‘Hate speech has now moved to social media’

‘There is a marked decrease in immoral policing in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi’

Updated - January 06, 2020 09:30 am IST

Published - January 05, 2020 09:40 pm IST - MANGALURU

While there is a marked decrease in the number of immoral policing incidents in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi last year, there is not much change in the number of cases of hate speech that has moved from the public space to the social media, observes activist Suresh Bhat Bakrabail.

In his latest report chronicling communal incidents in the two districts, Mr. Bakrabail puts the number of immoral policing incidents by Hindu and Muslim vigilante groups in 2019 at nine. While eight are related to Hindu vigilante groups, the other one is related to a Muslim group

As many as 15 immoral policing incidents were reported in 2018 and 22 each were reported in 2017 and 2016, respectively. The highest of 53 incidents of immoral policing were reported in 2014, followed by 48 in 2015 and 46 in 2013, Mr. Bakrabail notes.

The primary reason for the marked decrease in the number of immoral policing incidents, he says, is that perpetrators are getting busy with electioneering work. “As the perpetrators were engaged by the mainstream political parties in campaigning work in the Lok Sabha and local body elections, you did not see them get involved in these crimes last year,” he says.

Hate speech

Though the 12 cases of hate speech in 2019 is less than the 26 reported in 2018, Mr. Bakrabail points out, that the instances last year were more compared to those in the earlier years. The number of hate speech cases from 2013 to 2017 were 2, 8, 7, 1, 8, respectively.

“Now, hate speech has moved from the public domain to the social media. You will see a marked increase in hate speech cases [on the social media] this year,” he remarks.

Fundamentalist organisations are continuing with the work of polarising people on caste lines, he adds.

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