Given the past record of Uttar Pradesh’s chief minister Yogi Adityanath, everyone had assumed that the Uttar Pradesh government would adopt anti-Muslim policies when he was being elected as CM of a state where 18% of the population are Muslims. When his name was proposed for the chief minister’s post, there was a lot of outrage against it. Concerned citizens and activists had raised strong objections to him as a chief minister underlining his roles in the communal riots, hate speeches and pending criminal cases against him. But the politics of the BJP is based on anti-Muslim hate. So, they did not pay attention to these objections. It has selected Yogi because of Yogi’s anti-Muslim actions.
As three years have passed by his governance, all the apprehensions, assumptions and predications has become true and becoming true every day. The government in UP is brazenly anti-Muslim in its policies. There are various examples which showed that how the government is adopting anti-Muslim policies.
One of its major proofs is Uttar Pradesh police’s brutal crackdown against anti-CAA protesters. In the brutal way, the Uttar Pradesh police had crushed anti-CAA protests, no government in India would have done against any protest. UP police had killed around two dozen Muslims who took part in the protests. The police had unleashed a reign of terror on them by arresting thousands of people. The protestors are being made to pay damage recoveries which no government in India has done against any protester.
The second proof of Uttar Pradesh government’s anti-Muslim policies is the encounters. Soon after Yogi Adityanath became the chief minister, the police started carrying out encounters against alleged criminals. The victims of these encounters are mostly Muslims and marginalized castes. Out of 124 casualty, 47 were Muslims and 58 were from backward castes. Muslims, which are 18% of UP’s population, are 37% in the encounter casualty. This shows that the government mostly targeted Muslim and the backwards. This is the details of only those who were killed in the encounter. The larger number are of those who were badly injured in the encounters. But the government did not disclose its details. The government wanted to prove that it is not targeting the Brahmins by disclosing the details of those who were killed in the encounters. On the contrary, the government admitted that it has been targeting Muslims through encounters. And it doesn’t feel any remorse in admitting this.
The third case which brought Uttar Pradesh government’s anti-Muslim policies in the open and completely exposed it is the actions taken against Kafeel Khan. Anyone who would have been following the actions taken against Kafeel Khan by the Uttar Pradesh government and its police would definitely come to the conclusion that the government is taking action against him because of his religion. If Kafeel Khan would not have been Muslim, he would not have faced all this. He would not have been blamed for what happened at Gorakhpur’s BRD hospital. He would not have been suspended from his job. He would not have been imprisoned. His family would not have harassed. He would not have been again arrested for giving speech against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the administration would not have invoked draconian NSA against him even after being given bail by the court.
Let’s take a look at what happened with Kafeel Khan since dozens of children had been killed due to shortage of oxygen at the BRD College. The children were killed because the government had not approved fund for the oxygen. But the government blamed and punished him for the tragedy. Family members of the children, who died in the tragedy, had said that Kafeel Khan tried his best to save their children. Yet, the government suspended and put him behind bars. There was no explanation of what basis the government had taken action against him. The government took action against him without any inquiry. He was suspended and jailed.
One can assume that these actions were taken against him due to misunderstandings on the part of the government regarding the incident. But the government did not reinstate him despite an internal inquiry conducted by the government itself cleared him of all charges levied against him. Why did the government not roll back the actions taken against him and compensate him for wrongly implicating him in the tragedy which he had tried his best to handle? The government was expected to apologise to him. But, on the contrary, it kept its hostile behavior against him by not reinstating him.
While all this is still continued, the government had decided to take action against him in another case. The Uttar Police filed an FIR against him for giving a speech at the AMU and arrested him from Mumbai in January. He was imprisoned in the case for some months. But the court granted him bail in the case. But the government did not release him despite being given bail in the case. Next day, a draconian NSA was invoked against him for no reason. The Nation Security Act was invoked against him despite the fact he was given bail by the court. What was the reason to invoke such stringent against a doctor? The only reason was that the government want to punish him because of his religion. At Aligarh, Yogendra Yadav had also given speech against the CAA along with Kafeel Khan. But the police did not act against Yadav, rightly so. There was no reason that the police act against somebody only because he gave speech against the CAA. The UP police did it against Kafeel Khan. The only reason behind this is that he is a Muslim. The only reason behind invoking NSA after being given bail is that he is Muslim and the government wanted to punish him because of his religious identity.
The verdict of Allahabad High Court in his case exposed the government’s anti-Muslim policies legally as well as publically. The court clearly said that there was nothing objectionable in his speech for which he was arrested. On the contrary, there were positive contents in the speech which was hailed by the court.