Breaking his silence on the spate of mob lynchings across the country, Congress president Rahul Gandhi, in a veiled dig at the BJP, said the incidents were a direct consequence of politics of hatred and communal polarisation, which was damaging the social fabric of the country.
Calling the brutal lynchings ‘sickening’, Gandhi said, “The politics of hatred and communal polarisation is irreparably damaging our social fabric. The brutal lynchings across India…are the direct consequence of that kind of politics.”
The Congress chief’s reaction comes at a time when Union minister Jayant Sinha has come under severe criticism for felicitating eight men convicted for the lynching of cattle trader Alimuddin Ansari on June 29 last year.
The politics of hatred and communal polarisation is irreparably damaging our social fabric.
The brutal lynchings across India that have sickened our nation, are the direct consequence of that kind of politics.
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) July 7, 2018
In the past one year, 27 people have been killed in 15 cases of lynchings by frenzied mobs blinded by viral rumours of child-kidnappers on the prowl across nine states — from Assam to Tamil Nadu. The latest in the spate of killings — the lynching of five in Maharashtra’s Dhule on July 1 — has prompted the Home Ministry to ask the states and Union territories (UTs) to check incidents of mob lynching fuelled by rumours of child-lifting on social media.
In an advisory, the MHA urged the states and UTs to “keep a watch for early detection of rumours of child-lifting and initiate effective measures to counter them. The Centre has asked the states and UTs to take measures to prevent incidents of mob lynching fuelled by rumours of child-lifting circulating on social media,” a spokesperson said.
The Centre has also written to WhatsApp, which responded that it has introduced a series of measures, including labels on forwarded messages.