With rising violence, lynchings and silencing of rationalists, Sahitya Akademi Award winner Nayantara Sahgal believes that the country is shrinking into a Hindu monoculture. She said that the Hindutva being practised today is a travesty of Hinduism.
During a conversation with Githa Hariharan during a Facebook live chat organised by Indian Writers Forum, Sahgal said that What is projected today as Hinduism is a travesty of Hinduism.
Sahgal added that Hindutva is a distortion of Hinduism and that is what we are shrinking into; that’s what is taking place today. Sahgal said the "transformation of the nation is happening right now in front of our eyes".
The author, the niece of the country’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, said that in the name of Hindutva, debate has been crushed and dissent outlawed.
“We know what is happening...dissenters, writers and journalists are being murdered by passing vigilantes. There have been mob lynchings of humble people, who were just doing their jobs... This is what’s taking place before our eyes. This transformation is happening now.”
Sahgal recently came out with a book—‘When the Moon Shines by Day’—which has been described as a dystopian satire based loosely on the current political circumstances.
During the video chat, she also talked about her early years during India’s freedom struggle under the leadership of Mahatma Gandhi, whose prayer meetings included Hindu, Muslim and Christian prayers.
“There was something unique about India’s struggle for freedom, the secularity, it was across the board and class and it had patriotic songs in all Indian languages.
“But this idea of Hindutva maintains that India is a country of Hindus. Christians, Buddhists and Sikhs will be tolerated, but Muslims are our enemies. The Musalman has to be told his place if he is to live in this country. He is here on sufferance. The faultlines are deeper there,” Sahgal said.
With PTI inputs