JNU: Ambedkar Vs Left; but opposite in Panjab University, Why?

BAPSA (Birsa-Ambedkar-Phule Student Association) challenging the Left Unity in JNU

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JNU, the land of ideological battles, is well-known place for intellectual potential and dominance of Stalinist left. With the rise of right wing forces after Modi became P.M. in 2014, from Rohith Vemula to Una incident dalits are being attacked ruthlessly. Consequently, dalits who were cunningly communalized by RSS during Lok Sabha election are now coming out of Hindutva fold. After the march of cultural Hindutva of right wing conservative, the left politics which claims to be pro-dalits in its popular rhetoric of Bolshevik revolution, obviously has found some space in political discourse. Though, the JNU’s campus culture and its students’ verdict is not always the real reflection of society but the recent sedition row and overwhelming attempts of Modi government to haunt left hegemony have  pulled the attention of whole nation to link up with JNU. Interestingly, in present scenario, dalits are being lured by all political groups evidently under the banner of ‘annihilation of caste’. Even P.M. Modi warned his party to convince dalits and said that Nationalists are with us, let’s reach out to Dalits, backwards.

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Courtesy  Kractivism

Kractivism -Bridge the Gap Bring the Change

JNU campus has been a hub of Stalinist left and Marxist bastions since its foundation. AISA, a student wing of CPI (ML) Liberation had been winning mandate in student elections for many years. In 2015, Kanhiya, a leader of AISF (the student wing of CPI) fought against AISA and became president of JNUSU. And for now, the JNU bears very different kind of contest where the right wing ABVP has been completely swept away and BAPSA(Birsa-Ambedkar-Phule Student Association) came as strong contender against Left Unity (AISA-SFI). BAPSA, which started just two years ago, chased the Left Unity and lost with a small margin of 409 votes.  Aftermath, the political thinkers are forced to interpret the political contours of newly emerged scenario in JNU. Clearly, the mandate of JNU student election is a synthesis of national political environment and inherent Ambedkar-Marxian contradictions. The nature of right and left politics is complementary, unconstitutional and absolutely hegemonic. Right wing relies on cultural hegemony while spreading false version of history or endorsing hegemonic phase of Manu-Samriti and similarly Left considers its philosophy ultimate champion of all oppressed sections asserting its ‘intellectual’ hegemony while imposing economic interpretation of history.

B.R. Ambedkar, the icon of constitutional democracy, had always motivated downtrodden and socially oppressed people for education, saying knowledge as one of major premises in power sharing. In 1970s, the Naxalite movement under the slogan ‘land to tiller’ and big ill-literacy in dalits (landless) brought them in leftist outfits. Moreover, dalit intellectuals also became dependent on leftist ideology while being far away from Ambedkar’s constitutionalism. Later on, the Bahujanvad of Kanshiram and Janata Politics gave a new independent voice to dalits, minorities and backward classes of India strengthening constitutional democracy. The JNU’s mandate reflects that dalits who are the product Ambedkar’s reservation policy, now following his slogan of  Educate, Agitate, Organize are struggling for independent platform rejecting Left politics, understanding the real difference between the Ambedkarism and Leftism as suggested by Ambedkar :

my party would not align with Communist Party for the plain reason that I do not believe in Communism”.

Instead, the mandate of student election in Panajb University, Chandigarh is surprisingly different. Students preferred ‘non-political’ group PUSU over mainstream parties like NSUI,SOI,ABVP etc. Secondly, the election mandate also brings Marx-Ambedkar ties in question. The extreme left outfit, Students for Society (SFS) got 2494 votes with small margin of 11 votes from second contender SOI and scored third position. Ironically, the Ambedkar Students Association (ASA) again lacked in representing dalits independently and overtly supported SFS. When will dalits, OBC and all the anti-casteism students of Panajb University understand that there cannot be ideological unity between Ambedkar and Marx?

                -Eklavya Editorial Committee

 

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PAKISTAN: A Medieval State in 21st Century

Dilemma of Pakistani intellectuals after 70 years

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“ If I were a dictator, religion and state would be separate. I swear by my religion. I will die for it. But it is my personal affair. The state has nothing to do with it. The state would look after your secular welfare, health, communications, foreign relations, currency and so on, but not your or my religion. That is everybody’s personal concern! ”― Mahatma Gandhi

“The sovereignty of scriptures of all religions must come to an end if we want to have a united integrated modern India.”-  B. R. Ambedkar

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..there was no civilization, nothing before we came to India, there was no architecture, the structure of dome, there was no calligraphic painting infact there was no biryani before we came to India. What they had?  Triangular shaped temples and a very rudimentary civilization”. These were the words of a guest speaker in one of the discussions in a national Pakistani channel whose topic was how Indian culture through Bollywood is influencing ‘Pakistani culture’ as if there is some huge distinction between the two! By ‘we’ he meant Muslims and in whole discussion like majority of Pakistani speakers he wore a blanket of infinite cultural superiority (showing Indian culture inferior) as if Pakistanis are direct heirs of Turks or Arabs or Persians. This small statement sums up lot of aspects regarding Pakistani psyche, the dilemma of identity, the ongoing struggle inside Pakistan to invent false history (to murder history) so that it can be proved to young generations that the Islamic Republic of Pakistan was inevitable. For me it expresses the hollowness of whole idea of any nation state whose basis is religion. Because the consciousness where biryani is considered as ultimate linchpin of cultural superiority can only be maintained in a medieval state based on religion.

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The first pre-requisite, the most basic litmus test of a modern nation state is separation of state from religion. If a nation state has to be a modern nation state it essentially cannot and must not claim to belong to a race, religion or ideology. This is the first thing a student of 10th standard in India learns and I find it quiet peculiar that many so called intellectuals of Pakistan are not only reluctant to hit the bulls eye but sometimes altogether put the blame of all that has gone wrong in Pakistan on later military dictators. Whole of ire falls on poor Ayub Khan, Zulfikar Bhutto, America or perhaps Zionist-RAW conspiracy. I seriously have my sympathies with all those sophisticated Pakistani intellectuals who live in US or Australia or England. Perhaps like many, they are unable to question the whole rationale of their nation state’s birth. Pakistan born out of medieval sentiments of hatred, born out of the idea that two communities (Hindus and Muslims) cannot live together, that a nation has to be forged to safeguard a particular religion, that the very meaning of Pakistan is propagation of that particular religion. These and many more reasons of Pakistan’s existence today which essentially is quiet backward and undemocratic (not to forget the special blessings of British and west’s motive for creating a buffer state between India and Soviet Union’s frontier) are hard to accept by most ‘enlightened’ in Pakistan.

There may be exceptional scholarly works by many experts settled in foreign lands yet the core of the problem is not hit at. The fact is that Pakistan was to be a religious state, a medieval, feudal and 12th century idea upheld by a person who never had anything to do with religion-Mohammad Ali Jinnah the Jefferson Davis of South Asia. Consequently, today, Pakistan is nation of most blatant lies because it has to manufacture false history of Medieval India, it has to make claims of culture which essentially is Indian. To add to these problems all of these false histories and narratives are thrown at overwhelming population with overwhelming velocity and overwhelming hatred towards non-Muslims, especially against ‘foxy Hindus’ through media, print media and most effective have been the state owned and managed history and cultural curriculum taught to children in Pakistan. Consequently, one example today of the major difference in collective consciousness between the two nations born in 1947 can be measured through the fact that when a right wing government is formed in India under BJP in 2014, people of India after experiencing two years of attempted polarization reject RSS’s ideology through a shameful defeat of BJP in State Assembly elections in Delhi, Bihar, West Bengal, Kerala, Pondicherry and most probably in near future now in Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and paradoxically in Gujrat as well.  Whereas, Mumtaz Qadri, the murderer of Governor of Pakistani Punjab- Salman Taseer, since Taseer was a liberal and wanted to reform the Blasphemy Laws, is when executed by State of Pakistan,  after his execution, he i.e. Mumtaz Qadri becomes national hero of most in Pakistan. Under siege comes Islamabad stormed by his supporters, almost jammed in protest against this insane terrorist’s execution.

