The 7-year-old student stands, crying, slapped by his classmates. “Why are you hitting him so lightly?” Hit harder »encourages Tripta Tyagi, director and teacher of a school in Uttar Pradesh, the most populous northern state in India. “His face is turning red, hit him in the waist instead”she continues.
This scene of incredible violence, filmed and then broadcast on social networks on Friday, took place on Thursday August 24. “I hadn’t learned my multiplication tables… They kept beating me for an hour”explained the young Muslim to the media India Today. The Hindu teacher, who has since been arrested, justified herself as follows: “I am disabled and couldn’t get up, so I asked the students to beat the child. The video has been doctored. » The local police chief said there would be sanctions against the teacher and that the boy’s family had filed a complaint. His father also took him out of school.
The teacher claims that her action has no religious prejudice, but the video leaves no doubt. Tripta Tyagi makes Islamophobic comments several times. “We discovered that the teacher had said that Muslim students whose mothers did not pay enough attention to their studies were spoiled children”underlines the local police chief.
Increase in discrimination against Muslims
The video triggered the ire of part of civil society and the political opposition. For human rights defenders, the incident is symptomatic of the rise in hate crimes against India’s large Muslim minority, perpetrated by Hindu extremists since the first president came to power. Minister Narendra Modi in 2014.
“This video is the fruit of the last nine years. The message instilled in young children is that you can beat and humiliate a Muslim without any repercussions.”regrets Asaduddin Owaisi, MP and head of the All India Muslim Union (Aimim) Council.
“To sow the poison of discrimination in the minds of innocent children, to turn a holy place like a school into a hate market, there is nothing worse a teacher can do for the country”says opposition leader Rahul Gandhi. “This is the same kerosene spread by the BJP, which has set fire to every corner of India. »
Uttar Pradesh, anti-Muslim laboratory state
Uttar Pradesh, governed since 2017 by India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), is no exception. This state of 230 million inhabitants, where 20% of Muslims live, has been led since 2017 by a Hindu monk, Yogi Adityanath, to whom some lend a national destiny as the successor of Narendra Modi, his ally.
Nicknamed ” the king “Yogi Adityanath made his state the laboratory of Hindutva, an openly Islamophobic supremacist ideology, aimed at establishing a Hindu India. “These 20% are against us, against the construction of large Hindu temples, against development and they support the mafias and terrorists”explained the monk in 2017.
Since then, attacks have multiplied against Muslims, some using the pretext of protecting cows, sacred to Hindus, which would be killed by Muslims. Mobilizing the idea of a “great replacement”, Yogi Adityanath had religious conversions banned and inter-religious marriages criminalized.