Thursday, September 17, 2015

Divide and aspire to rule...

It is not that we are united as a nation. Let us be honest. We are divided quite badly. As someone said, the only thing that united us was cricket and perhaps war. Perhaps it is true of all nations, perhaps it is not.

But the least politicians can do is make unity the norm than the other way round. As it is, we are divided. By language, by eating habits, by states, by urban and rural divides, by religion, by caste, by sub caste, by millions of things.

The Mandal commission made it worse by dividing everything along caste. And from then on it has been one big race to declare oneself to be a minority of some sort. Either a schedule caste or a scheduled tribe or an OBC or DT or NT or something. This is not to say that affirmative action is needed - but whatever affirmative action has to be taken has to be agnostic of the god you worship (or not, in case you are atheist). But there are people who are denied opportunities because they are of a different caste - not because they are any less deserving.

In this divided pot is the BJP - which has kind of formed a 'Mahadalit' kind of formation -  at one level by uniting the different castes (which they usually vote as well) by getting a  pan-India 'agreement' on development. And this focus on development means that the old caste combinations are neither valid nor working as Mayawati and other caste based parties saw in the 2014 elections.

Again, this is to say that this will not make a comeback. There is a great chance it will. And this is the hope that those opposing the BJP have.

They want to break this 'mega coalition' into something they are familiar with. Which is why as soon the government took over, there was fake outrage over some global religions - which have all been proved wrong.

Then there was a huge brouhaha on Right wing hotheads (some obscure people in whose face mikes were thrust). Similar fatwas by secular groups have been neatly ignored.

Then there is recent outrage on meat ban (which in reality is a shutdown of slaughterhouses for the most part) and something that has been happening for decades.

There is a perpetual hurry to blame Hindus for everything that is wrong with the country.

There was a great attempt to paint Yakub Memon as the victim of a giant Hindu conspiracy.

And of course, the encouragement a certain Hardik Patel gets in the media is worth watching.

So what is going on?

The only antidote to creating unity is divisiveness. Like it says in the ancient story where humans were building a tower to reach heaven and god suddenly made them talk in different languages and since they did not understand each other from that point on, the tower collapsed.

In modern times, fear mongering is one of the ways to do it. And in that sense the media - the extended arms of the Congress has started spreading fear. By creating fear in the minds of the Marathis against the Gujaratis. By creating fear of the Patels in the others (and vice versa). By giving reservations to Jats (as opposed to Gujjars). By dangling reservations to Lingayats in Karnataka...

This is their idea of India. A perpetually fractious country tearing each other apart. And in this divided comes the Congress and their ilk wanting to milk this divisiveness by promising a piece of the pie here and a piece of the pie there and keeping them at each others throats.

The BJP needs to know this. That their message of pan Indian unity will be torn apart by the Congress and its useful idiots. The media amplifies this message. A Hardik Patel who is asking for a ridiculous reservation for a well to do community is a 'quota warrior'. A Shiv Sena which is amplifying the Marathi-Gujarati divide is suddenly 'liberal' for opposing a meat ban which has been in place for decades now. A judicial process over 20+ years (no less) that deemed Yakub Memon guilty is used to arouse suspicion among the people - resulting in a wave of sympathy for a terrorist. Stones thrown at a church by drunkards is amplified enough to result in a once respected senile man writing columns about Christian persecution. A man like Aurangzeb who did to India what ISIS does today - is suddenly finding himself loved by all liberals. The reason - a road named after him was renamed. Yes for sure, there are Hitler roads and Hitler nagars in Israel. We of course name cities and institutions after tyrants who ordered inquisitions, destroyed temples and imposed jaziya on Hindus.

All this will happen till 2019. The BJP needs to fine tune its messaging. Only fine tuning that will not help. It has to go big on many communal laws (like RTE). It has to get these fear mongers to pay for their crimes (and many of them have enough crimes in their backyards). It has to choke their funding (and many of these are suspicious - a first step has been taken with the crackdown on the FCRA).

This is the new divide and aspire to rule. This is the Idea of India - a perpetually squabbling dividing populace that don't care about governance, but will live on doles while at top level there is massive corruption that keeps their own sycophants happy.

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