Then the question here is that how come almost the same people, the same society, with same levels of social and political consciousness in 1947, after partition behave in such opposite manners when confronted with same kind of situations? The answer lays in the difference in the nature of two nation states and resultant evolution of societies within those two frameworks of nation states i.e. a secular republic and a religious republic.

Two Nation theory and reluctance of Pakistani intellectual:

State of denial is perhaps the biggest enemy of any society or nation and most serious hurdle to overcome in order to evolve out of hatred and euphoria of Middle Ages. But when this denial come from the hands of intellectuals of society, the sheer facts of history and truth are when denied or avoided by those who by the virtue of their placed position in society or nation were suppose to make efforts in lifting people out of the mess of false histories and faulted notions, when they keep dancing around the bushes but do not hit bulls eye, then it becomes very difficult for that particular society to evolve out of manufactured narrative and hence it is danger first of all to itself and then to rest of the world. Perhaps, there are many Pakistani intellectuals who avoid expressing their honest explication on the idea of a nation based on religion. I refuse to believe that many imminent Pakistani personalities are unaware of that fact that where the real fault is, that the whole idea of merging state with religion is Medieval. Many other progressive commentators in Pakistan may have realized that it is not Ayub Khan or some other Pakistani General who messed things along, it is the very idea of Pakistan (idea of state based on religion) which is nothing but a Medieval – Fascist state and that it is not a modern democracy if it can be identified as some Hindu-Republic or a Christian Republic or Islamic-Republic. A modern democracy essentially has to be a Secular Democratic Republic. Yet time and again we see that even after publication of immense literature on Pakistan the basic justification built is that perhaps Mohammad Ali Jinnah formed a ‘good Islamic Republic’ but military foiled it! That perhaps Mohammad Ali Jinnah wanted a secular nation but something along the way went wrong!

For reference of this outrageous denial by influential Pakistani intellectuals I shall take an example of Farahnaz Ispahani, a very well known commentator, in 2013-2104 she served as Public Policy Scholar Woodrow Wilson International Centre of Scholars. In 2012 she was listed among Foreign Policy magazines top 100 Global Thinkers and she authored a book – Purifying the land of the pure: Pakistan’s Religious minorities. An International online journal called The Diplomat published an interview of Farahnaz Ispahani on March 10, 2016 regarding her above mentioned book. I will be discussing some interesting excerpts from her interview in order to illustrate this pathetic justification built by Pakistanis regarding a theocratic state –

Q- What do you mean by purifying the land of the pure?

A-  Pakistan was originally conceived of as a homeland for South Asia’s Muslims. Pakistan’s purpose was to protect the subcontinent’s largest religious minorities. Overtime, however, religious and political leaders declared the objective of Pakistan’s creation to be the setting up of an Islamic state. Much of the prejudice against religious minorities can be traced to the effort by Islamists to make Pakistan ‘purer’ in what they conceive of as Islamic terms.”

Well, it is amazing the way they try to add sophistication to the idea of Pakistan/state based on religion and the way whole ‘progressive narrative’ is built against the extremist forces. The blame is laid again and again on army and on right wing for all the wrong that is done in Pakistan but the truth is these forces-Islamists as mentioned above in this case- in any nation state are only able to grasp unprecedented power in state machinery and unprecedented influence over society only and only when the nature of state allows it. She (as many other Pakistani intellectuals do) accepted in above statement that Pakistan was formed for one particular community. First of all, a modern nation state is never formed for one community (this infact is a pre-requisite of a medieval or fascist state), it always embraces plurality, encourages plurality and takes proud in it. And this capacity to accept and propagate plurality can only be inculcated in society if the nature of nation state is essentially a secular republic not religious republic. But this is not acknowledged by many Pakistani intellectuals. Further she declares that reason that Pakistan came into existence is ‘protection’ of Muslims in South Asia. Again in 1947 the idea of plural democracies was quiet 250 years old, the idea of constitutional protections, fundamental rights and all the tenets were discussed vehemently and in the end under the auspices of Dr. BR Ambedkar a miracle – constitution of India- was carved out and applied on equally challenging situations- Indian society. Jinnah as a much more successful lawyer than Ambedkar himself, I believe, was much more aware and well entrenched in these concepts of British common law and western constitutional principles yet instead of choosing a modern approach to deal with a religious divide in sub-continent, he on the contrary chose to push for a Medieval idea, an idea dividing a three thousand year old civilization and putting these two nations in a painful and perpetual bloody contest, an act whereby Jinnah stabbed in the back of the likes of Jefferson, Lincoln, Mandela and ofcourse Gandhi and stood in the lines of traitors trying to pull civilization and democracy two steps backward. And yet our Pakistani friends justify and claim that Pakistan was made by some secular people and then subsequently Islamists in order to make Pakistan pure made it an Islamic state! On the other hand these same Pakistani intellectuals, like many Indians (including me), will call those people who want to create a Hindu-Nation as Hindu-fascists but the people who created a Muslim-Nation (Pakistan) are declared so boldly by these same intellectuals as secular! I would argue vehemently that the idea of Pakistan is medieval and nature of Pakistani state is Fascist through and through.

These efforts of Pakistani intellectuals in complicating the whole idea of Two Nation Theory (Pakistan a Muslim country and India a ‘Hindu’ country) in order to make the division of subcontinent on basis of religion appear as modern and progressive and somehow inevitable is in itself a great disillusionment. The idea of dividing civilizations, peoples and nations on the basis of religion or race is and can never be termed as modern or democratic no matter what the historical conditions were. This attempt of sophisticating otherwise a very rudimentary sentiment of religious division in South Asia and then justifying it reminds me of Lincoln-Douglas debates in the year of 1858, where if any prudent person observes this debate closely she(or he) will observe that Mr. Douglas who under the garb of people’s rights as ‘popular sovereignty’ advocated for Kansas-Nebraska Act whereby if Act was to be passed then it would allow people to decide whether the newly formed states of Kansas and Nebraska will have slavery or not. During this famous debate no matter in how sophisticated manner Douglas in order to justify his argument invoked democracy or Rousseau, Abraham Lincoln came back every time with simple myth busting speeches explaining that how this very statute-Kansas Nebraska Act- is nothing but a sinister scheme of southern slave holders in order to transform whole of United States of America as a slave state, a Nation not for liberty and plurality but a nation only for one race.  And how easily it will become apparent that perhaps arguments made by Muslim League leaders in 1940’s in favour of making  Pakistan- a nation for one community which they put  as  Nation in order to ‘safeguard’ Muslims and arguments of Pakistani Intellectuals as mentioned above are similar to the arguments made in the favor of America being the country of only one race (White race). These two episodes in History, American Civil War and partition of India represent the soul of plural democracies fighting against the idea that two communities (whites- blacks or Hindus- Muslims) can never live together in perpetual peace as equals, that whether America/India was going to be a nation of one race/religion or nation of all races and religions. Hence, Pakistani intellectuals today can make all sorts of sophisticated arguments in favour of a nation state based on one ideology/religion/community but the fact of the matter remains that a modern nation state is conceived in liberty and perpetuates plurality as understood by likes Lincolns, Sewards, Gandhis and Ambedkars and founding fathers of Indian secular democratic republic and this principle cannot be diluted at any cost. There is no justification of building a medieval fascist state and then producing arguments that something went wrong subsequently. No, no, from the seeds of a cactus you cannot expect a mango tree.

