Modi’s visit to mother Gandhari for blessings

Radhakanta Barik

The way 7phases of election is organised by the Election Commission of India is being guided by Nagpur not South Block. That Nagpur will send its cadres of RSS to various places for campaigning. Their number is limited who can create a havoc though they claim they have a million cadres. These thousands of RSS pracharaks would go from one State to another. They are trained militia who can create ruckus in any place. They reached in Calcutta and committed vandalism against the statue of Vidyasagar who is an apostle of peace and progress. The speech was given by Modi on the same day in Gorakhpur where he used the sentence 'Ghar ke Ghush kar marenge' against  Pakistan. This sort of vulgar words used by Modi and getting tolerated by the Election Commission of India. Where it is against Indian Constitution under Art 51 one cannot use words against any foreign sovereign country. No case is going to be filed against Modi by the Election Commission for creating enmity with a neighbor and inter community relationship. This is politics of desperation by Shah and Modi and their private militia. Yesterday there was a massive rally in Banaras organised by Priyanka Gandhi which indicates Modi's desperation. Only desperate people can use these abusive words. It brings out a point from political history that Godhra a concept which got invented by Modi for speaking against the Muslim community. Today Pukham is another Godhra and Balakot is third Godhra. Invention of three Godhras is not helping Modi and Shah. In UP there is an upheaval of Dalits backwards and liberals in fighting against this false bravado. It seems that the 7th phase election is going to be their graveyard and nobody can save them as they are working as Duryadhans who are wounded and want to take rest in the lap of their mothers. It seems that Modi is already keen to go back to his mother who is ready to bless him that this is a dharma yudha and satya will win. This is being told to Duryodhan by Mata Gandhari when he went to get blessings from his mother according to a beautiful poem by a famous poet Kalinindi Panigrahi in Odiya.

The day Vidyasaghar's statue got broken while the rally organised by Amit Shah and the same day the Pragya Thakur spoke that Godse a patriot. Amit Shah and Pragya are two sides of the same coin. Shah chose her as MP candidate from Bhopal. Vidyasagar stood for reforms and education which can bring enlightenment in Hinduism. This was carried by Gandhi. Gandhi was bold enough to create a prayer 'Iswar, Allah tere nam sabka sanamati de' which brings two streams of Indian civilization. As Tagore defined it as an every enlightened Indian is carrying Hinduism, Islam and Christianity. It is not a mixture but blending in  a composite culture. In every language one finds the influence of Arabic and Persian words in every day conversation. Such a syncretic culture in India grew. Hindutva does not support this tradition. Destruction of statue of Vidyasagar has a symbolic importance for our political democracy. Reforms are required in a constitutional democracy to uphold the preamble of Indian constitution based on equality, justice and fraternity. Our social structure is not in harmony with these ideals of democracy. Hindutva is challenging this. This brought Shah, Modi, Pragya on the same wave length. They want anybody’s thinking of reforms in Hinduism would face the death like Gandhi. Godse here has a symbolic value in Hindutva thinking and Savarkar is the father their violent world which got opposed by Gandhi in Hindi Swaraj in 1909 in the city of London while the book got released there. Savarkar told Gandhi that he stood for violence. Gandhi was bold enough to tell that he stood for nonviolence. We have to carry such a democratic nonviolent tradition to encourage modernity in our society and dialogues based democracy which is being opposed by Modi, Shah and Pragya. Shah and Modi are angry against the rich intellectual and artistic traditions of Bengal. That is the reason Shah used 'Kangal Bengal' in contrast to Gujarat as it has no intellectual tradition and their anger is getting articulated in destroying the statue of Vidyasagar a scholar and reformer who respected manual and intellectual labour. Once a babu wanted a coolie in the railway platform Vidyasagar showed his shoulders to carry the luggage by teaching the babu that doing your own work is the best for yourself. This tradition got carried by Gandhi who got boycotted by the Gujaratis. In the morning one visits any park of Gujarat one finds thousands of people walking but without Khadi dress. I heard abuses against Gandhi such as ‘Bania beta’ in the year 1976 in Baroda park in front of the University of Baroda. They wear saffron or stylized dress of Modi. Their anger is getting articulated against the intellectual traditions of Bengal by destroying the statue which symbolizes the most violent action of the Hindutva forces. Hindutva forces are ready to bring goonds from outside to create riots in the Eastern India. They started some years back by inviting a goond from the Northern India who killed Stains and his children while sleeping in the car. The BJP leaders are unhappy of the Eastern India where they do not say Jai Sri Ram which makes them further angry. Their anger is getting articulated in Odisha and Bengal. I think they may not succeed as both Shah Modi are losing badly. They do not understand the Bengalee traditions which can be articulated in a dialogue or conversation which Modi has not done and Shah does not know how to start talking. Lack of conversation is the reason behind their destruction of a statue of a noble soul of India.

