Christophe Jaffrelot: On ‘love jihad’, BJP picks up baton from vigilante groups. Police, judicial apparatus have aided this move

This process is bound to transform India officially into an ethnic democracy, like Israel — where mixed marriages are practically impossible.   “Love jihad” is hitting the headlines again, but this old wine appears today in a different bottle, as the BJP is taking over from vigilante groups. The notion of “love jihad” first appeared in Gujarat in 2007, prior to resurfacing in 2009 in Kerala and in Karnataka under the auspices of Pramod Muthalik, a former RSS member who founded his own vigilante group, Sri Ram Sene, and who defined it as follows: “In love jihad, fanatic boys are encouraged to attract young Hindu girls outside ice cream parlours, schools, colleges and theatres … This is an organised effort to demoralise the Hindu community”.

Lucknow: families give consent but cops stop interfaith wedding // UP villagers allege the police forced the so-called 'love jehad' arrest

This rhetoric came out in public in 2014. In September of that year, a few months after Narendra Modi was voted into office, two weekly magazines by the RSS, Organiser and Panchjanya, devoted their cover stories to “love jihad,” the latter showing the photo of an Arab wearing a keffiyeh and dark glasses beneath which read the title, “Pyar andha ya dhanda?” (Is love blind or is it a business?)....

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