Hate speech videos and articles by BJP leaders erased from Internet

BJP leaders’ comments for Muslims, Christians, Dalits and women have mysteriously disappeared from the websites or video streaming portals where they had once been.

Hate Speech
Early in July, noted civil activists and eminent personalities launched a report on four years of India under Modi called ‘Dismantling India.’ They observed how India would become a fascist state by 2019 if BJP came to power again.
The book said that that the difference between earlier governments and the present government is that, the latter has reached the 50 per cent mark of the 14 points which qualify fascism. Referring to the mob lynching and cow vigilantism, the report alleges that the government, party and the Sangh Parivar have actually “triggered” the alienating hate campaigns in the country during last four years – also making use of the internet, smartphones and other apps.
What’s more, many of the polarizing, divisive and downright hateful speeches have been conveniently erased from websites and online media. According to civil activists Shabnam Hashmi, Leena Dabiru and John Dayal, online videos and articles pertaining to hate speeches by BJP leaders have mysteriously disappeared from the websites or video streaming portals where they had once been. They particularly pertain to riots, hate speeches or derogatory comments against Muslims, Christians, Dalits and women by the BJP leaders.
During the launch, renowned civil rights activist and founding member of ANHAD (Act Now for Harmony and Democracy) Shabnam Hashmi said, “There is very organised cleansing process of the internet which is happening. You wouldn’t find those speeches of Mr Modi in YouTube because they were removed even before 2014 general elections. What he spoke during Gaurav Yatra which is full of venom has been removed. Now they are removing articles, editorials which are against Modi, BJP and RSS. What we have been able to find is only 1/10th of some 2000 videos and articles.”
Talking to Caravan Daily, researcher and civil rights activist Leena Dabiru said, “When we were compiling the data we had several tables on various issues like hate speeches against Muslims and Christians, reports on Dalits and women. Since it is four years’ report, we were tracking the things from the day when BJP came to power in 2014. While tracking the links online we found that they don’t exist any longer. They were showing ‘404 Error’. This error was there in almost all the files which were directly associated with those who delivered speeches that created some kind of communal disharmony and are now ministers, MPs and MLAs of the ruling party.”
“While cross-checking, the team discovered that such videos and articles both have been removed. “Not only have the videos been removed from YouTube or personal accounts, articles in mainstream newspapers like The Hindu, The Times of India, Hindustan Times, and The Indian Express have also removed,” Dabiru said. “Some old data of 2012 is available but certain articles which were very important for us and we thought they would give more insight have been removed. We tried a search with names and locations where the riots had taken place or a hate speech had been delivered, still we could not find many of the articles or any other link,” she further said to Caravan Daily.
When Hashmi and Dayal wrote the 365 days of Modi government report for the book, the links to those articles were working between 2014-15. When the verification process began, many of the links had been deleted. “All YouTube channels that promoted Modi were sanitized and now the difference was that mainstream news organisations were doing it too,” she told SabrangIndia.
Speaking to SabrangIndia, Leena Darubi said that all news items with regards to events, speeches, victim’s testimony that would naturally be available at the click of a button, now needed sifting through 10 websites, e-papers, sifting through leaflets, reading pdf files and more. “We decided to add the page numbers of pdf files and e-papers where the reference was available instead of hyperlinks. I believe the data that was used for the 365 days report was purposely deleted as they might have got their hands on the report. Once it is out in the books, it becomes a legal instrument. We put in double the time and effort to search it as we had the patience. We realise it could be a threat to the ruling dispensation who depend on communal strife and division to survive,” she said.
The Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR) reported in its study in April that BJP has the largest number of lawmakers in the country with declared cases of hate speech against them. Of the total of 58 current MPs and MLAs with declared cases of hate speech against themselves, 27 are from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) the study observed.
In April this year, NDTV too in its own findings of hate speech reported that 90 per cent of hateful speeches/comments made during the NDA’s term right now are by BJP politicians. It also concluded that there was an increase of 490 per cent in hate speeches during this time compared to Congress led UPA 2.
In a study by IndiaSpend, 25 persons were killed in 60 incidents of cow-related mob violence between 2010 and 25th June 2017 and 97 per cent of the incidents occurred after the BJP took over reigns of the Central Government in 2014 (Abraham & Rao, 2017). 84 per cent of those killed in cow related mob lynching incidents were Muslims. The remaining 16 per cent were lynched on the accusation of cow slaughter are Dalits and other marginalised sections.
There is a clear co-relation of hate speeches deriding these communities and the consistent attacks on them. The erasure of videos from social media sites and the deleting of sensitive material by mainstream journalism organisations are a threat to civil society and Indian democracy.
Some of the Articles of Hate Removed From Internet (Caravan Daily)
Here are headlines of a few articles or videos of objectionable content that are no longer available on the Internet:
28 June, 2014, Indian Express
MP cites security for Christian profiling
2 September 2014, The New Indian Express
Communal tension flares up in Biramitrapur
2 December 2014, First Post
First ‘shehzada’ now ‘haramzada’: BJP MoS unleashes latest pre poll offensive
2 December 2014, IBNlive
Muslims, Christians sons of Rama, those who don’t believe in it should leave India: BJP Minister
Video removed: https://www.news18.com/videos/politics/niranjan-jyoti-729185.html
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