Sunday, July 9, 2017

Lynchistan: India is the Lynching Capital of the World

A spate of lynchings of Indian Muslims has highlighted the religious violence that has been rampant in India for decades. The 2014 election of Hindu Nationalist leader Narendra Modi to the office of Indian Prime Minister has further emboldened the Hindu Nationalists who have been the main planners, instigators and perpetrators of murderous rampages against India's religious minorities.

UP CM Adiyanath with Indian PM Modi
Modi was shunned by much of the world for over a decade for his part in the 2002 Gujarat massacre of Indian Muslims. His policies as prime minister indicate that he's not a changed man. Yet, he is now being embraced by the western leaders who claim to uphold human rights and religious freedoms.

Pew Research Report:

A Pew Research report from data collected in 2015, about a year after Modi rose to power, found that the level of hostility against religious minorities is "very high". In fact, it said India scores 9 for social hostilities against religious minorities on a scale of 0-10.   Other countries in "very high" category for social hostilities include Nigeria, Iraq and Syria. Pakistan's score on this scale is 7 while Bangladesh is 5.5.

Rise of Hindu Nationalists: 

The situation for India's minorities, particularly Muslims, has become a lot worse in the last two years with Hindu mobs lynching Muslims with impunity. Recent election of anti-Muslim radical Hindu priest Yogi Adiyanath as Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, India's most populous state, is seen as a clear signal from Mr. Modi that his anti-Muslim policies will continue.

Beef Murders: 

Mohammad Akhlaq is believed to be the first victim of Hindu lynch mobs claiming to be protecting the cow. He was accused of consuming beef. For more than a week Prime Minister Narendra Modi remained silent over the incident and even after he spoke about it, he did not condemn it outright. The ruling BJP officials even tried to explain it as the result of the genuine anger of the Hindus over the slaughtering of a cow.

This year, The Indian Express, an English-language newspaper, found seven incidents between March and May of 2017 in which Indian Muslims were lynched by Hindu mobs. On June 22, three Muslims were killed in West Bengal state after being accused of cow smuggling. On June 27, a Muslim dairy owner in the state of Jharkhand was attacked by a mob after being accused of slaughtering a cow; the man was rushed to a hospital in critical condition after the police managed to save him from his attackers, according to Al Jazeera.

Pew Research Report on Religious Freedom

History of Anti-Muslim Riots in India:

Paul Richard Brass, professor emeritus of political science and international relations at the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies, University of Washington, has spent many years researching communal riots in India. He has debunked all the action-reaction theories promoted by Hindu Nationalists like Modi. He believes these are not spontaneous but planned and staged as "a grisly form of dramatic production" by well-known perpetrators from the Sangh Parivar of which Prime Minister Modi has been a member since his youth.

Here's an excerpt of Professor Brass's work:

"Events labelled “Hindu-Muslim riots” have been recurring features in India for three-quarters of a century or more. In northern and western India, especially, there are numerous cities and town in which riots have become endemic. In such places, riots have, in effect, become a grisly form of dramatic production in which there are three phases: preparation/rehearsal, activation/enactment, and explanation/interpretation. In these sites of endemic riot production, preparation and rehearsal are continuous activities. Activation or enactment of a large-scale riot takes place under particular circumstances, most notably in a context of intense political mobilization or electoral competition in which riots are precipitated as a device to consolidate the support of ethnic, religious, or other culturally marked groups by emphasizing the need for solidarity in face of the rival communal group. The third phase follows after the violence in a broader struggle to control the explanation or interpretation of the causes of the violence. In this phase, many other elements in society become involved, including journalists, politicians, social scientists, and public opinion generally. At first, multiple narratives vie for primacy in controlling the explanation of violence. On the one hand, the predominant social forces attempt to insert an explanatory narrative into the prevailing discourse of order, while others seek to establish a new consensual hegemony that upsets existing power relations, that is, those which accept the violence as spontaneous, religious, mass-based, unpredictable, and impossible to prevent or control fully. This third phase is also marked by a process of blame displacement in which social scientists themselves become implicated, a process that fails to isolate effectively those most responsible for the production of violence, and instead diffuses blame widely, blurring responsibility, and thereby contributing to the perpetuation of violent productions in future, as well as the order that sustains them."

