Social Media Inundated with Anti-Muslim Hate Messages after Taliban Takeover in Afghanistan

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Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid speaks at at his first news conference in Kabul, Afghanistan on Tuesday. — Photo: AP

Modi supporters have changed their obsession from ‘Go to Pakistan’ to ‘Go to Afghanistan’

Waquar Hasan | Clarion India

NEW DELHI — The Taliban takeover of Afghanistan is being used to spread anti-Muslim hate and fan Islamobhobic sentiments on social media in India as well as other parts of the world.

In India, social media users, especially those who are aligned with Hindutva ideology, are whipping up communal passion targeting Muslims. They have even started asking Muslims and other anti-Hindutva voices to go to Afghanistan.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesperson of Haryana tweeted that those who don’t feel safe in India should go to Afghanistan. The tweet indirectly aims at those who have been raising issue of hate crimes and mob violence against Muslim in India.

The hashtag #GoToAfghanistan on Twitter is full of hateful messages which target Muslims in India.

Prominent journalist Arefa Khanum Sherwani said that Modi supporters have changed their obsession from ‘Go to Pakistan’ to ‘Go to Afghanistan’. She has been viciously trolled for saying so.

A user said that the Taliban are looking for people like her.

There are barrage of posts which ask Indians especially Muslims to go to Afghanistan if they have any issue with India and the Indian government.

A BJP MLA in Bihar said that those who want petrol and diesel at lower price should go to Afghanistan.

“The situation is extremely shocking in Afghanistan after the Taliban takeover. People are desperate to leave the country. Many of them tried to travel on the wings of aircraft. Three of them even died after falling from the aircraft. Imagine what the situation in Afghanistan is like,” said Hari Bhushan Thakur Bachaul, MLA from the Bispi Assembly constituency in Bihar’s Madhubani district.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s advisor Shalabh Mani Tripathi tweeted that UP Police decided to set up an ATS commando center in Deoband amid Taliban brutality.

Tripathi indirectly tried to attribute ‘the brutality of Taliban’ with Muslims of India by announcing the decision of setting up the ATS centre in Deoban which hosts a prominent Islamic seminary called Darul Uloom Deoband.

Apart from Hindutva users of social media, so-called liberals are also targetting Muslims in the name of Taliban. Sanjukta Basu, who claims to be a secular voice, targeted Indian Muslims accusing them of supporting the Afghan group.

Among those targeted is author and journalist Ghazala Wahab. She has been taken to task for saying that Taliban are ‘legitimate stake-holders’ and ‘insurgent group’ not terror group.

Wahab has been shamed by many people including many liberal voices. She explained her point of view saying that Taliban have been legitimate stakeholders because several countries including the US held talks with the group.

Apart from hateful narratives, unverified, unrelated and old reports were also shared to show the barbarity of Taliban.

A photo and video of street plays by Kurdish activists in London to depict the enslavement of women by ISIS have been shared as recent incidents from Afghanistan.

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