 Further in the interview Farahnaz Ispahani says- “When Pakistan was founded in 1947, Quaid e Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, clearly stated that non-Muslims would be equal citizens in the new country…………. Unfortunately, as part of the gradual Islamisation of Pakistan, the average Pakistani is not taught Jinnah’s true version of a pluralistic and inclusive society.

So if Jinnah’s version was pluralistic and inclusive then why the need of separate nation on the basis of religion (idea absolutely hostile to any notion of secularism) in order to save a minority which was quiet possible through rule of law and constitutional means? How many outrageous contradictions can be found in this statement? According to the speaker above first of all, Jinnah made a nation because he was sure that minority will not be safe in India but then he was sure that the country he will make on the basis of irreconcilability between Hindus and Muslims will be able to provide dignity and safety to minorities! This is an amazing and a shameful self contradiction. If Hindus and Muslims cannot live in India peacefully, according to Muslim league and Jinnah, then how could they live peacefully in Pakistan? Why all the local languages were murdered and trampled upon and a one exclusive language- Urdu was superimposed on otherwise linguistically plural population in newly born Pakistan under Jinnah? Was this plural and inclusive vision of Jinnah? The truth is once you have dwelt and acted on the idea that communities cannot co-exist peacefully, that you will have to divide a civilization or a nation but not press for better rule of law and constitutional means for protection of minorities, that once you are convinced and   formed a nation where you will have to murder all the local languages and cultures and impose one foreign language violently (the act which ultimately caused liberation of Bangladesh) then you are not a democratic secular person and you certainly do not have ‘version of pluralistic and inclusive society’, but you are basically fascist or perhaps opportunist at the most. May I ask that can you divide an ancient and essentially plural civilization on the basis of race or religion and then be termed as pluralistic and inclusive? Perhaps for many of them Jinnah was a secular and modern person because he loved Shakespeare, guess what, Hitler loved French paintings and allegedly Stalin loved American movies, does that make one of them not a fascist and another a compassionate dictator?

Many of these Pakistani intellectuals dwell upon the idea of gradual Islamisation of Pakistan as root cause of all problems. I believe they need some basic lessons in secular and plural nation state constitutionalism. They can blame Liaqat Ali Khan or Ayub Khan or try to find fault in formation of making of constitution of Pakistan, but the truth is that a nation state is built on the very basis of set of ideas that it was conceived with in the first place and in this case the premise on which Pakistan was born and built upon is Nation for one community with poisonous narratives of historical supremacy. The Muslim league was nothing but a band of aristocratic, feudal leaders with fascist leanings or as Javed Akhtar will put it aptly RSS is but mirror image of Muslim League, fundamentalist and fascist to the very core. Can we expect a nation made by RSS leaders a secular Hindu republic? It is just like stating – Oh sorry, Lenin died early and power came in hands of Stalin that is why such a mess, in case it was Trotsky then it would have been something different. Oh sorry, power came in hands of Hitler and he killed all the internal resistance in his party and gradually in whole of Germany if it was someone else, say Goering, then things would have been different. Oh sorry Jinnah died early and power came in hands of military dictators like Ayub Khan or Islamists and things went wrong otherwise the story would have been different! It is never about Stalins or Hitlers or Jinnahs or any individual, nation states take the shape of what they are eventually according to the most basic intentions and set of ideas, principles and narratives they are conceived with in the first place. It was the bolshevism  which killed millions in purges not merely one individual- Stalin, it was NAZI ideology of Aryan myth that lead to such slaughter not just Hitler, it was the very idea of Pakistan that has lead to inevitable Islamisation of Pakistan not just the military or Islamists. The Pakistani intellectuals have just got it all wrong, gradual radicalization as root cause of all problems in Pakistan is merely effect of the cause – nature of Pakistan’s nation state.

Opposite evolution of two nations and consequential Pakistani narrative:

Logically, then from Liaqat Ali Khan onwards the idea of what kind of state Pakistan is or what version of Islamic faith it must adopt started as the major discussion in Pakistan. On the contrary, in India, where founding fathers were clear that what kind of state India will be, constituted a committee headed by Dr. BR Ambedkar in order to write this huge, unique, inherently secular and democratic constitution which in essence was to be inclusive of all the unfathomable variety and infinite diversity of remaining Indian nation. One of the major pre-occupation of national legal debates in India in its early decades was how to assert constitutional supremacy over all the wings of state machinery and nature of constitution of Indian union in a very plural society. Right from Golakhnath Vs. Union of India to Keshavnanda Bharti, the evolution of Indian establishment towards a sturdier democratic secular republic has been unprecedented. Especially the debates regarding basic structure of constitution and ever present prevalence of fundamental rights, the idea of social justice for the oppressed sections in Indian society through Article 16 and its intensive application. Whereas, as mentioned above, one of the first acts of newly formed Pakistani state was to debate who Muslims are and who are not, consequently in 1974 constitution of Pakistan is amended whereby Ahmadiyyas legally are considered to be non-Muslims. Ironically, at the same time a country in neighbourhood is busy in embracing all castes, creeds, religions as one plural ancient civilisation, it boldly adopted number of languages as national languages, effectively defeating the Two Nation theory in theory and practice. The assertion of Pakistani leaders, especially Jinnah before anybody else, that Pakistan is for Muslims and India for Hindus was a farce from day one, Pakistan may be was made for one community but India was from beginning a secular, plural and inclusive of all that there is. So how could Pakistani establishment maintain the lie of century that India is for ‘only Hindu’? The only trick was systematic propagation of manufactured versions of history of subcontinent. Again, this was not problem in itself but a natural outcome of state of Pakistan trying to provide any sane rationale and justification for idea of Pakistan in 20th century.

Therefore, understandably, the ancient history of Indian subcontinent, the Nandas, Mauryas, Guptas or the Kushans and other pre-Islamic cultures and histories of Indian sub-continent were last seen in the year of 1961 in the text books of Pakistan neither Pakistani kids are taught story of India after the independence. The only part they are taught effectively is those 800 years of Islamic invaders from Turkey, Arabia and Iran and all of them being the national heroes of Pakistan. For example, there is not a single mention of a medieval Afgani invader Ghazni in official Afghanistan’s narrative or even in Afghanistan’s text books but he is hero in Pakistani narrative because Ghazni defeated his Hindu counterpart and broke a lot more temples especially historical temple of Somnath. Usually in a 21st century such an act is taught to children as shameful and medieval but in Pakistan he is a hero for doing these heinous crimes and children learn of him and many others as part of their national culture and identity, to take this further Pakistani  ballistic missiles are named after Ghazni and Abdali. Consequently today, the Pakistani narrative essentially is anti- India or to be precise and unfortunately anti- democratic. This development of a false and equally stupid narrative which, just like NAZIs, draw inspiration from some imagined past is not just a coincidence, it is but a natural outgrowth of all those nations which were (or will be) inherently conceived as a fortress of a particular race/faith/ideology. These kinds of narratives are always the result when a nation state is built out of some kind of revenge sentiment and superiority complex. Soviet Union could have never produced Abraham Lincoln but Stalin, Pakistan could have never produced Nelson Mandela but Zia Ul Haq and jokers like Musharraff.

