Reality Check India

Cacophony around being forced to say Bharat Mata ki Jai

Posted in Uncategorized by realitycheck on March 22, 2016

EDIT ::: < the Core Right agenda that was here > has moved to a separate article here “A Core Right agenda for a Modern India”     please comment on that one.

 

The country is drifting from one meaningless issue to another.  As soon as the media stopped its din over the Wold Culture Festival they hopped on to the “Bharat Mata ki Jai” issue. I stumbled upon this article this morning by Asaduddin Owaisi.

No. This was not said in a deliberate way to create this so-called controversy. I said it on record because RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat has said that time has now come to teach people this particular slogan so that they could take pride in the country. I said I would not say. The Constitution doesn’t mandate it. It is my freedom of expression and religion. I have nothing against raising a slogan. I am very much aware of that. What is wrong if I say Jai Hind or Hindustan Zindabad.

Source  : Firstpost

 

The central issue  in this is the following.  We all know that Freedom of Expression essentially places a negative constraint on the state. That is the state cannot prevent you from saying, writing, or expressing.   The Bharat Mata ki Jai issue is different, can the state make you say, write, or express in other ways something you dont want to say?

The answer is Yes. In the case of Oaths and Affirmations, you may be forced to say things you may not want to say.

In 18th and 19th Century England, Catholics were cleverly excluded from public office for over 100 years by designing a special Oath of Allegiance.   Among other things all those who wanted public office in England had to state that the “King of England has ultimate supremacy over the Church and not the Pope”.  Obviously no Catholic would say that. So, they were ousted !!  Even in the Protestant fold, the Quakers would not agree to swear to tell the truth by the King James Bible. They insisted their entire life is about telling the truth and there is no special need to take an Oath. Because of this, Quakers were not allowed to testify and a lot of criminals got away because you cant bear witness if you wont take the Oath !!

Meaningless brouhaha

So India also has an Oaths and Affirmation (non religious) Act.  All Muslim MP have to and they do say those words when they are sworn in.  Curiously even the Indian Pledge “India is my country. All Indians are my brothers and sisters..”  are recited without protest at school functions.  You could ask if “All Indians are my brothers and sisters” does that make the country a mother?  Maybe.

What Owaisi seeks is clear legal rules. I have to agree with him on this. Everyone cannot be asked to separately contract with everyone else on matters such as this. What people seek is a single clear interface with law.  Someone cant just walk up to you and administer a private oath “Say XYZ or ..”  and then have you evaluate his particular violence potential against your own and then decide if  you want to say it or not. This is not how mature countries work.

Unfortunately even learned Right Wing are getting the dynamics wrong. Currently the discourse is with the foot soldier of Hindutva even though the BJP is in power. The centre must seize the discourse at the top level,  announce that sectarian laws will be dismantled, and private thuggery and enforcement will not be tolerated.  What is happening it the reverse. After having voted in a Core Right agenda, people find that nothing of that sort is happening, hence they want private enforcement. This leads to such stupid issues.

 

 

 

EDIT ::: < the Core Right agenda that was here > has moved to a separate article here https://realitycheck.wordpress.com/2016/03/26/a-core-right-agenda-for-a-modern-india/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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9 Responses

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  1. ND said, on March 22, 2016 at 7:52 am

    While we set up an objective system of entry into quota system, we should also have something in place for exits. How about qualifying points considering:
    * caste (clear enough, additive)
    * economic status (data availability should improve with time, cutoffs will be crucial, additive)
    * set off by handicaps (a deduction based on benefits already availed by beneficiary plus parents, esp. those in Gov’t jobs)

    The aim is to avoid cascading quotas and to create space for more deserving beneficiaries.

  2. Akrishnan said, on March 22, 2016 at 3:36 pm

    people want development and jobs not this regressive list.

    • Vikram said, on March 23, 2016 at 6:50 am

      people need both roti (development) and dal (right to dignity and culture)

  3. Rajiv Chandran said, on March 22, 2016 at 7:13 pm

    I basically agree with all your points. I have some off the cuff / back of the envelope remarks to make.

