Evaluation Launched Into Hindu–Muslim Unrest in Leicester

The federal government has commissioned an unbiased evaluation into the violence between the Hindu and Muslim communities in Leicester final 12 months.

Leicester, recognized for its ethnic variety, noticed severe incidents of dysfunction following India’s victory over Pakistan in an Asia Cup cricket match on Aug. 28, 2022.

Teams of males from the Hindu and Muslim communities, principally masked or hooded, had been seen in tense confrontations and stand-offs on the town’s streets, resulting in dozens of arrests.

The unrest additionally unfold to Birmingham, additionally a metropolis with giant South Asian populations.

In a press release on Friday, the Division for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities mentioned, “In September 2022, neighborhood tensions led to a spate of vandalism, assaults, and assaults on locations of worship and different properties in Leicester, in some circumstances highlighting divisions between totally different teams throughout the town and past.”

The federal government mentioned {that a} evaluation has been commissioned to determine the causes of the unrest.

A panel of consultants, led by Lord Ian Austin, will present suggestions to enhance relations between the Muslim and Hindu communities.

‘Surprising and Upsetting’

Communities Secretary Michael Gove mentioned: “Leicester has a proud historical past of neighborhood cohesion, which makes final 12 months’s dysfunction all of the extra stunning and upsetting. This evaluation will construct a radical understanding of the precise occasions that passed off and what might be realized from them.

“I’ve spoken to each the house secretary and the mayor of Leicester to underline the significance of defending all elements of the neighborhood in Leicester and we is not going to tolerate makes an attempt to foster division or violence amongst individuals or between non secular teams.”

Leicester Metropolis Mayor Sir Peter Soulsby mentioned he welcomed the choice, including, “I’d need Leicester and different cities to have the ability to be taught from its findings and to know what must be finished to make sure that our neighborhood cohesion is rarely once more threatened on this approach.”

India–Pakistan Tensions

In the course of the unrest, each the Indian and Pakistani governments condemned the violence, however their statements introduced very totally different variations of occasions.

The Indian authorities mentioned the Indian neighborhood and its Hindu faith had been below assault in Leicester, and condemned “the violence perpetrated towards the Indian neighborhood in Leicester and vandalisation of premises and symbols of Hindu faith.”

Pakistan claimed the Muslim neighborhood in Leicester had been affected by Islamophobia.

The Pakistan Excessive Fee in London mentioned: “We strongly condemn the marketing campaign of violence and intimidation that has been unleashed towards the Muslims of the realm. This isn’t the primary time such Islamophobic incidents have been reported in Leicester.”

Social Media Influencers

In its evaluation of the unrest, the Henry Jackson Society (HJS), a London-based nationwide safety assume tank, claimed that radical social media influencers pushed false claims that Hindu nationalist teams had been behind assaults in Leicester, sparking a backlash towards the Hindu neighborhood.

The “Hindu-Muslim Civil Unrest in Leicester” report, printed in November, mentioned that this was a micro-community cohesion situation with Muslim and Hindu youth holding prejudicial attitudes in the direction of one different.

However within the rapid aftermath of the protests, mainstream media shops centered their consideration on the alleged position of Hindutva, or Hindu nationalism, in stoking the unrest.

HJS analysis fellow Charlotte Littlewood advised The Epoch Instances that false data was shared on social media platforms to unfold rumours concerning the actions of Hindutva despite the fact that proof of a Hindu nationalist presence within the UK is tenuous.

A few of the claims included accusations Hindu nationalists attacked a mosque, a person tried to kidnap a schoolgirl, and that three males had harassed a 14-year-old lady.

All three claims had been rebutted by Leicester police.

The HJS report states that the profitable unfold of those claims led to a safety menace posed to the Hindu neighborhood and assaults on their locations of worship.

Owen Evans and PA Media contributed to this report.