In lieu of conclusion:

General Akbar khan, the one who invaded Kashmir in 1948, after when he retired, in his autobiography claimed that they are the real warriors, Pakistanis are sons of Mohammad Bin Qasim and Ahmed Shah Abdali, they are descendants of great Abbasids and as they conquered half of the world in medieval times so will they do now, that as was Alexander The Great so was Mohammad Ghori! Infact every that invader and barbaric who has been successful in plundering and looting India is made hero in Pakistan, irrespective that whether that invader came from Mongolia or Turkey, Persia or Arabia, fuelling anti-India sentiment has become the centre point of whole Pakistani Narrative, its reason of existence, its foreign policy and perhaps now we see Pakistani intellectuals trying subvert the obvious truths. The hawkish in Pakistan have set lofty goals of waging war against India for thousand years and unfortunately this mentality and people carrying this mentality are in majority and are well entrenched in all the braches of Pakistani establishments which again is not some Zionist conspiracy but natural outcome of idea of Pakistan.

And on 70th anniversary of our independence I would like to ask our dear Orphans of Jinnah –that  you have wasted all these decades in manufacturing not schools and hospitals but false narratives of inferiority of Indian civilization and urgency of its annihilation through Jihad, then tell me, where are your heroic Macedonians now? Where is your Greek civillisation? Where is your Rome? Where is Mighty Egyptian Civillisation? Where are Akkadians, Sumerians, where are great Aztecs and Incas? Where have gone Persia? ALL LAY BUT IN DUST. We, the humble Indians were there centuries before these civilizations were even born and we are still here centuries after those civillisations have gone. It mattered nothing to this civilization, Hinduism came India absorbed it, Jainism came India absorbed it, Buddhism came India absorbed, Islam came we absorbed it, Christianity and Sikhism came India absorbed them, didn’t even burped. Then came the modern Isms, the so called Socialism and Communism and Maoism, the Capitalism and Imperialism none could destroy, or even change India! Not because people are better warriors or bigger tyrants or had better horses, stronger swords or a crossbow! No, they all couldn’t do it because of India’s acceptance of plurality, its inherent secular nature, its unconditional acceptance of all faiths and ideologies. And the bad news is that this nation is here to stay from ETERNITY to ETERNITY.

We are not sons of Taimurs and Babars, but of Maharaj Bharat and Vikramaditya. If we won’t allow desecration of Babri Masjid at the hands of Hindu fascists, then we won’t allow Jehadis/Fascists to be our heroes. Maqbool Bhat or Burhan Wani can be heroes in Islamabad but not in Delhi and neither in any democratic nation or culture embracing plurality.

Therefore, I will argue that Pakistani intellectuals maybe are the voice of sanity in an insane environment of Pakistan yet we need to have courage to call spade a spade i.e. idea of Pakistan was never a modern idea and Pakistan does not need another military dictator or a general elections but, as M.J. Akbar would put, it needs a Constituent Assembly to re-imagine and manifest a Modern Secular Democratic Republic of Pakistan.

On the other hand, I understand Pakistani paranoia that India and Indians never accepted the partition and perhaps want to usurp Pakistan again. A very common notion perpetuated in Pakistan by its establishment. Perhaps it is true that Pakistan is a reality and what is done cannot be undone and of course Pakistan cannot be asked to commit suicide. But in order to shake off shackles of separation, hatred and fundamentalism, it is a long journey for Pakistan’s civil society, intellectuals and youth starting from the resolve which will get themselves rid of the proxy militant groups they have created till re-inventing the idea and ideology of Pakistan, the ideology which is more in adept to 21st century because clearly a 12th century idea will not work in 21st century.

         – Sawinder Singh

STUPID yet not SEDITIOUS !

        STUPID yet not SEDITIOUS !

 (by Sawinder Singh on 14 feb, 2016)

 Showdown of Godses Vs. Stalins

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    jnu-protests_650x400_71455281490New Delhi: Students affiliated to the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) protest outside the office of the vice chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in New Delhi on Wednesday to vent their ire over a programme describing the execution of 2001 Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru as 'judicial killing'. PTI Photo (PTI2_10_2016_000236B)

New Delhi: ABVP activists protest against an event at JNU supporting Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru in New Delhi on Friday. PTI Photo by Kamal Singh(PTI2_12_2016_000107A)

DSU ( Democratic Students Union) organized an event to glorify Afzal Guru and Maqbool Bhatt in JNU (Jawahar Lal Nehru University) Delhi and shouts – “Bharat ki barbaadi tak jung rahegi jaari

Well, from my experience the first thing I can observe or conclude after watching a video of the fanatic shouting of DSU members-‘Bharat ki barbaadi’ is that, I am not sure whether they will be able to accomplish this but the people shouting will soon have a soar throat and if not taken care of it may quickly transform into serious throat infection which can well develop into a life long allergy!

I was appalled to see  poverty of the arguments made by either party to the debate of this JNU event, even a very upset Arnab Goswami in his show –The Newshour was full on and he asked one of the student leader involved that whether he knows Section 124-A of Indian penal Code (Sedition)? But the funny part was that neither those who were leveling the allegations of sedition knew what and how this section is invoked and nor those against whom it was being leveled. This episode is a classic case of X-Right wing Vs. Y-Right wing and neither of the party is able to develop a secular & democratic argument because actually no party to this debate is  Secular or Democratic. Its actually like all the Nathu Ram Godses Vs Joseph Stalins! I am discussing some of its aspects, you are more than welcome to differ because I am neither of these!

Firstly, about all the non-sense that is claimed by media and Hindu right wing that this event and shouting amounts to being ‘Anti-National’ or ‘Sedition’. Well, simple as it is, it is neither of the above mentioned. Though to a lay man at first reading of Section 124-A of IPC it can be perceived that mere shouting anti- India slogans is sedition but it is not. In an elaborated explanation of applicability of this section and so that it does not became tool in the hands of government Supreme Court of India have laid down certain ingredients of this Section which when are proven in actus reas and mens rea only then it is applied. Shouting ‘Khalistan Zindaabad’ or ‘Bharat ki Baraadi’ is shameful yet not seditious! This is huge heart of Indian Democracy and Rule of Law! Imagine pro Chechenya Sloganeering in Moscow University or Event glorifying Osama-bin Laden in some American University! It is not simply possible but in India everything is. Perhaps couple of weeks ago a Pakistani fan of Virat Kohli waved Indian Flag at the top of his house is already sentenced 10 years in Jail! I wonder for all the Lashkar leaders Pakistan needs proofs and for this poor fellow waving of tricolor was enough!

I am more than happy to get involve in exploring legal and political definitions and scope of sedition under common law, for now this is not the place. But suffice to say this does not amount to Sedition under Section 124-A IPC.

Secondly, About the aims and nature of protest whose permission was taken under the garb of cultural event. There are those people in or against the argument of hanging of Afzal Guru who shout at the top of their voice and consider themselves the best interpreters of the Supreme Court’s judgement sentencing him to capital punishment. The interesting thing is all these people i.e. X- Right Wingers willing to desecrate Babri masjid and Y-Right Wingers willing to destroy India have never read the Afzal Guru’s judgement but will make their argument as if they themselves are Sherlock Holmes. Any of these idiots have never even seen a court, much less a criminal trial, if you will ask them to write a representation to a Tehsildar then they will come to you and say “yaar yeh kaise likhte hain?”!

With such sorry state of affairs, I shall first mention that I am in favour of the Supreme Court’s Judgement regarding Afzal Guru but it is perfectly Ok to differ with Supreme Court. For example I think in M. Nagraj Vs Union of India Supreme Court has not only decisively harmed the interest of SCs and STs of the country but have pushed back the efforts made by Supreme Court in 1991 in Indra Sawhney Vs Union of India for atleast 20 Years! It is a huge loss. So what shall I do? Start shouting ‘India ki barbaadi’?

