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cataphract
05 Jun 13,, 02:05
Found this article on reddit today. A really nice perspective on how Nehru's ideas of secularism have impeded reformists in the very communities that he wanted to protect:

The Nehruvian condescension towards minorities - Livemint (http://www.livemint.com/Opinion/h953KJCyrVIMah1Cp8OTwO/The-Nehruvian-condescension-towards-minorities.html)


The Nehruvian condescension towards minorities

pdated: Tue, Jun 04 2013. 07 02 PM IST
“I charge you with communalism because you are bringing forward a law about monogamy only for Hindu community. Take it from me that the Muslim community is prepared to have it but you are not brave enough to do it.”

These words were spoken by J.B. Kripalani, who was decidedly not from the Hindu right, in 1955 during the parliamentary debate on the Hindu Code Bill. Kripalani was castigating then prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru for being communal, a charge we agree with. Yet, it is Nehru who is upheld as a paragon of liberal and secular values, and generation after generation of intellectuals has internalized his dubious standard.

Malini Parthasarathy, director of The Hindu Centre for Politics and Public Policy, echoed Nehru in a debate on Twitter, when she said that reform in the Muslim community should happen through “persuasion” rather than “imposition”. Parthasarathy said that India must take group rights seriously “if we want the world to believe that we are a genuine democracy.” But that does not answer why citizens affiliated to one religion should be “forced” to face difficulties in adopting children, for example—and if their religion is indeed opposed to adoption or other practices, why not let those individuals decide?
Even Infosys Ltd founder N.R. Narayana Murthy has argued that reform in the Muslim community should come from “them”. Delivering the first Darbari Seth Memorial Lecture in 2002, Murthy said on the issue of having a uniform civil code that the onus to introduce it should be on leaders of a given community “if they want their community to prosper.” Should Indians not care about the welfare and prosperity of their fellow Indians?

Many intellectuals and politicians dismiss as “communal” those advocating for dissolution of identity distinctions enforced by the state. Kripalani would have been called communal today. There are already special education schemes for minorities. Now, the National Advisory Council chaired by Sonia Gandhi has recommended that the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme should have a special minority focus. Special courts are being created to expedite trials for Muslims. Don’t undertrials of other communities deserve swift justice? Why not reform the judicial system to speed up justice delivery for all Indians?

India rejected Nehru’s economic ideology of state control and government-led industrialization, embracing economic liberalism in 1991 with impressive results for all sections of society, as Columbia University economists Jagdish Bhagwati and Arvind Panagariya have comprehensively documented.
In the interest of social harmony and national integration, it is high time the Indian state breaks from Nehru’s construct of seeing religious minorities as “separate from us” and stops indulging in the “soft bigotry of low expectations” from certain communities. It is a construct that manufactures distrust in society and encourages Indians to be suspicious of each other because the state emphasizes our differences, rather than our common heritage, while making us compete for goods and services for which an artificial shortage is created by faulty economic policies.

Hamid Dalwai, a Marathi Muslim who faced ostracism from his community for being a radical reformist, understood this. He advocated women’s emancipation through education and employment at the social level, and for a liberal-secular government at the political level. In his book Muslim Politics in Secular India, he critiqued minority politics for continuing to further the separatist mindset of the pre-partition Muslim League.
The real problem, Dalwai wrote, was Muslim—or what would today be called Islamist—obscurantism. Dalwai also argued that the right answer to Muslim communalism is not its Hindu variant, but genuine secularism. Indeed, Hindu communalism is largely reactive whereas the Muslim opposition to separation of state and religion is theologically central is globally visible. Despite this reality, the intelligentsia attempts to falsely draw an equivalence between both.

Dalwai wrote that Indian Muslim intellectuals are more likely to blame Hindus rather than introspect. Things have not changed much since his advocacy for Muslim reform—indeed, leftists are more likely to support Islamists.

Advocates of religion-based group rights do not admit that social backwardness is hardly exogenous. It is not scientific to call for socio-economic adjustments across communities without asking why those disparities exist in the first place. In the case of the Muslim community, it is clear that some backwardness is endogenous because of the community’s attitudes towards women, especially women’s employment, as documented in the Sachar committee report.

