Thursday, July 12, 2018

Recent Political Controversies in India

A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

Indian political controversies have a flavour of its own. Issues flare up like shooting stars across the evening sky and burn up as attention is focused on them. However,some serious issues have been flagged in the recent past.

First, the involvement of the Missionaries of Charity in child trafficking has led to a huge public outcry. More than 450 babies, born perhaps to unwed mothers in the Jharkand state have gone missing. It is suggested that several of them were "sold" to couples but the Missionaries of Charity has no explanation to offer about the missing children. Due to its iconic status in India public outrage has been muted. What the sister of the Missionaries of Charity did, and in particular, Sister Concelia, is beyond doubt reprehensible. Added to this is the scandal that has now enveloped the Roman Catholic hierarchy in Kerala. A bishop has been accused of raping, yes, a nun and the entire hierarchy seems to have comedown in defense of the priest. In addition, there are crimes of passion including murder that several priests belonging to the Roman Catholic order face. A Jesuit priest allegedly killed another priest over a dispute.

Sashi Tharoor who is now on bail for the murder of his third wife Sunanda Pushkar  made a statement that India is becoming a "Hindu Pakistan". At the face of it, this statement is absurd but the intent behind the statement is clear:the dynastic fascists are seeking to polarize the electorate by consolidating Moslem vote bank while simultaneously making inroads in the BJP support base by encouraging caste based voting. This strategy is dangerous as it would either give the dynastic fascists a huge electoral victory or push the NDA to an unassailable  victory. Such statements have been made by Congress leaders in the past. During the time of Hafiz Syed inspired attack on Mumbai in 2008, the Congress leaders started a campaign that it was a "saffron terror" attack.In other words they tried to deflect the responsibility to the BJP and its allies. This campaign was further bolstered by the deliberate misrepresentation of the Israt Jehan Encounter as a planned murder done at the behest of the then Chief Minister of Gujarat. The fact that was suppressed is that the LeT terrorist David Colemen Headley had clearly indicated to his interlocutors that Israt Jehan was trained as a suicide bomber who had been tasked take out the Chief Minister of Gujarat then. Using identity politics and creating a false narrative around Moslem fears led to the Partition of the country and the dynastic fascists still seem to be innocent of its implications.

Mohammad Ansari, the Vice President nominee of the Congress and its allies has made a statement in which he supported the "triple talaq" and Halala rape indulged by sections of the Moslem society residing in India. The later refers to the practice of women spending a night in the company of a moulvi before she rejoins her husband after a triple talaq. The BJP led Government wants to bring in legislation that would outlaw such practices and Ansari instead of supporting these progressive policies decided to oppose them. Moslem identity politics generally takes the form and shape of a consolidated Moslem population vs an Indian Polulation. In fact, educated Moslems have long given up these practices and even in Muslim counties like Pakistan, such customs have long disappeared. The Muslim community in India is kept in a dark ghetto by its political backers who want only its vote in order to defeat the BJP. Playing on the fears, usually misplaced fears and pandering to the most reactionary and fundamentalist opinion has become the mainstay of Congress electoral strategy.

Will such identity based polarization work.

No comments: