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Will India Survive As Bharat?
India that is Bharat (India is perhaps the only country in the world to have two official names), like the Ganga that symbolises her, meanders on in spite of continuous assaults on her political, cultural and religious institutions. These assaults are by political parties, which subsume national interest to their greed for power, their contrasting approaches towards issues that concern the majority and minority religions and their cultures and traditions and their subjugation of the intellectual community into endorsing their dominant political philosophy - by patronage or ostracism. The dominant philosophy of India’s political class may be summed up as the political equivalent of commercial sex work.

Hidden agenda in Kashmir?

The sequence of events that built up the Kashmir imbroglio makes out for an unmistakable case of ineptitude, political myopia and vanity. First, at the time of partition, the Maharajah of Kashmir affirmed that his state would remain independent and not join either India or Pakistan. When Pakistan tried to annex the state by infiltrating tribal raiders, the Maharajah offered accession of his state to India. The instrument of accession that the Maharajah signed was valid under international law and had no strings attached to it.

India sent her armies to liberate Kashmir from its aggressors. Mahatma Gandhi was reported to have come out of the Birla House in Delhi where he was camping and blessed the Indian airforce planes that were over-flying to liberate Kashmir. Indian army beat Pakistan in the battle and was ready to liberate Kashmir.

Thus far the progression of the story was linear with a simple cause and effect sequence. Then some bizarre things began to happen. India, instead of liberating Kashmir, called a unilateral cease-fire of the winning army. A new article - the now infamous article 370 - though the instrument of accession did not call for it, was added to the Indian constitution. The matter was referred to the UN - again, though not called for by the instrument of accession.

The instinct for self-flagellation of India’s political masters was not only to haunt her for over fifty years but virtually opened a Pandora’s box. First India weakened her case in international fora. Second, she was oblivious to the loss of Baltistan, Gigit and other northern areas, which slipped out of her hand along with Kashmir. And third, article 370 lead to the introduction of slew of cankerous articles that gave the northeastern states the same dubious status as Kashmir. The advent of Jihad culture on the world stage that originated in West Asia engulfed the Kashmiri Hindus and made them refugees in their own country. India winked at the phenomenon in West Asia and winks at the plight of the Kashmiri Hindus - her political institutions culpable and her intellectuals hypocritical.

Did Jawaharlal’s overweening ambition to win a Nobel peace prize script our pernicious Kashmir policy?

Tolerating treason?

Could you imagine, at the height of the Falklands war, the Communist Party of Great Britain supporting Argentina? If it did such an act would have been described as high treason. Strong public opinion chastised even the punctilious BBC in its reporting of the war.

In India that is Bharat, not only could a political party get away with supporting the enemy during the Chinese war of 1962, but forty years into the future usurp an aura of respectability that would give it a stranglehold over many public institutions. Today it is a state within a state that enjoys awesome authority and no responsibility.

Placatory scripts!

The UN mandated the formation of Israel in 1948 but India that is Bharat did not recognise the state for fear of alienating her native minority population. How recognising a state in west Asia for which its constituents fought for over two millennia would go against the interests of India’s minorities boggles imagination. Rather than cultivating a friendship with Israel that has so much to offer, India that is Bharat indulged a club called the Non Aligned Movement comprising mostly banana republics and totalitarian states. India that is Bharat finally got round to recognising Israel after China did.

Would Britain re-write its history eulogising Napoleon to please the French minority? In India that is Bharat, half a century after Sardar Patel ordered the restoration of the Somnath temple a celebrated historian re-writes history amounting to an apologia for Mohamed Ghaznavi who destroyed it.

White-livered fourth estate!

Not a whimper is heard when newspapers routinely publish derogatory critiques on Hindu mythology, films routinely lampoon Gods and other mythological figures and rationalists have a field day lambasting them. Newspapers and intellectuals cry foul when some social organisations protest against such insensitivity. They are dubbed obscurantist and even fascist.

