Kamal Morarka

Secular, Socialist and Democratic Values Inherent in Hinduism

Posted by Kamal Morarka Blog
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yogi-in-gujrat election 2017Elections processes in Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat are on. Himachal Pradesh will go to poll on 9 November, while voters in Gujarat will cast their votes on 9 and 14 of December. It is common practice for the political parties to pass slanderous remarks on opponents and exaggerate their facts during the run-up to elections. Nobody would have question if people from Gujarat campaigned in the state, but this time the BJP invited Yogi Adityanath to Gujarat. He has won Uttar Pradesh election, though doubts have cast on that election. However, he is an elected Chief Minister. He was asked to campaign in Gujarat. But the question is why people started leaving the venue of his meeting? It is because in UP you can raise questions on Hindu-Muslim, Babur, Akbar or Taj Mahal, but that will not work in Gujarat. A country which cannot cherish its past cannot shape its future. Even if we leave aside Ramayana, Mahabharata and other epics, doubting their historical authenticity, the history of India will remain glorious provided it is not seen through narrow prism of Hindu or Muslim.

It is my firm conviction that the Muslims of India are different from the Muslims of other countries in the world, because they belong to this land. I can change my religion from Hinduism to Christianity, but I cannot change my identity and become a European. My conversion to Islam will not make an Arab. It is very important to understand that an Indian will always remain an Indian. His religion, his eating habits and his political views are all very small things. There is hardly any country in the world where the Left parties or the communist parties believe in democracy or come to power through contesting elections in multi-party political system. India is a unique country on this count. We have to preserve this strength. There is something wrong with the education of people like Yogi Adityanath when they question the Taj Mahal. They cannot appreciate the beauty of the Taj Mahal. It is a jewel of the country. India attracts only 5 percent of its potential foreign tourists, and at least 50 percent of those 5 percent come to see the Taj Mahal.

There is nothing wrong in winning elections, but do not try to make anyone stand to abuse others. There is a gentleman called Sangeet Som who is using abusive language. Shouting obscenities and using abusive language will do no good to Hindutva. I am a Santani Hindu. I believe in Hinduism in toto. I doubt whether people like Sangeet Som are Sanatani Hindus. They are political Hindus. They want to use Hindus as vote bank. Just like the BJP leaders accused the Congress of using Muslims as a vote bank. There may be some element of truth in their accusation of Muslim appeasement, because if the Congress had done any favour to the Muslims, they would have been better off. Even after 70 years of independence the community as whole, let alone Pasmanda Muslims, is poor. These are not quick-fix issues. Therefore, the thing they are doing (whether they are core of the party, or marginal people or people who get direction from the RSS) is not going to do any good to anyone, neither the country nor the Hinduism.

There is another irony in this. In my opinion the Hindu philosophy – and I may be biased in my assessment because I am a born Hindu – is so vast that two or four people like Sangeet Som cannot harm it. They cannot even defame it. It is impossible for them to strengthen it. Who are they to do so? To me even Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru are beyond our criticism. Today, the BJP drag Nehru to win elections. Nehru was a man who spent ten years of his life in prison. He was oblivious of the fact whether India will ever become independent, let alone his harboring ambition of his ??becoming the Prime Minister. On Twitter, people write that a person from Nehru family born with silver spoon and become prime minister without doing anything. How illiterate these people are? Election should be considered Laxman Rekha, because you have to win election by influencing people. But denying history and pretending as if Hindutva is your own invention will be wrong.

Moreover, the terms secularism, socialism and democracy are not preferable now-a-days, but the irony is that secular, socialist and democratic values are intrinsic values of Hinduism, which may be a startling fact for many. But the fact of the matter is that we have seen Hindu families where elders’ decisions are final, but those decisions are taken in consultation with younger members. Though no voting takes place, decisions are taken in democratic way. Socialism advocates community living. Our joint family system is a very good example of socialism. Children of every adult member are treated equally. Hinduism is secular. It is five thousand years old religion. In Hinduism there is no room to say idol worship is good and monotheism is bad. The differentiation that idol worship is bad comes into later religions. This is their problem.

First, you should decide what your ideals are. Do you want to inculcate narrowness and become Pakistan? Or, enhancing country’s reputation and setting example for the rest of world is your ideal? It is very important. I think, we have gone off the mark in last three years. The inclusive values propagated by constitution maker Baba Saheb Ambedkar, Jawaharlal Nehru or Maulana Azad will take everyone along for a long time to come. However, there are some aberrations in between. The 42nd Constitutional Amendment by Mrs. Indira Gandhi was detrimental to the country. This mistake was corrected through 44th Constitutional Amendment. However, this is part and partial of a democracy. Once the situation comes, the public has to deal with that situation. But the happenings for the past three years suggest that some people have misconstrued things. If RSS fancy imposing Hindu philosophy of their imagination on India, then it is completely mistaken. Hindu philosophy is so vast that even their version will be counted in that. Veer Savarkar, whom he considers his biggest leader, used to say that Hindutva is a cultural nationalism. He never linked it to religion. He was an atheist himself. Veer Savarkar did not go to temple. He did not believe in worshiping God.

Now Yogi Adityanath is taking it in another direction. Diwali was celebrated for the first time in Ayodhya when Lord Rama came back from exile. But the question as to whether the present-day Ayodhya is the Ayodhya in which Ram returned. Is there any proof? In Benaras one lakh deep (lamp) are lit on Diwali night, Yogi Adityanath lit 1.5 lakhs deep in Ayodhya. Is he competing with Narendra Modi, then?

Uttar Pradesh is the largest state in the country. Modiji must keep an eye on Yogi Adityanath. Uttar Pradesh along with Bihar and Maharashtra is the state with high Muslim population. Muslims are less in numbers in Madhya Pradesh and Haryana, while Gujarati Muslims, especially Kucchi Memon and Boharas, are inclined towards businesses. There is not much communal divide in the state. Therefore, when Yogis came here, his public meeting was attended by less number of people. Gujaratis do not like widening the divide between Hindu and Muslims.

In one of the interesting developments, Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje has come up with a ridiculous bill, which anyone will say is against the Constitution. The bill envisions that police will not conduct enquiry against public servants. It is proper if after investigation the police say that there is no truth in a case, but it is totally wrong if the government consent is needed to investigate a case against anyone. The people opposed this bill, and the government sent this bill to the Select Committee, realizing its mistake. I think the matter is over once and for all. But the question remains as to how the government dares to bring such a bill? Was it done on the behest of Amit Shah? I do not believe that it would have been done on Modi’s prompting; because he is running the government and he knows the difficulties associated with running the affairs of government?

I cannot go against the Hindu religion, but take the public in confidence before venturing on any work. You cannot make the country great by creating divides, alienating and lampooning Muslims.

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