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HomeGeopolitical CompassSouth & Southeast AsiaReading Islamophobia in Hindutva: An Analysis of Narendra Modi’s Political Discourse

Reading Islamophobia in Hindutva: An Analysis of Narendra Modi’s Political Discourse

Author: Prashant Waikar 

Affiliation: Nanyang Technological University 

Organization/Publisher: Center for Race and Gender, University of California, Berkeley/ Pluto Journals

Date/Place: Spring 2018/USA 

Type of Literature: Research Article

Word Count: 5693


Keywords: Islamophobia, RSS, Hindutva, Modi, Racism


With each passing year, Islamophobia in India is more normalizing. With Modi’s “subtle and implicit” Islamophobia that he consistently uses in speeches, the BJP government has endorsed hatred against Muslims. Author Prashant Waikar identifies the ills of Hindutva in Indian society, as the general ideology of Hindutva enunciated by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) is now promoted by State policies. He identifies that Hindu Nationalism is an ideology which is designed only for otherization. To accomplish the objectives of Hindutva, different tools are used, one of which is language. Language games are being used in an offensive against Muslims; in the Hindu society today, Indian Media portrays Muslims as radicals and agitators. The author’s observation is that the current Islamophobia surge in India is an echo of the Hindu–Muslim antagonisms established in Hindutva. He takes notes from S. Sayyid that “racism is made possible because of the racial hierarchies that structure society.”  Therefore, the racial hierarchies of India meet this discernment. Hitherto, the Indian government’s patronage of hatred has been to win the majority. Subsequently, Islamophobia in India has been significantly normalized insofar that Muslims are characterized as subservient to Hindus.

By: Maryam Khan, CIGA Research Associate



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