Armed Forces veterans write open letter to PM Modi: Condemn targeting of Muslims, Dalits

In the letter the Armed Forces veterans said they stand with the ‘Not in My Name’ campaign and that the Armed Forces stand for "Unity in Diversity". They added the current situation in the country is that of fear, intimidation, hate and suspicion.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: July 31, 2017 11:48 am
Quit India Movement, Narendra Modi, Independence Day, communalism, casteism, corruption, terrorism, poverty, india news Rameswaram: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami during inauguration of former President A PJ Abdul Kalam’s memorial at Peikarumbu in Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu on Thursday. PTI Photo by R Senthil Kumar (PTI7_27_2017_000220B)

Highlighting the recent attacks on Muslims and Dalits in the country, the veterans of the Indian Armed Forces have written an open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressing their distress and condemning the relentless vigilantism of the self-appointed protectors of Hinduism. In the letter, the veterans said they stand with the ‘Not in My Name’ campaign and that the Armed Forces stand for “Unity in Diversity”. They added the current situation in the country is that of fear, intimidation, hate and suspicion.

They said, “what is happening in our country today strikes at all that the Armed Forces, and indeed our Constitution, stand for. We are witness to unprecedented attacks on society at large by the relentless vigilantism of self-appointed protectors of Hinduism. We condemn the targeting of Muslims and Dalits. We condemn the clampdowns on free speech by attacks on media outlets, civil society groups, universities, journalists and scholars, through a campaign of branding them anti-national and unleashing violence against them while the State looks away.”

The letter has been signed by 114 veterans of the Armed Forces. The Armed Forces comprise of the Indian Army, Indian Navy, and Indian Air Force.

Here is the full text of the letter by the veterans:

We are a group of Veterans of the Indian Armed Forces who have spent our careers working for the security of our country. Collectively, our group holds no affiliation with any single political party, our only common commitment being to the Constitution of India.

It saddens us to write this letter, but current events in India have compelled us to register our dismay at the divisiveness that is gripping our country. We stand with the ‘Not in My Name’ campaign that mobilised thousands of citizens across the country to protest against the current climate of fear, intimidation, hate and suspicion.

The Armed Forces stand for “Unity in Diversity”. Differences in religion, language, caste, culture or any other marker of belonging have not mattered to the cohesion of the Armed Forces, and servicemen of different backgrounds have fought shoulder to shoulder in the defence of our nation, as they continue to do today. Throughout our service, a sense of openness, justice and fair play guided our actions. We are one family. Our heritage is like the multi-coloured quilt that is India, and we cherish this vibrant diversity.

However, what is happening in our country today strikes at all that the Armed Forces, and indeed our Constitution, stand for. We are witness to unprecedented attacks on society at large by the relentless vigilantism of self-appointed protectors of Hinduism. We condemn the targeting of Muslims and Dalits. We condemn the clampdowns on free speech by attacks on media outlets, civil society groups, universities, journalists and scholars, through a campaign of branding them anti-national and unleashing violence against them while the State looks away.

We can no longer look away. We would be doing a disservice to our country if we do not stand up and speak for the liberal and secular values that our Constitution espouses. Our diversity is our greatest strength. Dissent is not treason; in fact, it is the essence of democracy.

We urge the powers that be at the Centre and in the States to take note of our concerns and urgently act to uphold our Constitution, both in letter and in spirit.

Open Letter From Veterans to PM Modi, CMs by The Indian Express on Scribd

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  1. L
    Lovely
    Aug 1, 2017 at 4:19 pm
    .Army Veterans are not politicians. I have 116 veterans in various cadres of ARMY , Navy and Airforce, will you publish? Most of them were injured in Indo Phak firings.These veterans are boneless and spineless . Their hearts never bled when Pandits were displaced and killed .My father was Lt Com in Indian Navy, they are insulated from politics. I was brought up in military environment. The soul of modern India was destroyed thru PoK, Indus Water Treaty, 62 war, 65 war, 71 war .. The soul of military was insulted by those acts.You are insult to security forces dian Army is not Gestapo, had it been so there would not have been any LoC. You have not only insulted Indian Govt but also 140 crore souls and the real veterans of security forces.
    Reply
    1. L
      Lovely
      Aug 1, 2017 at 3:56 pm
      I have 116 veterans in various cadres of ARMY , Navy and Airforce, will you publish? Most of them were injured in Indo Phak firings.
      Reply
      1. D
        drharun
        Aug 1, 2017 at 1:41 pm
        The latest to prove their loyalty to Mother India are these war veterans
        Reply
        1. R
          Rajeev
          Aug 1, 2017 at 4:59 am
          This is all to defame NDA Govt. Country is in safe hand. Instead of critizing Govt. Support him and demising antisocial elements. All hapoen in the shado of Cong.
          Reply
          1. R
            ranjit
            Aug 1, 2017 at 8:57 am
            Ex- veterans are true people.
            Reply
          2. S
            S jaggoo
            Aug 1, 2017 at 3:07 am
            Great great great act of great peoples
            Reply
            1. V
              V Janardan Rao
              Jul 31, 2017 at 10:54 pm
              A brave, wise and timely statement by the loved and respected veterans ! This rare expression of commitment to our Cons ution by these veterans has enhanced our respect for them. "The powers that be " should mend their narrow minded thinking, heeding this call !
              Reply
              1. R
                Rahul
                Aug 1, 2017 at 1:27 pm
                Correct All rights and priviledges are not only for Muslims but for all people including Hindus
                Reply
              2. B
                Bipin Bhardwaj
                Jul 31, 2017 at 9:27 pm
                A slap on the face of the fascists trying to divide the country and turning armed forces a fort of the fascists. This patriotic tradition of the armed forces to drive away the British and then fight against them in Azad Hind Fauz have survived and will surely contribute to end the fascists and colonial legacy.
                Reply
                1. R
                  Rahul
                  Aug 1, 2017 at 1:25 pm
                  It is already happening from May 2014.
                  Reply
                2. L
                  Lovely
                  Jul 31, 2017 at 8:40 pm
                  These veterans are boneless and spineless . Their hearts never bled when Pandits were displaced and killed .
                  Reply
                  1. V
                    V Janardan Rao
                    Jul 31, 2017 at 11:02 pm
                    Going through this comment and similar other posts, I come to the conclusion that the RSS / BJP has appointed a number of their Bhakts specifically for this purpose. But, alas, they are not properly trained.So they resort to abusive language instead of logic and reasoning.It will only add to the disenchantment of free thinking people.
                    Reply
                    1. L
                      Lovely
                      Aug 1, 2017 at 3:56 pm
                      Ok you say I am RSS bhakt then shall I say you are from Al Qaueeda?
                    2. R
                      Rammehar singh Redhu
                      Aug 1, 2017 at 3:08 am
                      U r right . And by reading their name none of them looks north Indian or hindu. They r leftist in armed forces and r paid to do so
                      Reply
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