If anybody thinks that Afzal Guru was wrongly hanged then please protest, agitate to best of your capacity but what should be the natural aims of the protest in case protest is sincerely against Afzal Guru’s hanging and not politically motivated by extremists?  Whether to ensure that in political trails, investigation should be more transparent and whether how can judicial proceedings be made more transparent and fair (in case of political trails)? Or ‘Bharat ki barbaadi tak jung rahegi jaari?

Further, yes you can say that as well and certain other things also. But my question is absolutely not regarding the Afzal Guru, I don’t care if whole of India is protesting against Afzal Guru’s hanging because to certain extent in such acts and protests democratic values are evolved. But my question is regarding MAQBOOL BHATT! Who is Maqbool Bhatt? If protest was against ‘unfair’ judicial proceedings regarding Afzal Guru then from where Maqbool Bhatt got swooped in? If Maqbool Bhatt is a hero then nothing is bad in argument of Khalistan and Bhindrawala is also a hero! And so is Mullah Omar and our all time favorite Al- Baghdadi ! What were and are the real intentions of these protests in JNU, who are involved in it? Is it a genuine out cry of people wanting a solution to Kashmir issue or a well crafted, politically motivated act by a shrewd extreme left wing facing ideological bankrupcy?

Therefore, thirdly,  I once asked a self styled comrade who has embarked himself on a ‘nobel’ cause of the proletariat of India- even though they believe that relations of production in India are semi-feudal and there are no proper proletariat in country hence in order to fight with feudal political order in the nation, armed revolution is inevitable!- that, “Comrade, you always are glorifying and trying to repeat Mao’s Long March in India whereas all those things that those Chinese did a century ago, none of those circumstances exist in India and perhaps without material conditions you wont be able to repeat what Mao did because India is a Union, with perfectly centralized government, Rule of Law increasing at snails’ pace but surely it is and there aren’t much geographically divorced regions in India where government of India’s reach is minimum for you to create ‘base areas’. So how you imagine yourself to follow Mao?” He obviously had no clue what I was asking or how to answer such questions because they usually come across empty headed, impatient and innocent rural youth who are trained to follow than to question ! But in the end I was dumbfounded when I collected and tried to make sense of his answers which concluded that they shall ally themselves iwith separatists in order to create the conditions congenial for a Maoist Style armed revolution known as NDR (New Democratic Revolution)! And the first reaction that I had in my mind was “Hor kehre moorkhan de singh hunde ne”!

Infact, DSU the ‘Democratic’ Students Union is a hard core Maoist organization with its agenda of creating an armed revolution. Now, the situation after the demise of Soviet Union has become more and more clear that the ideological concepts of Communism have lost their ground miserably. I will not say communist organizations are totally irrelevant, nothing is irrelevant in a plural culture and certainly political parties like CPI or CPM shall always add colour to India’s political spectrum. But my point being that these aimless protests are less of a public outcry but a desperate attempts by remnants of radical left wing extremists whose basic agenda is failing very rapidly ! It is a very expression of rotten left politics. The facts that-

  1. Theoretical debates on which the very Maoist politics(and perhaps the justification of violence based politics) rests, like nature of Production -Relations of Indian country side being Semi-Feudal or Capitalist have gone out of relevance what so ever!
  1. Whether the Indian Capitalist class is National Bourgeoisie or Comprador Bourgeoisie? Is more or less meaningless.
  1. Whether ‘Socialist State’ exists or not, Since according to Marx it is only a transition phase but for Stalin it is a proper totalitarian regime capable of committing horrors of unimaginable magnitude in the name of proletariat and class struggle.

Nobody in left phalanxes wants to answer these questions and many  more because sincere answer to these questions will bring the truth on surface! Hence, if you question, then either you are a Trotskyite or a selfish activist with petty bourgeoisie tendencies! Then what is to be done? In the scenario where their own political justifications and ideological pillars are crumbling they needed to find political allies with violent anti-state ideologies so that a fresh lease of oxygen is fused in their ranks. And the Politburo must have concluded – Comrade, this is what Mao did when he joined hands with Chiang kai-Shek ! Do anybody in national media or participating in this debate even understand this?

 For me two important questions arise –

  1. Whether even if a Maoist Organisation behind the scenes collaborates with students having extremist and anti-democratic ideologies and they try to stage their politics in University campuses, should a vibrant and strong democracy like ours simply allege sedition(which is not viable legally) and brush them aside Or inculcate some discipline, some character and fight back the irrelevant anti-human, anti-democratic, extremist ideologies in the realm of ideology and politics ?
  1. Where is a genuine, intelligent, principally Secular and Democratic students’ political force which can put forward its argument, which can without falling into a trap of political necessity of opposing the government even at the cost of allying themselves with anti-democratic forces?

Right now the very people who consider Nathuram Godse a hero are opposing people who consider Maqbool Bhatt a hero!  What is the difference between these forces except the difference in their religions?

Question of Kashmir:

          And then finally comes the burning question of Kashmir. The charge of invading princely state of Kashmir was taken up by General Akbar Khan in 1948 even without the knowledge of Army Chief of Staff of Pakistan who happened to be a British. Having miserably failed in that endeavour then he later invaded Balochistan and State of Kallat whose King by the way was more than interested to join Indian Union, requested Pandit Nehru but he was not interested!

          I am not an expert on Kashmir and certainly not a ‘Nationalist’ who in the fit of nationalism will sing praises of India without rhyme and reason. But I do understand the consequences whenever an armed force occupies hostile population centres or atleast when either party, the occupying or occupied consider the other party hostile. Be it Vietnam or Balochistan or Tibet, story remains the same.

          So is the solution – ‘Bharat ki barbaadi tak jung rahegi jaari’?

                                                              Or

                                          ‘Annihilation of Pakistan’?

          While on the show of Arnab Goswami one of the JNU student leader said that Nehru promised plebiscite in Kashmir and almost every person in favour of Kashmir separation parrots the same argument! I wonder to whom Nehru promised this? Or was this in Nehru’s power? I wonder if any single one of these persons making argument for or against the plebiscite ever -ever read the UN resolution and the pre-conditions of plebiscite in Kashmir? The first most important pre-condition of this was complete demilitarisation of Kashmir. The Indian and Pakistani occupied. Which never happened. Moreover, there are other political and cultural pre-requisites to a plebiscite or to exercise of Right to Self- Determination. A plebiscite is next generation Human Right, it is an expression of increasing degrees of liberty and democracy. But can there be a plebiscite if one community ethnically is cleansed and then the remaining dominant community says lets go for plebiscite? JKLF cannot force one community, Kashmiri pundits/hindus, out of their homes they have been living for centuries, perhaps more than a millennia and then claim to have a plebiscite? Plebiscite is not facilitation of ethnic cleansing but quiet opposite to it.

          Kashmir belongs to hindus and sikhs and muslims alike as every province and region of Indian sub-continent belong to every community, caste and creed without doubt. Then how come some Pakistani backed jehadis claim it to be their territory? Is religion a bigger determinant than nationality based on pluralism? If not, then sorry Maqbool Bhatt is NOT our hero.

