While the world rejoiced for a new and a better year, the people witnessed yet another defeat for the freedom of speech and expression, when a satirical page, Humans of Hindutva was forcefully shut down.
Where many assumptions of Facebook, taking the page were made, they was however, silenced by a small but powerful message by the admin of the page. In his last post, he had stated that:
“I’m quitting out of my own accord. I’ve not been banned or mass reported. I have recently received some threats to my life which I can’t take lightly. I am outnumbered, live in a BJP state and come from a middle-class family with no political or police connections. I have no desire to end up like Gauri Lankesh or Afrazul Khan. Actually, more than myself I worry for the safety of my family. I hope those who threatened me consider this as a victory and leave us alone. I have deleted the HOH page and will delete this website soon. Congratulations to Hindutva for winning this David vs. Goliath fight. As for those who were kind enough to lend me their ears for the last eight months, I’d like to wish you all a Happy New Year. Cheers and alvida. Thanks for giving me some of your time”
After reading this statement, the only thought that may occur in the minds of many, would be whether the country, of which we call ourselves, faithful citizens, is safe for us. This statement raises the most lingering issue in the minds of all, whether the freedom of speech and expression is no more than a myth.
Even though, it was not the first time, when the page was deactivated, it seems that this might be a final decision after the last statement reflects the high degree of fear within the admin, with respect to his life and more importantly, the life of his near and dear ones.
The social media platforms had been invented in order that the people all over the world can express their views over the different issues in question. However, in this era, when fear has overtaken the opinions and death has overpowered the expressions, it has become a trend, to keep mum and keep to one-self, rather than speaking up.
The only conclusion that can be construed from this, rather shaking event, is that this is a dark era for the fundamental rights and there is a grave need to open the sarcophagus and find a new light, for a prospective free future.