I Wish you all purposeful days ahead.
2020 is here and we hope forces of social justice, secularism, pluralism, democracy, socialism with deep respect to individual autonomy will join hand, without attempting to become ‘great leaders’ but in a collective spirit.
Last one decade has seen how over ambitious crooked forces joined hand in the name of corruption and ended in actually handing over the country on a platter to the Hindutva forces. Anti Corruption plank is the easiest and best way for the religious right to get legitimacy.
While we. must protest against all the draconian laws and in particularly the attempt to filter out Muslims in the NRC or NPR processes.
These protests that we are witnessing today all over the country also give us a hope that India’s young want to do away with the divisive forces and work for an India which is as per the ideals of our constitutional forefathers, as defined in our Constitution. Baba Saheb Ambedkar emerged a mass hero of the youths of India It is not that he was not. More than 20 crore Indians already consider him their icon and everything but it is heartening to see now that he has been embraced by ‘others’ too. It is great as embracing Dr Ambedkar’s revolutionary ideals will give you freedom from the age old chains of the varnashram dharma. It may also be possible that all those who hold Dr Ambedkar’s poster may not know about him much except as father of India’s constitution. I would advise friends to read him and you will find refreshingly a freedom waiting for you. You will get liberated. You will be able to understand what ails India.
The fact is when ever there are any movement emergence, most of them are for the immediate needs of the people in that we ‘avoid’ controversial issues. We need to be careful as we will not be able to fight against the powerful.
During Anna’s period, we saw, a huge number of ‘civil society’ ‘activists’ who are visible on TV as well as elsewhere attempted to ‘create’ an ‘alternative’ and ended up in strengthening the Sangh Parivar strongly.
At the moment, the country is really in the crisis and we need to democratise and secularise the political parties. Respect the diversity of these political parties and focus on alliance building. For the civil society leaders, my request is the compel political parties to democratise them. Movements, discourse, opinions all help us build the environment for that.
Last decade was the growth of fundamentalists and hate monger. How can wee defeat them in this decade. With short term goals where people fight each other for ‘position’ and entry on the stage. Can we really bring fight caste discrimination and untouchability as the center of our ‘revolution’. Baba Saheb is my hero not because there is a constitution but because of he identified and remedied the alternative to brahmanism. Will we rise up and speak the truth.
Fact of the matter is that growth of religious rights world over is from the fear of the success of the marginalised, immigrants and minorities. In India, the brahmanical forces are really afraid of the growth, the success of Ambedkarites and other shudra communities. It is here, they wanted to make a full stop. Not allow children from the marginalised in the schools and higher education. Destroy public institutions and universities so that education remain in the hands of the brahman-bania elite. And for this, they want to keep the poor continuously on the toe so that she does not have time to stand up and concentrate on other things. If the things that we have seen where the state is ‘asserting’ its power on our private domain and individual things is a clear attempt that in the name of ‘digitalisation’, the effort is to control our lives and make us totally depended on state, but more than that, it will be an easier tool to harass and humiliate the dissenters and religious minorities.
Every one says, we must fight against hatred but how ? It has to be diagnised as what is the reason of this hatred in India. Any serious reader of India’s social system can tell us that as the number of Dalit-OBC-Adivasi students were growing up in higher education, it became a threat. And that needed to be curtailed and controlled and because these segment were most assertive and proud on the legacies of Ambedkar, Phule, Birsa, Periyar, they became a ‘threat’. Muslims too understood well, that their future lie with this segment and not with India’s brahmanical elite which come to them as ‘patron’ and gave them a ‘satisfaction’ of promoting their great faith of ‘Vasudhaiv kutumbkam’ but not having a small space in their heart for the 80% of the population, they claim as Hindus and we call them as Bahujans. Political battles will be and should be fought by political parties and it is our duty to ensure they have fair representation of India’s diverse section. It is our duty to ask for fair representation in all sectors of power including India’s police, paramilitary and armed forces. Our diversity must be reflected at all level. Social movements must continue to focus on anti caste agenda on the top, respecting the autonomy of the Adivasi life and livelihood, providing access of Dalits and other marginalised on natural resources which these days are being handed over to a few cronies, oppose privatisation of public resources and call for a complete land and agrarian reform in India. You can not democratise India unless you democratise our village and it is not possible if social conditions not change there or power equations remain the same. Let political parties promise to do the fair distribution of village land, implement the land laws honestly, get the Forest Rigihts act implemented fairly and dont sale our water to profit making companies. The issues are bigger but let us not allow our natural resources to be grabbed by a few corporate cronies. Let us now allow our beautiful environment and life style to be damaged by cronies in the name of ‘development’.
And at the end, I would advise friends to protect themselves from temptation of being in ‘news’.
As I said, those who are not in print or air too work and it does not mean all those who are giving their ‘expert’ advise on the air are the ‘best’ and the ‘only’.
The best thing of the decade was the complete expose of the electronic media. Promoited by Babas and real estate agent and now the party in power, most of these channels became a threat to the very idea of India. Happy that most of the people understand this but they still have the power to destroy so our work is still important to fight against this propaganda unleashed by such crooked corporate slaves who are enjoying their ‘slavery’ by abusing others who disagree with the power.
Let us connect, share and continue our struggle to democratise our society and fight protect the rights of all the citizens of the country irrespective of their identities. Let us hope that this new decade will bring all the people together to strengthen our constitution and build a strong united secular republican India.
Vidya Bhushan Rawat\
January 1st, 2019