‘Dissent isn’t Treason’: Military Veterans in Letter to PM Modi

The veterans slammed attacks on Muslims, Dalits & criticised “vigilantism of self-appointed protectors of Hinduism.”

Published31 Jul 2017, 08:46 AM IST
India
2 min read

Denouncing the recent spate of attacks on Muslims and Dalits in the country, 114 Armed Forces veterans have written an open letter to Prime Minister Modi.

“What is happening in our country today strikes at all that the Armed Forces, and indeed our Constitution, stand for,” the veterans were quoted as saying in the open letter, accessed by The Indian Express.

We are witness to unprecedented attacks on society at large by the relentless vigilantism of self-appointed protectors of Hinduism. We condemn the targeting of Muslims and Dalits

The letter has been signed by retired army, naval and air force officers.

Condemning the atmosphere of fear, hate and intimidation, the veterans assert that they stand by the ‘Not in My Name’ protests and that the believe in the ideals of “unity in diversity.”

Also Read: How #NotInMyName Became a Nationwide Expression of Anger

“Differences in religion, language, caste, culture or any other marker of belonging have not mattered to the cohesion of the Armed Forces, and servicemen of different backgrounds have fought shoulder to shoulder in the defence of our nation, as they continue to do today,” the letter reads.

The letter also goes on to criticise the “clampdown” on free speech and “through a campaign of branding them anti-national and unleashing violence against them while the State looks away.”

The letter end with the veterans claiming that they can’t look away and that it would be a “disservice” to the nation if they did not stand up and speak. “Dissent is not treason; in fact, it is the essence of democracy,” it says.

Also Read: Silence on Mob Lynchings Broken at #NotInMyName Protest

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