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PM Narendra Modi under fire by civil society over Aurangzeb Road, FTII row

Members of civil society on Saturday accused the Narendra Modi dispensation of fundamentally redefining identities, isolating and denying recognition to cultural streams and claimed that the country was being governed by the RSS and not the BJP. The members also expressed concerns over alleged replacement of history by mythology “inventing facts”, renaming of roads, appointments of people close to power centre at premium institutes, etc which they said create “extremely dangerous” scenario.

 PM Modi

Speaking to reporters, they accused the ruling party of being a power ambitious of becoming fascist and adopting tactics used by German dictator Adolf Hitler in the European country to influence people. “We must realise we are today governed not by the BJP as in the previous NDA government, but the RSS. And the RSS, from its inception, has never concealed its admiration for the fascism. Here we are dealing with perhaps not the actual fascist power, but the power ambitious of being fascist,” Irfan Habib, Professor with Aligarh Muslim University, said during a press briefing organised by NGO Sahmant.

Referring to remarks of Indian Council of History Research (ICHR) chairman Sudershan Rao’s that Mahabharata and Ramayana can be used in research, Habib accused the Centre of replacing history like Hitler did and “inventing” facts. Habib also termed renaming Aurangzeb Road as an “ominous” development.

“In this atmosphere, renaming of Aurangzeb Road is an ominous development. This renaming effort is condemnable and this be reversed,” he demanded.

Civil rights activist Teesta Setalvad seconded Habib over “complete paradigm shift in what is dictating country’s educational and cultural policy” which she termed as being an “extremely dangerous” scenario.