"In India, all this takes place within a discourse of Hindu-Muslim hostility that denies the deliberate and purposive character of the violence by attributing it to the spontaneous reactions of ordinary Hindus and Muslims, locked in a web of mutual antagonisms said to have a long history. In the meantime, in post-Independence India, what are labelled Hindu-Muslim riots have more often than not been turned into pogroms and massacres of Muslims, in which few Hindus are killed. In fact, in sites of endemic rioting, there exist what I have called “institutionalized riot systems,” in which the organizations of militant Hindu nationalism are deeply implicated. Further, in these sites, persons can be identified, who play specific roles in the preparation, enactment, and explanation of riots after the fact. Especially important are what I call the “fire tenders,” who keep Hindu-Muslim tensions alive through various inflammatory and inciting acts; “conversion specialists,” who lead and address mobs of potential rioters and give a signal to indicate if and when violence should commence; criminals and the poorest elements in society, recruited and rewarded for enacting the violence; and politicians and the vernacular media who, during the violence, and in its aftermath, draw attention away from the perpetrators of the violence by attributing it to the actions."

Summary:

India is seeing a spate of lynchings of Muslims by Hindu mobs who have been emboldened by the rise of anti-Muslim Hindu Nationalist leader Narendra Modi since his 2014 election to the highest office in India. The elevation of fellow radical Hindu Yogi Adiyanath to the top job in Uttar Pradesh by Mr. Modi has further alarmed India's Muslim minority. University of Washington's Professor Emeritus Paul Brass, who has documented the history of anti-Muslim violence in India,  describes it as "a grisly form of dramatic production" by well-known perpetrators from the Sangh Parivar of which Prime Minister Modi has been a member since his youth. Pew Research report on religious violence confirms India's status as a country with "very high" levels of social hostilities against religious minorities.  There appears to be no relief in sight for them at least in the foreseeable future.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Yogi Adiyanath as UP CM

Hindu Nationalists Admire Hitler

Hinduization of India Under Modi

Muslim Victims of Gujarat 2002

India's Superpower Delusions: Modi's Flawed Policies

What Do Modi and Trump Have in Common?

13 comments:

Shams S. said...

In Pakistan, tens of thousands of Shia have been evaporated in bombings, plus the Ahmadis, and other minority religions. Balochi young men have been obliterated (like Bengalis in E Pak). The jews have been literally kicked out.

Riaz Haq said...

Shams: "In Pakistan, tens of thousands of Shia have been evaporated in bombings, plus the Ahmadis, and other minority religions. Balochi young men have been obliterated (like Bengalis in E Pak). The jews have been literally kicked out."

Your parroting of propaganda based on extreme exaggeration of facts is no match for actual data that the Pew Research report is based on.

Riaz Haq said...

BBC News - Why stopping #India's #vigilante killings of #Muslims will not be easy. #Lynchistan #Modi #BJP #Cow

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-40505719#
Last month Prime Minister Narendra Modi said murder in the name of cow protection is "not acceptable". Hours after his comments, a Muslim man was reportedly killed by a mob who accused him of transporting beef in his car.
Under Mr Modi's Hindu nationalist BJP, the cow has become a polarising animal and religious divisions are widening. Restrictions on the sale and slaughter of cows are fanning confusion and vigilantism.
The recent spate of lynchings in India have disturbed many. Muslim men have been murdered by Hindu mobs, mostly in BJP-ruled states, for allegedly storing beef and, in one case for helping a mixed-faith couple elope.
Using data gleaned from news reports, some have argued that such hate crimes have increased since Mr Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government came to power. Party chief Amit Shah has rejected such assertions, saying there were more incidents of lynchings when the previous Congress government was in power.
When a prominent journalist said India was becoming a "lynchocracy", critics immediately took to social media to say that India had a long history of mob and religious violence and liberals were exaggerating the import of the recent murders.
Vigilante justice
A BJP MP and columnist wrote that there was a "streak of underlying violence in India's public culture", and since Independence, "political violence has been supplemented by flashes of mob violence aimed at either settling scores or securing justice".
I spoke to Sanjay Subrahmanyam, one of India's most distinguished and provocative historians, on the cultural history of violence in India. He told me it would be useful to distinguish between three acts of violence: pogroms (violent riots aimed at the massacre or persecution of an ethnic or religious group), mob violence and killings to defend social norms.
Is India descending into mob rule?
'Beef' lynching: Failure of India's political imagination?
A night patrol with India's cow protection vigilantes
During a pogrom, he said, "a majority community targets a minority, and the violence takes place on a sizeable scale, in an orgiastic mode".
"These are also usually repeated incidents. They often are based on systematic mobilisation, as well as systematic targeting. We all know the prominent instances in India. (The anti-Sikh riots in 1984, or the 2002 anti-Muslim riots in Gujarat, for example.) Often, the forces of law and order have a part, either active or passive."
Mob violence, Dr Subrahmanyam says, usually comprise acts on a small scale, which claim to deliver vigilante justice, because the forces of law are feeble and undependable.
"These are your thieves and robbers, or even sometimes when a car accident happens, a crowd gathers, and lynches the driver. Essentially, this is because of the perceived weakness of the law to deliver what it promises."

