New Delhi, 29th Nov 2021: Seetharam Koiwal, National General Secretary of Social Democratic Party of India, has expressed deep concern about flourishing intolerance in the country. “It is ‘legitimized’ anarchy that prevails in the country. Cancellation of a comedy show of stand-up comedian Munawar Faruqi, the other day in Bengaluru, following police intervention is the latest event in the series of intolerance sponsored by the extreme right wing Hindutva fascists. It is the humanity that loses and hatred that wins, by these acts, “said Koiwal.

The police intervention was the result of threats from the right wing Hindutva elements including Sriram Sena and Hindu Janajagruti Samiti, that they would not allow the show to be staged because it hurts the religious sentiments of Hindus by allegedly insulting Hindu Gods. Munawar who was imprisoned on a complaint by the vigilante son of a BJP leader that his New Year stand-up comedy show in Indore hurt the religious sentiments of Hindus, was out on bail granted by the supreme court. About a dozen of his shows were cancelled in the past two months following the right wing Hindutva outfits threats. The latest incident has led to his declaration of abandoning his shows, henceforth.

In the present India, cover of ‘hurting Hindu religious sentiments’ is the easy way to unleash injustice, violence and atrocities on the minorities, especially Muslims. Faruqui’s shows have nothing to do with religious sentiments.  His humorous comic routine included, among a great deal else, takedowns of social stereotypes, of widespread communal attitudes and communal violence, politics in general and the BJP in particular. The shows in a blend of Hindi and English attract a large audience. This is what provokes the Hindutva fascists, not the religious sentiments.

Witch-hunt of Munawar is an assault on the freedom of expression. The Hindutva forces, who, unfortunately, are the rulers of the country, are not ready to tolerate any criticism or dissent. They are afraid of people like Faruqi who articulate in simple way with the common people. Democratic and secular people of the country should not allow humanity to lose and hatred wins, urged Seetharam.