In Québec, (as in many other parts of the world) anti-Muslim racism has been on the rise for many years.  The most horrifying proof in Québec was the attack on the Grand Mosque in Québec City in January 2017.  6 people were killed and 19 injured.


Indigenous people, especially Indigenous women are the victims of violence and racism. There has also been a ratcheting up of hostility towards newer arrivals and refugees.  We know that such thinking and action is not representative of the majority of Quebecers; that the majority of Quebecers understand the true meaning of solidarity.  So it is time to stand up! Speak out! Do not remain a silent majority!  The political class exploits our genuine concerns and anxiety caused by years of neoliberal policies and austerity that have led to increased poverty and insecurity.  But instead of rectifying the situation,  they try to distract us by raising false alarms about ‘Others’;  they think that by doing so we will be diverted from  the real causes of these inequalities.  At this time it is up to us to call them out on their deceptions and irresponsible speech and acts.  As our political representatives it is their duty and obligation to ensure the well-being of us all. They must stop playing dangerous political games that fuel hate and end in death.  We demand that the CAQ government stop their current escalation of hatred and xenophobia by dictating in a patriarchal and anti-feminist manner how women should dress!  As well, the alt-right is small, but growing, feeding on peoples’ anxieties, promising quick-fix (and false) solutions to their daily struggles to survive.  We must resist!


In India – the world’s largest democracy, there is an alt-right ultra-nationalist government in power and there has been an escalation of attacks on minorities – Muslims, Dalits[1], Christians, and those who dare to speak out and challenge the current regime.  While documentation of every incident is difficult to come by, on record are 40,000 attacks on marginalized groups in 2016 (Global Council of Indian Christians). 220 incidents of hate crimes and 146 murders targeting Dalits, Muslims, women and transgender persons in 2017 (Amnesty International).  Most of the corporate media provide echo chambers for the government and their non-governmental organizations, or practice self-censorship to escape political and bureaucratic harassment.  Activists, lawyers, journalists who speak out are intimidated, harassed, arrested on trumped up charges or assassinated.  There is evidence that links the violence across the country and on the ground to the highest political office.  In Québec we have organizations that subscribe to this alt-right Hindutva[2] ideology such as those who celebrate the Festival of India in July each year  (see Garam Masala 2017) and The Art of Living (see J. Sharma, The Wire 2016).   International Yoga Day was initiated by the alt-right Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi to dupe the world and whitewash the obliteration of the myriad and syncretic traditions of India.  In May 2019 India will have national elections.  The current regime must be defeated or those might be the last democratic elections in India. As a member of the Indian diaspora or a friend of India speak and act now! Join the movement to resist the fascism that is dominating the lives of millions of Indians. What happens in India with a population of over 1 billion, will have an impact around the world, including Québec.


In Québec and for India, write to your MNAs and to your MPs.  Register your deep concern and your opposition to the politics of hate and xenophobia.   Make then raise questions and act. Do not be a silent majority.  In our unity against Hate and Xenophobia is our strength.


INDIA CIVIL WATCH-CANADA —  a non-partisan group of concerned citizens in Canada

Info: cerasmontreal@gmail.com


[1] Dalit = category of self-definition by persons declared  so-called ‘untouchable’ by Brahminism’s of so-called ‘impure’ and ‘polluted’ categories; signifies a state of radical consciousness that seeks to interrogate and challenge Brahminical stereotypes.

[2] Hindutva = an ideology seeking to establish the hegemony of Hindus and a narrowly-interpreted Hindu way of life (essentially Brahminism, a hierarchy that imposes subordination on those it declares ‘impure’, ‘polluted’)

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