27 January, 2021

Through A Lotus-Eyed Lens

First you kill their family members, then you arrest them—the Gujarat Model.

Sanjay Rawat
Through A Lotus-Eyed Lens

There has been a lot of debate on statements endorsed by academics and artists alerting the people to the dangers of a possible Modi-led BJP victory in the ongoing elections. Among the first was a Sahmat initiative with nearly 200 signatories which appeared in The Hindu, followed by a statement with signatories from the UK and the US, which appeared in The Guardian. There were statements iss­ued by members of the Hindi film industry, and by academics of Indian origin in Brit­ain. I have been asked why so many members from the cultural and academic community are expressing their apprehensions.

The reasons are quite clear if we look at the past history, both of the BJP and the wider Sangh parivar nationally, and Narendra Modi’s specific record in Gujarat, but I will only refer to a few instances. Faced with an unprecedented advertising onslaught focusing solely on Modi and his ‘Gujarat’ model, it is important to understand that this ‘model’ has implications that go far beyond the so-called development...



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