Why I don’t prefer Modi

In light of the protests at Turkey, and the disturbing comments made by the Turkish PM, Erdogan, here, I would like to once again warn my dear fellow citizens as to the bleak, oppressive and fascist future that awaits us were we to make the mistake of allowing Modi to become the Indian PM.

Now, I’ve had this conversation with a lot of people, over a lot of forums. But, I think I’d like to briefly present my reasons once again:


1. Have you paid attention to any of Mod’s speeches? He never says we will do this, or we will achieve this; it is all “I will”, “Under me”, “I can”. He is clearly not too big on democracy. The words reflect an ego that definitely parallels Erdogan’s. And guess what else they have in common? Boasts of awesome economics-shaping abilities!

2. Which brings us to how Modi treats dissent. When he came to a college to give a speech about the economic future of India, he brought with him enough police protection to fight off a hundred terrorists. Which police force was then employed to harass and threaten the handful of college kids standing around with posters about the Gujarat riots.

3. And when Modi’s own enthusiastic saffron brigade showed up, the same police stood by as those guys beat up, groped and threatened the students, telling the women to watch it or they would face the same consequences as the Muslim women in Gujarat. Point being: Even if Modi is harmless (which I really, really do not believe) and his Hindutva merely an act (which really does not concern me), too many of his followers are juvenile fanatics who will take his assent to PM-ship as a sign that India is ready to forgive you if the people you fuck up, rape and kill are only minorities.

4. Modi is not very keen on the development or patronage of literary and fine arts, and his government has been known to give a hard time to all sorts of authors, revoking licenses, getting galleries shut down, etc.

5. Not to mention the strict intolerance towards unfavorable news reports in the local papers.

6. You all, who accuse the Congress of being weak and ineffective, saw the way protests were dealt with in Delhi last December. Do you really believe the Modi govt. will be any less brutal when it comes to dealing with dissent?? Especially if involving minority rights..

7. His repeated speeches at Women’s colleges/to women reek of primitive patriarchal ideas such as how women should use their natural talent at food cooking, and set up restaurants etc., so that India can develop. 
Arre, fuck his development. What am I gonna do with a thousand more malls if the streets are full of crime and intolerance? No, thank you.

8. Gujarat. 2002. [You can be a regular guy belonging to a community and wish vengeance for wrongs against “your” people. You can’t claim to represent an entire state and still make that wish. And, if you do, then you aren’t fit to rule. I don’t want such a man representing me, or my country. I’d rather be poor and cling on the little bit of pride and freedom I have left as an Indian, than have to always be chauffeured around in A/C cars to places.]

