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"Redefine" secularism and democracy

Farooque Chowdhury


The article "Netaji Bose, Nehru and anti-colonial struggle" (posted on the web-page of Frontier, Kolkata) by Ram Puniyani is interesting.

However, the very first sentence pushes reader to stumble as it says: "Indian anti colonial struggle has been the major phenomenon which built modern India into a secular democracy." "Secular"/secularism and "democracy" have to be redefined if the claim made in the sentence -- "built modern India into a secular democracy" -- is accepted.

I hope, Mr. Ram Puniyani will substantiate the claim made in the very first sentence of the article. Has bourgeois democratic revolution been completed in India? Which class has led it? And, when was it done? How a secular state is made? I don't know the new definitions of those, if there are a few. It's my inability. I'm sorry for my inability. However, answers to the questions made above are needed for readers like me so that we can learn. 

I'm raising the issue as there are a lot of confusions and misinterpretations on these two issues. It's not only in India. It is spread across the border of India. Consequently, a lot of missteps and mis-claims are being made on the basis of these and similar confusions. The claims go to such extent that one political group in Bangladesh sometimes claiming to be left and sometimes renouncing identity of left raises demand: "A social contract has to be concluded". Although the demand is yet to be explained by the group. I'm not sure, but, similar confusions in India is not unnatural in this time -- the time basic findings and lessons by the world proletariat is being forgotten, is being swapped by middle class imaginations about politics, class character of politics, and other basic concepts; the time bourgeois concepts are being accepted as universal concepts, as concepts above class interests. These are happening after the world proletariat made incomparable sacrifices over decades and decades that enabled the class to find out scientific findings about many facts of life including secularism and democracy.  

I'm looking forward for the interesting new definitions.

Dec 28, 2018


Farooque Chowdhury farooque_chowdhury@yahoo.com

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