The Right wing of India has stunned all. It’s Modi again. Like it or not, but the verdict is loud and clear. A secular India is swept away by a wave unabashedly and uncompromisingly communal. Communal in letter, in spirit, in make and in operation as well. Comprehensively communal. We may reject it in our imagination, but on the ground, this is the reality. The beauty of democracy is that you accept what you don’t want to accept. Ideally we have a right to nourish a free thought against a communal politics of whatsoever brand it may be, but practically we accept the mandate. (By the way even if we don’t accept it, will that matter).
It’s a paradox. On one hand a secular India is uniting on communal lines and on the other the purportedly communal people are being told to uphold secularism as their creed. I am talking about ourselves. We the poor, weak and demonized Kashmiris are being sermonized to defeat fanatics and `prove’ ourselves as custodians of a creed called secularism. Our performance on the political front lies in our rejection of fanatic forces. We are being punished for `radicalizing’ our politics. How much we display our `secular’ selves, we need more to come up to the standard of secularism that applies exclusively on us. Well, it’s like Pope banning synagogues, Rabbis churches, Brahmins mosques and Imams temples.
We shouldn’t respond bigotry with bigotry, but we must understand the power of power. Saffron may not be colour of your choice, but when saffron speaks you have to listen. The BJP counts. Forget their past, talk of today. The foundations of power are not moral, they are rational. Morally minority-haters, mob-lynchers, cow-vigilantes, love-jihadis can’t claim to rule a country, but rationally they can’t be denied the rule. The world doesn’t operate on emotions, it operates on logic. Cold logic. To the world outside India is an industry, a market that symbolizes progress, emancipation, development and democracy. The trade other countries have with India define the rest of their relationship with it. No matter whether the country is ruled by dyed-in-the-wool bigots, by uncivil, illiterate, right wing priests, monks or fundamentalists, as long as the business happens, the rest can be managed. So the world is at peace with them.
What is happening in India has happened elsewhere on the globe. When Taliban rose to power, the world had a problem. When Alegeria and Egypt witnessed an upsurge of ideological politics, it didn’t go well with the West. No matter the parties were voted to power through peaceful and democratic means, but the very verdict was not accepted by the votaries of democracy. How the popular governments were targeted and sponsored regimes were thrust on people is a sad part of history. When Netanyahu congratulates `my friend’ for doing well, he violates no principal of democracy, but when he robs people of their democratic right, democracy dies.
The massive mandate Indian electorate has thrown has a massive message for us. Dethronements, coups, countercoups or military operations are short-lived short cuts to power. The real route to paramountcy goes through people. Against this avalanche of power we will either be swept out. But if we sit back and think we can gather bits, piece them together peacefully, gracefully and with a hope that one day the world may listen to our story. It’s a long journey of pain, perseverance and struggle. We want to make it short overnight tryst with power.
It takes years and years to bake this cake.