The Muslim Genocide in India

Genocide Watch, a global organisation dedicated to the prevention of genocide, has issued two alerts warning of a possible genocide of Muslims in India. That’s 200 million Indian Muslims, a number even greater than the population of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Yemen, and Syria combined.

The convention has recognised that as of 2023, India has reached seven out of ten stages of a complete genocide of its Muslim civilians within its national borders.

This phenomenon has not just become apparent, but has been strongly perpetuated in India for almost a century. 

In December 1992, a mob of 150,000 Hindu Nationalists led by L.K. Advani rallied in Ayodhya at the site of the 16th-century mosque – the Babri Masjid. 

L.K. Advani was the power centre of the BJP, a Hindu nationalist political party that has now risen to the highest seat of power in the Indian government today.  Spawned on by Advani ultra-nationalist hate speech, an angry mob  stormed into the masjid and in just a few hours they axed, hammered and grappled the 450-year-old building to rubble. The Hindu-nationalist mob then proceeded to attack Muslim residents of Ayodhya, ransacking and demolishing their houses, torching their shops and murdering their occupants.

L.K. Advani is now the deputy Prime Minister of India.  

This case is just one chapter in the story of Muslim persecution in India. And unfortunately, these themes are much more devastating and hold deadly consequences—the themes of genocide.   

This is a story of dehumanisation, discrimination, alienation, persecution and senseless killings. And it’s all rooted in the idea of Hindutva which is a Hindu nationalistic ideology dating back to the 19th century. The term was coined by Vinayak Damodar Savarkar in the early 20th century to mean “Hindu-ness”. Savarkar was a great admirer of Adolf Hitler, having said that:

“India should follow the German example to solve the Muslim problem… Germany has every right to resort to Nazism and Italy to Fascism – and events have justified those ‘isms’…”  

Savarkar’s nationalistic ideas led to the birth of the RSS, a volunteer nationalist paramilitary organisation created in the 1920s with the goal of acting out Hindutva ideologies and bringing forth the Hindu Rashtra, or Hindu state.  At the centre of the Hindutva ideology is the concept that Indian national identity and culture are inseparable from the Hindu religion, claiming that India is fundamentally a Hindu state. By that logic, Hindus are Indians, and non-Hindus are non-Indians or foreigners. This poses a problem to the  fourteen percent Muslim population of India along with other minority communities. 

It’s important to note here that Hinduism is not the same as Hindutva, and not all Hindus support the Hindutva movement. Hindutva manipulates Hinduism as a political weapon for strategy, transformation and mobilisation. 

The BJP, formed in 1980, became the political arm of the RSS, weaponising Hindu nationalism as part of its politics. In 2014, the BJP won the country’s Hindu majority vote and their leader, Narendra Modi, was elected Prime Minister of India. He remains Prime Minister till today. The victory of the BJP in the election was rooted in a highly Islamophobic political campaign , signalling a fundamental social and political shift for the 207 million Muslims in India. The BJP was successful in bringing Islamophobia out from the shadows and into the Indian & international mainstream, which fundamentally perpetuated the state-manufactured ideology that Muslims represent an existential threat to Hindus and the Hindu religion.    

By spreading this notion into the public sphere, the BJP has found reasons to pass policies that seek to marginalise and discriminate against Muslims, including laws that prevent beef consumption, restrict Muslim immigration, and purportedly counter Islamist terrorism.   

Genocide Watch recognises genocide with ten stages and the current laws, policies and regulations of the ruling BJP party are clear evidence of the fulfillment of these stages. According to this, India is actually very close to a full-scale genocide.

Stage 1: Classification

This is the ‘us’ vs ‘them’ phase, where, ironically, the majority dominant part of society is threatened by the minority powerless part of society. What is known as the ‘other’ can be a different race, nationality or religion, and in this case, it’s Muslim Indians.

There are 1.4 billion people in India all hailing from diverse ethnicities, languages and religions. Since the BJP came into power, Modi’s government has espoused Hindutva ideology which divided Indian society into Hindus and Muslims, or Indians and non-Indians.                   

Stage 2: Symbolisation

In Nazi Germany, the Jews were forced to wear the Star of David, and although Muslims haven’t been forced to wear a symbol, they are identified and often criminalised in Indian society by the expressions of their religion. A clear example of this is the Hijab Ban. Muslim girls and teachers who wear the hijab are denied entry to colleges, as the hijab supposedly goes against the school policy on appropriate school uniforms, hence they are forced to remove their hijabs. 