9. Lastly, but almost as important as the previous point, his claims regarding Gujarat’s economic success are mostly exaggerations and lies, as various reports have already conclusively proven. Yet, of course, people see what they want to see.

~~~

Note: The reports I have referred to are not media reports, but NGO, NHRC, etc. reports. Also, there is the fact that it isn’t about his involvement alone in the Gujarat riots, but the fact that it happened while his party was in power, and they did very little, if anything, to stop it. And the fact that it doesn’t matter whether he was leading the orange brigade or hiding under his bed. The point is it happened. And he is responsible in more ways than just legally.

Anyway, I fervently hope that this country doesn’t have to see those days. But, with India’s growing inequality, high unemployment rates, and eager friendship with MNCs, I think it’s highly optimistic to assume that, under Modi, we won’t be heading down exactly the same path as our Turkish brethren.

Much faster, too.

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A Sordid Affair: Capitalism and Socialism

I have a theory on why the World is going to hell. And, it somehow relates to why capitalism wasn’t the worst idea to begin with.

At the last point of time when socialism had any shot at affecting capitalism, i.e. at the time of the Cold War, people were just beginning to appreciate their individual rights. To even suggest to such a population, standing on the brink of what looked like cities of gold, that they must necessarily share their wealth with anyone, was nothing short of blasphemous. More importantly, it was unfair. Most importantly, it seemed regressive.

“Let the people choose” was the cry of the day.

Fair enough. Had the World not seen enough of foolish kings and cruel dictators? Had we not had enough despotism to not want any more of that in the State? Of the People, By the People, For the People, cried the People themselves. Yes, the World had seen enough of force and violence and oppression. It was choice we craved, and Capitalism was the only way visible to get at it.

And, what have we chosen?

In my humble opinion, I believe humanity has underestimated its ability to evolve/adapt to situations. People, as they existed in their natural state, may benefit from a survival-of-the-fittest kind of system that is capitalism. But, as generations are born and die within this system, the more they internalize these values, these codes of behavior, this sense of what is alright, and what is not, the more our basic values and core principles shift.

What values does capitalism promote? What do we have in place of the things that even cruel kingdoms could boast of? What is it that we value if not valor and honor and intelligence and compassion and understanding and creativity and communication? What is it that we allow the system to teach our children? What does this system reward, appreciate, encourage?

Competition?

Money?

Consumption?

Greed?

No, maybe what we really need is a capitalist government with socialist people. And, I think somewhere the Indian constitution grasped this need. [Or did whichever constitution they “borrowed” the concept of Directive Principles from. Irish, I think?] The Directive Principles of State Policy, contained in part IV of the constitution of India, are not enforceable by any court, but the principles laid down therein are considered fundamental in the governance of the country, making it the duty of the state to use these as guiding principles to establish and maintain a just society.

But, as a nation what do we promote?

As a people, who do we idolize?

And, who shall our children look up to?

Atrocities against Humanity: Syria – Leave the Kids Alone!

“Images of the killings in and around Baniyas have transfixed Syrians. In one video that residents say shows victims in Ras al-Nabeh, the bodies of at least seven children and several adults lie tangled and bloody on a rain-soaked street. A baby girl, naked from the waist down, stares skyward, tiny hands balled into fists. Her round face is unblemished, but her belly is darkened and her legs and feet are charred into black cinders.”

This is not a scene from the World Wars, or Iraq or Vietnam. This is Syria, today.

Sometimes I think to be a speck of dust would be more noble an existence than being a part of this septic cesspool of filth that calls itself humanity.

And, for all those ready to jump in and point out that a lot worse happens all over the World, and has been happening for centuries, save your breath. That makes nothing better.

It’s, like, at least once a day, I am ashamed of being human. And, don’t ask me to concentrate on all the good things few human beings are doing to help other living beings on this planet (both human and not so) – we’re only fixing what *we* broke. It’s the least we ought to do, considering the most inhuman acts today are carried out by humans.

I don’t even know why this bothers me. But, it does. Perhaps because it’s happening right now. It’s happening as I sit in class, as I play DotA, as I read Game of Thrones, as I sleep and – the children. Why would you murder the children?

It’s all the same everywhere. Are people really inherently evil? I get angry too. If I knew I could get away with it, I’m sure there would be at least a couple of people who would end up dead (okay, 5) But what kind of creature tortures infants, man?

