The secular disengagement agenda also includes personal law reform (with a secular Uniform Civil Code as the ultimate goal); abolition of religion-based tax benefits to Hindus (through the institution of Hindu Undivided Family); robust antidiscrimination provisions to prevent housing, education and employment discrimination on the grounds of religion; end to the state’s meddlesome role in temple trusts; end to symbolic religious practices by state institutions (eg bhumi-poojan); repeal of anti-conversion legislation; repeal of cow-slaughter bans; express enumeration of atheists and agnostics in the national census; effective measures to combat religious violence; robust protection for anti-religious speech etc. Acceptable exceptions will include cases where religious doctrine causes harm, e.g. open access to temples for dalits.
The agenda will require nuanced discursive responses to allegations of decontextualised naïvety and claims of Indian-exceptionalism (although the one thing we will perhaps not be guilty of is partisanship). Are liberals up for the fight?