Wednesday, February 16, 2011
India waits for Its Mubarak Moment
Mubarak ho Egypt as India waits for its Mubarak moment By Vidya Bhushan Rawat After the 18th day protest Egyptian despot Husni Mubarak was forced to leave. Ofcourse, he ensured everything for him. Perhaps, he might have seen the writing on the wall but was just arranging like his bank accounts, financial deals and other things. As I write this, report of Swiss Bank freezing his accounts and British Government also willing to follow the same, would not be providing a great future to him. More importantly, the Egyptian people have owned this revolution which is truly being claimed 21st centuries French Revolution. That is why as an armed forces commander, Mubarak might have survived several attempts on his life and was a tough fighter but this fight became his waterloo and he had to leave Cairo. Like any other dictator or power politicians of today, he had enough time to wait for his people’s patience in the hope that they would return their home and he would again lord over them proved false. Hence his efforts to frighten people with tanks or with flying jet over their heads could not break the conviction of the people who were unanimous in one point agenda that if Egypt has to survive as a dignified nation then Mubarak has to go. Clearly, Mubarak was still weighing on his threat of an Islamic take over if he steps down. We all know most of these ruling lords in the Middle East have the blessings of western government and serving their interest. The only thing they have to pretend is wear a secular cap and do anything that violates the fundamental rights of the people. You have to look secular to kill your own people. These despots knew the weakness of the western governments and hence used the very frame work so that they can get huge arms and funds. It was like made for each other syndrome. Today, we all may decry Mubarak and call him a villain but as former British Prime Minister Tony Blair mentioned in an interview yesterday that Mubarak brought stability to Egypt and was the key western ally in bringing stability in the region. One can clearly understand what does he meant by stability, clearly good relations with Israel is called stability by the western world. The army has taken over in Egypt. It has suspended the constitution and dismissed the Ministry as well as the Parliament till the next government take over. Mubarak is still in Sharm-el-Sheikh and is calculating his future plans. There are however, reports that he might escape to Saudi Arabia or elsewhere which are heaven for all the despots. Mubarak also knows well that he can not live in the West as it will target him and his wealth. Though it clear that life would be tough for him and the pressure on Egyptian army would be under tremendous pressure from its people to show result and hand over the country to a democratic government. After Mubarak’s departure, Egyptians thronged the street, celebrated whole night but they also knew it well that the time ahead was more crucial and tougher. It is easier to fight against an enemy but the situation does not remain the same all the time. After Mubarak’s departure they have to take things in their hands and do it otherwise they can not blame on others. Hence, we saw people came in large number to clean the streets and do the menial work like construction and wall cleaning and were joined by the families. It is called ownership of a revolution and one can find very few examples like this when people still wanting to know what next. They do not end up with waiting for a messiah. The biggest danger in such revolution is the control of a few who may not have the same ideas as people and they mould people’s opinion according to their fancies and political ideologies. For people who suffered with tyrants, the most important thing is how to get dignity of work, right to make free political choices and freedom of expression and thought. Of-course, right to work will not work unless the employment situation changes and corruption is fought with. Most of our friends are discussing here in India as can a revolution be possible in India which is suffering more than Egypt does. Many of us think that at least Egypt does not suffer from chronic hunger and poverty that is clearly visible in India. They did not put their people on sale for years. They did not suffer from the brutality of caste system and untouchability as we suffer here for the past three thousand years. Yet, we are called a democracy and hailed as world’s ‘biggest’ democracy. The Americans, British and other give our example to the world as how India survived and is progressing with 9% growth. They give our examples how India had a ‘Muslim’ president, ‘Sikh’ prime minister, ‘Dalit’ women as Lok Sabha speaker and now, a ‘woman’ as President of India, a ‘Dalit’ Chief Justice of India and so on. All, these, according to them, show, how India has graduated from a British colony to a vibrant ‘plural’ and ‘multi cultural’ democracy. So, India does not need a change as what will people need after getting ‘so-much’ of freedom. We all know how British Prime Minister David Cameroon