lørdag 7. mars 2020

What’s killing India’s democracy? It’s not just Modi who’s to blame

As sectarian violence engulfed parts of India’s capital last month, 60-year-old rag picker Ayub Ansari and his son went without food for three days. Trapped indoors by the violence, Ansari, who lived hand to mouth making barely US$4 a day selling the scrap he picked off garbage dumps, ran out of supplies and decided to chance it. His disabled son, 17-year-old Salman, warned him against going out. He left home early in the morning while Salman was still asleep.

A couple of hours later, two men brought Ansari back on a scooter. They had found him lying in a pool of blood with his head smashed in. He told them that he had been spotted by a marauding Hindu mob that asked him his name and set upon him when they learned he was a Muslim. With barely any public transport available amid the rioting, Salman laid his father on a handcart he found by the roadside and pushed it for several kilometres to the nearest clinic. The staff there gave Ansari first aid but had little else to offer, so Salman pushed the cart to another clinic further down the road, which asked for a deposit he could not afford. Finally, he found an auto rickshaw that agreed to take him to the government-run Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital but, by the time they arrived, Ansari had died.