/stand up and speak

stand up and speak

There it is no longer an appeasement of Muslims as ‘pseudo-secularists’ have been accused of since Independence. Now it is the mainstream fanatics who are appeased by allowing them to harass Muslims, attack their places of worship, demolish their residences and livelihoods, their cultural symbols, their food and clothing choices. This is the perverted sense of secularism in Sangh Parivar jargon.

This is the culmination of a century-old project based on the concept of cultural nationalism, in opposition to the inclusive territorial nationalism proposed by the leaders of the freedom movement. Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, who laid the ideological foundations of the two-nation theory years before Mohammed Ali Jinnah expounded the idea, did not mince words when he defined, in 1923, his idea of ​​a nation and who belonged to it:

“To every Hindu… this Bharat bhumi is both a Pitribhu and a Punjabhu, a homeland and a holy land. That is why… some of our Mohammedan or Christian compatriots who had originally been forcibly converted to a non-Hindu religion… are not and cannot be recognized as Hindus. Because although Hindustan is for them the Homeland like any other Hindu, it is not also a Holy Land for them. Their holy land is far away in Arabia or Palestine.”

Then came MS Golwalkar, with a cruder definition: “For a Hindu, he gets the first
sanskar when he is still in his mother’s womb… So we are born as Hindus. As for the others, they are born into this world as mere nameless human beings and later, either circumcised or baptized, become Muslims or Christians. Therefore, there is no room for compromise.”

Then came Mohan Bhagwat: “Whose Germany? It is a country of Germans, Britain is a country of British, America is a country of Americans, and similarly Hindustan is a country of Hindus. It does not mean that Hindustan is not the country of others… The term Hindu covers all those who are children of Bharat Mata, descendants of Indian ancestors and who live according to Indian culture. [read ‘Hindu’ culture]”

Until 2014, the Sangh philosophers had interpreted his vision of India. The idea, however, was to create an India in its own image.

Then came Narendra Modi, labeled a man of development bestowed on him by the ever-grateful Big Boys of Indian capitalism, presenting himself as the Sangh Parivar’s best bet to move forward with its hundred-year project.

If “someone else is driving a car and we are sitting behind, even if a puppy gets under the wheel, will it be painful or not? Of course it is. Whether I am a Chief Minister or not, I am a human being. If something bad happens anywhere, it’s natural to be sad.” That was not a comment dropped by a fringe element. That was a comment made by Narendra Modi, a Chief Minister who aspires to be the Center. The reference was to the anti-Muslim pogrom in a state ruled by him.

He quickly washed away that gloom by mocking riot-affected Muslims in the relief camps with his infamous comment: ‘We five, our fifty…’, and referring to the camps as centers of child production.

What has changed since then? CM is PM. The cars are bulldozers. And the ‘cubs’ live in constant fear and suppressed rage. The strip is the center and the center is the strip. Fair is dirty and dirty is fair.

As the bulldozers go, the honorable Prime Minister has chosen to remain silent. Sections of the media have become ‘cheerleaders’ celebrating Stormtroopers Four and Six in Saffron.

But for those who appreciate the idea of ​​India, silence is not an option. If they don’t stand up and speak up now, they will never be able to in the future. Dissent, says Howard Zinn, is an act of patriotism.

In the land of Bulldozer Babas, it’s not easy being a patriot. As Peter Seeger says: ‘Over the centuries, this trick has been tried by various establishments around the world. They force people to engage in the kind of review that has only one goal and that is to stamp out dissent.”

But the properties of matter ensure that this is not easy either. Dissent, like water, finds its way.

R.Vijaya Sankar


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