The rise of communalism in recent years as the major claimant to power in Indian politics has posed a serious challenge to the survival of democracy and is even threatening the fabric of the Constitution. Coupled with the fact that political discourse in the international arena has been increasingly using the language of religion, this phenomenon has posed a serious challenge to human rights movements worldwide. The seventeen original essays in this volume traverse a large canvas and critically interrogate Hindutva from multiple vantage points in the light of recent national and international political events.

Introduction: Religion, Power and Violence

Introduction: Religion, power and violence

Contemporary World Scenario and the Language of Religion

The beginning of the twenty-first century has been marked by two most dastardly crimes. The world witnessed with helplessness two airplanes ramming into the WTC and killing over two thousand innocent lives. In the immediate aftermath Osama bin Laden thanked the Allah for this event. At the same time US President George W. Bush announced that this was an act of Islamic terrorism and that the US would initiate a war on terror, a crusade against Islamic terrorism. This resulted in an attack on Afghanistan where bin Laden was thought to be living then, in the process killing thousands of innocents.

In a nondescript town called Godhra in Gujarat, a ...

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