Reform is the need of the hour, and entails confronting what Dalwai characterized as “obscurantist medievalism” rather than evading it under the deceptive label of “minority protection” and “secularism”. The new standard should be that anyone who claims that such reform is a “Muslim problem” is communal, for it is a problem for all Indians if a large section of India’s society is consumed by religion-sanctioned and state-enforced orthodoxy.
Scholars like Partha Chatterjee have pointed out that the Indian Right is simply not threatened by genuine secularism, and that if a strict separation of religion and state is accepted, this would—in his left-liberal view—be incompatible with religion-based positive discrimination.

This exposes the game of left-liberals—“formal” equality is not enough, the ever-subjective “substantive” or “contextual” equality is what will be demanded. Unfortunately, sections of the Right fall in this trap by failing to advocate the former, which would force the Left to explicitly defend the latter.

In their everyday lives, Indians continue to resist the divisive messages issued by the intelligentsia and are forging a deeper, common identity. In India’s melting pot—and urbanizing landscape—customs are cross-pollinating more than ever before, making for a unique and constantly evolving culture. It is government’s insistence on telling Indians what their identity is that creates fissures in society. Unfortunately, India’s first prime minister set this standard—it is time we changed it.

Rajeev Mantri is director of GPSK Investment Group and Harsh Gupta is a Singapore-based finance professional.

Firestorm
05 Jun 13,, 17:29
So Nehru's economic policies failed miserably and brought the country to the brink of bankruptcy, his foreign policy came crashing down in 1962 and his warped definition of Secularism has hamstrung Indian minorities to this day. Is there no end to the damage that this man and his descendants did?

The biggest problem with Indian secularism is that the constitution says that people of all religions should be treated equal before the law, but in reality that is not the case. In many cases people are still judged according to laws made for their own religion, some of which are plainly discriminatory. What is necessary to have true secularism is a uniform civil code, which nobody in the country seems to be interested in.

Double Edge
05 Jun 13,, 18:20
This is a difficult discussion because the issue itself is contentious within the various communities themselves. So lets take the articles byline.

It is government’s insistence on telling Indians what their identity is that creates fissures in society

Using this wiki article for basis.

Hindu code bills - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hindu_code_bills)


What was the purpose behind the hindu code bill ?
Unify the Hindu community, which ideally would be a first step towards unifying the nation. Nehru and his supporters insisted that the Hindu community, which comprised 80% of the Indian population, first needed to be united before any actions were taken to unify the rest of India. Therefore, the codification of Hindu personal law became a symbolic beginning on the road to establishing the Indian national identity.Nehru also felt that because he was Hindu, it was his prerogative to codify specifically Hindu law, as opposed to Muslim or Jewish law.

Who is a hindu ?
The Code established "Hindu" to be a negative category that would include all those who did not identify as a Muslim, Jew, Christian, or Parsi. Such a broad designation ignored the tremendous diversity of region, tradition and custom in Hinduism. Those who practised Sikhism, Jainism, and Buddhism were considered to be Hindus under the jurisdiction of the Code Bill. While these had originally included aspects of Hinduism, by this time they had evolved into unique religions with their own customs, traditions, and rituals. There was also significant controversy over what was established to be Hindu personal law. Sanctioned under Hinduism were a variety of practices and perspectives. Therefore, the administration had to arbitrate between these variations, legitimating some and disregarding or marginalising others.

The application of the Hindu Code Bills have been controversial in determining who is to be called a Hindu and who is entitled to be exempted from certain rules of Hindu law.

Govt has not arrived at a positive definition of what a hindu is. So on this basis govt is not even telling Hindus who they are :)

Personal Law dealing with muslims, christians, parsis & jews date to the British era. After independence we just continued them.

Work on the Hindu code bill started in the 20s and yet into the 50s there was still so much opposition that Nehru had to subdivide it into 4 bills if there was to be any chance of passing anything.