Another symbol employed by the BJP and RSS which sows dissent into Indian society is the prohibition of beef consumption. Eating beef is not allowed in some states in India, even though the country is one of the top exporters of beef in the world. It seems that Hindutva mobs conveniently forget this reality whenever they ‘catch’ Muslims transporting, selling and consuming beef.  

Stage 3: Discrimination 

A decade into Modi’s electoral term, Muslims have been sent down a downward spiral of disenfranchisement. Discrimination delivered through policies on a national scale has effectively made Indian Muslims second-class citizens, like the Citizenship Amendment Act in 2019. This effectively made religion the basis by which immigrants can become Indian citizens and denied Muslims their citizenship rights. 

Discrimination has even entered family homes with the conspiracy of ‘Love Jihad’, which accuses Muslim men of luring Hindu women into marriages in order to convert them to Islam. In order to ‘protect’ its Hindu citizens, the BJP government has prohibited inter-faith marriages. 

But this is only a fragment of the countless number of anti-Muslim discriminatory laws that have barred Muslims from their rights in India.

Stage 4: Dehumanisation

Muslims in India are subjected to ongoing discrimination and are also denied their humanity, being thrown with taunts by RSS members. Home Minister Amit Shah has publicly likened Muslims to ‘termites eating the food that should go to the poor’. The BJP regularly enforces prejudice through television broadcasts, books and other media to spread these Islamophobic notions.

Even in religious conferences, Muslims aren’t free from Hindutva bigotry, where calls for genocide and ethnic cleansing are openly called. One known fanatic, Yati Narsinghanad Saraswati, posted a video on Facebook saying: “I want to exterminate all Muslims and eradicate Islam from the face of the earth.” There are a multifarious range of these verbal attacks and their presence is undeniably provocative and persistent.

Stage 5: Organisation

Organising a genocide takes time, and in India’s case, it’s been decades of Islamaphobic fear-mongering and indoctrination that aroused millions. International humanitarian organisations have accused Hindutva factions of hate-filled propaganda and riling up violent lynch mobs with the aim of brutally murdering any Muslim suspected of transporting or consuming beef. These murderous vigilante mobs hunt interfaith couples who perform ‘love Jihad’ and crack down on any Muslim student who protests their unjust discrimination. 

When it comes to Hindutva supremacist organisations, the RSS is at the head. They have been accused of plotting assassinations, stoking riots against Muslim minorities as well as committing acts of terrorism over the decades.   

Stage 6: Polarisation

India’s media polarisation has formed major echo chambers of Islamaphobic bigotry that further fuels anti-Muslim harassment. Right-wing media personalities, religious leaders and BJP politicians have been freely blasting Islamaphobic rhetoric to millions of screens across the country. Arnab Goswami, an Indian journalist that runs his channel on false, divisive and inflammatory reporting, claimed that Indian Muslims were responsible for the spread of the COVID-19 virus to target the Hindu population. 

Stage 7: Preparation

All this hateful division and polarisation has led to the perpetuating group needing a “final solution to their problem”. 

The preparation of this solution can be seen clearly through the occupation of Muslim-majority Jammu & Kashmir. In 2019, India controversially positioned and stationed 600,000 troops to occupy the disputed state. Since then, there have been reports of arrests, torture, rape and murder of Kashmiri citizens. Police encounters and citizen disappearances are routine, and freedom of the press and movement is restricted. For many Muslims in India, this is a sign of what’s to come in their own neighbourhood. 


The seventh stage. That’s where Muslims in India currently find themselves. 

In limbo between Stage 7 and Stage 9, which are ‘Preparation for Extermination’ and ‘Actual Extermination’.

If the theory behind these 10 stages stands true, which they have so far, then only one possible outcome can come, genocide. In fact, the Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide released a 2022-23 report ranking India as being at the 8th highest risk of a new mass killing.  

This relentless persecution has been normalised and acted out by influential figures and laymen alike. The right-wing Hindu nationalists have successfully induced fear and hatred of the ‘other’ in order to collect Hindutva sympathisers as voters. Modi’s government feeds itself and its voters from the same ideological plate.

History has taught us that genocide is very real and it can happen anywhere. But to learn from history necessitates that we study it first.

Right now, Muslim Indians total to 200 million, and so if a genocide occurs on a national scale, it would be the largest genocide in history. 

We ask Allah ﷻ to save the Muslims in India from their suffering and bring peace and unity to a fractured nation. Ameen.