    1. While I agree that RTE ought to be repealed and all sectarian provisions there expunged. I would like to see government make constitutional changes making it impossible to sneak in sectarian provisions in other areas as well like (say) housing. Considering the possibility of (Singapore like) public housing schemes in the future – corralling of real-estate/resources in favor particular groups is a real possibility and threat. Hence constitutional amendments guaranteeing zero communal “sneak-outs” from laws or communal “awards” is necessary. Else RW will be left needlessly firefighting each new issue caused by the circumvention of constitution that the likes of NAC manage to sneak past.

    2 & 4. Generally agree regarding the communal purse. Would like to ask if issues like govt funding of minority institutions would fall within its ambit ? In my view the govt should produce annual reports of the inflows & outfows from the fund. The prime interest here is to ensure that if the inflow is from sectarian sources (eg Hindu temples) it should be mentioned & accounted for. Laws must explicitly guarantee that funds from one religion are not used to fund activities of another. Also high time temple endowments ceased to be a state subject. It is vital that Hindu temples in any state in India enjoy the same protection (and freedom from interference by govt) that mosques & churches do.

    3. Wondering if authorizing / enabling Jaati-panchayats to manage quotas would be a good idea. Jaati’s can negotiate between themselves for fixed but rotating quotas – so that every aggrieved Jaati gets a shot at the same size pizza slice. Also provisions considering economic status of beneficiaries is vital.

    5 & 6. Agree here but again wondering if (5) would prevent intervention from motivated busybodies into affairs of temples like Shabarimala or Shani-shignapur. Hindu (devotees/insiders as opposed to secular/tourists) agency over their temples is vital. So people of Shignapur and people invested in management of the temple should decide the nature, and scope of thier rituals/ceremonies – not secular agit-prop artists nor Fadnavis nor Sri Sri.
    While cow slaughter is important – is there a scope for protection of other flora & fauna important to Hindus (eg Sacred Groves, geographies like Rama-Setu etc). I bring this up as Hindus would be fighting losing piecemeal battles for each of the other issues. Consensus over cow-slaughter should be used to protect all flora/fauna/geology sacred or important to Hindus.

    Apart from these I am little puzzled at the omission of issues like UCC & Article 370. Shouldn’t these be part of core RW demands ?

  4. Vijay Kumar (@m_vijayakumar) said, on March 23, 2016 at 5:24 am

    >> “After having voted in a Core Right agenda, people find that nothing of that sort is happening”

    Never once did Modi mention any of these six points (much less, made it a prime agenda) during election campaign. All he did was highlight corruption of UPA and showcase what he did in Gujarat, with a bit of non-elite/non-brahmin/OBC/tea-wala card. That brought some incremental non-hindutva vote to make it about 30%, which was enough for an electoral win.

    On your 6 points:

    1) The beneficiaries of RTE are those who are receiving 25% reservation – the poor, dalit, backward caste etc. The history of caste system makes it difficult for any school to declare itself a “hindu school” – because the traditional meaning of such would be a different kind of education for different castes and exclusion of dalits. Could independent India have allowed it? So there are secular schools rather than “hindu schools”. Not sure if it is still the case, but hindu religious schools like Ved Pathshalas are exempt from RTE: http://www.hindustantimes.com/delhi/pathshalas-to-be-exempt-from-right-to-education-act/story-qGe2g7yD1F7Lsa2iNEEpJK.html . That means only those who declare themselves to be secular schools are under RTE. Correct me if I am wrong.

    2) Sectarian Purse: There are a lot of special schemes and budgeting for almost all sections – mostly for dalits and backward classes. Most minorities also come from the same background, hence some allocations.

    3) Quota: I agree about collecting of data points. It is the upper castes resisting a detailed caste census, as they fear that such data will show the contrast even more.

    4) Temple: As you rightly recognize, “there are some issues around the kind of trust to which this will be handed over”. Make a proposal that is acceptable to a majority (if not all), it can be done the next day.