Nehru split the Code Bill into four separate bills, including the Hindu Marriage Act, the Hindu Succession Act, the Hindu Minority and Guardianship Act, and the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act. These were met with significantly less opposition, and between the years of 1952 and 1956 each was effectively introduced in and passed by Parliament.

Now we get to J.B. Kripalani who might not be from the right but nonetheless represented the conservative voice.


there was significant opposition from various Hindu politicians, organisations and devotees who saw themselves unjustly singled out as the sole religious community whose laws were to be reformed.


So why no movement with other communities ?

Though Nehru himself likely would have favored a uniform code, he knew that personal laws were linked with religious identity in India and therefore could not be easily abolished. Recognizing that what he wanted was not a political reality he settled for an unenforceable clause.

Some resistance to the code was on the grounds that its imposition would destroy the cultural identity of minorities, the protection of which is crucial to democracy.
More likely just getting the Hindu code bills passed was such an uphill struggle that he did not have the stomach to tackle other communities.

Which leads to article 44 of the constitution.


A compromise was reached in the inclusion in the first draft of an article that compelled the state "to endeavour to secure for the citizens a uniform civil code throughout the territory of India." This clause—which equated to a goal, not a right—became Article 44 in the Constitution. It was widely criticised by proponents of a uniform code because it contained no mechanism and provided no timetable for enforcement. However, Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and others insisted on its inclusion, arguing that though only symbolic it was an important step towards national unity.
Imposition vs persuasion.

Who in the minority communities is going to stand up and get this ball rolling recalling what Nehru had to go through.

So, did the Hindu code bills succeed in their intent ie unifying 'Hindus' ?


These continue to be controversial to the present day among women's, religious, and nationalist groups

And what does this signify ? Certain groups are going to be opposed no matter what. But the bills did pass in parliament so the majority agreed that this was the best that could have been achieved at the time.

And that was just the byline, there is a lot of stuff crammed into that op-ed.

Have posted about Hamid Dalwai here earlier. Clearly a man before his time, its a pity he died young.

Tronic
05 Jun 13,, 19:44
Govt has not arrived at a positive definition of what a hindu is. So on this basis govt is not even telling Hindus who they are :)

Personal Law dealing with muslims, christians, parsis & jews date to the British era. After independence we just continued them.


The British even had a separate personal law for Sikhs as well, the Anand Marriage Act 1909, but it was scrapped by the Indian government soon after independence and Sikhs put under the Hindu Marriage Act. An action which created mistrust of the central government in Punjab among the Sikhs. Coupled with few other grievances, it played into the Sikh separatism movement.

So in this regard, I totally agree with the article's statement that, "It is government’s insistence on telling Indians what their identity is that creates fissures in society".

cataphract
05 Jun 13,, 21:03
I wish we had French-style secularism where the gov't is completely dissociated from religion, not simply trying to appease every religious community. That way, we wouldn't need separate personal laws for Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Jews, Parsis, Jedis and Pastafarians. Uniform civil code ftw.

cataphract
05 Jun 13,, 21:04
So Nehru's economic policies failed miserably and brought the country to the brink of bankruptcy, his foreign policy came crashing down in 1962 and his warped definition of Secularism has hamstrung Indian minorities to this day. Is there no end to the damage that this man and his descendants did?

The biggest problem with Indian secularism is that the constitution says that people of all religions should be treated equal before the law, but in reality that is not the case. In many cases people are still judged according to laws made for their own religion, some of which are plainly discriminatory. What is necessary to have true secularism is a uniform civil code, which nobody in the country seems to be interested in.

Well he did establish a good foundation for heavy industry and the IITs. That's all the good I can think of him.

Doktor
05 Jun 13,, 22:10
Is it that hard to just impose any secular system Indian Government would sees fit?

Seems to me that a fear from temporary outburst is holding while country as a hostage for a long period of time.

cataphract
06 Jun 13,, 03:11
Is it that hard to just impose any secular system Indian Government would sees fit?

Seems to me that a fear from temporary outburst is holding while country as a hostage for a long period of time.

No one has the political will to do it. The various communities in India have become addicted to their special statuses anyway.

