The Opposition’s ‘INDIA alliance’ recently faced a blistering attack from India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Alleging dangerous intentions on behalf of the bloc, he sparked concern about perceived threats to ‘Sanatana Dharma’, the ageless, eternal tradition at the heart of Hindu philosophy.
PM’s ‘INDI Alliance’ jab at Opposition
In a public rally that grabbed headlines, PM Modi colorfully reframed the INDIA alliance as the “INDI alliance.”
He suggested that this nascent power bloc, drowned in pride or ‘ghamand’, aspires to extinguish the sacred flame of Sanatana Dharma.
Well, according to the Prime Minister, the implications could be cataclysmic for both the country’s culture and its citizens.
The context behind PM Modi’s inflammatory words was a controversial call to “eradicate Sanatana Dharma”. This came from Udhayanidhi Stalin, Tamil Nadu minister and DMK leader.
In response, PM Modi specially briefed his council of ministers, asserting that the DMK leader’s remarks deserved a “proper response”.
‘Divide and Rule’: The INDIA Alliance Challenge
Primed by a deep concern for societal cohesion, PM Modi cast the Opposition INDIA alliance as divisive opportunists.
He argued, “A few groups are working to divide the country and society…They have come together to form an INDIA alliance… The INDIA alliance has come with a resolution to end ‘Sanatan’ culture.”
The Opposition’s alleged aim to dilute the Sanatana tradition was sharply criticized by the Prime Minister.
He posited the tradition, venerated for centuries, as being a fount of inspiration for millions. However, he stressed that the line had been crossed with outright calls for its eradication.
“If today, they openly target Sanatana, tomorrow they will increase attacks on us. All ‘Sanatanis’ across the country and those who love our country need to be alert. We will have to stop such people,” proclaimed PM Modi.
The BJP’s Counterattacks
Following Stalin’s uncouth comparison of Sanatana Dharma to diseases like malaria and dengue, BJP went on the offensive.
The BJP accused the INDIA alliance, a conglomerate of 28 opposition parties, of harbouring ‘deep-rooted Hinduphobia’. In a heated debate, DMK’s MP A Raja fueled the fire, comparing it to leprosy and HIV.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath weighed in on the controversy, firmly defending the place of Sanatana Dharma.
He declared it to be the “Rashtriya” (national) religion of Bharat, and lamented the attempts by some to tarnish or erode its significance.
As the controversy continues to boil, Udhayanidhi Stalin finds himself embroiled in a legal tangle. A case registered against him in Thane, Maharashtra, condemns his inflammatory remarks for hurting the religious sentiments of Sanatana Dharma followers.
Caught in a battle for the soul of Sanatana Dharma, the Opposition’s INDIA alliance and the ruling party continue their ideological war.
What this signifies for India’s social fabric remains to be seen. Future political actions will offer more clarity on the genuine gravity of these fiery accusations.