Rule of the ugly Indian

There is a waning of debate, dignity, justice. For vigilantes, “achhe din” are here.

Written by Kapil Sibal | Updated: September 11, 2017 12:36 am
muslims in india, india lynching, india hindutva agenda, faridabad lynching, hindu muslim issue, india news The “anti-Hindu” rationalists are being taught a lesson. Similar lessons are taught by lynch brigades. They attack Dalits and Muslims for transporting cows or dealing with them as part of their occupation. The ugly Indian in politics seeks blood for blood. Violence has become the norm.

The steady rise of the ugly Indian since 2014 has gained traction. The organs of the body politic have begun to atrophy. State-craft based on media hype, blatantly partisan electronic media channels disseminating views not news and frequent public announcements with much fanfare, have begun to sound hollow. Democracy is being tested. Vigilantism across the country has several manifestations.

The manner in which Gauri Lankesh was murdered was strikingly similar to killings in the past of rationalists who were ready to stand up and be counted. Narendra Dabholkar, out on a morning walk, was murdered in August, 2013 near Omkareshwar temple, Pune. Govind Pansare was killed in February, 2015 when he was out on a walk with his wife Uma. The miscreants came on a motorbike. M.M. Kalburgi suffered a similar fate in August, 2015 at Dharwad. The killers have not been traced till date. Either the police is inept or is not willing to effectively investigate.

The “anti-Hindu” rationalists are being taught a lesson. Similar lessons are taught by lynch brigades. They attack Dalits and Muslims for transporting cows or dealing with them as part of their occupation. Even when caught, prosecutions are few and far between. When prosecuted, the wheels of justice show no alacrity for closure. Bail is granted routinely. The ugly Indian in politics seeks blood for blood. Violence has become the norm.

We have ugly Indians on TV channels ranting and raving to further a particular mindset. Shrill opinions receive vocal support from anchors. Reason has no place and there is no virtue in dialogue. Drowning the voices of reason and seducing people to listen to senseless soliloquies makes for entertainment. Large sections of the electronic media are not interested in disseminating facts. Opinions based on fiction carry the day.

Yet another genre of the ugly Indian is the one who trolls on social networking sites. He is abusive, arrogant, muscular, intolerant, dismissive and condescending. Where he finds the discourse inconvenient, he diverts the dialogue. The uninformed do not seek truth. Repeated lies by paid trollers bury voices of sanity. Attack is the best form of defence. It is hazardous to challenge or question trollers, paid only to vilify. The ugly Indian is gaining ground and we are silent.

The death of children in Gorakhpur and Farrukhabad is yet another example of the ugly Indian symbolised by the state, apathetic and heartless. Its rationale: Encephalitis has taken lives before. If lack of oxygen is the cause of deaths, facts are twisted, the media managed. The state continues with business as usual. The ugly Indian looks on, untouched and unperturbed.

A poor man served food on the floor of a hospital does not shake our conscience; nor are we appalled when the dignity of the dead is desecrated. We see images of the dead carried to hospital in pushcarts, bicycles and on the shoulders of the grieving survivor. Despite the December 16, 2012, rape case in the capital, and the ensuing death sentence, the incidence of rape has not decreased.
Contract teachers serving the state are paid Rs 10,000 per month, or even less, as salary.

Teachers are the least regarded assets. They are ill-quipped to nurture the young. The student-teacher ratio in some instances is 90:1 in rural India. Absentee teachers are the norm. Children of Class V are only able to read books for children of Class II (ASER Report). The ugly Indian is not committed to teaching the young. Higher education is replete with issues of institutional corruption. Medical education is controlled by an ugly cabal, manipulating the system in admissions to medical colleges.

For those rolling in wealth, over-invoicing and under-invoicing is the way to heavenly riches. Statutory orders are passed overnight to declare over-invoicing legal. Over-invoicing is also a means to transfer wealth abroad. Entrepreneurs beef up project costs for loans to siphon off money for personal gain. The resultant NPAs cost the country and tax-payers. The rich get away while the cash in the hands of the poor is frozen. The country suffered a loss of at least Rs 3 lakh crore by paralysing 86 per cent of the cash economy. The ugly Indian defended it. Economists around the world considered it an unmitigated disaster. The poor lost out while the rich retained their ill-gotten wealth by banking their black money, converting it into white. The ugly banker allowed that to happen. For the ugly Indian, politics, not economics, holds sway.

The ugly Indian refuses to give the farmer his due. In times of drought, he commits suicide, unable to repay his loan to moneylenders. With excessive rainfall, his crops are flooded and he has no roof over his head. Even the few with crop insurance are caught in bureaucratic wrangles. The ugly bureaucrat makes sure that he tells his boss what he likes to hear. For the ugly professionals, making money is an end in itself.