    5) While I agree that “cultural practices” should not be banned easily/lightly, there can’t be a blanket immunity to anything and everything in the name of “cultural practices”. Some of the most evil practices known to mankind are “cultural practices”. Almost all the discriminations practiced world over, are cultural practices.

    6) You say “Need to have a better law that openly says that cows get protection due to their special position in Hindu religion”. If so, then why can’t the Jains ask for a total ban on all meat for everyone? Why can’t the muslims ask for Shariah law to be applied on all? These too have a special position in their religions. What will you do if some caste or sect or religion had cow sacrifice as their religious ritual for thousands of years? How will you decide which religious belief should have primacy over other? (the demand for total ban on cow slaughter may not be a majority or even a significant minority – leave alone, a full consensus. Beef eaters are a majority in some states).

    • Vikram said, on March 23, 2016 at 7:18 am

      Do you understand that private schools run by Hindus are SHUTTING DOWN do to the slow strangulation of RTE? Instead of forcing state Governments to upgrade Govt education, or adopt innovative schemes like vouchers, RTE creates an entry barrier for those very private players who are trying to change the abysmal state of education in this country. Why dont we just revert to socialism where State provisions everything and anything ‘private’ is bad……..and what evidence do you have to support your claim that RTE is helping poor? A few poor children getting admission into top private schools versus the majority poor who was relying on budget private schools that are worst affected – is that ‘social justice’?

    • realitycheck said, on March 24, 2016 at 2:54 am

      Vijaykumar –

      Thanks for taking the time to write that well considered comment.

      Will let Rajiv respond, but here is my take.

      > Never once did Modi mention any of these six points (much less, made it a prime agenda) during election campaign. All he did

      I am not able to pin point when he mentioned the 6 points. But as per my view – he hinted indirectly. I concede that it may just be a case of #CoreRight people like myself projecting this on him. I am just hoping this isnt the case.

      Now on to your comments .

      1 #RTE
      The beneficiaries of RTE are those who are receiving 25% reservation – the poor, dalit, backward caste etc”

      The way you test RTE is pious intent vs actual policy. In theory you can go on front foot with a pious declaration “want to help poor” but the policy is designed to subvert institutions run by Hindus. If RTE is to help the poor as advertised then why exclude Christian schools? At this point you can modify your original position and say “RTE is to help the poor and also to help Christian schools”. You may couch that in various other bogus arguments like ‘but christian schools already help the poor’ – then the response is if they are already helping , then why not commit like others. Without principles, this is the level of discourse available to us.

      The only issue in RTE for me is the exclusion of minority schools. The policy is horrible, but 1956 Excise Act is horrible too. There is a difference between a horrible law and a horrible law that doesnt apply to all. Edu control is of highest strategic importance and the site of massive tension. Right now edu may not be a commercial sector but it is an intensely competitve sector. You cannot tilt the rules to favour Christians (who are by no means unable to compete) and then sit back and hope this concession, that is not available anywhere in the world, is not used in a strategic manner.

      Veda Patashala is not an attractive proposition for the vast majority. Unless the policy is that Hindu run schools should train to toss sticks into fire but others can train to make kids cardiac surgeons? This is not acceptable at all to CoreRight.

      2 Sectarian Purse

      You say others are getting it too. so no big deal.

      But Core Right will make you commit to this legally. If others are all getting fair = pro-rata anyway, then why run a separate program? So this exposes the tekiyyah (evil lie in Hindi) that others are NOT getting pro-rata allocations. Either they get NO allocation like poor-upper caste or they get a fraction poor-OBC.

      Another Tequiyyah here is when asked about creamy layer – all the benefit protectors like Lalllo, NItheesh, Karunanidhi say “but quota is not a poverty alleviation program, others can get scholarships” but when it comes to scholarships they dont engage with this. These point to massive judicial failures, that these kinds of simple evasions are not checked.

      3 Quota

      Upper caste are blocking scrutiny is your point. Let us see how absurd this is.

