It’s uncanny how India ends up being the last battleground of some of the worst scourges the world has thrown up through our historical timeline. Not everyone would agree but Alexander was one of the first, who had to turn back from India’s western borders.
The story down the centuries have been no different. Islam cooled and even threw up a humane sufi strain here. The Huns met their salvation and chose to be absorbed in India’s society, as one or other Kshatriya sub caste. The European colonialists were the the latest : they retreated, choosing to continue their nefarious oligarch business through other means in the new world order, post World War II.
The current battle is between India, with its government and its people on one side, and paid disruptive, destructive, nakedly corrupt, globally sponsored forces raised within country’s secularism-spewing political opposition, oligarch-owned mainstream media, abrahamic religious verticals (islamic and christian), anti-development-masked-liberal NGOs, and the mafia-minded wealthy, on the other.
A government is an aspirational behemoth that, in Europe, began by foisting itself on people, appropriating resources and straddling territories for their own profit and preservation over a long, long time, before some of them were forced to shape up in accord with what the people wanted for themselves … through this political device called democracy. Even today, none of these fat, powerful and sprawled-all-over entities are without that constant need to protect themselves, and many to preserve the self-serving forces that manipulate it from behind the curtains.
In the advertising and information age, especially in democracies, the anti-people anti-nation mammon-wound powers employ a very effective methodology honed during the second world war, and later : propaganda, disinformation, lies and half-truths, diversely coloured and variously repeated endlessly for deep effects on the gullible, innocent and unsuspecting public.
By far, democracies are most duty-bound to keep their people’s interests centre-stage. But do all democratic governments and economies work at delivering people and social values ? The answer to that is by no means ” yes.”
The ambivalence perpetually hovers because democracies suffer from their own sanction to excess; the arena itself is open, unsecured, to admit every voice, every influence, every rabble-rousing campaign as well. There are best of the actors on stage; there is the media in print and on air, everywhere; and, there is no dearth of money to fund even the darkest horse if it is motivated enough, corrupt enough, unscrupulous and criminal enough !
We, the people, are schooled enough in ethics and morality. But we are also free to choose : to be and to do as we wish.
The real question then is :
WHAT DO WE — THE PEOPLE — WISH TO BE AND DO ?
It is both critical and urgent that we each roar our answer into our ears, never to forget. Which isn’t difficult at all if we recall to our mind our Gods, our Seers and the Steers : Ram, Krishna, Vyas, Vashisht, Rana Pratap, Shivaji, Vivekananda, Sri Aurobindo, Sardar Patel, Subhas Bose, Bhagat Singh…
How wrong can we go if we remember them ! In them, their life deeds and words, lie our concensual values, as a people and as a nation.