The judicial system is often manipulated. Investigating agencies take U-turns to help the guilty. They listen to their masters in the corridors of power. Perpetrators of violence are rewarded by the state. The shameless say they don’t buckle under pressure because they are different. Morality is not a word that finds place in their political vocabulary.

Communities are being torn apart and the voices of sanity are being silenced. Women and children are the least protected. The poor and the marginalised are voiceless. The ugly Indian rules. Vigilantes are at large because they know that no harm will be done to them. I hope someone rises to the occasion to put a stop to this atrophy. Somewhere, the state is failing us and we the state. For the ugly Indian, “achhe din” have arrived.

 

The writer, a senior Congress leader, is a former Union minister.

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  1. V
    V.S.Malhotra
    Sep 18, 2017 at 10:48 am
    This article and the huge onslaughts of comments need to be taken note of by the makers of our future generations at all levels from kindergartens to the universities.
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      lovely
      Sep 12, 2017 at 9:02 pm
      The Dynastic Slave of Pappu.
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      1. J
        Jeff
        Sep 12, 2017 at 9:50 pm
        Let me remind you that after indipendance from British, all states rules by Raja-Maharajah used to get special rights and Saliana ( Annual payment from Government) still it's abolished by who?????? Probably you don't know Lovely!!!!, b/c probably you not had born when that happened. it's was Mrs Indira Gandhi . Indiraji stipped those slavery from ex-rulers ( actually slave and yes man of British rule) So, for love of slavary, Lovely you are too short live to understand it.
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          rishi
          Sep 13, 2017 at 6:41 pm
          how dumb is jeff, a man of poor intellect unable to see through the deal his mistress indira entered with these maharajahs....they were all inducted in congress and made MPs from their respective "fiefdoms"....no wonder congress nwas chucked out for its perpetration of the culture of "kingly MPs" whose continued exploitation of the masses was thereon "legitimised" by a crooked indira gandhi for collective gains of a corrupt congress which is by now duly exposed as the most destructive legacy of the outgone colonists this nation was thrust upon with . I pity people like jeff who wilfully fail to see through the eveil machinations of the colonial-congress...perhaps as a part of the same outfit, jeff is as conditioned to "easy life of easy money" of the congress era as all those of the vanishing clan of whatver little is left of the cancerous limbs in people like jeff of a corrupt-colonial-congress born and nurtured for more than half a century by the british before thrusting it on us !
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            rishi
            Sep 13, 2017 at 6:57 pm
            and indira turned the masses to 'yes man' of mahrajah-turned-congressi MPs ! and the exploitation of the poor continued....."garibi hatao" slogan could work election after election only if the garibi could be preserved...and that's what congress did for its vote-banks.....garibi hat jaati toh unhe kaun vote deta ! jeff needs to get out of his compulsive anti-bjp rant !
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          Jeff
          Sep 12, 2017 at 8:33 pm
          This is great facts and humanly explained by Mr. Sibal. Let me remind all opposition parties that why did you forgot what Modi did as CM of Gujarat? Now all crimes being repeated under him as PM. Why did you forgot Anna Hajare's gathering of people in Delhi and gained people attention and support which BJP benefited at back door? Why did you forgot Kiran Bedi who was right hand of Anna and matter of fact worked for BJP? How many times BJP stalled parliament to show people of India that they are exposing Congress and UPA government for misdeed? Mr. Sibal, this is right time to ACT, expose BJP and their Goondaism, anti-democracy policy including anti-right of minority's, anti- right of freedom . Gather a dedicated group who fight and stay still with you on fighting, not person like Nitish Kumar, but you need more LALU YADAV. I worked with Indira Congress and was stood by with her when she came out from Jail and fought her way to Victory. I know we don't have Indiraji, but fight together.
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            rishi
            Sep 12, 2017 at 8:28 pm
            rightfully so...for congressis, indians are ugly....that is why this colonial-born-and-nurtured-gangsters-outfit that corrupt-cogress with its goons and commission-agents at best was was chucked out disgracefully in 2014.....a traumatic defeat sibals and chiddus have not been able to come out of while Modi-Led-NDA armed with the admiration and strength of their billion-plus young electorate are putting in his best and sincere efforts to take everyone forward to a visibly evolving New India, putting an end to the era of colonial-proxy nail by nail.
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              Harry
              Sep 12, 2017 at 8:16 pm
              " blatantly partisan electronic media channels disseminating views not news " What have we been hearing from mainstream media until now? How can media claim Hindutva hand in murder of Author when police has not even presented initial findings? IS IT NEWS OR VIEWS? Only good thing now is SECUS are getting their own medicine and they don't like it. They never ask their victims how did they felt.
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