Riaz Haq said...

The head of a militant Hindu supremacist temple is now leading India’s most-populous state

Firebrand Hindu Cleric Ascends India’s Political Ladder

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/12/world/asia/india-yogi-adityanath-bjp-modi.html?smid=tw-nytimes&smtyp=cur

the taproot of Yogi Adityanath’s popularity is in a more ominous place. As leader of a temple known for its militant Hindu supremacist tradition, he built an army of youths intent on avenging historic wrongs by Muslims, whom he has called “a crop of two-legged animals that has to be stopped.” At one rally he cried out, “We are all preparing for religious war!”

Adityanath (pronounced Ah-DIT-ya-nath) was an astonishing choice by Narendra Modi, India’s prime minister, who came into office three years ago promising to usher India into a new age of development and economic growth, and playing down any far-right Hindu agenda. But a populist drive to transform India into a “Hindu nation” has drowned out Mr. Modi’s development agenda, shrinking the economic and social space for the country’s 170 million Muslims.

Few decisions in Indian politics matter more than the selection of the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, because the post is seen as a springboard for future prime ministers. At the age of 45, the diminutive, baby-faced Adityanath is receiving the kind of career-making attention that projects an Indian politician toward higher office.

“He is automatically on anybody’s list as a potential contender to succeed Modi,” said Sadanand Dhume, an India specialist at the American Enterprise Institute. “They have normalized someone who, three years ago, was considered too extreme to be minister of state for textiles. Everything has been normalized so quickly.”

Adityanath did not respond to repeated requests for comment for this article.

In March, when the Bharatiya Janata Party won a landslide electoral victory in Uttar Pradesh, political prognosticators expected Mr. Modi to make a safe choice — Manoj Sinha, a cabinet minister known for his diligence and loyalty to the party. On the morning of the announcement, an honor guard had been arranged outside his village.

But by midmorning, it was clear that something unusual was going on. A chartered flight had been sent to pick up Adityanath and take him to Delhi for a meeting with Amit Shah, the party president. At 6 p.m. the party announced it had appointed him as minister, sending a ripple of shock through India’s political class.

They were shocked because Adityanath is a radical, but also because he is ambitious, even rebellious. As recently as January, he walked out of the party’s executive meeting, reportedly because he was not allowed to speak. Mr. Modi is not known to have much tolerance for rivals.

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Political observers in Delhi are watching him as one might watch an audition. Journalists filed reports of his first 100 days last week, and some were lukewarm, noting his failure to contain violent crime.

Neerja Chowdhury, an analyst, said Adityanath has two years to establish himself as an effective administrator.

“Remember, he is 20 years younger than Modi, and he is a known doer, so if he manages to deliver on some fronts, he would then become a possible candidate” in 2024, she said.

“India is moving right,” she added. “Whether India moves further right, and Modi begins to be looked upon as a moderate, I think that only time will tell.”

Adityanath may be interested in rebranding himself a mainstream politician, but his followers in the vigilante group do not all agree.

During the days after the election, some 5,000 men came forward to join the organization every day, prompting organizers to stop accepting applicants, said P. K. Mall, the group’s general secretary.

Riaz Haq said...

