Penned before the election results were out, it appears on Outlook's website:
Instead of the hunger, thirst and soul-chilling deprivations that our people still suffer, you talk of swords and trishuls. Instead of the lynching of Dalits and the rape of thousands of women and girls, you speak of building temples and destroying mosques. Instead of propagating the Hindu thought of vasudhaiva kutumbakam (the world is my family), you split our family into religions and tell all "others" to get out or live as minions in their own country.
As a proud Hindu and a proud Indian, I feel vilified by you. You have reduced the great Sanatana philosophy to a Taliban-style Hindutva. As an Indian, you have tried to reduce my identity to a single factor—Hindu or not.
* * *
Vinod Mehta's column in Outlook:
The people have spurned the divisive, negative, low, petty, self-defeating, erratic, irrelevant politics of God’s Own Party. The BJP, which is very good and very swift at introspection, has much to introspect about. For the sake of the party, I hope the inevitable clamour for returning to Hindutva is resisted. If the BJP, already wounded, goes back to Ram mandir type mobilisation, the return could be fatal.
The proposition that Oppositions don’t win elections, governments lose them, is in trouble. This time the Opposition lost unilaterally. ...