How hate-mongers turned a man-animal conflict into a Hindu-Muslim turf war

A pregnant elephant that died by allegedly eating firecracker-stuffed coconut has been dragged into a communal conflict | Photo - Mohan Krishnan/Facebook

In June 2017, India’s former foreign secretary Nirpuama Rao, a native of Malappuram in Kerala, tweeted not to spread hate against the district. This was in response to a tweet that went viral by a right wing Twitter handle @reachsom or Somnath saying that nobody can buy land in Malappuram except Muslims.

Nirupama Rao tweeted in response; “That is an outright lie. I am from Malappuram, and my family has owned land there for over a hundred years. You are spreading hate.”

Somnath’s allegation against Malappuram had appeared in a reply to Shashi Tharoor’s tweet on Kerala.

This is just one example of the countless number of false stories about Malappuram, the only Muslim majority district in Kerala (70.2% Muslims and 27.6% Hindus). Malappuram has often been referred as a ‘mini-Pakistan’. The reality, however, is far from these myths created outside the state.

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