has admitted failure of ‘multiculturalism’ in their own country because rather than strengthening the cause it seems a license to every one to defend their ‘deeds’ in the name. India is worst off as here the ruling elite is much crafty and best suited to use these ‘modern’ terms. Hence ‘secularism’ is suited to help them retain in power in a very similar way as the rhetoric of Hindu Nationalism. The rise of Dalit assertion is growingly becoming victim of same brahmanical syndrome. Rather then providing an alternative module, it wants to ape them and use them to demolish their structure. The fact is it has become a tool in their structure. That is why despite Uttar-Pradesh and Tamilnadu experiences might seem to give community an identity and make ‘Indian’ ‘democracy’ vibrant but does not help people at the village whose daily struggle for dignity and life continues and where an administration is ready to make everything ‘comfortable’ and ‘beautiful’ for the ‘most powerful’ person of the states even at the cost of the poor who might hail from the same castes which these leaders belong to. Yet, no tears are shed for the poor as we are dividing our energy between our leaders and hope that leaders will change India. To understand India, we will have to analyse the minds of India’s ruling caste structure and how it has created such ghettoes which helps it retain its domination. Brahmanism, India is biggest disease does not survive because of Brahmins only. It is a contiguous disease and fast spreading across the spectrum. The forces which were supposed to demolish it are today suffering from it and hence the fight against the brahmanical democracy in India remained unsuccessful so far. The best part of the brahmanical strategy is to divide people in the layers of identities so we think these identities help us but at the end it helps the brahmanical minds. It is these identities which they befool people world over. All these Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian, Dalit leaders we mention represent the people just because of their birth. One can easily ask a question as how many of the community’s people really feel for them. Brahmanism worked through these symbolic gestures. Now the monster of other identities is threatening the very basic of the identity we created. So, every where, these upper caste thugs now create multiple identities among Dalits-Bahujans-Adivasis. Because of lack of communication among the communities and any further initiative, smaller contradictions of our village lives are becoming the big one. For political purposes, these contradictions are being used by each one of us as in ‘democracy’, it’s the umber game. If Mushhahars, Balmikis, Doms, Kols, Banzaras, Kanjars, Khatiqes, have no number then damn care for them. They don’t exist. Do not approach them. This has resulted in the biggest caste conflict in the region which may not look violent but which threatens to destroy the basic preamble of Dalit movement in India. Just keeping away from these issues and not speaking on them will not help that at the ground level. It is true about other communities in each states whether Andhra or Kerala, Tamilnadu or Maharastra. Any voices of dissent or assertion from these communities are fiercely blamed to be fed by the ‘opposition’ camp or agent of the ‘upper castes’, despite known fact that all the political parties of Dalit-Bahujan communities have compromised on the basic principles of Baba Saheb Ambedkar and EVR Periyar. The Egyptian tyrant’s brutalities forced his own country men and his own co-religionists to throw him away from their land but can it happen here in India. Can we speak against our own tyrants who do not have time to see the problems of people? Can we speak against our brahmanical democratic tyrants who are using democratic way to grab power yet have no time for people? Democracy has boosted the morale of the powerful anti democrats in the country. There can be nothing better than making the powerful more powerful and the poor more marginalized. The violence by the powerful unleashed against their own people is not debated. Instead, we are divided in groups of political identities. Hence, when the question of our rights violation comes, it is deafening silence and according to our suitability. How will there be a revolution when we are critiquing according to our convenience. Our political parties are divided between individuals and their families. We like to abuse others while are highly intolerant about our own selves. We do not want to hear anything about our political leaders. I do not call the differences between different groups ‘ideological’ as it has no face value in India. Your ideology is your caste in this country and those who were supposed to demolish it also use it for their own tiny purpose and hence getting defeated every moment. They may say that they are demolishing Brahmanism but fact is they are becoming the extension of Brahmanism and nothing more. Often a slogan is raised as how our 85% population is victimized by the brahmanical oppression and how we want these 85% should be united. Is it possible? If yes, then what attempts