Not In My Name, a peaceful non-violence Artistic event to protest against the growing incidence of cow vigilantism which has cost several innocent Muslim lives recently.
Over thousands of middle class citizens across 14 cities in India and five cities outside India, including London, Boston and Karachi came together to make one loud message heard, enough is enough. We don’t want any more killing of minorities in the name of majority’s imagined hurt religious sentiment. “Not in my name” is a message that violence is not accepted by my religion or culture or Constitution. Anti-social elements from the Hindutva camp of politics who call themselves protectors or worshippers of cows should know that the crime, violence, and blood is on their hands alone and they alone are responsible for violence. They are not a part of Hinduism.
At least 19 attacks of cow vigilantism have been reported in past 22 months, from all over India including Una, Alwar, Delhi, among others . According to India Spend 86% of people who died in various cow related attacks in last eight years (2010 to 2017) were Muslims and 97% of these incidents occurred after Modi government came to power.
BJP came to power in 2014 general elections with mere 31% of vote share, the lowest in India’s history, largely owing to anti-incumbency sentiments and hopes of development promised by Modi during the election campaign. While there were no mentions of Ram Mandir, Hindu Rashtra and other Hindutva tropes in the election campaign, foot soldiers of BJP interpreted Modi’s win as a sign to discard the Constitutional values of secularism and usher in Hindu Rashtra. Three years on, people of India, including those who voted for BJP, are now tired of the hate and violence. They are taking to the streets to mark their protest, “Not in my name. I didn’t vote for this.”
These are some of the moments from New Delhi’s event at Jantar Mantar where over 4 thousand gathered braving the rains. It was refreshing to see that the crowd consisted of people not from usual social and academic background but included business class, young entrepreneurs, MBAs and techies etc. The event saw several powerful performances by artists Maya Krishna Rao, Fauzia Dastango, Rabbi Shergill, Vinod Dua and others.