Minority report for the BJP

The cornerstone of the evocative article “Why Muslims should give BJP a fair chance” by Syed Zafar Islam (ie May 4) is not at all unusual. Indian Muslim communities are often invited to give “their” view of the world closed inward and become fully involved in the project of expression of desires (read official) called “nation building.” However, in the article, Zafar Islam goes one step further to defend Muslims, who “have not yet recovered from the shock of the BJP’s victory in the UP must come out of the state of denial and embrace the BJP. “The example of Gujarat should be a model for the Muslims of UP and other states … where the BJP won the state elections without giving tickets to Muslims for 20 years.”
I do not want to talk about the rigid communal secular binary to respond to these overly generalized demands. A populist and unnecessary stress in the parts other than BJP secularism, in my opinion, can not help us to analyze the nuances of Muslim policy responses. After all, the so-called secular parties prefer to share Muslim communities as a closed social group and do not articulate Muslim exclusion as a national concern. I have encountered three serious difficulties with the article Zafar Islam: a problem of Muslim homogeneity imagination; A superficial understanding of Muslim political behavior and, finally, a non-representative foundation of the BJP led by Modi as a true emancipation of Muslim communities.
Zafar Islam depends to a large extent on a strong presumption that Muslims in India are a closed homogeneous social group – as if they thought, felt and acted (or react) in a simple, direct and standardized way. Imagination does not correspond to the social and cultural norms and real values ​​of communities that follow various forms of Islam and recognize themselves as “Muslims” in India. Sociological variations determine the nature of political preferences in different regional and local contexts. Since the author does not understand the complexity of Muslim plurality, he does not realize that Muslims vote for the BJP.
Let’s examine how the Muslim national vote in the last four elections of Lok Sabha to elaborate this point. The BJP generally gets 5 to 6 percent of the Muslim votes nationwide. The election for Lok Sabha in 2014 is an exception in this regard. The BJP gained 9 percent of Muslim votes, making it the third choice for Muslim voters. The claim that Muslims “are made to believe that the BJP is communal and the anti-Muslim party confirmed” contains factual errors from the point of view of a large number of Muslim voters.
However, the response of Muslim voters nationally as a whole should be decompressed to avoid simplistic conclusions. For clarity, we can compare the performance of BJP in UP and Gujarat. (In the article, Zafar Islam is very concerned about these two states.) The Lokiniti-Chart surveys show that the BJP’s performance in the UP was rather bad before 2014. No significant support has been received from the last three Muslims general elections. But in 2014, the exceptionally good party that led the BJP alliance obtained 10 percent of Muslim votes. The Congress alliance, which receives the highest Muslim electoral support in all of India, is interesting, it only manages 11% of the Muslim votes in UP. This means that a significant number of Muslim votes rejected Congress and the BJP have moved in 2014.

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