From our beloved “Shehenshah” Prime Minister Modi Ji to his chaddi-buddy, the Chanakya of Modiocracy, Home Minister Amit Shaah, to the budding Hindutva hero and Delhi pogrom fame Kapil Mishra- hate speech (subtle, and not so subtle) has been one of the most effective tools used by the politicians to polarize the electorate for poll gains. It is impossible to imagine contemporary right-wing politics in India (and for that matter right-wing politics in any other country) without the frequent ‘garnishing’ of popular narrative with hate speeches. Historically too, hate speech has remained a highly debated topic, especially because it often clashes with the notion of freedom of speech. This month, we focused our attention on this topic. In this sixth episode, we talk briefly about some recent and famous cases of hate speech in India, what we think makes a speech, a hate speech, what motivations lie in saying hateful things openly, and how society and institutions like the Supreme court, play a role in creating an environment where hate speech can go unchallenged. We also discussed the recent custodial death of Fr. Stan Swamy, a fearless activist who fought for the rights of the marginalized in Chhattisgarh for thirty years. To Fr. Stan Swamy, we can only say one thing- “Sab yaad rakha jayega” (we will remember everything). We also dive into “Pegasus” and the abuse of institutional authority of cyber snooping, espionage, and the use of cyberattacks against civilians in India. The list of atrocities seems endless. Despite all that, we have Ghadar, and innumerable activists joined together by the common camaraderie to seek justice. In our podcast, we celebrate their grit and commitment.
And of course, we need you, our listeners to support this spirit by identifying and speaking against hate speech,
by talking about hate speech to friends and family, and asking them to listen to our lovely podcast (wink wink). We hope you will like our podcast as much as we love making it. During our research, we collected some material on the topic:1. Getting away with hate speech in India- Al Jazeera2. NY Times talks about (missing) hate crime data3. News of Father Stan Swamy’s death by the Economist4. Background on Pegasus by Vice 5. A court case was filed against the NSO group, founder of Pegasus.