OPEN LETTER TO PRIME MINISTER NARENDRA MODI FROM THE UK’s INDIAN DIASPORA REGARDING THE CAA-NRC-NPR 25 January 2020

Dear Prime Minister Narendra Modi,
           We are writing to you to express our outrage at India’s descent into open fascism under your government. Since 2014 we have watched the growing epidemic of mob-lynching, rapes and attacks on Muslims, Dalits , Christians and Adivasis, along with attacks on dissenters, human rights defenders, journalists, lawyers and even judges who dare to speak out and uphold the truth about what is happening in India under your government.
             We have been appalled by the fact that the vast majority of lynchers and rapists have not been brought to justice, instead they have been feted by spokespersons of your government in a number of ways.
          The events of the last six months have been particularly disturbing. First the revoking of Article 370, the further militarisation of Kashmir , India’s only Muslim majority state, which was already the most highly militarised zone in the world, the imprisonment of leaders, continual curfews, torture, including torture of minors, and the imposition of a lock down on internet services while outsiders including your corporate friends such as Reliance’s Ambani buy up land in the Kashmir valley.
           This was followed by the handing over of the land on which the iconic Babri Masjid had stood for some 500 years, before it was demolished by RSS stormtroopers, to a Hindu right-wing organisation for the construction of a massive Ram temple.
             Most recently your government has enacted a law, the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, which blatantly discriminates against Muslims and alters the very basis of Indian citizenship undermining Ambedkar’s secular Constitution by effectively introducing a ‘religion test’ . The Act arbitrarily offers Indian citizenship to Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists, Parsis and Christians from specific countries – Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh in the name of protecting ‘persecuted minorities’. This list blatantly excludes Muslims, and it will mean that the CAA excludes a number of groups who are severely persecuted from countries neighbouring India – including Rohingyas in Myanmar, Tamils in Sri Lanka, Muslims and Buddhists in China, secular rationalists in Bangladesh, Shia and Ahmadi people in Pakistan.
           In conjunction with the NRC (which has already made 2 million people in Assam stateless by demanding documents to prove Indian citizenship) and the NPR which will potentially allow arbitrary revocation of citizenship, the CAA will lead to the selective mass disenfranchisement of Muslims, because most non-Muslims caught in the snare of the NRC will be offered citizenship as refugees under the CAA.
        We note with alarm that historically mass disenfranchisement of a targeted minority has been closely followed by ethnic cleansing and genocide.
         We condemn the vicious attacks launched by your government’s police and right-wing gangs affiliated to your party and its parent organisation the RSS on those who have protested against the CAA and NRC.
          Students have been particularly targeted: university libraries have been invaded, and students quietly studying have been viciously beaten up and even shot at, the injured have been followed into hospitals and ambulances turned away with their windows smashed and doctors and nurses beaten up.
          Following the enactment of the CAA, the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh has instituted a reign of terror. Muslim homes have been attacked, more than 22 people have been murdered in UP alone, and women, children and elderly people have been tortured and assaulted.
          As members of the diaspora we are deeply concerned about this attack on the Constitution and the future of India itself. We urge you to listen to the voices of mass democratic united protest in India and revoke the CAA and abolish the NRC and the NPR as a matter of urgency.
Yours sincerely;
Sarbjit Johal (South Asia Solidarity Group)
Satpal Muman (Caste Watch UK)
Shamsuddin Agha (Indian Muslm Federation)
SOAS India Society
Shaheen Moidunny (Coordinating Committee of Malayali Muslims)
Harsev Bains (Indian Workers Association GB)
Shiraz Kothia (Spokesperson East London CAA Protests)
Dalwinder Atwal (Indian Workers Association GB)
Karthik (Tamil People in UK)
Mathan (Tamil Solidarity)
Salvinder Dhillon (Ghaddar International)