Offices of all four English language newspapers in Bangalore a.k.a. India’s Silicon Valley were vandalised at one time or other for publishing something the principal minority religion considered blasphemous. There were no cries of ‘freedom of expression in peril’. The victims promptly published apologies. After one of those episodes, an eminent columnist went into hiding till the fury subsided.

Who do you think was responsible for Salman Rushidie becoming a fugitive to eternity? A very revered, eminent journalist, champion of freedom of expression and conscience keeper of (India’s version of) secularism.

Reformation abroad and apartheid at home!

There are three kinds of nations in the world. In first world democracies every religion enjoys equal status vis-à-vis the state, probably with a slight but understandable tilt towards the majority religion. Therefore no one would take exception when the president of the US takes oath on the bible when sworn into office or lights a Christmas tree on the eve of Christmas. After the break up of USSR, nations in Eastern Europe abandoned the dead religion called communism and moved into this category. In the theocratic states only the dominant religion is - allowed to be - practised in public.

India that is Bharat belongs to the third category - alone in the world - where there is an undeclared apartheid against the majority religion. Unbelievable? But true! Every child is initiated into school after a prayer to Saraswathi the goddess of learning. Yet Saraswathi Vandana or invocation to the goddess of learning was not allowed in a conference of Education Ministers. The received wisdom was that it would offend the sensibilities of a minority religion. Now look at the contrast. During the holy month of Ramjan every two-bit politician and his uncle - of the majority religion - dons a fez cap and hosts at least one Iftar party.

The Indian State cannot serve a superior court’s summons to a Muslim cleric. But a state government gave Hindus a Diwali gift last year by arresting one of their most revered pontiffs. The state’s law enforcement agencies (literally) stage-managed an Entebbe type commando operation with machine guns helicopters and aeroplanes to arrest a harmless Sanyasin at a cost of twenty million rupees. If only they were as zealous and volunteered their prowess when an Indian Airlines plane was hijacked to Afghanistan!

Demographic Invasion

Berlin wall was dismantled in 1990 so the two Germanies could unite. This year the French rejected a common EU constitution not because they feared losing a few plumbing jobs to the Polish but because they feared their culture and identity might be smothered in the enlarged EU. The Dutch followed suit.

In India that is Bharat, a report about fifteen to twenty million Bangladeshi illegal immigrants swamping all over the land is dismissed as paranoia of a fanatic Hindu fringe. Fifteen to twenty million is more than the population of many European nations. Just to give an idea by contrast, the three Baltic republics Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania had a combined population of 2.7 million when they seceded from the erstwhile USSR

These examples demonstrate how cultures seek to consolidate and protect their identity from atrophy.

What is culture? Why should a nation seek to preserve its cultural ancestry? What will happen if power hungry political élites seek to erase a nation’s cultural ancestry to perpetuate themselves in power?

<i>This is not the end of this article but the beginning of a - hopefully - lively debate!</i>

Messages In This Thread
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 08-31-2005, 02:57 PM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 11-23-2005, 01:01 PM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 11-28-2005, 12:23 AM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 11-28-2005, 05:22 AM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 11-28-2005, 08:22 AM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 11-28-2005, 10:49 AM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Bharatvarsh - 11-28-2005, 09:40 PM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 12-02-2005, 04:55 AM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Shambhu - 12-02-2005, 05:12 AM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Bharatvarsh - 12-02-2005, 11:23 PM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 12-03-2005, 01:10 PM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 12-03-2005, 09:48 PM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 12-03-2005, 10:56 PM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 12-04-2005, 11:44 PM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 12-05-2005, 01:49 AM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 12-05-2005, 03:20 AM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 12-06-2005, 07:42 AM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Bharatvarsh - 12-06-2005, 09:35 PM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 12-06-2005, 11:25 PM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 12-07-2005, 09:00 AM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by shamu - 12-11-2005, 01:43 PM
Will India Survive As Bharat? - by Guest - 12-14-2005, 10:54 PM

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