Indian liberals jumped guns to blame Hindus and Buddhists when blasts were still happening in Sri Lanka

A series of bomb blasts rocked Sri Lanka and the world on Sunday. A number of hotels and churches across the national capital colombo were targeted, claiming more than 290 lives and injuring a greater number of people. The attacks were unanimously condemned by one and all as a heinous act of terrorism.

However at the time when the blasts were still taking place in the country just down the sea, a few in India preferred to jump guns to blame the majority Buddhists or minority Tamil Hindus of Sri Lanka for the attacks. “Terror attack has killed at least 20 & 160 injured in 6 blasts at Sri Lankan hotels & churches on Easter Sunday. No one has claimed the attack, but Churches have been in the past targetted by LTTE, a Hindu-Tamil terror outfit fighting against Buddhist-Singhalese majoritarianism,” wrote Ashok Swain, an Indian professor known for having anti strong anti-Modi views.

Swain further went on to suggest involvement of RSS, an Indian non governmental organisation, which has members from all ethnicities and religions.

While, Hindu were blamed by Swain, Kavita Krishnan, well known Indian communist leader, decided to put the blame on majority Buddhist community of Sri Lanka.

As the day evolved, new details about the blasts kept emerging. The reports suggest that contrary to accusations made against either Hindus or Buddhists, the Islamist organisations are perhaps the most likely perpetrators of the crime. Though no terrorist group has claimed responsibility yet, authorities in Sri Lanka have identified two of the suicide bombers as Zahran Hashim and Abu Mohammed.

The attacks, in their operationalisation, seem similar to the Holey Artisan Bakery suicide attack in Dhaka in 2016, which was carried out by local boys but trained by Islamic State. The spectacular scale bears the IS signature and is in keeping with the desire of jihadi groups from Al Qaida to IS, and including variants like Lashkar and Jaish, to stage attacks that serve to intimidate enemies and attract recruits.

Maldives, with the dubious distinction of having one of the highest number of IS fighters, has been a source of worry. Apart from terrorist acts, the deeper radicalisation due to IS messaging is a serious challenge to social stability.

The Wahhabi-aligned Sri Lanka Thawheed Jamaat (SLTJ) has found traction in the country’s eastern province and has been pushing Sharia law with burqas for women and building mosques to disseminate radical messages.