26 Oct, 2015
By Tavleen Singh
At this point in Narendra Modi’s term as Prime Minister we should have been talking about good things. Jobs, growth, economic reforms, new policies, India’s role in the world and her transition towards fulfilling that promise of making the 21st century her own. Instead, all we have talked about since Mohammad Akhlaq’s barbaric murder are the things that have held India back for decades. Old hatreds, old enmities, cultural intolerance and religious violence. These things have so dominated the national debate that it is beginning to feel as if we have moved backwards to an uglier time when such things were routine.
Those were times when the burning alive of two Dalit babies would not have made the news, leave alone headlines. Times when we talked of massacres and not individual killings because in the wilds of rural India it was accepted that upper castes would abuse and subjugate lower castes as they had always done. And that they would seize all the fruits of development and progress, and lower castes and Muslims would be confined to cleaning their filth and living off scraps from the high-caste table.