumbai Police registered an FIR against Nupur Sharma based on a complaint made by Irfan Shaikh, joint secretary of the Mumbai wing of Raza Academy. However, she has still not been arrested. The BJP, once again chose to remain silent on the issue.

May 29: The BJP’s Uttar Pradesh government instead of cracking down on hatemongers, arrested the president of Shibli College students union Abdul Rehman in Azamgarh district for protesting against Nupur Sharma’s offensive remarks.

June 1: Attacks begin on Alt News co-founder Mohammed Zubair who was the first to expose the communal hate speech by Nupur Sharma. He has shared on social media platforms s that he has been named in multiple first information reports, in Uttar Pradesh, accusing him of allegedly hurting religious sentiments when he exposed communal hate speech. He continues to be threatened and abused online.

June 3: After a protest march is taken out to protest the offensive remarks violence breaks out in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, in a clash with police after Friday prayers.

June 4:  Vice President of India (HVPI) M Venkaiah Naidu arrived in Doha on the third leg of his 3-nation tour. He was accompanied by Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Dr. Bharati Pravin Pawar and Members of Parliament, Sushil Kumar Modi, Vijay Pal Singh Tomar and P. Ravindhranath. He was received by Soltan bin Saad Al-Muraikhi, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and was welcomed by the  ceremonial with a Guard of Honour.

June 5: VP Naidu called on Father Amir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, met the Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz Al Thani at Amiri Diwan and top ministers.

June 5: Sunday witnessed a massive diplomatic outrage from Gulf countries. This is what  led to and the ruling BJP ‘punished’ its spokespersons over their derogatory references to Islam and the Prophet. Meanwhile Qatar, Kuwait and Iran had summoned India’s ambassadors posted in their countries, and many calls were posted on social media urging “a boycott of Indian products”. The BJP has only suspended its national spokesperson Nupur Sharma, but has expelled its Delhi media head Naveen Kumar Jindal over their communal comments.

This symbolic action too has come after massive public outrage from the Gulf nations who have  condemned and denounced the BJP members statements insulting Prophet Muhammad.

 

 

BJP is in damage control mode

The BJP is now in damage control mode, perhaps for the first time in response to a communal abuse, and issued a statement asserting that it “respects all religions” and “strongly denounces insults of any religious personality”. In a note now circulating on social media, BJP's disciplinary committee said Nupur Sharma had violated its constitutional rules and was “suspended from the party and from your responsibilities, assignments if any, with immediate effect,”till “further inquiry’.” Jinadal has , expelling Jindal, who had echoed Sharma's sentiments the party stated his views on social media could “vitiate communal harmony”

Nupur Sharma was forced to post her personal ‘apology’ on Twitter claiming she had been upset with 'insult and disrespect' of Lord Shiva, “I have been attending TV debates for the past many days where our Mahadev was being insulted and disrespected continuously.” Interestingly these ‘apologies’ are not displayed on the BJP’s official website yet, but are only available on social media, or have been released to the news agency ANI by the party.

 

 

Naveen Kumar Jindal too was quick to delete his remarks and ‘apologise’. He claimed his “intention was not to hurt anyone's sentiments. We respect all religions. I made another tweet today afternoon in which I have written that one should respect all religions. My question was to those people whose mentality is to constantly talk nonsense about Lord Shri Ram, Goddess Sita, Goddess Janaki, Lord Hanuman and Goddess Saraswati. I asked the people a question. It doesn't mean that I want to hurt anyone's sentiments. That's why I want to say very clearly that one should respect all religions. I do not wish to spread hatred amongst people. No religion propagates hatred."

 

 

Both Nupur Sharma and Naveen K Jindal have claimed they are ‘victims’ and are being trolled and allegedly threatened for their remarks, even as they now continue to ‘explain’ those offensive remarks. The apologies have so far not been seen as effective or even meaningful. That the party is in mere damage control mode has also been called out.

 

 

CJP was among first to call out Times Now’s bias towards BJP’s Nupur Sharma

The Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP) was perhaps among the first organisations to raise the issue and write to Times Now about their News Hour debate show ‘The Gyanvapi Files’ that aired on May 26, 2022. The CJP wrote to Times Now on June 1, soon after studying the issue in detail, after Mohd Zubair of ALtNews had tweeted exposing the story on May 27. The Times Now debate seemed one-sided and partisan, and had thus violated “the basic principles of journalism and those laid down by the esteemed News Broadcasting Digital Standards Authority (NBDSA),” wrote CJP. The letter highlighted how anchor Navika Kumar appeared biased towards Nupur Sharma and did not even attempt to intervene even when Sharma made remarks about Prophet Mohammed. The narrative of the show appears to suggest that it intended to spread hatred, stigmatise and demean the Muslim community on national television, on a channel that is accessible and within the reach of a large number of people and has a huge societal influence.

Nupur Sharma, then the BJP’s national  spokesperson said, “They (Muslims) should be told to shut up and stop insulting our (Hindu) religion. Otherwise, we are also capable of hitting them where it hurts. They may call it a fountain as much as they want, but the reality is that even the Supreme Court ordered immediate protection of the area…” She then went on to make even more comments targeting Muslims asking, “Claims made in the Quran about your flying horses… that the earth is flat …should I make fun of it?” But the shocker was when she alleged that Prophet Mohammed, revered by all Muslims, married and defiled a child.

Gulf trade powers BJP reaction to its own communal hate offenders

That the BJP’s took action, perhaps the first of its kind in recent times, has clearly been taken keeping in mind the nation’s relationship with the Gulf nations. There is also a massive Indian expat population that lives and works in the Gulf countries. VP Naidu in his ongoing visit to Qatar called these “deep rooted centuries old ties”. He also acknowledged that nearly 40 per cent of India’s gas requirements are met from Qatar and called for a “need to move beyond buyer-seller relationship into a comprehensive energy partnership” reported Indian Express.

Now the spokespersons of his party have done major damage to his image, and to that of the party.  Qatar and Kuwait summoned the Indian ambassadors on Sunday, reported The Telegraph, as did Iran. India’s ambassador in Doha, Deepak Mittal, reportedly “expressed regret and called any insult to the Prophet of Islam unacceptable”. However, the Narendra Modi led government has said the comments were made by  “fringe elements” ignoring the fact that Nupur Sharma and Navin K Jindal, were representing the BJP as spokesperson. Nupur Sharma continues to be a member of the party.

Qatar’s foreign ministry has stated that it expected a public apology from the Indian government.

 

 

Reports of photographs of the Indian prime minister on garbage bins have been circulating widely on social media since Sunday. Prime Minister Modi had visited UAE and Kuwait in January 2022, the latest of his many visits since 2014. Soon calls went out on social media asking that the Gulf nations boycott Indian products The Grand Mufti of Oman was among those who called for a boycott.

 

 

According to the news reports quoting official data “nearly 6.5 million Indians live in the region” and according to India’s Embassy in Saudi Arabia, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) — which is headquartered in Riyadh and includes Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and UAE — has “tremendous significance for India”. The IE reported that, “in

2020-2021, the total value of India’s trade with GCC nations was worth over US $87 billion, which included total imports worth nearly US $60 billion.”

 

Related

Student leader, Abdul Rehman arrested for protesting against hate-monger, Nupur Sharma

Hate Watch: Couldn’t NKTV have stopped BJP’s Shiladitya Dev from making anti-Muslim comments on air?

Three FIRs registered, 500 booked as police personnel stay alert: Kanpur violence

Violence in Kanpur, clash with police after Friday prayers

After Times Now debate Nupur Sharma gets online threats from trolls

 

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