      Upper castes in this context are those who belong to castes who do not figure in OBC, SC, ST lists. Why would they block scrutiny of quota that doent even apply to them ? Also upper caste power is over estimated. Take tamilnadu – only 1 MLA of 236 is upper caste and 0 MP. They are wiped out from almost all public positions in bureaucracy and even from medical education and teaching. If you talk to even a lower level party functionary it is laughable proposition that upper caste have power to block Karunanithi and Jayalatlithaa from simply subjecting the program to scrutiny. No such power exists.

      The real reason is OBC quota resulted in inside/outside groups. The ruling coalitions primary duty is to prevent the program from being under scrutiny. Do you really think if Akhilesh Yadav or Nitheesh Kumar wanted to scrutinize quota system. The UP and Bihar brahmin and rajput have the power to stop him? They dont do it because data = automation = loss of their power over their group. Written tons of articles on this phenonmenon on this blog.

      4. Temple

      I think you agree with me. The principle is : Temples should be seen as fountainhead from which Hindu institutional revival takes place. The trust can be subjected to Hindu believing public in a number of ways ( I dont have exact formula) but as long as the principle is maintained – something will emerge. Some ways to exclude communists and dravidian atheists would be to insist on written recognition in exchange for a vote to select trustees. You get the drift ? the techniques will fall out as long as the principles are clear.

      5. Cultural practice

      Again the principle is that : in India the PIL process is heavily biased towards NGO, formal activism, well funded production (docus, films,media campaigns). Since the court is not operating on core principles – these get heavy play in court over the little village guy in Melur Madurai Dist. I am saying that a constitution amendment can put these practices out of the PIL process. The exact mechanism can be worked out – either list them all and put in 9th schedule or state the principle and amend art 26. the goal is to prevent the court+activist circuit from f_ng with tradition.

      This does not mean ALL practices are immune. No religion can claim bombing others to be essential religious practrice. The test I have proposed is : IF THERE IS NO IMPACT ON NON PARTICIPANTS then that practice needs protection under EPT. If Team Modi (Rohathgi & his Lutyens gang) cant even figure out how to secure this legally, we have a giant problem.

      6 Cow Slaughter

      Your raise the most important question of all. Why should majority sentiment get respect over minority sentiment? Unless fundamental rights are involved where everyone gets protected ; this is what is happening in almost all areas. Put it this way – “in a democracy does the majority have the right to protect its culture?”

      The animal issues are confounding and simple at the same time. That is why it made it to CoreRight list – unfortunately I think Sangh will blow this one HARD. Massive industrialized dairy is expanding rapidly in Sanghi ruled Maharashtra – where cows are being moved indoors and milked by rotary parlors. They are also achieving nearly 100% AI in Sangh states while AI is closer to 40-50% in TN. My point in item 6 was to move away from RSS position. Instead of a law that appears mean spirited (targeted at muslim butchers) need a law that puts money where mouth is. Pass a law that puts cow / bull welfare first. Animal issues are complex stuff that may be out of range for now. Still leaving it in Core Right Item 6.

      Thanks for taking time to comment. Truly invigorating talking to you.

      • Akrishnan said, on March 27, 2016 at 7:50 am

        caught peddling lies again realitycheck?

        After having voted in a Core Right agenda, people find that nothing of that sort is happening, hence they want private enforcement.

        Never once did Modi mention any of these six points (much less, made it a prime agenda) during election campaign. All he did was highlight corruption of UPA and showcase what he did in Gujarat, with a bit of non-elite/non-brahmin/OBC/tea-wala card. That brought some incremental non-hindutva vote to make it about 30%, which was enough for an electoral win.

