But what people in India should learn that this barbarity will continue unabated unless there is a massive protests against this across India. What is surprising that despite such a massive brutality, India never witnessed any movement against this issue.
The brutal killing of African American George Floyd raked up massive anti-racism protests in different cities of America. The video of a white police officer kneeling on black man’s neck so strongly that he was not able to breath drew outrage across the US. People took to the street, clashed with the riot police forces, vandalized public property and set them on fire. The protesters even gathered in front of the White House to raise their voices against the US President Donald Trump, who has been accused of promoting and fanning the racist ideology.
The graphic of white police officer’s brutality against the black man was so powerful that it has given birth to a movement against racism in the US. Racism against the people of colors are very deep-rooted in the western country. It exists there for centuries. The recent massive outburst against the festering racism is not just result of one incident. But the people of color has been grappling with it for a long time which burst out on the brutal killing of George Floyd at the hand of white police officers. It’s not only people of color who protested but every section of the society including the white people joining the anti-racism movement against the police brutality. People and activists from other countries including Indians have also shown the solidarity with the protesters and joined the campaign #BlackLivesMatter.
But many Indians who are now showing solidarity with anti-racism movement remained silent when the Indian police unleashed brutality on Indians. These people are speaking out against the racism but they remained silent on the growing Islamobhobia. For example, Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra chose to speak up on the racism and the police brutality in the US but she remained silent when Indian police unleashed brutality and cruelty in India. She did not speak up on the growing vicious Islamobhobia in India which claimed lives of many Muslims.
The questions must be asked as to why Indians remain silent on the brutality of Indian police? Why were no protests as we are witnessing in the US held in India against Indian police brutality? If one has to count the incidents of police brutalities in India, he will not able to count all of them. These incidents of brutalities are far crueler than what happened in the US. And these were mostly aimed at the Muslims and Christians and the marginalized castes Dalits and Aadivasi.
In the case of Indian Muslims, one of the most horrific incidents of the police brutality was Hashimpur massacre when 40 Muslims were killed by the UP police overnight. The incident has been haunting India since 1987. There are numerous incidents of communal riots when the police actively participated in the communal violence against the Muslims. Most recently, it has happened in Delhi’s Jafferabad violence when the police either supported the rioters or unleashed violence on Muslims. The case of Faizan’s death is one of those examples. The video surfaced on the social media in which the policemen were beating him by making them lie on the road in the injured condition. And later, he died in the police custody. His family alleged that the policemen killed him. But so far, no investigation has been carried out in his murder case and no one punished yet.
There are many such examples which happened this year itself. The UP police brutality on the anti-CAA protesters claimed lives of many Muslims. The UP police indiscriminately opened fire at the protesters, barged into Muslim houses and tortured many of them in the jail. Similarly, Aligarh police unleashed brutality on the students of Aligarh Muslim University in which many students got seriously injured. They brutally beat up the students who were protesting against the discriminatory Citizenship Amendment Act. In Jamia Millia Islamia too, the Delhi police followed the same pattern of brutal crackdown on the students. On the same night when AMU students faced the police brutality, the Delhi police launched brutal crackdown on the Jamia students when the police forces barged into the campus and hostels and brutally beaten up male and female student indiscriminately.
The list of the police brutality in India is endlessly long. There is separate mayhem of security forces’ brutality in Kashmir going on for decades. But what people in India should learn that this barbarity will continue unabated unless there is a massive protests against this across India. What is surprising that despite such a massive brutality, India never witnessed any movement against this issue. The time of this movement has come and people in India should take inspiration from the US and must stand up strongly against this endless brutality.
The Writer is a Delhi-based journalist.
Courtesy The Companion