have been made? Is the discrimination of these the same? Is it true? Leave alone the 85%, 17% Scheduled Castes are not the same and every where new questions and identities are emerging. Can we be happy with such a situation when the oppressed people have been put to fight against each others? The issue of quota with in quota will finish whatever coming together of the Dalits. We all know how these brahmanical thugs have cheated and betrayed the Dalit-Bahujan-Adivasis of India. But the issue is now much bigger than mere quota. The cultural changes have not taken place and majority of us despite claiming Ambedkarite still follow the same brahmanical values. Just by saying that you do not like Hindu Gods does not mean you have become Ambedkarite as it is one of the toughest things to be. One has to be courageous and deeply committed to the cause and believing in sacrificing for the sake of the community. One who believe there is no ‘third party’ intervention in our life and we are the makers of our world. An Ambedkarite is the one who can not live in the past and victim hood all the time but has to provide alternative of this disgusting module. Yes, for that caste identities will not work, its annihilation is the precondition. Caste is a brahmanical game and will never strengthen the coming together of Dalit-Bahujan. It is destroying their coming togetherness and ultimately strengthening the neo Brahmins and their brahmanical backers. The divisions are happening because we are just obsessed with identity politics and ideology has some where taken a back stage. If you are an Ambedkarite, you can not really compromise with brahmanical, casteist, communalist and corporatised anti women thugs of our society where individual is supreme and has right to dissent. A 21st century India can only grow and develop on these wider principles of Equality, Liberty and Fraternity. It needs a cultural renaissance which Ambedkar could have done had he lived several years more. The later generations have not only compromised with his basic principles but completely drifted away from the communities he aspired to work. With out a cultural revolution, Indian democracy will be just identity politics which is most suitable to the brahmanical agenda in India. Unless, we go in the communities and raise the issue of their common concern, the threat to their livelihood, the looting of their land and resources, more political participation and representation in power, in assemblies and parliament, nothing is going to change. In Egypt, people rose up against the despot for a common cause. They wanted a good life for themselves and can not be happy with the palace of Mubarak. Can we really fight a common cause in India ? Well, Indian democracy is the biggest threat to its poor. It betrayed them from the very beginning. It created dumb leaders. It legitimized killing of people in Delhi in 1984 and Gujarat in 2002. It legitimized commercial land grabbing by the corporate. It does not allow a revolution. It is creating rebels. People want justice. Justice can only come when the political parties take up the cause. At the moment they are unanimous in two things. One to destroy and demolish any dissent to their activities and secondly in acquiring wealth and living a high life. Well, we will only fight that our leader is better corrupt then yours but that will not solve the problem. Our political class continues to make mistake. Political leaders have gained through exploiting all shorts of issues but hopefully the silent revolution started by Ambedkar will ultimately wake us all against notoriety of the political class. The Adivasi revolt or the Dalit assertions are part of revolt against Indian structure. Hopefully, the backward communities, the farmers, the agrarian workers, all will wake up and join hand to demolish this brahmanical supremacy. Remember, annihilation of caste is annihilation of Brahmanism and Hindutva. Are we ready for it? There was one Mubarak against whom all Egyptian had one opinion that they must get rid of him, it worked and brought them together. Here in ‘democratic’ India we have worst than Mubarak and they exist in each caste and political sphere that a common man is confused. If I participate in somebody else’s movement, what will happen to ‘my’ leader? And hence there seems to be no common ground between those who are oppressed or who aspire to fight. In the politics of Jugad, they just feel ‘enemy’s enemy is a friend ignoring the grave new reality that caste forces are more than powerful as ever and most of the leaders we idolize are accessed by our enemies more than us. My friends are writing everything accept the important one as how to bring together these victims of brahmanical deception. Is there any magical wand to resolve this crisis? There is everything for a revolution here but there are so many Mubaraks in our society that it looks difficult that India will have its ‘Mubarak’ day soon as it would the elimination of varnashram dharma and none seems to be interested in its annihilation as those we believe fighting against it have got their own world in it and therefore denying us the Mubarak day.