IFTAR POLITICS

Ajay Maken – Iftar at Narela with Buta Singh Ji organised by the local @DelhiPCC workers – Spirit of togetherness & brotherhood!

Ajay Maken – Thanks @ArvindKejriwal for your Iftar invite! Unable to make it because of prefixed Iftar with Congressmen in Narela.

Derek O’Brien – Always an honour to represent @MamataOfficial My first Iftar outside Kolkata. Gracious host @ArvindKejriwal

Aam Aadmi Party retweeted – High profile iftar party hosted by Delhi CM Kejriwal. Pak HC, vice president, LG Jung JDU and TMC.

These tweets are yet another example of how politics and religion have become so entangled in our country.

A devout Muslim breaks his daily fast in the holy month of Ramadan (Ramzan) at every sunset and Iftar has been a social event ever since the beginning. At every evening, in every locality, Muslims come together, sit together and break their religious observance of the day. And it has been a common sight ever since childhood. And it happens so, in every childhood, in every generation.

In India, where politics took religious overtures very early, the social event has been turned into yet another spectacle of political appeasement.

Every political party has been doing it, including the Bhartiya Janata Party. In a country where politics draws its sanctity heavily from religion, caste and their appeasement, politicians and political parties in every part of the country organize special Iftar parties to show how politically involved they are with the community. And leaders and opinion leaders of Muslims do the same.

And since it is the season again, as Eid is expected to be July 18 (or based on Moon sighting), they are on the job again. Yes, elections do carry politicised, contextualized and localized calculations and as Bihar polls are just two months away, everyone is busy promoting political credentials on their ‘self conceived and self-propaganda’ lines.

So, even if the regular stuff in this Eid is on, like the daily festivities related to the daily Iftar parties, those shops in Muslim localities selling food items to satisfy appetites after a tough day of fast, and Salman Khan’s annual movie release on Eid, political parties are competing each other in attending and organizing Iftar parties to lure voters.

And after ‘mainstreaming’ of the Aam Aadmi Party, it too has joined the bandwagon. Though the party claimed to be a party with a difference, unlike any, it ultimately, and within three years only, joined similar ranks. These tweets and many of its acts after forming the government again in this February confirm this.

Arvind Kejriwal today hosted an Iftar party which was attended by many political heavyweights including Najeeb Jung, Delhi’s Lieutenant-Governor , with whom Kejriwal is engaged in bitter power struggle and Pakistan’s High Commissioner Abdul Basit. It was logical to expect Ajay Maken’s and the BJP’s leadership’s absence there. Kejriwal’s deputy Manish Sisodia was seen attending Iftar party of J&K chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed where no central BJP leader was present.

Sonia Gandhi is hosting Congress’ Iftar party tomorrow and big political names, including many chief ministers (especially of non-BJP states), trying to send out an impression that Congress leads the anti-BJP front (or the secular front). But Mulayam Singh Yadav, Lalu Prasad Yadav and Mamata Banarjee are not going to be there. Also, Lalu is holding his own Iftar party tomorrow, in Patna, whereas Nitish Kumar, Bihar’s chief minister and Lalu’s alliance member, is flying to Delhi to attend Sonia’s.

And while the BJP has denied that Narendra Modi will hold an Iftar party in Srinagar during Eid, the party has organized Iftar parties at state levels – like it did in West Bengal. This is in addition to the Iftar parties held by its allies in the National Democratic Alliance.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

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