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Modi ji ko gussa kyun aaya? Modi's anger & Dalit votes
It's been almost a year since Mohammad Akhlaq was publicly lynched for allegedly eating beef.

This was probably the first incident which launched the 'gau rakshaks' and 'cow-terrorism' into national headlines. Since then, numerous such incidents have been reported. So many that they do not seem to deserve the big space on the front pages of our newspapers any more.

In the name of protecting cows, we have seen lynching, public flogging and even murders. These assaulters do not go underground after committing the crimes. They are famous, active on social media and so proud of these incidents that they upload videos and photos of such crimes on social media. A number of them have, on their social media profiles, posted pictures with BJP leaders ranging from Anurag Thakur to Amit Shah.

These 'gau rakshaks' have so far lynched a 55-year old man, hung a boy of 11 years, beat up two women in the presence of police, stripped and beaten four young men, forced two Muslims to eat cow dung and drink cow urine. But Mr Modi did not even mention these incidents in his speeches or tweets.

While the attacks in Paris and Pakistan 'saddened him' and he 'condemned them', the terror incidents in his home country did not seem to bother him. Mr Modi did not speak up against the incidents even when the international media criticised him or when United States expressed its concerns. Not even when the terror reached such alarming levels that recently a truck driver, fearing 'public backlash', jumped to death after accidentally killing three cows with his vehicle. Yet, PM Modi remained silent!

And now, the newspapers are flooded with headlines "Modi angry over cow-vigillantes''. But what should be worrying us is, Modi ji ko gussa kyun aaya? (Why is Mr Modi Angry?)

If the prime minister of a country is 'angry' over incidents of terror, that should worry us more than the terror. Terrorism needs to be condemned, the guilty need to be arrested & prosecuted; not be told that 'I am angry over you'.

The prime minister can get angry if the mike stops working when he is about to deliver the punchline of his speech, he can get angry if people arrive late for meetings, he can get angry over losing elections, but not over terrorism.

The initial victims of 'cow-terrorism' were Muslims. Pseudo-national sentiments were attached with cows. So, anyone speaking for Muslims could easily be termed as 'anti-national'. Even Muslims refrained from speaking against 'cow-terrorism' publicly, fearing that they will be labeled as anti-nationals. And how easy it is to label a Muslim an anti-national, is anybody's guess.

The police ignored such incidents, a part of the public supported them while some politicians endorsed the culprits. This made the criminals believe that they are above the law; that this is their 'chance'. And then, they turned the heat on Dalits.

The Una incident in which Dalit men were tied to a car and publicly flogged for allegedly killing a cow (which they had not) evoked mass public reaction. The Dalits throughout the country rallied & protested against the injustice. The cow-vigillante groups tried their 'bharat mata ki jai' card but alas, labeling a Dalit an 'anti-national' did not turn out to be as easy as it was in case of Muslims. Then they played the 'gau hamari mata hai' card and the Dalits responded by saying 'Tumhari maata, tum hi sambhaalo'.

Dalits in Gujarat, refused to clear the carcasses of dead cows and the state started to stink. This stink reached the Gujarat Chief Minister's office and she resigned. Though she claimed to have resigned from the post because of the age limit set by Mr Modi, but all of us know how true that is!

Then the stink from Gujarat further reached Delhi, but through Uttar Pradesh. Uttar Pradesh has a major Dalit vote base and the state goes to polls soon. Uttar Pradesh has a party based on Dalit support. Uttar Pradesh's ex-chief minister was a Dalit. Add all this to the stink, and we have the answer to 'Modi ji ko gussa kyun aaya?'

Now, one more thing that the newspapers missed: The 'Raja and Baadshah' reference made by Mr Modi.

Mr Modi said, "Purane zamaane mein aap ne dekha hoga Badshah kya karte the. Apni ladai ki fauj ke aage gai rakh dete the. Raja ko pareshaani hoti thi ki vaar kare to gai maregi aur paap lagega. Isi uljhan mai wo haar jate the." (You must have seen in the old times that a Badshah used to put cows in front of his army. This put the Raja in a dilemma and he used to get confused that if he attacked, the cows would get killed and that would be a sin. And due to this dilemna, the Raja would loose the war). As if Masud would spare the cows when he had won the war! Next time we have a war with a country, we should first cut off their cow supplies. The tanks, bombs and nuclear weapons can be taken care of!

Now, the story Mr Modi is referring to is that of Ghazi Saiyyad Salar Masud's war with Suheldev. Suheldev was a Dalit Hindu king. And by that, once again, subtly, Mr Modi has told the Dalits that it is their responsibility to protect the cows. This is not the first time that Suheldev's war, after about a 1000 years, is being used to fight democratic elections. Parties have owned or disowned him as per their convenience. BJP has hailed him and Mayawati has built his statues. And now again, BJP wants to own him.

Mr Modi's reaction (though so vague & weak) is nothing but a mere electoral rhetoric. In terms of his most valued friend, 'a chunavi jumla'.

The ball has been set rolling. Madhya Pradesh CM tweeted, "Protection of cows is an integral part of our culture. A true gau-rakshak will never resort to unlawful activities. This is the truth."

He did not feel the need to tweet this when two women were publicly beaten in the presence of policemen, for allegedly possessing beef.

On Monday, ANI quoted Shiv Sena spokesperson, Manisha Kayande as saying, "This is the second time when such incidents have happened. First, it took place in Dadri, where a man was lynched for allegedly storing cow meat. Now this is happening in Gujarat. So, somewhere the Dalit votes seem to be getting affected, and hence, Prime Minister Modi had to make a statement, because Gujarat is a very important state for the BJP. They should not lose it at any cost."

An internal survey conducted by RSS has claimed that if polls were to be conducted in Gujarat today, BJP is set to lose.

An yes, on Sunday, Mr Modi made an appeal saying, "I would like to tell these people (gau rakshaks) that if you have any problem, if you have to attack, attack me. Stop attacking my Dalit brethren. If you have to shoot, shoot me, but not my Dalit brothers. This game should stop."

Imagine the prime minister of a country 'appealing' to a bunch of hooligans who are terrorising people. The picture is clear: Cow-terrorism brings votes, but for now, BJP needs Dalit votes. And these two are not the same thing.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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