The Big Picture - Tackling Radicalism
- 07 Mar 2019
- 4 min read
The Ministry of Home Affairs recently issued a notification banning Jammu and Kashmir based Jamaat-e-Islami (JeI) as an "unlawful association" under Section 3 of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act. According to the government, the organisation is "in close touch" with terror groups and wants to "escalate secessionist movement" in Jammu and Kashmir.
The word “radical” refers to change in the fundamental nature of something, thus Radicalism is set of beliefs or actions of people who advocate thorough or complete political or social reform.
Radicalisation refers to the process of an individual’s transformation from a moderate, law-abiding citizen into an active, anti-state, violent extremist.
Factors behind Radicalisation
- Individual socio-psychological factors, which include grievances and emotions such as alienation and exclusion, anger and frustration and a strong sense of injustice.
- Socio-Economic Factors, which include social exclusion, marginalisation and discrimination (real or perceived), limited education or employment etc.
- Political Factors, which include weak and non-participatory political systems lacking good governance and regard for civil society.
- Social media, which provide connectivity, virtual participation and an echo-chamber for like-minded extremist views, accelerates the process of radicalisation.
Forms of Radicalism in India
- Politico-Religious Radicalism: It is associated with a political interpretation of religion and the defence, by violent means, of a religious identity perceived to be under attack.
Use of Religion by ISIS to spread its influence all over the world is an example.
- Right-Wing Radicalism: It is a form of radicalization associated with fascism, racialism/racism, supremacism and ultranationalism.
- Left Wing Radicalism: This form of radicalization focuses primarily on anti-capitalist demands and calls for the transformation of political systems considered responsible for producing social inequalities, and that may ultimately employ violent means to further its cause.
Steps to Tackle Radicalism
- A consistent counter radical strategy is required to tackle radicalism.
- Institutions have to be strengthened: Educational and political institutions should be strengthened at ground level so that people of any state feel empowered. Also, enough number of job opportunities should be provided to people to decrease their chances of joining any radicalist organization.
- There should be sufficient evidence behind banning any organization. This is necessary to avoid court cases. Also, Intelligence Agencies, Law Enforcement Agencies and Judicial Courts need to act in unison on this matter.
- Once government identifies any radicalist organization, it needs to take hold of their physical and financial resources.
- Countering activities of radicalists. If hate can be taught, then love and social responsibilities toward people and the nation can also be taught. This is necessary to de-radicalize people.
- It needs to be ensured that people who been de-radicalized feel safe and secure in the country.
ISIS is trying to spread its influence in India. Also, there is a possibility that after U.S. withdraws from Afghanistan; Taliban will also try to spread its reach to India. In these circumstances, avoiding radicalization of people becomes the top priority for India.