At conceptual level it refers to ideology which involves use of some common identity for satisfaction of individual or group interests . Commonly it is given negative connotations mainly on account of tensions it generates between communities . It may or may not generate riots .
In this way most common identities like region , race , language etc are used leading to various types of communalism.
In India whenever communalism is referred it is used in context of religious communalism. Thus it means use of religion for satisfaction of some individual and group interests.
Communalism manifests itself into either tensions like individual conflicts and riots at broaderlevel . At latent level it exists in forms of stress between communities leading to volatile situations .
In short and simple terms it is basically an ideology which consists of three elements:-
|STAGES OF COMMUNALISM||FEATURES|
|Stage 1 : Rise of nationalist Hindu, Muslim, Sikh leaders and laying basis of communal ideology||
· A belief that people who follow the same religion have common secular interests i.e. they have same political, economic and social interests.
· Roots of this were led in later part of 19th century with Hindu revivalist movement like Shuddhi movement of Arya Samaj and Cow protection riots of 1892.
|Stage 2 : Liberal communalism||
· It believed in communal politics but liberal in democratic, humanist and nationalist values.
· It was basically before 1937. For example organisations like Hindu Mahasabha, Muslim League and personalities like M.A. Jinnah, M M Malviya, Lala Lajpat Rai after 1920s
|Stage 3 : Extreme Communalism||
· This had a fascist syndrome.
· It demanded for separate nation, based on fear and hatred. There was tendency to use violence of language, deed and behaviour.
· For example Muslim League and Hindu Mahasabha after 1937.
Communalism is a serious problem and is sensitive for internal security . Strategy to combat communalism includes
AT BROADER LEVEL:
Govt including legislature , executive , judiciary and electoral system
· Formation of non discriminatory laws
· Formulation of broad policy eg PM’s 15 point programme
· Programmes leading to bridging of socio-economic divide between communities
· Proper implementation of Peoples Representative’s Act 1951 to avoid parties to mobilize people on religious identities
Various Civil society groups including political parties , trade unions , socio-cultural associations etc
· Civil society groups to show commitement to secularism
· Cancellation of registration of associations dealing in communal propaganda
· Bringing different associations at same platform in order to prevent communal tensions in sensitive areas
|LEVEL – 3||
General administration at centre and state level including law and order machinery
· Non discriminatory and transparent administration which includes making minorities feel secured physically and pshycologically
· Adequate representation of different communities in administration
|LEVEL – 4||
Press and mass media
· It should propagate communal harmony via various programmes and adequate representation of all communities of society in terms of coverage
· Cancellation of registration in event of press involvement in communalism
· Active role of Press Council of India is required in this regard
|LEVEL – 5||
Institutional framework including education etc
· Restructuring of syllabus and especially history books
· Socialising the child in multicultural environment
· Special teacher training for this purpose
|LEVEL – 6||
Individuals and neighbourhoods
· Strenthening of social bonds in neighbourhood
· Collective celebration of festivals
· Non engagement in communal activities
AT LOCAL LEVEL: