Indians And Pakistanis Should Stop Following Pied Piper Of Hamelin
Indians and Pakistanis share a common trait. They are gullible people, very fond of following a local version of the Pied Piper of Hamelin who leads them to their doom, writes Justice Markandey Katju.
Today India is passing through a period of its intellectual revolution, which is a precursor to the actual revolution which will come in the future.
Indians and Pakistanis share a common trait. They are gullible people, very fond of following a local version of the Pied Piper of Hamelin who leads them to their doom, or a madaari (juggler) who makes monkeys dance.
Gullible Indians voted for Indira Gandhi en masse when she gave the slogan ‘Gharibi hatao’, and for Modi who gave the magic formula ‘vikaas’ (development).
Similarly, Pakistanis were led away by that fraudulent demagogue ZA Bhutto who promised them ‘roti kapda aur makaan’, or that con artist Imran Khan who beguiled them into believing he would give them a clean government (though he gave PTI tickets to numerous dubious ‘electables’, and will not dare to stop the large scale loot by those whose ‘select’ he is).
Now we have another Pied Piper and madaari, who is being effusively praised as a great ‘performer’, having given the people of Delhi cheaper electricity and water, and better schools and healthcare.
I submit that what this Superman has given to Delhiites, and why they voted for him in the recent elections, are just some fringe benefits, some crumbs, which are like some straw to the sinking man of Delhi, and was therefore eagerly grabbed at in preference to the ‘Hindutva’ and ‘nationalism’ offered by the BJP, which offered nothing substantial.
The problems of Delhiites, like the problems of the people in the rest of India, are massive poverty, record and rising unemployment, appalling level of child malnutrition, lack of proper healthcare and good education for the masses, soaring prices, widespread corruption, rampant casteism and communalism, etc. To solve these huge problems requires a mighty, united, people’s struggle, and spread of scientific thinking, and this in turn requires radical change in the mindsets of our people, which cannot be achieved within the present political system in India.
To change the physical environment is easy. With modern scientific and engineering techniques it is easy to construct roads, buildings, bridges, schools, hospitals, etc. But it is ten times, or a hundred times, more difficult to change the mindsets of the masses.
Today our people’s minds are still steeped in casteism, communalism, superstitions, and other kinds of feudal backwardness (which I often call ‘gobar’ or cow dung), which has accumulated over centuries. Unless their mindsets are radically transformed and modernised, and this feudal filth (gobar) is removed from their heads, we will never be able to resolve the massive problems of our people.
Does Kejriwal have any method of doing this?
We must first understand that Kejriwal is in electoral politics. He will never do anything which will antagonize his voters. So he will never make a serious effort to change the mindsets of the people (which is what must be done to really solve our huge problems).
For instance, he will never say, as I repeatedly say, that:
(1) a cow cannot be a ‘gomata’ as an animal cannot be the mother of a human being
(2) there is nothing wrong in eating beef, as almost the whole world eats it.
(3) building Ram Mandir is just a gimmick to divert attention of the people from their real problems. If Kejriwal says that, Hindus will get antagonized and not vote for him in future.
Similarly, Kejriwal will never call for abolition/suppression of (1) sharia (2) burqa (3) madarsas and (4) maulanas (as I repeatedly demand, and as was done by the great Turkish leader Mustafa Kemal), for then he will lose his Muslim vote bank (which has almost entirely gravitated to AAP in Delhi).
But without abolition/ suppression of these feudal laws and practices Indian Muslims will never get out of poverty and backwardness, in which they are steeped today, as the Sachar Committee Report pointed out.
Some people ask me how my Facebook posts will bring about a revolution, which alone can transform and uplift India from the ranks of the underdeveloped countries and bring it into the ranks of the developed, highly industrialised countries, which alone can solve our massive problems. The answer is that historical experience shows that before every great revolution there has to be an intellectual revolution. For instance, the great French Revolution of 1789 was preceded by several decades of intellectual struggle by great writers like Voltaire, Rousseau, etc.
Today India is passing through a period of its intellectual revolution, which is a precursor to the actual revolution which will come in the future. All patriotic people must contribute to this process. But people like Kejriwal, who are in electoral politics, will never do that, fearing of losing their vote banks.
Markandey Katju is a former judge of the Supreme Court of India. He was also the Chairman of the Press Council of India.