Double Edge
06 Jun 13,, 07:44
I wish we had French-style secularism where the gov't is completely dissociated from religion, not simply trying to appease every religious community. That way, we wouldn't need separate personal laws for Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Jews, Parsis, Jedis and Pastafarians. Uniform civil code ftw.
Have you ever lived in France. The kind of issues they have are ones we will never see in India or for that matter any other country that practices common law.

Am very happy to live in a country where simple religious symbols are not considered an affront to the secular state if worn within a public institution. You want work in a public institution ? then lose that head scarf or turban and wipe that tilak off your forehead. Wonder how much of our public that would alienate over nothing.

Hey Manmohan, we'd like to have you in government but that turban is just gonna have to go !

French style secularism is implemented with civil law which applies all over the continent, across Russia right up to China. Turkey & Egypt also have to deal with it. Its much more imposing.

You think imposing will work in India. We saw that with states reorganisation committee in the 50s when the centre wanted to impose Hindi as the national language all over the country. Hey if it was French style we would have had yet another insurgency in the south.

No thanks.


The British even had a separate personal law for Sikhs as well, the Anand Marriage Act 1909, but it was scrapped by the Indian government soon after independence and Sikhs put under the Hindu Marriage Act. An action which created mistrust of the central government in Punjab among the Sikhs. Coupled with few other grievances, it played into the Sikh separatism movement.

So in this regard, I totally agree with the article's statement that, "It is government’s insistence on telling Indians what their identity is that creates fissures in society".
Controversy Exhibit #1: Sikhs, Jains & Buddhists got told who they were.

cataphract
08 Jun 13,, 02:06
Have you ever lived in France. The kind of issues they have are ones we will never see in India or for that matter any other country that practices common law.

Am very happy to live in a country where simple religious symbols are not considered an affront to the secular state if worn within a public institution. You want work in a public institution ? then lose that head scarf or turban and wipe that tilak off your forehead. Wonder how much of our public that would alienate over nothing.

Hey Manmohan, we'd like to have you in government but that turban is just gonna have to go !

French style secularism is implemented with civil law which applies all over the continent, across Russia right up to China. Turkey & Egypt also have to deal with it. Its much more imposing.

You think imposing will work in India. We saw that with states reorganisation committee in the 50s when the centre wanted to impose Hindi as the national language all over the country. Hey if it was French style we would have had yet another insurgency in the south.

No thanks.


Controversy Exhibit #1: Sikhs, Jains & Buddhists got told who they were.

Fine, let me rephrase. We should have a gov't that is completely disconnected from religion. It should not make ANY decisions based on a community's or an individual's religious beliefs. Social welfare schemes should not be tied to religious identity. Public holidays should not be religious holidays. Personal law should not be based on religion. At the same time, the gov't should not impede anybody's religious observances as long as they do not impinge upon others. You are free to wear a turban, but not free to keep your neighbours awake at night with Diwali firecrackers or wake them up at 4 AM with prayer calls. I guess that doesn't sound French and I can't give another example.

Double Edge
08 Jun 13,, 10:39
We should have a gov't that is completely disconnected from religion.
Is there anything in our constitution to make you think otherwise ?


It should not make ANY decisions based on a community's or an individual's religious beliefs. Social welfare schemes should not be tied to religious identity. Public holidays should not be religious holidays. Personal law should not be based on religion.
This is where things start getting into political territory which will play out in a partisan manner. How to remain objective here.

The poor come into the cities for work and see how those better off live and would like to have a piece of the action. But they cannot do that and it creates friction. So we resort to redistribution to keep the peace.

The argument centers on the extent of redistribution when it should really focus on the creation of opportunity for all. But there are vested interests that oppose this. In fact its gotten more pernicious of late. The people thanks to the never ending hype from scams perceive only corporates & politicos getting amazingly rich and have decided to obstruct the passing of legislation. Less laws passed, fewer people get richer. The oppositions job right now or lets say all they can do is oppose anything and everything.