Excerpts of Audrey Truschke's Aurangzeb


https://books.google.com/books?id=oUUkDwAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=aurangzeb+by+audrey+truschke&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwibz_Hvn4XVAhUS32MKHdNlAKIQ6AEIJDAA#v=onepage&q=British&f=false


Across the border in Pakistan, too, many endorse the vision of an evil Aurangzeb. As Shahid Nadeem, a Pakistani playwright, recently put it: " Seeds of partition were sown when Aurangzeb triumphed over [his brother] Dara Shikoh". Such far-fetched suggestions would be farcical, if so many did not endorse them.


British colonial thinkers had long impugned thew Mughals on a range of charges, including that they were effeminate, oppressive, and Muslims. As early as 1772, Alexander Dow remarked in a discussion of Mughal governance that "the faith of Mahommed is peculiarly calculated for despotism; and it is one of the greatest causes which must fix for ever the duration of that species of government in the East". For the British the solution to such an entrenched problem was clear: British rule over India. While the Indian independence leaders rejected this final step of the colonial logic, many swallowed the earlier parts wholesale. Such ideas filtered to society at large via textbooks and mass media, and several generations have continued to eat up and regurgitate the colonial take that Aurangzeb was a tyrant driven by religious fanaticism.

Over the centuries, many commentators have spread the myth of of the bigoted, evil Aurangzeb on the basis of shockingly thin evidence. Many false ideas still mar popular memory of Aurangzeb , including that he massacred millions of Hindus and destroyed thousands of temples. Neither of these commonly believed "facts" is supported by historical evidence although some scholars have attempted, usually in bad faith, to provide an alleged basis for such tales.

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Such views have roots in colonial-era scholarship, where positing timeless Hindu-Muslim animosity embodied the British strategy of divide and conquer. Today, multiple websites claim to list Aurangzeb's "atrocities" against Hindus (typically playing fast and loose with the facts) and fuel communal fires. There are numerous gaping holes in the proposition that Aurangzeb razed temples because he hated Hindus, however. Most glaringly, Aurangzeb counted thousands of Hindu temples within his domain and yet destroyed, at most, few dozen.....A historically legitimate view of Aurangzeb must explain why he protected Hindu temples more often than he demolished them.

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The bulk of Mughal histories are written in Persian, the official administrative language of the Mughal empire but a foreign tongue in India today. Out of necessity and ease, many historians disregard the original Persian text and rely instead on English translations. This approach narrows the the library of materials drastically, and many translations of the Mughal texts are of questionable quality, brimming with mistranslations and abridgments. Some of these changes conveniently served the agendas of the translators, especially colonial-era translations that tend to show Indo--Muslim kings at their worst so that the British would seem virtuous by comparison (foremost here is Elliot and Dowson's History of India as Told by Its Own Historians). Such materials are great for learning about British colonialism, but they present an inaccurate picture of Mughal India.

Riaz Haq said...

In rebuke to Modi government, India’s high court suspends ban on trade of cattle for slaughter

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/in-rebuke-to-modi-government-indias-high-court-suspends-ban-on-cow-slaughter/2017/07/11/e23c6733-93f9-4bff-b785-b3279dfd08fe_story.html?utm_term=.eda62df7461c

India’s Supreme Court has suspended a controversial ban on the trade of cattle for slaughter that critics said unfairly targets the country’s meat and leather industry and its predominantly Muslim and lower-caste workers.

The ban, introduced by the Hindu nationalist government, prohibits the trade of cattle for slaughter in animal markets, a move that would have cut off a major supply chain for the country’s $16 billion-a-year meat and leather industry.

Cow slaughter and consumption have increasingly become a flash point in India, where cows are considered sacred by many members of the Hindu majority and where cow traders and beef consumers have faced beatings and lynchings.

India’s highest court on Tuesday upheld a lower-court decision to suspend the ban, which some states had already declared they would not enforce.

“The livelihoods of people should not be affected by this,” Chief Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar said in a courtroom in New Delhi. The government’s attorney told reporters after the decision that the government would modify the rules.

The government had said in May that the prime focus of the new livestock market rules was to protect cows from cruelty and to stop them from being smuggled to places such as Bangladesh and Nepal for large-scale animal sacrifice.

Representatives of India’s meat industry had argued that the ban — which prohibits the sale of “cattle” for slaughter, “cattle” being a broadly defined term including buffaloes and even camels — would have a devastating effect on their business.

Daljeet Singh Sadarpura, president of the Progressive Dairy Farmers Association in the northern state of Punjab, said the regulations would complicate the sales of the 300,000 cows the association’s members send to market each year.

“A crazy person has written this notification,” he said. “Where will the cows go? If a farmer sells four cows every year and now he cannot, how will he keep them? No one has the capacity to keep so many cows. If he cannot keep them, he will leave it on the roads or in the fields.”

India has about 5 million stray and abandoned cows, many kept in shelters run by volunteers.

The ban was the latest limitation placed on butchers in a country where beef slaughter and consumption is already banned in several states. One state assembly this year amended laws to punish those slaughtering cows with a maximum sentence of life imprisonment, and other state officials have suggested that butchers should be hanged.


Right-wing Hindu “cow protection” squads have in recent months beaten and killed cow traders and those suspected of eating beef.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s lengthy silence on the issue led to criticism that he was enabling the cow vigilantes. Last month, he spoke out against the violence, saying killing in the name of the cow was “not acceptable.”

Since the late 2000s, India has rapidly increased its beef exports — particularly of water buffalo meat, known as carabeef — by 12 percent annually, boosting its share of world beef exports from 5 percent to about 21 percent and rivaling Brazil for the top spot, according to a 2016 report from the U.S. Agriculture Department.

The country’s leather goods industry — which supplies international retailers such as Benetton — would face supply shortages in the long run under the ban, according to Puran Dawar, chairman of the northern section of India’s Council for Leather Exports.

“If animals are not slaughtered, where will we get the raw material from?” Dawar said. “If the raw material is not there, the prices will go up. We will lose to our competitors. We could not play in the international market.”

Riaz Haq said...

Angry mob beat #Muslim man for allegedly carrying #beef in #India. #Cow #BJP http://metro.co.uk/2017/07/13/angry-mob-beat-muslim-man-for-allegedly-carrying-beef-in-india-6776885/ … via @MetroUK

A Muslim man was brutally beaten by a mob in India after the accuse him of carrying beef.
A video posted on social media showed a group of men hitting Salim Ismail Shah, 32, in Jalalkheda, India, yesterday.

He had been stopped while he was transporting 15 kgs of meat on his motorcycle, according to Jalalkheda Police Inspector Vijaykumar Tiwari.
‘He was accosted by four persons who beat him up, alleging he was carrying beef,’ he told The Indian Express.
‘Shah sustained injuries for which he was admitted to a hospital, from where he has been discharged.’

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The Maharashtra Animal Preservation Act, 1976, bans the killing of cows and calves.
Inspector Tiwari added: ‘We have sent the meat sample to a forensic laboratory to find out if it was beef or something else.
‘We haven’t registered any offence against Shah as of now.’
It’s not the first time someone has been attacked after allegedly carrying beef, which is considered sacred among many religions in India, including Hinduism and Sikhism.
Last month a mob on a train headed to Mathura reportedly stabbed a 15-year-old boy named Junaid Khan to death because he was apparently carrying beef.


Read more: http://metro.co.uk/2017/07/13/angry-mob-beat-muslim-man-for-allegedly-carrying-beef-in-india-6776885/#ixzz4mjsqOR1G

Anonymous said...

Mr. Riaz is pig slaughter and consumption allowed for non Muslims or Muslims who want to consume it?

Riaz Haq said...

Anon: " is pig slaughter and consumption allowed for non Muslims or Muslims who want to consume it?"

There's no ban on pork in Pakistan.

Zain said...

I understand your projection to Indian problems here in light of Pakistans.

Prejudice is everywhere. Against blacks and others in the US to Sunni Shia politics internationally.

However, it is the infrastructure of hate and the scale of militant religious fervor that is imported and exported throughout the world in the form of terrorism, is the true question.

Pakistan needs to analyze that within itself otherwise the world will continue judge it harshly.

Riaz Haq said...

Zain: "Pakistan needs to analyze that within itself otherwise the world will continue judge it harshly. "

"The world" judges nations and religions based on its own interests, not based on merit.

The hypocrisy of "the world" is on full display all around us.....some are judged very harshly while others escape with little or no criticism for the same or similar actions.

Atrocities committed by western, Indian and Israeli forces barely get mentioned while actions of those in countries considered unfriendly get maximum negative coverage.

Pakistan should do what Pakistanis see fit and not to please "the world".

Riaz Haq said...

