Federal probe agency files case against BBC India after Modi documentary
India’s federal probe agency has registered a case against BBC India for an alleged foreign exchange violation, months after the BBC broadcasted a documentary that takes a critical look at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s role in the 2002 anti-Muslim massacres in Gujarat state.
In February, Indian tax officials raided the BBC’s offices in New Delhi and Mumbai in a clear act of retribution for the BBC’s documentary- “India: The Modi Question.”
The authoritarian raids came just weeks after the Indian government used “emergency powers” to block the documentary from airing in the country, as part of a wider crackdown on all criticisms against Modi and the ruling Hindu supremacist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
The Modi regime has repeatedly weaponized tax authorities against critics of the government and Hindu supremacism. In 2020, Amnesty International was forced to shut its India offices after similar raids, while the Editor’s Guild of India and Oxfam have also been subjected to searches.
BJP leaders among those arrested for anti-Muslim violence in Jharkhand
Police arrested 70 people, including Hindu supremacist BJP leaders, in connection with a recent outbreak of anti-Muslim violence in Jharkhand state.
Violence had erupted in Jamshedpur city after some people had allegedly wrapped a piece of chicken flesh in a bag around the bamboo of a Hindu religious flag.
In response, Hindu supremacist mobs started throwing stones at a mosque and set fire to shops owned by Muslims.
Police had targeted Muslims amid ongoing anti-Muslim violence by Hindu extremist mobs. Muslims in Jamshedpur city said that the police broke into the mosque, destroyed its belongings, beat up worshippers inside, desecrated the Quran, and then arrested Muslims without any reason.
BJP leader who called hijabi Muslim students “terrorists” to now contest elections
Karnataka state BJP leader Yashpal Suvarna, who was at the forefront of a hate campaign against Muslim students protesting for their right to wear the hijab to school, will now contest elections for the BJP from Udupi district.
Members of the Hindu supremacist BJP have stated that Suvarna’s involvement in the anti-hijab campaign further strengthened his “qualifications.”
In addition to supporting the state High Court’s unconstitutional hijab ban, Suvarna went so far as to label the six Muslim students who had taken legal action over the issue as “terrorists.” He also distributed saffron shawls to Hindu extremist students as a way for them to “protest” the hijab and harass Muslim women.
Suvarna was previously associated with the Hindu militant group Bajrang Dal.