          Kashmir problem is not a territorial dispute, it is not a misunderstanding of two nations, it certainly cannot be reduced as military tussle between two countries. The Kashmir issue is essentially an outcome of a Civilisational War that Pakistan and its ideology has waged on India. There is no solution to Kashmir problem because it is not the problem, it is merely a reflection of a problem called ideology of Pakistan! Or as Amrullah Saleh, the ex Intelligence Chief of Afghanistan under the Karzai government (He was the first person to point to Musharaff that Osama is in Abottabad and Musharaff mocked him.) recently said in an interview to Danish Royal College of Military regarding Taliban seizure of a Afghan city Kunduz that, “ If the whole world is one body, then Syria is kidney, you can well live without one kidney but Pakistan is a cancer…”

          And he is not wrong because the very base of Two-Nation theory is Muslim Pakistan and Hindu India. Well, I am sorry India is not Hindu it is secular! The very idea of Pakistan was laid by Muslim league that muslims and hindus cannot live together. Muslims must make their homeland to safeguard their religion and faith against the foxy hindus and sikhs! My first question is who does that to their own motherland? Divide it in the name of religion but Mohammad Ali Jinnah, the Jefferson Davis of South Asia but perhaps we didn’t had Lincoln. Hence, a medieval State is born.

          Kashmir is not an isolated issue, it is inter-dependent with Balochistan and kallat, it is reflection of ideology that one community cannot live with the other in peace. There is no solution in isolation to Kashmir unless the ideology of Pakistan is not defeated. Unless there is secularization of Indian subcontinent there cannot be and must be a solution to Kashmir. I am more than happy to discuss on this topic at length at some other occasion. Here it suffices to say that Pakistan is a Fascist country, if we will never compromise with ideology of a Hindu Rashtra or Khalistan, then we cannot compromise with ideology of an Islamic-Republic as well.

          Hence, there is no question of us accepting Maqbool Bhat or Nathuram Godse our hero. Other than making an effort or slogans against India or Pakistan the effort of students and left in particular should have been a cross-continental drive of secularizing Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Shri-Lanka and Burma as a solution of Kashmir and Balochistan, as a solution of nuclear proliferation, as a solution of wars and unending poverty in the subcontinent. But to the contrary, what can we accept from the followers of Stalin but a staged drama?

Finally, an answer to ‘bharat ki barbadi tak jung rahegi jaari 

I ask question to these people that since you have set yourself a lofty goal of destruction of India, I see that you are unlikely to succeed. There have been numerous mighty empires and civilizations all gone and perished. General Akbar khan after when he retired, in his autobiography claimed that they are the real warriors, Pakistanis are sons of Mohammad Bin Qasim and Ahmed Shah Abdali, they are descendants of great Abbasids and as they conquered half of the world in medieval times so will they do now, that as was Alexander The Great  so was Mohammad Ghori !

          Well, dear comrade-jehadis, Bastards of Abdali and Orphans of Jinnah -tell me, where are your Macedonians now? Where is your Greek civillisation? Where is your Rome? Where is Mighty Egyptian Civillisation? Where are Akkadians, Sumerians, where are great Aztecs and Incas? Where have gone Persia? ALL LAY BUT IN DUST. We, the humble Indians were there centuries before these civilizations were even born and we are still here centuries after those civillisations have gone. It mattered nothing to this civilization, Hinduism came India absorbed it, Jainism came India absorbed it, Buddhism came India absorbed, Islam came we absorbed it, Christianity and Sikhism came India absorbed them, didn’t even burped. Then came the modern Isms, the so called Socialism and Communism and Maoism, the Capitalism and Imperialism none could destroy destroy India! Not because people are better warriors or bigger tyrants or had better horses, stronger swords or a crossbow! No, they all couldn’t do it because of India’s acceptance of plurality, its inherent secular nature, its unconditional acceptance of all faiths and ideologies.

          We are not sons of Taimurs and Babars, but of Maharaj Bharat and Vikramaditya. If we won’t allow desecration of Babri Masjid at the hands of Hindu fascists, then we won’t allow Jehadis/Maoists to be our heroes. Maqbool Bhat and Afzal Guru could have been hero in Damascus or Tehran but not in Delhi and neither in any democratic culture.

Hence, maybe for now DSU’s actions are not seditious but surely DSU’s ideology is one huge stupidity.

– Sawinder Singh

Navkaran’s suicide and Left-wing Casteism

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 Navkaran’s suicide and Left wing Casteism

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MARCH OF DEMOCRACY: ANNIHILATION OF MAOISM/NAXALISM (By Amandeep Singh on 22 April, 2015)

[A reply to Maoist/Stalinist leader Chemkuri Azad on his statement “Your Constitution is a piece of paper that does not even have the value of toilet paper for vast majority of India” in a letter to B.G. Verghese ]

maoisn vs democracyINTRODUCTION:–  Fourty Six years ago, on 22nd April 1969, a political party called CPI(ML)  under the leadership of Charu Majumdar was founded after a spontaneous peasant rebellion in village – Naxalbari in West Bengal (1967) with sole aim of overthrowing Indian Democracy and Constitution through means of arms. Today it becomes essential to look back into history and to find how democracy survived and developed after the India’s Independence in 1947. It is also very important to observe where and how Indian political class committed serious mistakes in understanding and not including tribal people into the mainstream economic and social development and hence risked the degradation of constitutional values. The CPI (ML) party was based on an organized armed approach relying upon Charu’s Eight Documents as sacred mission. After a short time, this party got scattered into various groups primarily because of ‘internal contradictions’ and strategic failure of Charu’s “Class Annihilation” (to murder so called landlords/ rich farmers, businessmen, public officials etc.).

In all these years no doubt strict attitude of the Indian State to maintain law and order in the Naxal affected areas compelled many left wing armed groups to review the line of class annihilation. Although this inherent inhuman, anti-democratic and un-Marxist approach of Charu Majumdar (i.e. line of class annihilation) is now diluted to some extent but few dogmatic groups like MCCI, PW etc. carried the same line of violence. In late 1980’s many groups left the violent path to fulfill political agenda of ‘land to tillers’ finding the democratic space in modern democracy. The self-critical attitude of these armed groups made them realize that land reforms can be accomplished through legislative means facilitating the abolishment of the ‘semi-feudal’ relations. However, these groups may give excuse for adopting parliamentarism/electoral politics as part of their ‘revolutionary tactics’ but in fact their so called revolutionary path does nothing but  toes the line of CPI/CPM. Two or three banned groups like Party Unity, MCCI and PW merged to make CPI (Maoist) party in 2005. However, much research and facts have shown that this merger is not ideological but is a union of remaining violent armed groups only to survive in different territories of Andhra Pradesh and Bihar.

Today the time has changed, Naxalism/Maosim (or any such 15th century styled violent effort) is dying its own death under the pressure of democracy and people’s need of living in prosperity and waging peace not violence. Rightfully, every citizen must question the social responsibility of State Governments towards affected areas and tribal community. What has Indian state done to our people? What was inhuman Operation Green Hunt or Salwa Judum? Why did state try to acquire lands/minerals for Vedanta, POSCOs, Tatas and Mittals in unconstitutional and illegal manner? Is this a way of inclusive and rational growth?  It is only Supreme Court of India which openly addressed the above questions while condemning the State with harsh manner in Nandini Sunder Vs State of Chhattisgarh judgment that “Predatory forms of capitalism, supported and promoted by the State in direct contravention of constitutional norms and values, often take deep roots around the extractive industries”

Now, Let us examine the problems in tribal areas. What is Maoism?  Why does it exist in India? Why, Adivasis got indulged with Maoism? We will also take ideological and political failures of Maoism into account.

NO POLITICAL REPRESENTATION OF TRIBALS IN DEMOCRATIC GROWTH OF COUNTRY:-

It is estimated that 85 million Indians are officially classified as scheduled tribes. Roughly 70 million tribal people who live in the heart of India reside in remote hilly areas and forest belts across the states of Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Bihar and West Bengal. The state machinery has been unable to prevent the loss of forest lands traditionally belonging to tribal people in the favour of outsiders without properly rehabilitating the so displaced adivasis/tribals or to check the exploitative activities of moneylenders and contractors. Meanwhile, the major power projects and steel plants set in motion by the Five-Year Plans have resulted in a substantial displacement of the tribal people. Already, by the 1960s, reports commissioned by the government of India have demonstrated the utter failure of the state in providing a life of dignity and honour to its tribal citizens. The major problems faced by tribals are still land alienation, restrictions on their use of forest lands in traditional ways and displacement by dams and other large projects.