10 things #India must learn from #Pakistan. #Minorities treated better, women safer, ambulance servc http://www.indiatimes.com/culture/travel/10-things-india-must-learn-from-pakistan-292313.html …

Surprisingly, in Pakistan minorities are treated better. No, hindus aren't called terrorists and Sikhs who live in Pakistan don't have a grudge against the Islamic religion. It's unbelievable how many myths we have about Pakistan and it's too saddening that we actually believe random crap that is being said about Pakistan.

We make fun of the Pakistani cricketers while they are being asked about the match summary for they don't have such a strong command over the English language, but did you know that they are the fourth smartest people in the world? And that's not all according to a poll organised by the Institute of European Business Administration, from 125 countries, Pakistanis have been ranked the fourth most intelligent people across the globe. Pakistan has the seventh largest collection of scientists and engineers.

Accept it or not but the beautiful Sufi music that we Indians sway and hum to are originally from Islamic country Pakistan. And that's not all, even the ever famous musical show Coke Studio on MTV has been adopted by us from Pakistan. You must listen to the original Coke Studio from Pakistan, it's just too beautiful to even describe. The best thing about the show is that it isn't as commercialized as India and they actually feature budding artists instead of popular and renowned singers and musicians.

Yes, we do have several child prodigies in the country but no one makes it as big as this one. Pakistan's Muhammad Ilyas passed the examination enabling him to become a Civil Judge in July 1952 at the age of 20 years 9 months, although formalities such as medicals meant that it was not until eight months later that he started work as a Civil Judge in Lahore, Pakistan.


With death toll just rising at a rapid pace, we must learn how Pakistan's NGOs operate and how the health sector works. Edhi Foundation is Pakistan's largest non-profit social welfare program. It runs the world's largest ambulance network in Pakistan. Now that's something that we Indians must really look in to and get inspired for it will help us aiding and saving lives better.

Riaz Haq said...

#India’s Turn Toward Intolerance. #Hindutva #Islamophobia #cow #Modi #economy #jobs #BJP

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/17/opinion/indias-turn-toward-intolerance.html

Narendra Modi’s landslide victory as prime minister of India in 2014 was borne on his promises to unleash his country’s economic potential and build a bright future while he played down the Hindu nationalist roots of his Bharatiya Janata Party.

But, under Mr. Modi’s leadership, growth has slowed, jobs have not materialized, and what has actually been unleashed is virulent intolerance that threatens the foundation of the secular nation envisioned by its founders.

Since Mr. Modi took office, there has been an alarming rise in mob attacks against people accused of eating beef or abusing cows, an animal held sacred to Hindus. Most of those killed have been Muslims. Mr. Modi spoke out against the killings only last month, not long after his government banned the sale of cows for slaughter, a move suspended by India’s Supreme Court. The ban, enforcing cultural stigma, would have fallen hardest on Muslims and low-caste Hindus traditionally engaged in the meat and leather industry.

It would also have struck a blow against Mr. Modi’s supposed priorities: employment, economic growth and boosting exports. The $16 billion industry employs millions of workers and generated $4 billion in export income last year.

More disturbing was his party’s decision to name Yogi Adityanath, a Hindu warrior-priest, as chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, India’s most populous state, and a springboard to national leadership. Mr. Adityanath has called India’s Muslims “a crop of two-legged animals that has to be stopped” and cried at one rally, “We are all preparing for religious war!”

This development led the analyst Neerja Chowdhury to observe: “India is moving right. Whether India moves further right, and Modi begins to be looked upon as a moderate, I think that only time will tell.”

On Tuesday, India’s film censor board, headed by a Bharatiya Janata Party stalwart apparently intent on protecting Mr. Modi and the party from criticism, ruled that a documentary film about one of India’s most famous sons, the Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen, cannot be screened unless the director cuts the words “cow,” “Hindu India,” “Hindutva view of India” — meaning Hindu nationalism — and “Gujarat,” where Mr. Modi was chief minister at the time of deadly anti-Muslim riots in 2002.

This might seem like merely a farcical move by Hindu fanatics, if it were not so in line with much else that is happening in Mr. Modi’s India, and if the implications for India’s democracy weren’t so chilling. But this is where Mr. Modi has brought the nation as it prepares to celebrate 70 years of independence on Aug. 15.