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Being Muslim in South AsiaDiversity and Daily Life$
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Robin Jeffrey and Sen Ronojoy

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198092063

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198092063.001.0001

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Kafka in India

Kafka in India

Terrorism, Media, Muslims

Chapter:
(p.289) Chapter Fourteen Kafka in India
Source:
Being Muslim in South Asia
Author(s):

Irfan Ahmad

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198092063.003.0014

In post-9/11 India, scores of individuals (including minors under 18) were arrested, tortured, imprisoned and killed in ‘encounters’ as ‘terrorists’. Though some have been released from prisons, most continue languishing in jail. A running thread behind all these cases of arrest, torture, killing –beyond the divide of region, language, profession, age and gender –seems to be the intertwining theme of ‘treason’ and ‘terrorism’ which media, security agencies, institutions of law, and police collaboratively manufacture, rather than report, in such a way that terrorism and Islam or Muslims become synonymous. I argue that Indian media discourse on terrorism is linked to West’s discourse on War on Terror so intimately that one might substitute the other; both painstakingly produce and distinguish ‘good Muslims’ from ‘bad Muslims’ and thereby vilify Islam. Based on the thick description of the dynamic amongst, terrorism, nation and media, I demonstrate how the post-9/11 political-legal landscape of India is perfectly Kafkaesque.

Keywords:   Kafka, terrorism, media, War on Terror, nation, treason, security agencies, police, vilification, Muslims

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