It is commonly acknowledged that dalits and tribals are the two most disadvantaged sections of Indian society. But why have only dalits created an adequate space in the formal political system and not tribals? This contrast can be explained by aspects of history, geography. The tribals of central India usually live in tribal villages, in hills and valleys and no where they constitute a majority.  The dalits have been represented and inspired historically at national level by Dr. B R Ambedkar – a man of towering intellect who successfully breached the caste mentality. On the contrary and quiet unfortunately, the tribals have never had a leader who could inspire admiration across the boundaries of state and language. Birsa Munda, for example, is revered in parts of Jharkhand; but he is scarcely known or remembered in the adivasi areas of Andhra Pradesh or Maharashtra. The Mahatma’s claim that the Congress represented all of India was strongly challenged by M.A. Jinnah, presuming to speak on behalf of the Muslims, and by B.R. Ambedkar representing the so called lower castes. BUT the Congress has never really understood the distinctive nature of the tribal predicament. Hence, unfortunately tribals faced ignorance and exploitation in independent India.

The colonial period incorporates many tribal revolts like Kol and Bhumj revolts of the early 19th century, the Santhal ‘hool’ of 1855, the Birsa Munda-led ‘ulugulan’ in the 1890s, the uprising in Bastar in 1911, the protests in Gudem-Rampa in the 1920s, and the Warli revolt of 1945-46. Most often, these protests had to do with the alienation of land or the expropriation of forests. They were crushed by British Raj only with the use of force and violence. Indian political class knowingly or unknowingly followed the same violent attitude and often unconstitutional means towards tribals because of ignorance, lack of political will, experience, and sadly many times greed petty leaders and local bureaucracy as well.

MAOISM – A GEO-PARASITE ON POVERTY IN THE DARKNESS OF LAWLESSNESS:- 

Maoism in India is more or less a geo-political phenomenon. Since firstly, Indian State failed to provide adequate and proper political representation to tribals furthermore in the central parts of India where tribal population resides there was real absence of state machinery, administration, infrastructure of education, medical facilties etc. In the remote upland areas, public officials (doctors, teachers, magistrates etc) were unwilling to work and often willing to come back in plains. Hence, there was extreme resentment in the local people because of this blatant ignorance of state and central government who infact were already struggling against land grabs, displacement and no rehabilitation, lack of basic facilities, poverty etc. It was this power vacuum, which was supposed to be filled by the Indian State but unfortunately later on this vacuum was filled ultimately by Maoists who claimed the local people’s support as their ideological victory but infact their movement was only result of mistakes of Indian state and ignorance of local people to understand the real nature of Maoist Politics.

In earlier days Maoists glorified the ‘land to tiller’ as central slogan of their armed movement. After applying this misconception about nature and character of Indian agricultural classes (blended with casteism), they failed to address the very aim of ‘mass line and class line’, ‘masses to masses’ or otherwise NDR (so called ‘New Democratic Revolution’). Indian government delivered land reforms to some extent, though these reforms were not implemented in constitutional spirit but still these land reforms were able to destroy any logical and ideological grounds of left wing extremism. State’s reply, unfavourable people’s attitude, total ideological bankruptcy compelled this armed romanticism to retreat and hide in forests of Andhra Pradesh and other inaccessible parts of central India.. Consequently, Maoists occupied this vacuum in the absence of Law and Order and started to rehearse the tribal slogan of “Jal, Jungle aur Zamin hmara hai” for which Adivasis were already fighting against forest mafia and private contractors. Latter on the MoUs signed with Business Houses/Companies by State Government enhanced the rift between local tribes and state. Arundhati Roy settled this matter with unique critical remarks that the tribal forestlands should be called a “MoUist Corridor” instead of the “Maoist Corridor” as the people of these tribal forest lands have been wrestling with “Memorandum of Understanding (MoUs) of the mining companies.

It becomes quite clear from here that ever since the formation of first Maoist armed groups these people have been facing extreme hatred from common masses, ideological bankruptcy while retreating geographically. Now very cunningly in order to hide their ideological and political failures they have changed their political slogan from ‘land to tiller’ to “Jal, Jungle aur Zamin” with their retreat from plains to forests. Hence, Maoism in Indian context is not an ideology but a geo- parasite which survives over poverty in the deep dark forests. It is historical fact that the Adivasis have gained least and lost most from 69 years of political independence. No one can deny the problems of poor or landless people, dalits, tribals and women especially in rural India. But, such mindless extremism is not solution rather a severe problem.

IDEOLOGICAL FAILURES OF MAOISM:-

Maoism as continuation of Stalinism

Russian revolution is an event that can be supposed in continuity of French revolution (Liberty, Fraternity and Equality) whereas Chinese revolution was synthesis of contradiction of ‘Semi-colony’ and ‘Semi-feudal’ overcoming the drawbacks in Stalinist Socialism (which led to extreme power concentration). Mao criticized Stalin’s mechanical attitude of analyzing classes and class struggles in Russia. He rejected Stalin’s notion that classes were abolished (economic equality has reached!) and private property has been snatched. Stalin’s declaration that “Socialism in one country is possible” (where classes were abolished but State got consolidated!) was contrary to Marxist theory of Stateless and classless society. In the name of Dictatorship of Proletariat, Stalinism became totalitarian state which resulted into one of the most horrible and murderous regimes in the whole history of Humanity.

Like, Leninism is defined as era of Imperialism; Stalinism is era of totalitarianism and authoritarianism in practice as outcome of ‘socialism in one country’ and static conception of Institution of State in theory, not followed by withering away of State but destruction of democratic principles of Liberty and Fraternity.  Many dissents within Bolshevik party, among party workers and millions residing in USSR were brutally suppressed. The episode of Kronsdatt (1921) is one of major incident which led to killing of thousands of workers by Stalinist State. Mao’s critique was only about mechanical aspect of Stalin’s approach of Dialectics of base and Superstructure but he could not understand Stalinism (in theory and practice). Mao gave his own solution against problems of Stalinism as so called – Proletariat Cultural Revolution (1966-76). Which aimed to eliminate ‘bourgeoisie class consciousnesses’. But infact this so called cultural revolution aimed at destroying the most basic human instincts of Liberty and Fraternity irrespective of class or creed !

 Look at Maoism what happened to it in China! Why same repressive bureaucracy emerged in Communist Party of China (CPC) as in USSR under Stalin? Why forced collectivization of land and Cultural Revolution failed to impress peasant masses and working class? Who would assure that a Proletarian Dictatorship or a Single party regime will transform itself into a proper democracy? Material conditions? Nature of State or Power? Their concept of abstract philosophical Proletariat? OR Self-proclaimed very conscious Maoist/Stalinist groups? All the above historic ideological discourse is highlighted to people with extremely violent narrative of revolution. We the students and youth of India question Maoist/Stalinist Azad’s followers, what would you say about above issues?

The Maoists in India are even against basic principles of Marxist theory- the Industrial development as precondition and road to Socialism. Why don’t Maoists fight for minimum wages of workers? Why don’t they argue for pro-adavasis and inclusive development of Industry? Why don’t they cooperate with government to bridge cultural gap and represent tribal in mainstream? Why don’t they even stand for construction of Hospitals and Schools for adivasis and poor people? Why are they trying to deprive tribal community to meet their basic rights and needs which Indian State is trying hard to provide? Undoubtedly, the principal aim of the Maoists is not the social or economic advancement of the adivasis, but the capture of power in Delhi through a process of mindless bloodshed. Isn’t it?

