Amid Varanasi’s Burning Pyres, Modi Seen as ‘India’s Only Hindu’

When his father died some 15 years ago, Vikram Chaudhary was forced to quit his studies and carry forward his family legacy. For many generations now, Chaudhary’s family has burned corpses on the ghats of Varanasi.

Traditionally, this community under India’s Scheduled Castes has been treated as pariahs, but Chaudhary says things are not the same anymore.

In a conversation with Barkha Dutt at Varanasi’s Harish Chandra Ghat, Chaudhary tells her why he and his community want the Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to come to power.

Varanasi – Modi’s Lok Sabha constituency – will vote in the seventh and final phase of UP elections, on 8 March.

“Modi is India’s only Hindu,” Chaudhary says, adding that the ghats have become much cleaner under the Prime Minister’s Clean India programme.

Camerapersons: Shadab Moizee and Abhay Sharma

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