At the same time, the gov't should not impede anybody's religious observances as long as they do not impinge upon others. You are free to wear a turban, but not free to keep your neighbours awake at night with Diwali firecrackers or wake them up at 4 AM with prayer calls. I guess that doesn't sound French and I can't give another example.
Actually it sounds very American. Zoning laws and individual jurisdictions down to the town & village level.

Some things are legal in some places and not in others as opposed to being more consistent when ordered from on high as is the present case.

This will require much more autonomy between states & centre than presently. Its in the books.

The US-India business council identifies only 8 states that are considered business friendly. These states will become more prosperous than others and then demand more autonomy from the centre. I see the Tamils in the forefront of this movement.

Going further means being able to make your own laws in individual towns & villages. Will increase public participation in the process.

How are we to deal with this.

antimony
09 Jun 13,, 08:14
So Nehru's economic policies failed miserably and brought the country to the brink of bankruptcy, his foreign policy came crashing down in 1962 and his warped definition of Secularism has hamstrung Indian minorities to this day. Is there no end to the damage that this man and his descendants did?

The biggest problem with Indian secularism is that the constitution says that people of all religions should be treated equal before the law, but in reality that is not the case. In many cases people are still judged according to laws made for their own religion, some of which are plainly discriminatory. What is necessary to have true secularism is a uniform civil code, which nobody in the country seems to be interested in.

Be aware that a uniform civil code would impact Hindus across the board, on matters such as inheritance, adoption and everything in between. While I do not particularly favour laws based on religion, it is a simple truth that communities across India, even those belonging to the same ethnic communities and religions may follow different customs. Apart from removing a few ridiculous laws that actually impinge on the rights of others (like the one that allows 4 wives and the trivial triple talaq) and formulating some non religion based laws (such as the Special Marriages Act), I would recommend leaving the others alone. It is not the government's business to intervene in our lives, unless someonee rights are getting abused.

cataphract
10 Jun 13,, 03:43
Is there anything in our constitution to make you think otherwise ?

Originally, our constitution made no reference to secularism. The clause was added in the 70s amid Indira Gandhi's demagoguery. Beyond that, I would have to read up on the constitution to remember the exact wording.

This is where things start getting into political territory which will play out in a partisan manner. How to remain objective here.

The poor come into the cities for work and see how those better off live and would like to have a piece of the action. But they cannot do that and it creates friction. So we resort to redistribution to keep the peace.

The argument centers on the extent of redistribution when it should really focus on the creation of opportunity for all. But there are vested interests that oppose this. In fact its gotten more pernicious of late. The people thanks to the never ending hype from scams perceive only corporates & politicos getting amazingly rich and have decided to obstruct the passing of legislation. Less laws passed, fewer people get richer. The oppositions job right now or lets say all they can do is oppose anything and everything.

I know and I couldn't agree more. Let's imagine the vested interests gone for a moment. I have nothing against redistribution, only that it should be based on personal/family income rather than the larger community's socio-economic status. Give poor Hindus, poor Muslims, poor Gujjars and poor Gonds reservations, subsidies and tax breaks. Tax the daylights out of the rich Hindus, rich Gujjars and rich Gonds.



Actually it sounds very American. Zoning laws and individual jurisdictions down to the town & village level.

Some things are legal in some places and not in others as opposed to being more consistent when ordered from on high as is the present case.

This will require much more autonomy between states & centre than presently. Its in the books.

The US-India business council identifies only 8 states that are considered business friendly. These states will become more prosperous than others and then demand more autonomy from the centre. I see the Tamils in the forefront of this movement.

Going further means being able to make your own laws in individual towns & villages. Will increase public participation in the process.

How are we to deal with this.

I don't see the connection with zoning laws and federalism :confused:, although they are definitely good things. On the topic of religion and state, India needs to go further than the US, and remove state endorsement of religious holidays and institutions. The Americans have Christmas and we have every holiday in the book. And why do temples sitting on billions of dollars of endowments and mosques sitting fat on Wahabi money need tax exemptions?

anil
10 Jun 13,, 05:17
There are two ideological parties in india:

1) Indian National Congress: A party of high castes whose aim is to preserve the caste hierarchy, sometimes regardless of religion. Hinduism belongs to high castes, the low castes can have islam, christianity, Divide and rule etc etc.

2) BJP: Began as a nationalist party who believed that only the high caste hindus desired for the well being of india. Over the decades, its support base has cut across both the high and the low castes. Today it aggressively campaigns for a contemporary form of hinduism called "hindutva" which secretly works for the abolishment of caste hierarchy for the purpose of unification.

Both the INC and BJP are each others mortal threats. Without caste hierarchy the INC cannot triumph and without hindutva the BJP cannot triumph.

IMO, "indian secularism" is nothing but a congress master stroke giving legal entitlement for the minority religious groups to leech of the majority. On the surface it appears as if it benefits a minority religion but it actually maintains the status quo of the old caste order.

It was the british raj who originally believed that ruling india meant dividing it rather than uniting it. No doubt the INC has inherited the legacy of the raj and the BJP is pursuing a policy which will most probably not work. IMO, the caste hierarchy will outlive political parties and gods.

lemontree
10 Jun 13,, 05:36
The INC is made up of the erstwhile Rajas, Nawabs and Princes who formed the ruling class in the states. These old royals of yore have some sort of holding on the locals of their areas but it is slowing loosing ground to other regional parties and national parties. These power groups came to power based on old loyalties.

BJP on the other hand has its leadership covering all strata of society and is more cosmopolitan in nature, however it has one major disagvantage is that many of it leaders have very retrogarde policy mindset that takes them many steps back.

antimony
10 Jun 13,, 05:59
I know and I couldn't agree more. Let's imagine the vested interests gone for a moment. I have nothing against redistribution, only that it should be based on personal/family income rather than the larger community's socio-economic status. Give poor Hindus, poor Muslims, poor Gujjars and poor Gonds reservations, subsidies and tax breaks. Tax the daylights out of the rich Hindus, rich Gujjars and rich Gonds.


Steady now, I would caution against this "tax to death" thing. All you would achieve if making people dig out loopholes. I would look at getting the inefficiencies ironed out of the system


And why do temples sitting on billions of dollars of endowments and mosques sitting fat on Wahabi money need tax exemptions?

Agree, we don't. Cut them all off. We could do with more privatization of religion in our country.

antimony
10 Jun 13,, 06:24
Today it aggressively campaigns for a contemporary form of hinduism called "hindutva" which secretly works for the abolishment of caste hierarchy for the purpose of unification.


Caste abolishment my foot. The BJP plays the caste game just like everyone else, only with different castes., Also they are definitely the party of the North Indian Hindu merchant castes and other upper castes. AND ... they want to bring in a unified, aggressive, conservative Rambhakt vanarsena version of Hinduism, that would change the currently pluralistic Hindu society, for the purposes of increasing their party base.



It was the british raj who originally believed that ruling india meant dividing it rather than uniting it. No doubt the INC has inherited the legacy of the raj and the BJP is pursuing a policy which will most probably not work. IMO, the caste hierarchy will outlive political parties and gods.

When exactly were we united? We were as united/ disunited as Europe was.

Deltacamelately
10 Jun 13,, 08:32
Modi is coming.

Let us see what it doesn't change. ;)

anil
10 Jun 13,, 12:24
Here's why BJP will not win the 2014 elections. This is an incomplete list of regional parties from 22 states and there are many more.

Andhra Pradesh
Telugu Desam Party
YSR Congress Party
Telangana Rashtra Samithi
All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen

Arunachal Pradesh
All India Trinamool Congress
Peoples Party of Arunachal

Assam
All India United Democratic Front
Asom Gana Parishad
Bodoland People's Front

Bihar
Janata Dal (United)
Lok Jan Shakti Party
Rashtriya Janata Dal

Goa
Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party

Haryana
Haryana Janhit Congress (BL)
Indian National Lok Dal

Jammu & Kashmir
Jammu & Kashmir National Conference
Jammu & Kashmir National Panthers Party
Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Democratic Party

Jharkhand
AJSU Party
Jharkhand Mukti Morcha
Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantrik)
Rashtriya Janata Dal

Karnataka
Janata Dal (Secular)

Kerala
Janata Dal (Secular)
Kerala Congress (M)
IUML

Maharashtra
Maharashtra Navnirman Sena
Shiv Sena
NCP

Manipur
Manipur People’s Party
Naga Peoples Front
People's Democratic Alliance
All India Trinamool Congress
Manipur State Congress Party
National People's Party
Rashtriya Janata Dal

Meghalaya
United Democratic Party
Hill State People’s Democratic Party

Mizoram
Mizo National Front
Mizoram People’s Conference
Zoram Nationalist Party

Nagaland
Nagaland Peoples Front

Odisha
Biju Janata Dal

Puducherry
All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam
Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam
All India N.R. Congress
Pattali Makkal Katchi

Punjab
Shiromani Akali Dal

Sikkim
Sikkim Democratic Front

Tamil Nadu
All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam
Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam
Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam

Uttar Pradesh
Bahujan Samaj Party
Samajwadi Party

West Bengal
All India Forward Bloc
All India Trinamool Congress
Revolutionary Socialist Party

cataphract
11 Jun 13,, 01:14
Steady now, I would caution against this "tax to death" thing. All you would achieve if making people dig out loopholes. I would look at getting the inefficiencies ironed out of the system

That's a topic for another day. But a welfare state like Canada or Scandinavia would be nice IMO.


We could do with more privatization of religion in our country.

You've put it far more eloquently than I could. Thank you for that :)

cataphract
11 Jun 13,, 01:19
Caste abolishment my foot. The BJP plays the caste game just like everyone else, only with different castes., Also they are definitely the party of the North Indian Hindu merchant castes and other upper castes. AND ... they want to bring in a unified, aggressive, conservative Rambhakt vanarsena version of Hinduism, that would change the currently pluralistic Hindu society, for the purposes of increasing their party base.



When exactly were we united? We were as united/ disunited as Europe was.

Actually, there is some truth to the statement that Hindutva is against casteism. Hindutva is essentially a mirror image of fundamentalist Abrahamic religions, with rigid rules, conservative outlook on "morals" and a tendency to impose religious will by force. A positive aspect of the mirror image is its attempt to appeal to the lower castes by breaking caste barriers.

Double Edge
11 Jun 13,, 08:52
Here's why BJP will not win the 2014 elections. This is an incomplete list of regional parties from 22 states and there are many more.
We are in the regional parties era now. Both national parties like Congress & BJP are going to lose out as a result. So its up to the national parties to be able to cut deals with regionals if they want to form a winning coalition. The thinking is that Congress is better at this wheeling and dealing than BJP.

BJP losing general elections three times in a row is not good for democracy. I mean, there is still a large gap between runner up and third place isn't it. BJP becomes like a permanent opposition party whose job is to obstruct business and search for problems where there are none. It will also empower their radicals as the moderating effect of possibly winning isn't there.


But a welfare state like Canada or Scandinavia would be nice IMO.
How to fund it ?

Aruna Roy of RTI fame quits the NAC because the PM won't agree to minimum wages for NREGA. He cannot because the rating agencies have us under the gun for budget deficits and threaten to relegate us to junk status.

anil
11 Jun 13,, 10:16
It will also empower their radicals as the moderating effect of possibly winning isn't there.
Contrary to beliefs the current BJP has mellowed out and will probably mellow out further under narendra modi. IMO much of his "bad boy" image is sensationalism. I don't think anyone is left with a lot of options when faced with mob mentality.

Firestorm
12 Jun 13,, 00:28
Be aware that a uniform civil code would impact Hindus across the board, on matters such as inheritance, adoption and everything in between.
The Hindu Code Bills of the 50's set about to do exactly that and succeeded in most respects. But our leaders in their infinite wisdom chose not to carry out the reforms in the laws for other communities. In fact, they even took retrograde steps in some cases, like the Shah Bano affair in the 80's.



