Will have issued orders to shoot intellectuals: Karanataka BJP MLA’s unabated violent propaganda

 A senior Karnataka MLA from BJP, Basanagouda Pati lYatnal is in news again for his controversial statement that had he been the Union Home Minister, he would order the shooting of intellectuals.


The MLA from Vijaypuraalso branded liberals and intellectuals as “anti-nationals”

Speaking at a Kargil Vijay Diwas event, the MLA also added, “These people (intellectuals) live in this country and use all the facilities for which we pay tax. Then they raise slogans against the Indian Army. Our country faces grave danger from intellectuals and seculars than anyone else.”
However, this is not the first time that the minister has made such statements.

In a video that went viral early June, the ‘lawmaker’ can be seen making discriminatory remarks against Muslims. “I never asked Muslims to vote for me, I had faith in Hindus that they would vote for me,” he says in the video. Clearly biased in his approach, he further adds, “Hindus are the one who ensured my win in the elections. I will work to develop the Hindu community, not the Muslims.”

When clarification was sought from him, he had defended his comments saying that Muslims hadn’t voted for the BJP. He had also said that elections were a “war between Hindus and Muslims” as reported in an Indian Express report.

However, propagandist websites such as oneindia clearly dubbed him as a hero using words like “firebrand”, “Hindu leader” etc. in their pieces reporting about his joining the BJP in April 2018.

The Times Now channel, which is rapidly and outrageously indulging itself in poisonous, hate-filled, jingoist discourses sugar-coated the problematic and clearly violent ideas of the minister by highlighting how “Our intellectuals are harming us”

Yatnal was an MLA from BJP for the period between 1994 and 1999. From 1999 till 2009, he serves as the MP from Bijapur. He even served as the minister of state for Textiles and Railways between 2002 and 2004. He joined the Janata Dal in 2010 and became an independent MLA an year after. He joined BJP earlier this year.

His comments are an indication of the discourse that tends to dumb down and dehumanize a certain section of society that critiques the government or likes to present ideas in a scientific and reasoned way. Moreover, the more worrying bit is not the comment itself, but the normalization of such hate-filled messages from people in responsible positions without drawing a word of criticism from their peers and leaders. The idea is to promote rhetoric and play on people’s fears and insecurities. This is simply indicated by the fact that more than twenty hours of the statement, no leader from the party has criticised his comments.



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