Divided We Fall
Once upon a time, there was a nation that could have lived happily ever after. But then that nation decided to become a democracy, and a confused mix of socialism and communism and capitalism.
Things would never be the same again.
Down the line, several new isms joined in. Big brother communalism started dividing the people on the basis of their regional identities. The nation of twenty one national languages and thousands of other languages and dialects started breaking up. South India hated North India. North India was suspicious of South India. Things came to a pass in 2008 when Maharashtra started beating up people from other states for taking up local jobs and not speaking the local language.
Separatism soon engulfed different corners of the nation. Kashmiris started burning flags and killing people. ULFA went on a rampage in the northeast. Naxalites took over Andhra and adjoining regions.
Then came along secularism. This one was funny because it was really anti secularism. This practice involved certain people from certain political outfits favoring certain religious communities, while ignoring the needs of the majority community. Anyone doing that was proclaimed non secular. Secularism acquired a new meaning – taking for granted the Hindu majority and appeasing the religious minorities to tap into their vote bank.
This secularism eventually broke up the country and gave rise to hatred and intolerance among the various communities.
Soon this evolved into fundamentalism. Muslim groups started blowing up Hindus. Hindu groups started blowing up Muslims. Christian missionaries started getting burnt (literally, unfortunately). When this got too predictable, terrorist outfits started blowing up their own people, just to make the other side look worse. Nobody gained, and a lot of lives were destroyed.
Sikhs got plundered in 1984 because two of them had killed the reigning monarch of India. Hindu pilgrims got burnt alive inside their train at Godhra, and many more Muslims were killed in the ensuing riots.
Gandhi died a second death. And a few dozen more.
This period was a stark comparison to medieval India when a Muslim dynasty ruled most of India’s predominantly Hindu population for a great period of time. Tipu Sultan was a latter day king famous as being a Muslim ruler under whose rule his kingdom of Hindu subjects made immense progress. The British would later come in and implement a Divide and Rule policy which would help them establish control of the huge and diverse country. They were sent packing in 1947, but things were to come a full circle under the politicians of modern day India who played their own game.
The country’s leaders then invented favoritism. They came upon this invaluable instrument that would help them achieve this. A few lives got lost and some people burnt themselves trying in vain to stop them, but we had a winner. Reservation. India started reserving jobs for minority communities. The original intent was noble. Reservation would have led to emancipation of the socially backward in the nation. But that was not what happened.
A couple of decades later, this system was mature. Like a two month old baby. Not satisfied with just having incompetent civil servants, doctors and teachers, the vote beggars started clamoring for reservation in private institutions. (whoever came up with the term civil servants – they are more like rulers!) )This would eventually pave the way for the collapse of the Indian economy as the so called global village started getting suspicious of Indian competitiveness.
Mahatma Gandhi was a Gujarati, as was Sardar Patel. Jagdish Chandra Bose was from Bengal. Bhagat Singh was from Punjab. Maulana Abul Kalam was Muslim. Jai Prakash Narain was from Bihar. C Rajgopalachari was from Tamil Nadu.
Silly people, all of them, representing different regions and religions, yet laying down their lives for the cause of the nation that was not to be.
We will keep fighting. We will keep blowing up people, and then expressing sympathy for them. We will look down upon backward castes. We will keep fighting for our respective regional languages. We will beat up people who don’t accept our viewpoints.
We don’t care.
Unity in Diversity be damned. The nation can go take a walk. This is too much of a power trip for us to bother.