Mamata Banerjee is a popular leader of Bengal. She came some years back while protesting against the Tata'a acquisition of land. She was alone on hunger strike and nobody was there. In the morning I was there while she was sleeping alone covering her face. Next day there was a police firing in the place where land was acquired. A crowd came to the street in favour of her. From that day she is articulating the aspirations of Bengal society without any distinction of caste or class or community. Left front reforms helped her leadership as they implemented the policy of land reforms which reduced the economic inequality between the rural rich and rural poor. That provided a base line for her leadership. As social reforms initiated by Vidyasagar and others who reduced the social inequality. A culturally rich society with such additional factors such as less economic and social inequalities she turned into a popular leader. She replaced Jyoti Basu as the most popular leader of Bengal who led movements of kisans and workers. All these movements have helped her in shaping her a political persona. It is wrong to abuse her. It is better to understand her and her persona. She is able to challenge the Hindutva forces as the leader of Bengal.

Ashutosh Varshney, a Prof in Brown University wrote an article in favour of the Yogi- Modi rule in UP in Indian Express just after the election two years back in UP as popular movement in favour of Yogi. But today he finds the caste combination is not supporting the BJP but does not explain why? That the rural economy is being ruined  with the banning of cow slaughter. The Shoes factory is closed in Kanpur which was the only industrial town of UP. It was badly affected with the rise of Mandir politics as the workers belonged to Muslims and owners belonged to Banias. During the temple politics in the first phase Kanpur was badly affected which led to closure of many industries according to the industrialists there. Whatever left over was there has been getting ruined by Modi Yogi because of non-supply of raw materials. Modi's demonetization and GST have destroyed the informal economy and trading classes. This is the reason that the Banias are boycotting the BJP for the first time. Lack of employment has led to abandonment of the Brahmins and only Thakurs are remaining with the BJP. Any political meeting one can see that the upper and middle classes are attending the meetings of Modi-Yogi-Shah. Poorer classes are attending the meetings of SP plus BSP. There is mass uprising against the BJP as their human rights got violated by the present government. 800 have got killed by police firing belonging to these groups. They lack job and employment opportunities in UP as they migrate to Delhi which has experienced the closure of industries. Today they are suffering from politically and economically who are opposing the BJP. This is the mass uprising against the Yogi rule and Ashutosh told in his first paper that it is a popular movement in favour of Yogi. As a researcher one has to look at the mentality and attitude of lower classes and upper castes. This is absent in his analysis (Indian Express, 16 May,2019).

