Communalism can be understood as a strong allegiance to one’s ethnic community rather than society. Communalism today is rejected because it is totalitarian in nature. Community based violence has been prevalent in India since its pre-independence days. Its most devastating form was seen during India’s partition. The architects of Indian constitution adopted the policy of secularism to strengthen the fabric of Indian unity. The constitution guaranteed right to religious freedom to all and refrained from adopting any religion as state religion. Religion plays a very important role in Indian politics. The causes of Communalism in India are colonial legacy, communalization of history, communal ideas of indian leaders, communal parties and groups, religious orthodoxy, communalism as a means of securing political power, religious fanaticism, social causes, compulsions of electoral politics, poverty and underdevelopment. Orthodoxy prevails in all religions of India. Orthodoxy hinders growth and curtails the freedom of individuals. Religious fanaticism in India has gained a fundamental character lately. Communalism is a state of mind. This evil can be treated through a well designed system of education. Proper socialisation of children should be the responsibility of families, schools, colleges and communities. This will help them adopt and believe in the idea of secularism. Mass media is the strongest tool that can be used against communalism. Political parties should be prevented from politicising communal riots.
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