New Delhi: At a time when a number of hate speeches given by BJP leaders such as Anurag Thakur, Yogi Adityanath and Parvesh Verma are increasing during election campaigns ahead of the Delhi Assembly Election 2020, a group of 175 activists and women’s groups on Monday wrote an open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In the letter, they have expressed anguish over the alleged hate speeches made by these BJP leaders during the poll rallies.
These activists in the letter accused the BJP leaders of using ‘fear of rape as a campaign message’ during the ongoing Delhi poll rallies.
These activists in the letter alleged that the hate speeches given by these BJP leaders asking their followers to inflict violence on women who are protesting against the CAA and the NRC have created an ‘atmosphere of violence’ in the country.
“Is the BJP now openly endangering the lives of India’s women and children? This is what history will record and India will not forgive PM Modi. For the nation saw the direct result of this violent atmosphere created by members of your party, which inspired an attacker to open fire at innocent students in Jamia on January 30, and another terrorist weaponised by the hate being spread by your party, fired at the women of Shaheen Bagh on February 1,” the letter to PM Modi stated.
In the open letter, the women activists have mentioned that they are familiar with the concept of rape. “We have long suffered violence on our bodies, with little access to justice, despite your government’s slogan of Beti Bachao! We condemn this attempt to demean our histories of pain and fear by using it for cheap, divisive electioneering,” the open letter further stated.
The well-known personalities, who have written the letter to PM Modi, include feminist economist Devaki Jain, activist Laila Tyabji, former Indian Ambassador Madhu Bhaduri, gender rights activist Kamla Bhasin, and groups like All India Progressive Women’s Association (AIPWA), National Federation of Indian Women (NFIW).
In the latest development to the hate speeches given by BJP leaders, the Election Commission last week had put a 72 hours ban on campaigning by Union Minister Anurag Thakur and a 96 hours ban on BJP MP Parvesh Sahib Singh Verma with immediate effect.
After the action of the EC, the two ministers are out of the star campaigners list of BJP for the Delhi Assembly polls. While addressing a public meeting in Rithala on January 27, Anurag Thakur had raised the slogan ‘Desh Ke Gaddaro Ko, Goli Maaro Saalo Ko’ (shoot the traitors) several times.
In a poll rally, BJP MP Parvesh Verma had said that lakhs of people gather there at Shaheen Bagh. “People of Delhi will have to think and make a decision. They will enter your houses, rape your sisters and daughters, kill them. There is time today, Modi Ji and Amit Shah won’t come to save you tomorrow,” he had said.