The temperature of the Eastern UP is at 44 degree explaining the political heat of the area. The area is going out of hands of the Hindutva as these hot headed people are getting thrown out by the dalits and backwards. As the artists, teachers and workers are moving from the village to the village and campaigning for the ganthabandan. Political temperature is going to burn the fingers of Modi and Yogi. They are very much isolated persons in the politics of Eastern UP. These people enjoy the Kabir and Nanak while celebrating their festivals. They like to punish the Gujarati two who have no understanding of the intellectual liberal traditions of this place. There is a joke about the place as there is flood and the soil of the place is fertile and minds are fertile. In the early 1930s Gandhi came here and started the temple entry movement here and people supported him but not the priestly class. While he was going in the car with Jagjivan Ram these people attacked his car. But Gandhiji argued with these people "that you are hitting my car not me and you are so many that means that you are wrong." That silenced the priestly class. Today the same thing is happening that the Brahimins and Banias are leaving the sinking boat as these people are violent under the leadership of Modi and Shah and Yogi.

There was a rally by Yogi from his hometown Gorakhapur reported by Srinivas Jain of NDTV which has brought people belonging to his caste that is the Thakur caste. There was another rally by BSP and SP in the same town which was a massive rally. As the BJP a casteist party of India which brought Yogi to power where most of his officials and political supporters belong to his caste. The caste alliance of Thakurs, Brahmins and Banias brought Yogi to power in UP have led a precarious political situation today that the Brahmins and Banias have abandoned the alliance. BJP of UP has turned into Bharatiya Thakur Party which is unable to take up the challenges posed by the BSP and SP. It is reported in Hindustan Times  by Jha a good reporter from the ground that it is not alliance from the above but from the below as masses suffered worst during the last two years from Yogi's bullets they have combined to protest against the Yogi and Modi here. But the NDTV reporter instead of using the word masses used that combination of x y z castes is going to defeat Yogi- Modi in UP. This sort of reporting is of poor taste from a competent journalist like Jain. Some journalists report that BJP's caste alliance as nationalism which is an absurd story.

Delhi university remains as the best undergraduate university in India and tenth in Asia. It draws students from all over India specifically from Bihar. They are the most energetic and in a mood to learn from various sources. As a teacher of a local college of DU had this experience. Yesterday I met some colleagues and students from Bihar where I mentioned them that I miss an intellectual politician Shri Laloo Yadav. Perhaps he is the first politician who carries books to the election rally and speaks with facts and figures and occasionally looking into books. 2014 general election saw Laloo Yadav as the most sought after the public speaker. He is very articulate and communicative to audience. While in answering the Hindutva people he is the best as he brings out their views from the book by Guru Golwalkar where he has opinion regarding the reservation and women. Public speakers are required to speak out ideas and sufferings of the public where Laloo perhaps the best. He is very good to reply to the bluffs of Modi-Shah. There is another speaker who speaks out with facts and figures, the former finance minister P Chindabaram. Today Rahul Gandhi has evolved as an important public speaker who speaks with facts and figures. On the left Shri Sitaram Yechury brings out the facts and figures to expose the present government. It is a strange but true that Modi and Shah do not fit into the framework of public intellectuals and they speak loudly in an abusive tone and mixed with false bravado.

After conducting the Ph. D viva in Delhi University I went to have a cup of coffee in the Coffee house of Delhi University. Students are enjoying their coffee over a talk on ignorance and unscientific thinking of Modi the Prime Minister who is campaigning for his himself in the 2019 general election. Vote for Modi rather than the BJP and Amit Shah is campaigning for vote for Modi-Shah. This jugalbandi is unable to create music in summer. After hearing from the students that Modi has spoken how clouds could prevent the Radar to be tracked by Pakistan. I read Kalidas's Sankutalam where cloud is being used as messenger of love. Cloud is a powerful symbol of Tagore's writing showing emotional outburst of love making. Modi hates Tagore and Kalidas both as he used cloud for covering Radar in the war situation. One can pity his ignorance and illiteracy in the contemporary Indian society. He is suffering from war mentality and that brings out truth that Modi can go for war against Pakistan and have nuclear war if necessary if he gets elected. He is planning like Charlie Chaplin's Great Dictator where he is sitting in a chair by keeping his legs over the table and there was a globe over the table. While dreaming of a war against Pakistan Modi's leg touched the globe on the table and which fell down on the ground and broken into pieces. It looks like Modi is wearing a king's Mukut which is already broken.