RIP people I never knew, and never will.. May you find better worlds.

TL;DR – Humans suck. Here’s some more proof.

The Hunt

Context – Firstpost India Minor’s rape: Let men who commit such crimes feel hunted

I usually refrain from saying this but

Kill them.

If there were to ever be such a thing as honor killings, this would have to be the context for it. Because these vile, disgusting, depraved individuals who prey on little children, and our nonchalant attitude towards them, are defining our society right now, like it or not. Defining our nation. And, I’m tired of being ashamed of being related to them. Even if only by nationality.

If we want to redeem ourselves, the next man found assaulting a minor, especially sexually, should be instantly killed by the people who discover him. [red handed] Kill him, cut off his head, and mount it on a fucking pole.

Don’t bother with beating him up, or trying to teach him a lesson before killing him, or attempting to make him feel as powerless as his victim was barely moments ago. These men are not just a result of an apathetic, overcrowded, misogynist, sexually hypocritical society; they are like animals who have tasted human flesh. You can’t redeem someone once he stoops to the level of abducting an infant to sexually use and discard. That’s the limit. That’s where empathy ends. It doesn’t matter what the circumstance. If you cannot treat it, you have to kill it, Indian society.

Enough.

 

Note: What I say above does not apply to any society other than India. I mean, maybe it does but I wouldn’t know about it. I doubt it though, because in the USA, as well as the Scandinavian countries, and many others I’m certain, there do exist facilities for the understanding and rehabilitation of individuals who might be actually sick and thus pedophile. However, in India, it’s more about ease of access. And unlikelihood of being caught-tried-punished. And that’s disgusting.

RIP Sudipto Gupta

22 year old, arrested and beaten up by the police so bad, one of his eyes was knocked out of its socket. Was denied immediate medical aid. Is dead.

His crime? Protesting.

“Mr Gupta was among hundreds of students who were protesting against the government’s decision to postpone college union elections. They were forced by the police on to a bus that was meant to take them to jail. Mr Gupta’s friends say he was battered by the police till he was unrecognisable.”

Read the entire sad, horrifying tale here.

They’re all my age. The educated youth of India, determined to brighten the bleak future of this appallingly unapologetic nation.

And, what is their reward? Rape and Murder.

Forget about “anti-social” elements; the villain here is the State itself.

Fuck Police Brutality. Do we really have no value or regard for human life whatsoever?

But, then, going by Hindu philosophy, it’s all karma, right? If not in this lifetime, then in the next, you must be sure your sins will find you out. Like the Buddhists say. Anyhow, the point being, maybe we’ve all been these horrible people who are the horrible people now, and this is all just atonement.

But, that’s not fair.

Not that that’s relevant. What is relevant is that another one of us has been murdered, and the illiterate government couldn’t give less of a fuck.

I don’t understand it. We have an overpopulation problem. We have an unemployment problem. Both our police force, as well as the judiciary, is horribly understaffed.

Why doesn’t someone do something?

Yes, if you look, you can always find the ones who are trying.

But, why is their reward only brutality?

Why are we killing our young?

And, for a country that considers age so supremely important, why won’t middle aged frustrated dudes stop raping and murdering teenagers?! And toddlers too, now.

What the hell is wrong with this country?!

Why belonging to Delhi should not be a Source of Pride

Note: It’s not like I loathe Delhi. Well, okay, I do sort of loathe Delhi, but the tone of this article, it’s only a rant. An angry rant that’s been bubbling inside me for years and years, after every 3 months that I spent in Delhi, annually. The City has its moments, I’m sure it does. But, when all of its people love it so very much, and express it so intensely, I can’t help but take the extreme opposite stance. I am the Devil’s advocate. Hypocritical, in that she only extremely pursues ideas she already believes in, but, give her an underdog in need of defending, and no one can ever go to more extreme or dramatic lengths. umm. It’s a flaw. So, anyway, no offence meant, Delhiites, except where it’s obvious. Yeah. You guys need to fix that.

I don’t like Delhi. It’s hostile and fake and the people who’ve lived there all their lives are so proud of the fact, it’s a mix of little-scary and very disgusting.

But, by all means, yay for the chaat and aalu parathas and all the monuments built a thousand years ago that smoke and pollution and people have determinedly destroyed! Love that culture, if you must, but let no one take pride in this city within a month of what happened.

If you all recall, the girl was lying, bleeding, on the side of the road for nearly two hours while people drove by, gawking and staring in that horrid way that people from that city believe they are automatically entitled to simply because they have eyes. The DELHI police refused to help her into the PCR van, and her injured naked friend had to do it instead, because the police didn’t want blood on their uniforms.

