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20 Sep, 2013

Fragility of tolerance in India – Indian Express

The logic of communal politics is gathering momentum. There have been major clashes across UP. But worryingly, this trend is beginning to appear, albeit at a low level, in Bihar as well. There has been much discussion of the immediate political antecedents of the violence in UP: the deadly combination of criminality, communalism and administrative incompetence of the SP, the sordid propaganda of the VHP, the irresponsible rabble rousing of MLAs across political parties, the irrelevance of the Congress on the ground, and the fact that the opposition’s candidate for prime minister cannot speak with much moral authority on the subject.

We seem stuck in the same dreary pattern of violence since competitive politics came to UP in the 1930s. It is almost as if decades of democracy, growth and education have done little to dislodge the archetypal manifestations of hostility.

Read the rest: Fragility of tolerance – Indian Express.