Modi is showing his true colour in the 7th phase of voting. His poor argumentation and poor communication capacity are getting reflected in his election speeches. Yesterday he uses a word like "my soldier” who is fighting in Kashmir. This sort of language is used by generals for his soldiers when he is commanding them as my people. Modi has turned himself as the general yesterday. He used "Khan Market gang” but without knowing the importance of the market where two famous book stalls are there and people including the BJP members and ministers come to buy the books. For instance once I was buying the books from the shop and found Uma Bharati and her friend are searching for books in the selves which is a rare thing to my wonder she did not buy a book on religion but an English novel. Modi and reading of books specifically novels do not go together. Those who visit the Khan Market do belong to bureaucratic elite or journalists and sometimes politicians and the best thing in the main market specifically CP the book stalls have got closed and they have invested in the Engineering colleges. In the East Delhi which is known as the Oxford there is no book stall and Dwaraka, the sub city of Delhi does not have a book stall or library. Branding those read and discuss and debate are a part of Khan Market gang does not reflect his political maturity or intellectual power of Modi.

 A young taxi driver and a college student told me yesterday after casting his vote at 7 AM by seeing the crowd waiting for voting that Delhi would be having a cent percentage of polling but I argued, there are places like 'Vasant Vihar' who feel that standing in the Que with their servants and workers is below their status. Then the young voter's enthusiasm argued that it would end in 80 percentage. Then I argued that it would be around 60 percentage and Delhi has lowest voting percentage this time it stands just at 60 percentage. It seems that both the Congress and AAP have not gone to work in different pockets. For instance I have not seen any of them in Dwaraka Sub city. But there are RWA chiefs, milk suppliers working in milk booths and sobjiwala and pan shop keepers are the members of the RSS. They are actively whispering this time as they feel people of Delhi are angry against Modi. Here it is fight between their whispering and silence of Congress and AAP.

 I visited Uttarkhanda a State among four Himalayan States. Every State has an internal economy. Kashmir is having apples and small scale industries of Kashmir Sal. Himachal is having apple orchard and a job in the government services. Sikkim is having agriculture and tourism. But Uttarkhanda is a failed economy as out migration is going on at the higher pace than other States. Majority of youths in search of jobs come to Delhi and work in the various canteens. Because of their hard work they are respected in Delhi and other cities of India. They wait here while working in the canteens for a job either in government or private organisation. Today Modi government for five years has created unemployment which is the highest in last forty five years. Their interest lies in economy where jobs for all will be there. But they have decided for a political path which is against their class interest and interest of the State, But it seems that majority of people have voted for Modi whom they came to know through the electronic media. Before 2014 general election at least 90 percentages of people did not know Modi as a human being or animal. Today Modi's slogan "Ghar me ghush ki marenge” appealed to them rather than jobs.

As a teacher of political science one teaches students that no political party dies and somehow each party survives. With the death of Liberals in Britain there is a Labour party but the Liberals today as a part of the present Conservative coalition. The same things happened in India but it is a fact today in Indian politics that there will be no party BJP a right wing conservative party. The election campaign is going on in the name of Modi. I went to caste my votes in the Kotla village and two children below five came to the gate and they want to see Modi as he has come to the booth. That means children were given chocolates to shout Modi Modi. This is the way voting is going on and there is joke that Modi is contesting in five hundred forty three seats. How political party is dying or facing death. Political democracy allows competition between conservatives like the BJP and left of the centre Congress and the left parties. But slow death of the BJP is because of Modi Shah Combination. Their self-interest plays an important role instead of the BJP. Campaign for a single man is going on which reflects the fascist trend and that Modi represents the political party. This is going to be a sad day for Indian democracy.

Prof Radhakanta Barik, retired as Professor, Indian Institute of Public Administration, New Delhi

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May 18, 2019

Prof Radhakanta Barik [email protected]

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