Why am I writing this: because I want to improve my writing skills and am hoping that one day I can write on the 21st-century topics rather than the 19th-century ideas (religion, nations etc.).
Now coming to the topic at hand, reasons behind “Hindu” nationalism or anti-JNU sentiments is not really people becoming nationalists all of a sudden. It has to do a LOT with what has happened over hundred of years and still happens regularly.
Hindus “in general” fear Islam’s regressive (perceived, if you may) nature: It may be historical baggage of Islamic rule or how this country was created but to me fear is an apt term. Compound it with the narrative around the world where the majority of terrorist belong to one religion which no secular wants to name. Yes, it is a battle of perception that Muslims are losing but you cannot blame me for this - the reform comes from inside - and if people are not ready to accept that something is wrong - what can one do!! How different countries/ cultures have been destroyed by radical Islam is not hidden from anyone. Even in India, Hindus, in general, have no problem in visiting a 'mazaar' but one will rarely find Muslims visiting temples. No, I do not want a Muslim to prove his/ her 'liberalism' by visiting temples but this is where "we vs them" comes into the picture - people think Muslims are 'radical'. Compare that against the history of India (Hinduism) which had resulted in charvaga like materialistic philosophy to prosper or saved different religions from persecution (Zoroastrians) or coexisted with various religion (Jews/ Christians in early Kerala, Islam, Jainism etc) for the major part of the 1st millennium. Once you rationally analyze the condition of different religions under Hinduism vs that in Islam - you can understand why people fear radical Islam.
One recent example is Kashmir: People cry oppression but army moved in a big way after 1989 - when ‘kashmiriyat’ converted into ‘wahabism’ - If it can happen in Kashmir - can I expect anything better in places like Hyderabad/ UP??
There is a saying in Hindi “gehun ke saath ghun bhi pista hai” - and unfortunately, that is holding true here.
Selective outrage of Muslims/ Secularists: Malda is nothing but Gujarat will still remain a problem. Beef eating is freedom of expression but bull fighting is NOT!! Kamlesh Tiwari’s freedom of speech is a problem, if someone publishes a cartoon on a certain someone no one - I dare not a single Muslim friend - will say this is freedom of expression but as soon as it comes to abusing/ making fun the nation or Hindu Gods or anything not related to Islam - everything falls under FoE. I couldn't care less but this frustrates people who see different yardstick for different incidents. And in a ‘democracy’, everyone has the right to put forward their point of view (the way they want) which brings me to the 3rd most important point
The power of social media and change in power equation: A medium to connect people has become a place where any tom, dick and harry can write anything (just like me smile emoticon ). It gives “some” voice to people who see things going wrong around them and are frustrated when they are not resolved. And this - the great social media - gives them a place to vent out their frustration sitting behind their laptops and writing 144 chars of sh*t. No one now wants to be told what needs to be done - if I think some Sardesai is being a hypocrite, I do not need to discuss the same among my group - I can simply write this to HIS face. This has changed some “power equation” and whether the erstwhile ‘power brokers’ like it or not, it is here to stay. They just cannot blabber anything behind the 4th wall. And, for them this is “INTOLERANCE” - as the majority or general public without sophisticated linguistic tools (spoken or written) can express themselves freely/ speak their mind and show them the mirror. Probably, people exaggerate a few things but essentially it is their way of choosing what they want to support
Flow of knowledge and Internet: This has resulted in people starting to question the biased history (IMO: leftist) that we have read in schools - I won’t put many people in this category but still there are people (at least I am) who believe a better education system, a true history and knowledge would have helped society more than hiding the sins of past like Mughals were not really great (just like German don’t hide WWs from their new generations)
To summarize people, psychologically, are not being anti-JNU just for the slogans that were raised but it has to do with disdain for radical Islam and outdated leftist ideals - which got combined here in a big way along with the frustration of regularly seeing hypocrites on national TV channel.
BJP (slightly) sucks in governing: A few leaders in BJP are good, but a lot of lower/ middle tier and probably, a few top tier ones are buffoons or are playing their own dirty games. Narendra Modi has transformed into a statesman with only a few bad days (eg Bihar election speech where he was giving money like a 3rd rate politician) but same cannot be said about several others. They somehow end up screwing a good situation. Case in point JNU - after the anti-national sloganeering they could have easily cleaned this leftist institution but no, they had to make a big case out of it that too without any concrete proofs against the accused. There were enough anti-JNU sentiments which have now probably reduced (improved) slightly. According to me, it was a blunder unless my tiny brain does not understand games BJP masterminds are playing...