Posted: 28 November 2019
The Man Stoking Nationalism in India Could Succeed Modi One Day
Shah has spearheaded other moves to please the Hindu base, often using inflammatory language. At a campaign rally in September last year, he called Muslim immigrants living in India illegally “termites” who were “taking our jobs.”
He promised parliament earlier this month to implement a BJP campaign promise to establish a nationwide registry of citizens—similar to one he installed this year in the northeastern state of Assam—in order to weed out illegal Muslim migrants. He’s also the main voice behind the BJP’s push to amend India’s citizenship laws to grant nationality to only non-Muslim migrants from neighboring countries.
Shah’s association with anti-Muslim rhetoric will hurt him with regional countries and the wider world, according to Alexander Sehmer, director of geopolitical intelligence at Falanx Assynt, which advises companies around the globe.
“Shah does not have a particularly high political profile in the West,” Sehmer said. “But his notoriety will rise as he takes on a greater role in government.”