        I am not able to pin point when he mentioned the 6 points. But as per my view – he hinted indirectly.
        ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

        hahahahahaha

  5. LakshmanPST said, on March 23, 2016 at 2:04 pm

    You asked four questions on Twitter—>
    1) why it is important
    2) what if you dont do it
    3) what is #IOI strategy
    4) how to do it

    I’ll answer only Question No. 3…
    Before I answer 3, I will say a few words about my understanding of birth of Nehruvian “Idea of India”…

    Nehruvian Idea of India is a utopian ideology, where all people of the country stay together peacefully without any problems… Where all differences of Caste, religion, Economic status etc. are set aside… Where all communal forces are prevented from coming into power… And where rationalism is promoted and superstitions are removed etc. etc.

    On the outside, this looks like an ideal Idea-of-India…
    But the main problem comes when we start analyzing the ‘enemies’ of this IOI and the perceived ‘victims’ of these ‘enemies’…
    So, it ends up in
    1) Destroying, if not Controlling these ‘enemies’ and
    2) Protecting or giving special ‘benefits’ to the ‘victims’…
    This is IOI…
    —-
    A) Enemy No. 1:- Hindu Right Wing…, Victim No. 1:- Minorities…
    This very idea of Hindu RW being enemy no. 1 comes from our study of Modern History Textbooks…
    Our history textbooks say that —> “Undivided India had both Hindu and Muslim RW… All Muslim RW went to Pakistan… All peaceful Muslims stayed in India… All Hindu RW also stayed in India…”
    Implying that Minorities are in constant threat from this Hindu RW…
    Implying that it is the job of “Secular” and “Educated” Hindus to destroy or atleast prevent the Hindu RW from coming to power…
    By default, it should also be ensured that Minorities does not feel unsafe in this country… So, they should be given special benefits

    This is where the root cause of all the problems is… An “educated” Hindu is by default Anti-BJP/RSS/HIndu organizations… He is against any kind of perceived political posturing or Hindu Identity related politics… Even if there are any sectarian laws or even sectarian violence, he has the eternal responsibility to ensure that the violence does not escalate… So, the best way to do it is follow Gandhian-Suicidal-Retardism… i.e. be indifferent to it if Minorities are to blame, but call for destruction of the Hindu RW if Hindus are to blame…

    So, for a law like RTE or any Sectarian law, even if common Hindus are aware, they tend to be indifferent…
    —-
    B) Enemy No. 2:- Upper Castes… Victim No. 2:- Lower Castes…
    This comes from the teaching of ancient history…
    I do agree that there were injustices meted out to some lower Castes by Upper Castes, but that is not the problem here…
    The definition of ‘Lower’ or ‘Backward’ is where the problem is…
    (I often hear some Dalits talking about the discrimination faced by Castes classified as OBCs in the past…)

    As you have repeatedly mentioned, the problem lies with lack of ground rules to define who is Backward and who is not…
    Problem lies with tagging some Castes as backward *permanently* and providing them benefits *permanently* without clearly defined ground rules…
    —-
    C) Enemy No. 3:- Wealthy people… Victim No. 3:- Poor People…
    I need not elaborate on this…

    A, B & C are interconnected in a strange way…
    Here the main problem is Equating Hinduism with, so called, Brahmanism… Saying that Hinduism is a religion of Brahmans imposed on all other Castes…
    So, A Hindu RW = Upper Caste RW…
    So, raising Hindu issues = promoting/defending Brahmanism…
    RSS becomes a Brahmanical organization…
    It goes further by equating Wealthy & Educated people with Upper Castes…

    So example, any promotion of investments or entrepreneurship becomes an ‘agenda’ to appease Hindu Upper Castes
    —-
    D) Enemy No. 4:- Hindu Superstitions (actually any Hindu practice)… Victim No. 4:- Uneducated Masses…
    This goes like—> All Superstitions in Hindu practices should be removed to bring out this country from darkness…
    Remember—> Hindu=Upper Caste=Wealthy…
    That’s why you see the articles about Jallikattu saying that Jallikattu is a prestige issue for ‘Caste Hindus’…
    The narrative goes further into this—> “Uneducated ‘Lower Castes’ should be saved from ‘Upper’ Castes who’re trying to oppress them be imposing Superstitions…”