I mean, seriously, what is everyone from this city so proud of? The roads??

Well, I’m talking about the people! The undeniable truth! We’ve been to places all over this country! The kind of hostility that the Delhi gaze has, no other city in this nation compares. It isn’t about “a few rotten apples” or a “few stray incidents”. When we’re all being proud of things, isn’t it important to know just what we’re being so proud of? And, maybe we’re all being proud of the wrong things.

It’s a possibility, don’t you think? Just like the possibility that Delhi is actually a lovely, friendly, forgiving city that doesn’t worship clique mentalities and money and actually cares about each other on the street (to even a tiny amount over giving a fuck), and most importantly, is open to people who don’t fit in any of the ideas that the city has of the people who’re supposed to inhabit it. Or however the fuck that works. *shrugs* 

My point is, what I *loathe* about Delhi is just how proud people are for having lived in a territory for the longest time, about things that they have no control over. And how it changes everyone who *ever* lives there. It’s akin to being forced into a box, and if you resist, the City will cheerfully cut off whichever limb is in the way of fitting you in that box, and the people will cheer by the sidelines. That’s what I hate.

And, yes, I am not proud of India for the absence of the Rule of Law, I’m ashamed of how far the educated citizens of this state have allowed the Nation to fall as long as their immediate rights were protected, I’m disgusted by the kind of mentality that seems to be prevalent along the majority of its citizens. I’m horribly apologetic and deeply disturbed by the communal riots, and the State sanctioned anti-sikh riots of 1984. I’m saddened to think of the fact that while thousands died of hunger, food lay rotting in and around our godowns, bound by bureaucratic red-tape and feeding only rats. I’m offended by the reality of people from MY country pausing in the middle of slaughter to ask their victims what religion they belonged to. I’m ashamed of the way we treat our minorities, and the simultaneous pride we seem to take in our “diversity”.

But, I’m proud of the fact that we made a killer constitution that has actually held this fragmented sub-continent together! I’m proud of the leaders that sat together and conducted their constitutional debates wherein they laboriously went over every word, every concept, in order to ensure that their intentions could never be misunderstood! I’m proud of the fellow Indian who gave a jacket to the Tribal girl who was stripped naked and beaten up by other fellow citizens of ours, despite being turned on by the angry mob for doing so. I’m proud of every dead whistle-blower that our State could not protect, and I’m proud of the two authors who went ahead and read out portions of Salman Rushdie’s book despite fearing for their lives. I’m proud of the logic behind the colors on our flag, and the nice people of Delhi who give jackets to stray dogs on the Street in Winter. And, I’m proud to have access to first World opportunities despite living in a clearly third-world country. And, I’m proud of the changes my college, and people from my college (also Indians) are making in the World. I’m proud of the unrelenting activists, and the people fighting corruption, and all the outrage that this incident brought forth from the public.

But, until, as a people, we can feel ashamed of the things “our people” are capable of, things will never change. And, as long as we keep defending entire systems as a whole, on some level we’re legitimizing the wrong things that do happen. Especially when it comes to attitudes and mentalities.

I mean, be proud, na. Love it! Like it’s said, Everywhere you go, there’s lots to love and hate. But, the things that bother me about Delhi, they sicken and frighten me to my core. So, please understand if I can’t just sit down and swallow it when someone tells me how Delhi is a fabulous city, or how proud they are to belong from there.

Just voicing my polite dissent.

On Arresting those Elements of Society that Instigate the Masses on Communal or Regional Grounds

Perhaps.. but this vigilance must be balanced against the very important freedom of speech and expression. The fact that people will make hateful and instigating speeches is not as much a disadvantage as one might believe. It is these people, with these words that are echoing what people comfortably speak within their homes. By reacting strongly to them, as free and aware citizens of the State, we send out a message to every single person who thinks that way. When we discuss why what they’re saying is wrong, we give everyone an opportunity to know why we think so.

It’s the same thing with Honey Singh. These people are just reflecting our society. Arresting them is not the answer. Constant dialogue against what they’re saying, filling the air with awareness, changing the mindsets of those people who are not completely convinced by these guys, and strongly condemning their words as a citizenry, *that* is the correct way to move forward.

It’s a sad state of affairs that such ranting can inspire such fanaticism in our country. That is what we must aim to change, so that tomorrow if such elements stand up and begin to talk crap like this, the people listening should equally condemn him. Or even better, ignore him completely. That is the only incentive for communal politics to stop in India.