If he is to win credibility for his slogan-type ideas!
Why are the intellectuals, liberal elite, silent?
Where are we with Modi slogans?
It is now more than six months with Modi in position as the Prime Minister. What is the news that hit headlines?
Yes, Mr.Modi is very active and goes about winning elections one after another. The latest wins in Jharkhand and Jammu & Kashmir produced very good results but not as Modi imagined. Not as good as in Maharashtra and Haryana.
In Jharkhand it is more out of the folly of the Opposition parties, including the Congress and also from the Janata Parivar the BJP did well. The folly of the Congress continues.
In J&K the BJP was halted in a significant sense.
The Modi wave abated. In fact, it lost deposits in all but one seat in Kashmir Valley. In Jammu it polarised on communal lines.
In Leh the Congress won.
But it is poor consolation for the opposition parties that are still under the battering of the self-confident BJP.
But where are we in India?
Are we in a modern India or are we marching in a medieval India?
The newspaper headlines tell us a different story. Mr.Mohan Bhagwat and Mr.Amit Sha are on the front pages and they talk of conversions and reconversions.
The three headlines on a single day(in The venerable Hindu)run like this:
Would you back ban on forced conversions : Amith Sha.
RSS chief endorsees reconversions.
Christian forum opposes ban.
Are we really living in the modern world or are we from some other planet?
Where are the Westernised elite class, we mean the educated middle classes, the government servants, the teachers, the various small and the not so small independent professionals and the entrepreneurs.
The merchant class, the baniyas and vysyas and others are supposed to be supporters of the BJP.
We ask all of them: is this the priority for such a massive win for a party that was in the dog house for long.
Where are intellectuals like Swapan Dasgupta, Arun Sourie, M.J.Akbar and of course the most vocal of them all, the redoubtable Dr.Sudbramanyanswamy?
Why we call them the Westernised elite class?
They must be only too acutely sensitive to what the Sangh Parivar, the RSS and the other outfits that are doing things other than development, other than good governance and also other than really rooting for manufacturing, make in India a possibility.
Sweeping the streets once a while is not cleaning India.
It is sanitation, healthcare and much more.
The latest World Bank report has come out with some in-depth about how to bring about sanitation to a vast mass of people is much more than just building toilets, it is behavioural change and it takes multiple efforts.
As slogans Modi’s slogans are fine, they are harmless, they are a wakeup call.
A leader, any leader has to give such slogans and also with much persuasion he has to educate, prod and must get his team along.
This was what Gandhi, Nehru and other leader also did.
But what we today, right now, within the few months of Mr.Modi taking over the country.
We see the most despicable talks and actions. On the very same page we read about Prof.Romila Thapar’s speech in Chennai at the same time gave us a new insight into how to get a grip over India’s culture of diversity, history of changes, changing culture forms and of course our own changing history.
Said Prof.Thapar; Elite culture have always dominated our discourses on history or any other dominant social issues”.
How true and how relevant?
Ironically, on the same day and on the very same page was published a photo of the Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha chief along with the bust of Nathuram Godse at their central office in Delhi. The chief wants to install the bust of Godse in all parts of India!
It is here we have to raise some questions about the Prime Minister’s outward assertions in development and good governance and also his own supporters from his own pariwar, both from the RSS to the Westernised fringe.
India is a very modern country, its modernisation is owing to its domination by the British rule. Let us admit and recognise it. We can’t go back and disown our past, can we?
The 1,000 odd years of the Muslim and Moghul rule is a given fact. This you can’t just put aside. So too the 400 and odd years of the British rule in India.
Today’s world is changed. Britain is down. India is on the upsurge. So too what we had inherited from other cultures.
India is a mosaic of multi-religious, multi-cultural and multi-ethnic society.
There is any number of this variety. Our tribal population alone comes to 8 per cent. There are 700 variety of tribal population. They are mostly poor and largely illiterate.
We have an inherited problem of castes, casteism is a burden and so too the religious and ethnic strife.
See what is happening in Assam, for instance.
So, what we can least expect from Mr.Modi is certain humility, certain moderation and of course much restraint. He ant ignores the liberal progressive public opinion.
Only when he brings round the liberal and enlightened public opinion to endorse his slogans, his sloganslalas, would remain slogans and emtopy slogans at that!