    Why won’t they touch Superstitions of other Religions…???
    Ans—> Coz. if you raise them, those religions will feel unsafe…
    And this Tit-bit from Gandhian Retardism—> “We should cleanse Hinduism FIRST before talking about other religions… ”
    —-
    Two main axioms of Idea-of-India for Intra-Hindu issues—>
    1) In Idea-of-India, it is important that all groups should share everything *proportionately* on pro-rata basis…
    2) All ‘enemy’ groups should be ready to provide special benefits to ‘victims’… And “Educated” people within the ‘Enemy’ groups should be ready to defend/tolerate ‘victims’ at any cost… Even the backward/violent/sectarian stuff of the ‘victim’ group should be defended for the ‘greater good’ i. e. “Realization of Nehruvian Idea of India”…

    And the axiom of Idea-of-India for ‘Hindus vs. Minorities’ issues—>
    1) Minorities are entitled for special benefits unless and until they do not feel threatened… [When will they not feel threatened, as per IOI mindset…??? Ans—> When their population becomes equal to Hindu population…]…
    Some will say that minority RW exists today only to defend themselves from Hindu RW… And they say that minority RW shouldn’t be feared or criticized unless and until they become majority…
    —-

    So, if we analyze the points you wrote above keeping the description of IOI, the strategies by them will be very simple—> They can twist any issue into one of the Enemy-Victim issues mentioned above… And they will keep changing the position of a group between ‘Enemy’ and ‘Victim’ as per their convenience…
    And given their vast Ecosystem, (i.e. media, ‘intellectual’, Think Tank, NGO) clout, it is nearly impossible for Modi to raise any of the issues you mentioned above…

    Because, ultimately Modi should convince common people that he is doing the right thing… And he should ensure that he needs to win…
    He lacks the ‘Ecosystem’ that Congress has… As simple as that…
    Most common people do not spend time to analyze the laws in depth… They depend on the opinions of the Think-tanks, intellectuals and NGOs… And they look at their own benefits first…
    —-
    Your question, What is IOI strategy…???
    Their strategies will be as follows if he raises these issues:-
    1) RTE…
    If he says that he will remove RTE altogether or modify some parts, they will say that he is Anti-poor… Implies Anti-Lower Caste…
    If he says that he will extend it to minorities, they will say that he is Anti-Minority and say that he is imposing Hindutva…

    2) Sectarian Purse…
    Simple, they will say it is Anti-Minority… Imposition of Hindutva…

    3) Quota…
    Imposing Brahminism…

    4) Temples…
    Promoting Brahminism…

    5) Hindu Practices…
    Promoting Superstitions, hence irrational Hindutva…

    6) Cow Slaughter…
    Promoting Brahmanism & Hindutva…
    —-
    I really doubt if Modi can get past these narratives, given the lack of support from ecosystem…
    His success depends on how well he will manage the narrative and take the IOI head on…

    If you ask me, among all the issues, the issue he can raise is RTE & Sectarian Purse… Because, he can afford to be branded as Anti-minority…
    And to a certain extent, he can bring some amendments to Temple laws regarding use of funds for Hindu causes etc…. He can bring some Constitutional changes to protect some Hindu practices…
    Because, other Castes are not effected by these moves… (Though he may get the tag of protecting Brahmanism or promoting superstitions, he can still afford it to some extent…)…

    Beyond that, I don’t think he can do much if he wants to win the next election…
    —-
    Modi’s support base is two-fold… Ppl who voted for Hindutva and people who voted for various reasons like Development/Anti-Corruption/Anti-Congress and a variety of regional issues…
    (Till now, RW in SM has not figured out whether he got elected for Hindutva or for Development…)

    He needs a bit of support from each and every Caste group, who are on the opposite ends of the spectrum on various issues, like say reservations…
    So, he won’t go beyond a certain level in raising #CoreRight issues…
    —-

    On a side note, I doubt if he will win and with this kind of majority next time… But I really wish that he raises atleast some of these issues, before he leaves the office…

    – Thanks


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