Can Maoism/armed bloodshed survive in Indian democracy?-

History has witnessed many examples of armed rebellions lead by common masses against tyranny, against backward and dictatorial regimes. But, No one can find any single account of the armed revolt which has smashed a multiparty parliamentary democracy with universal suffrage (by the people for the people) to establish “single party dictatorship” ! Don’t confuse it with “End of History.” All the tyrannical, monarchal, autocratic, authoritarian and military states may be the center of armed movement where peoples’ voice is suppressed and no rule of law exists. But in Democratic, Republic, State Welfare like India it can’t.

Mao Zedong himself analyzed China as Semi-feudal (pre-democracy) where no proper democratic state was found. Chinese society was composed of provinces (warlords) and even smaller districts under independent military control having large peasant masses bounded over the land. Simultaneously, the whole country was suffering the direct interference of Britain, Japan and Westerner missionaries resulting into huge poverty, vagabondage and backwardness. The destruction of semi-feudalism and warlords required an armed violence in the absence of democracy.

Now again, We the students and youth of India question Maoist/Stalinist Azad’s followers – Is Union of India a group of warlords/provinces?  Is Indian democracy is mere a ‘Game of Votes’? Did India show no growth in 69 years? Does India have any need of ‘Mao’s unification of India’ that already has taken place with more peaceful ways?  Why are you Maoists trying to reverse the wheel of history back?

The shrinkage of Maoists in forest terrain shows their ‘political agenda’ got reduced to guerilla agenda or geo-politics. The power of Representative System over Armed Mobilization has already established its might. The drama of making equalitarian society with lot of bloodshed and failure of Maoism to build up socialism in China ended up while losing the promise of proper democracy .Since there cannot be liberty in any meaningful sense without equality so there also cannot be equality without liberty. Only a constitutional democracy is first premise to have radical democracy through democratic opposition without use of any armed force. And any force like Maoism/Naxalism/Terrorism is bound to die with strengthening of democracy in deep roots of society.

NEED OF POLITICAL WILL TO DESTROY POVERTY & MAOISM :-

Corruption at the delivery level has severely curtailed the impact of all government welfare programmes in affected areas. This needs to be addressed urgently because a nexus has been formed between the corrupt officials and the Maoist/Naxals and the public money meant for development is ultimately going in to the hands of Maoist/Naxals who in the name of underdevelopment are waging a war against the state and common people of India. Transparency is one of more viable weapon than ‘AK 47’ to check corruption and suppress structural violence. All the MoUs with private/public companies must be displayed in public domain. Every citizen must have right to know all business deals/corporate accounts and details, funds of Public as well Private projects. It is not the issue of only tribal people but whole country is demanding the accountability of government towards Corporates. Swaraj as a decentralization of political power and wealth is one such instrument to involve the Adivasis in democracy and to mould their opinions towards rational and inclusive Industrial growth. As per guidance of Nandini Sunder Vs State of Chhattisgarh judgment, State must reduce the dependence on SPO’s (Special Police Officers) and appoint SPO’s who meet specific qualification and training standards. All the security force must act primarily to protect the Social Infrastructure (Hospitals, School and post office etc) and maintain law and order in affected region. It is well known reality that Maoists carry some serious rifles, INSAS, SLR and AK 47s. From where this advanced ammunitions come? A retired CRPF DG Dilip Trivedi questioned the seriousness of State governments “Why is that the explosives have not been stopped from reaching the Naxals? There is free availability of explosives (to Naxals). Why is the state government not doing its job? To reduce the violence and to destroy Maoists with relatively peaceful ways a vigilant check over the supply of weaponry to left Wing extremists is must. The 5th Schedule under Article 244 of the Indian Constitution is an enabling provision which unfortunately remains unfulfilled. Ensuring the implementation of Article 244 will do much to remove tribal grievances and reduce the support base of the Maoists. The Panchayats Act (PESA) is another practical provision which puts the powers of managing the forests in the hands of the Panchayats run by the tribes who reside there. The tribal people have become like sandwich between State police and Maoists. Maoists murder many innocent people by branding them “police informers” whereas police arrest or kill the people in anticipation of being Maoists. Again underlying the recommendation of Supreme Court, state police should not even arrest any person without showing strong evidence or report.

Although, Maoism as an ideology is obsolete but it’s violent tactical remnants surviving in remote forest belt need a more political will to eliminate.  If the Industry/Market can sell something to middle-class which is of no big use for them, then why can’t government or companies realize that hungry and poor people are actually in hunger and poverty? Why doesn’t State provide education to Adivasis on priority basis? It is quite obvious India is lacking political will towards common people and marginalized section which infact now is been properly and ever increasingly addressed by all the agencies of state as well as civil society of the country.

A REPLY TO MAOIST/STALINIST LEADER AZAD’s STATEMENT:-

Chemkuri Azad was a leader and spokesperson of Maoist Party who wrote a reply to Verghese’s article which was published in a national magazine – Outlook.  In this reply letter, Maoist/Stalinist Mr. Azad disgraced Indian Constitution by saying that Indian constitution is even less worthy than a piece of toilet paper for vast majority of people. While making this rubbish statement, he seems to be very insane and prejudice. We condemn his hollow claims and firmly challenge his statement. Mr. Maoist, how dare you disrespect constitutional sanctity and legitimacy in India?  Are your 20,000 armed guerrillas a vast majority of India? How many leaders of minorities you have in your Central Committee (C.C) for whom you advocate?  The leadership of the Maoist movement is largely from the upper castes and classes and to a large extent is Andhra Pradesh centric. ( Katoch, CLAWS Journal, 2012). If you were really pro-oppressed why couldn’t your 40 years movement impress and gain popularity among dalits and other oppressed sections and create dalit leaders in your top leadership? Why don’t you have any Women leadership in your top most committee? Why couldn’t you break the so called patriarchal structure in small local area irrespective of high degree of female guerillas? You are cursing the Indian Constitution and do not look over into your own sins around the globe? Our Constitution has produced many leaders in dalits and women and all oppressed sections of the country who constantly become Member Parliaments, some of them rising upto becoming Chief Ministers and much more.

Why do you seek judicial favours of same Indian Constitution when your Maoists fellows are arrested or charged? Why don’t you condemn this Constitution at that time? Are you not a hypocrite? If Indian Constitution has failed to reach vast majority, why couldn’t your ideology mobilize peasantry and dalits to destroy Dr. Ambedkar’s Constitution? Why have you been hiding in forests and hills for last 40 years? Is Dr. Ambedkar’s democracy too weak to represent downtrodden and destitute of India? Is really parliament a pigsty house? Obviously, it is not.

Even though in the Nazi regime of Adolf Hitler the holocaust he unleashed and the wars he provoked cost some 30 million lives. But you feel proud on mass murderers like Stalin and Mao whose ‘revolutionary’ wars and extremism/totalitarianism have claimed even more human lives than fascism and the extremist ideologies of the right? How shameful! Why don’t you feel proud on this world’s largest plural democracy which makes India unique especially in South Asian region? See, what is happening in Middle East where no proper democracy exists? This multiparty democracy may not be the best, certainly is the least harmful political system devised by humans. Humanity will make this democracy more humane and more decentralized over the globe expressing its ever evolutionary essence to combat violence, wars and poverty.

-By Aman Singh, Chairman ESYA
Amandeep Singh, Chairmain ESYA

22 April, 2015

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