The debate over rising intolerance in India gained fresh ammunition after 49 celebrities from various walks of life wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The lengthy three page letter claimed that the ‘hate crimes rate’ had risen in the recent path. Categorically mentioning that Lynchings against Muslims, Dalits & other minorities are on a rise.
Here are a few excerts of the letter.
‘DEEPLY CONCERNED ABOUT NUMBER OF TRAGIC EVENTS’‘LYNCHING OF MINORITIES MUST BE STOPPED IMMEDIATELY’‘PM HAS CRITICIZED LYNCHINGS IN PARLIAMENT’
‘CRITICISING IS NOT ENOUGH’
‘LYNCHING SHOULD BE DECLARED NON-BAILABLE OFFENCE’‘EXEMPLARY PUNISHMENT SHOULD BE METED OUT’‘NO CITIZEN SHOULD HAVE TO LIVE IN FEAR’‘JAI SHRI RAM HAS BECOME A PROVOCATIVE WAR CRY’‘STOP RAM’S NAME FROM BEING DEFILED IN THIS MANNER’
‘CAN’T BRAND DISSENT AS ANTI-NATIONAL’
‘DISSENT MAKES COUNTRY STRONGER’
"Why are people of different faiths forced to speak Jai Shri Ram?"filmmaker Aparna Sen on the letter by eminent personalities to PM pic.twitter.com/jFjYwaPjWT
— NDTV (@ndtv) July 24, 2019
49 signatories of the letter included the following prominent personalities
SHYAM BENEGAL, FILMMAKERREVATHY, ACTORANURAG KASHYAP, FILMMAKER
APARNA SEN, FILMMAKER/ACTORKONKONA SENSHARMA, FILMMAKER/ ACTORMANI RATNAM, FILMMAKERRAMCHANDRA GUHA, HISTORIANSHUBHA MUDGAL, SINGER/ MUSICIAN
This Urban Naxals & Award Wapsi Gang kept on abusing India by syng it hs become intolerant under @narendramodi ‘s rule. India responded to them by bringing back Modi with a bigger margin which ws a big slap on their face. Their letter should be put in a dustbin where it belongs. https://t.co/BmqhzkixwJ
— Ashoke Pandit (@ashokepandit) July 24, 2019
In the meanwhile those backing the letter say, this move by the celebrities will only help the government as it backs the government in strengthening laws against hate crimes.
West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, on 49 famous personalities writing an open letter to the PM: I think it is the right time that they have written to the Prime Minister, any citizen can write to the PM for any purpose. https://t.co/c0W5lABEgf
— ANI (@ANI) July 24, 2019
The debate of intolerance has gained pace in the last 5 years, but what remains to be seen is will the government change this perception in the next coming 5 years.