Riots that took place for weeks in Leicester of England, where Indians live in huge numbers, have propagated shock waves among the locals and the community leaders. The hindutva mob started the riots after a cricket match between India and Pakistan that took place at the end of August. The people were feared to come out of their houses. Though this part of England is home to people belonging to different religions and races, it has not seen any violence or hostility for the past 50 years.
On last August 28, India played against Pakistan in an Asia Cup cricket match in Dubai. India defeated Pakistan in that match. In the aftermath, a hindutva mob that rallied in the streets of Leicester chanted “Pakistan Murdabad” (death to Pakistan), a slogan chanted during 1947 partition of India and Pakistan. Soon the rally turned into a violent clash.
On September 17, almost 3 weeks after this incident, riots broke out again in Leicester’s Green Lane Road area, where there are a number of Muslim-owned businesses and a Hindu temple. 200 hindutva terrorists with masks rallied from the temple with weapons including cricket bats and shouted the slogan “Jai Shri Ram”. The hindutva mob threw glass bottles to instigate riots, taunted the Muslim community when they came past the mosques and physically beat up the people randomly. As the angered Muslims retaliated, it turned into a bigger riot.
The people of Leicester, who haven’t seen riots like this, were horrified. Leaders of Hindu and Muslim communities of Leicester representing the Iskcon Hindu temple and Jame Masjid read out a joint statement to declare peace. The statement said, “We are from one family. We settled here in this city together, we fought the racists together, we built it up together. We, the family of Leicester, stand in front of you not only as Hindus and Muslims but as brothers and sisters. There is no place for any foreign extremist ideology that causes division.”
Moreover, the statement said “We together call upon the immediate cessation of provocation and violence, both in thought and behaviour. We together, call upon the inciters of hatred to leave our city alone”.
The police in its statement on September 17 riots said that it was an ‘unplanned protest’. Likewise, the majority of the media also depicted that this incident happened only because of a cricket match.
But, videos linked to the riots and the recent attacks on the Muslims in England reveals us that this riot was a pre-planned one.
When we look into the crowd that got out of the temple during the day of the riot, it can be blatantly seen that the crowd was not an accidently gathered crowd. Everything, from their attires to their slogans, looked perfect and organized.
The Guardian, in its report, said that eight out of the 18 people arrested on the aftermath of the riots did not belong to Leicester. Of these, five came from Birmingham, while one came from Solihull, one from Luton and one gave an address in Hounslow. This exposes us that the hindutva terrorists were made to infiltrate into Leicester to instigate the riot.
A professor belonging to the London School of Economics said about these riots that, “The incidents that happened in Leicester are not separate or spontaneous incidents or a clash between the locals of the society. These are pre-planned attacks on the Muslims orchestrated by groups of Hindu men with a particular motive”.
He further said, “Rallying on the streets with flags and sticks is an importation from the Hindu supremacist government and is an extract from the hindutva book of drama”
Professor Neil Chakraborti of the Leicester University also opined almost the same. He said that “There is no doubt in my mind that the religious tensions in India, and the actions of a hardline, violent, nationalist government there, have had a direct influence on what we have seen”. From this, we can clearly understand that the riot was not a spontaneous one which got started because of a cricket match.
The attacks against Muslims have been increasing in Leicester in recent times. A new trend that never existed before has been created in Leicester. August 15, the so called ‘Independence Day’, was celebrated by shouting outside the mosque. A video that went viral recently showed that torn pages of Quran was lying on the streets near Melton road, which is populated with Hindus. And Muslims were picking it up.
Moreover, similar to what’s happening in India, Muslims in Leicester are being attacked after enquiring whether they are Muslims or not. A Muslim youth was attacked last May in this fashion, and in September, a Sikh youth doubted to be a Muslim was attacked by the hindutva mob. But Leicester police have not taken any proper action against these incidents, according to a media.
Almost 40% of Leicester’s residents are of South Asian origin. Only a few parts of England including Leicester are populated with Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs. Though people belonging to different religions live, the city remained as a successful model of integration.
The hindutva mob has instigated riots in such a city. They selected Leicester because of its pluralism. In India, RSS instigate riots by targeting the places which are populated with both Muslims and Hindus. They do so, because those places will be the apt choice for them to create division and clashes.
This is how Leicester has been targeted. Raising “Jai Shri Ram” slogan in the streets of Muslim-owned businesses and attacking them and then trying to turn it into a riot; asking “Are you a Muslim?” and then attacking – are all tactics of the Sangh parivar that they follow in India. The RSS is now implementing it in England.
Almost 50 persons were arrested in links with this riot. Moreover, the report released by the Leicester police said, “Serious disorder on Saturday when a large crowd formed after groups of young men began an unplanned protest. Officers attempted to engage with the group and remain with them whilst additional officers were called in. They sought to keep actions lawful but, regrettably, the situation led to disorder.”
But, many media exposed that the police not any action to control the riot. Videos that got released on the day of the riot revealed that the hindutva goons roaming freely on the streets with weapons and that the police just stood on the sidelines and watched.
This pro-hindutva trend of the Leicester police is not only limited to them. The British government itself is not paying any heed to the growth of hindutva and in contrast, it can be seen that the government is encouraging the growth of hindutva.
Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (HSS), an affiliate of RSS, was started in England in 1966. Though it was active from its establishment, its activity has peaked after Modi’s 2014 election victory in India. Modi, who was denied entry into England after the 2002 Gujarat riots, was welcomed after assuming power in 2014. After that, HSS directly and indirectly partnered with the Conservative Party, which is the ruling party. Because of this, the hindutva mob had gained a free hand there in England. Hence, the communal riots that are taking place in England should be viewed as a part of the terrorist activities carried out by the HSS with the aid of the government.
The British government is not trying to stop these attacks on the Muslims. The reason for this is that both the Conservative Party and the HSS converge at the point called ‘Islamophobia’. Moreover, the HSS needs the Conservative Party for its unhindered growth and the Conservative Party, in turn, needs the HSS for harvesting Hindu votes. They arrived at a compromise because of these mutual benefits.
For example, during the 2019 general elections, Kuldeep Singh Shekhawat, the president of Overseas Friends of BJP UK, campaigned for the Conservative Party through social media individually.
At the same time, members of the Conservative Party openly projected themselves as HSS sympathizers. In 2014, Priti Patel, former Home Secretary, congratulated the HSS for the event “RSS: A Vision in Action – A New Dawn” by writing a letter. Moreover, she said that the HSS should be proud about what they did for the Hindu society in Britain.
RSS’s Hindutva terrorism had spread not only to England, but also to other countries such as the United States and Australia. The RSS is joining hands with the regressive neo-Nazi groups and expanding their base for fascism.
The riots that took place in England and the Independence Day celebrations with bulldozer in the US show us only the presence and growth of the RSS and not its full strength. The truth is that the strength of the RSS is colossal. Now, the RSS is an armed Hindu-fanatic fascist organization with an international base.
The RSS, with its Hindutva terrorism base and Hindu identity, is now engaged in creating split among the working people of the West. Therefore, the obligation of defeating the RSS lies not only in the hands of the Indian proletariat alone. It lies in the hands of the world proletariat.