Cow vigilantes terrorising Dalits, minorities: Yechury

Communist Party of India (Marxist) general secretary Sitaram Yechury on Saturday demanded a complete ban on gauraksha samitis, or cow protection committees, saying they were terrorising Dalits and minority communities on the pretext of cow protection. He said the National Democratic Alliance government was permitting these vigilante groups to promote communalism and polarisation.

This was deliberately being done with an eye on the Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh due next year, Mr. Yechury said at a press conference here. “The purported warning [given] by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the vigilante groups after the Una incident was too little and too late,” he said.

The CPI(M) leader, who inaugurated a two-day meeting of the party’s State committee here, said the gruesome crime of rape and murder of the members of a Muslim family in Mewat was committed by suspected members of a local gauraksha dal.

Instead of extending protection to vulnerable communities, the Bharatiya Janata Party government in Haryana had launched a new drive to inspect biryani sold during the Id-ul-Zuha festivities to check its contents. This would further inculcate fear among minorities and sharpen communal polarisation, he said.

Referring to the impasse in Kashmir, Mr. Yechury said the NDA government, which had earlier ignored the CPI(M)’s suggestion for a political solution, had now agreed for talks with the stakeholders and even sent an all-party delegation to Srinagar. However, the will to bring normality to the State was lacking, he said.

Mr. Yechury said the social, economic, political and constitutional crises in the country had deepened during the past two years of NDA rule, as the BJP was striking at the core values of democracy. Besides the attempts to topple the State governments of Opposition parties, the foreign policy had taken a negative twist with India becoming a “junior partner of U.S. imperialism”, he said.

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