Delhi Municipal Corporation’s bulldozer rolled onto the Delhi colony after the Hanuman Jayanti procession, and riots happened in the Jahangirpuri area. The bulldozer became a villain all over the country, since then in Uttar Pradesh also bulldozer rolled out onto the illegal constructions.
Amid these bulldozer issues, British PM Boris Johnson’s photograph, showing him on a bulldozer has been active on social media and news. Western leaders visiting India on diplomatic missions often end up making comments that seemingly help the cause of Hindu hardliners while leaving left-liberal and secular people in the lurch.
Donald Trump, then US president, did such a comment, as Antony Blinken all landed in a not-so-pleasant comment of theirs. The latest in the row is Boris Johnson. “India is a very different country from autocracies around the world. It is a great, great democracy. It is a stunning, shining fact that 1.35 billion people live under a democracy, and that’s something we should celebrate as it offers us an opportunity for closer cooperation and partnership,’ said Johnson while concluding his two-day visit on April 22. Johnson’s rhetoric misses the moot point unknowingly or otherwise. He went a step further, perhaps unintentionally, and jumped into a bulldozer to pose for photographers in Gujarat, Modi’s home state on the western coast. A.C. Michael, a Christian rights activist and former member of the Delhi Minorities Commission, said: “Bulldozers have become a new weapon in the hands of the people in power completely disregarding the constitution and directives from the country’s highest court.” However, global leaders like Trump and Johnson seem to develop cold feet when it comes to pinpointing the same during meetings with Modi.
Western powers can ill afford to lose India as a trade and strategic partner even though it may refuse to condemn Russia for invading Ukraine. Fr. MD Thomas of the Delhi-based Institute of harmony and peace studies, says “As liberal Indians, we say Boris Johnson failed us. But we too failed in our campaign against fundamentalism, communalism, and rights violations in India in the past several years. It has had little impact on the global stage.”