While I do not particularly favour laws based on religion, it is a simple truth that communities across India, even those belonging to the same ethnic communities and religions may follow different customs. Apart from removing a few ridiculous laws that actually impinge on the rights of others (like the one that allows 4 wives and the trivial triple talaq) and formulating some non religion based laws (such as the Special Marriages Act), I would recommend leaving the others alone. It is not the government's business to intervene in our lives, unless someone rights are getting abused.
Different customs are fine. No one is stopping them from behaving according to their customs as long as they don't adversely impact someone else, even if that person is from the same religion. A court of law cannot and should not judge two people differently just because they were born in families following different religions. Otherwise, just stop claiming that the country is secular, because it is not. Today a Muslim woman enjoys less rights than a Hindu or Christian woman in India when she gets divorced solely because the state has decided that since she was born in a Muslim family she doesn't deserve the same rights as another woman born in a family following another religion. Isn't that state sponsored discrimination? Isn't it interference?

The only way to stop this is to prohibit the courts to dispense different levels of justice based on a person's religion. That is impossible without a Uniform Civil Code. I would go so far as to say that secularism itself is impossible without a UCC.

Double Edge
12 Jun 13,, 11:59
Contrary to beliefs the current BJP has mellowed out and will probably mellow out further under narendra modi. IMO much of his "bad boy" image is sensationalism. I don't think anyone is left with a lot of options when faced with mob mentality.
What is your basis for the underlined bit.

antimony
12 Jun 13,, 19:33
Contrary to beliefs the current BJP has mellowed out and will probably mellow out further under narendra modi. IMO much of his "bad boy" image is sensationalism. I don't think anyone is left with a lot of options when faced with mob mentality.

Fucking BS.

This is what the BJP wants, when they do get to vent. This is not some random guy on the street, this is a Rajya Sabha MP and party vice president in Madhya Pradesh. They are not any different from the Talibunnies, except in lack of firepower.

No cellphones for unmarried girls, no jeans for women: BJP MP - Times Of India (http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2013-06-11/india/39897938_1_bjp-mp-babulal-gaur-statements)


INDORE: Joining the ranks of 'self-appointed' guardians of public morality, BJP's Rajya Sabha member and Madhya Pradesh party vice-president Raghunandan Sharma has come up with bizarre suggestions to check crime against women: Girls shouldn't be allowed to use mobile phones before marriage and women shouldn't wear jeans.

This is your example of mellowing out ???:mad::mad::mad:

anil
13 Jun 13,, 05:01
What is your basis for the underlined bit.
Personal experience.

I followed politics in the 90s era and it was the wildest in BJPs history. Todays BJP is actually a clean version. Most of its old wild leaders have been sidelined. Many have disappeared and many have switched sides with congress also.

Today you see BJP politicians like Arun jaitley, Nirmala Sitaraman, Ravi Shankar Prasad etc speak on TV like an aristocrat englishman's aatma has entered their body. Arun jaitley and narendra modi speaking about economics etc etc. Back in the 90s, they weren't politicians in the BJP who talked like this. It was very amateurish and aggressive.

There is a guy called Anand Patwardhan who basically is one those crafty morons making a living by comparing hindutva with nazism. So naturally, top universities from around the world para drop on his films and they show it to their students as if they have found el dorado of fundamentalism. He has made two documentaries about BJP in the 90s. Most of it is hindutva=nazism propaganda but in it you'll find old archives that will give you an idea about the BJP of the 90s.

Ram ke naam can be found on youtube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UFdqadr-eyY)

Pitr, Putr aur Dharmayuddha is also available if you can find it. The title sounds jhakaas when translate it into english: Father, Son and Holy War.

Check out the cover
http://images.tate.org.uk/sites/default/files/styles/grid-normal-8-cols/public/images/fathersonholywar.macho__0.jpg

Released in 1995 but its still running somewhere around the world

Tate Modern, Starr Auditorium
Wednesday 24 July 2013, 19.00 – 21.30
£5, concessions available

Season ticket £30 / £20 concessions. Available to book by tel 020 7887 8888.
Anand Patwardhan: Pitr, Putr Aur Dharmayuddha /Father, Son and Holy War | Tate (http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/film/anand-patwardhan-pitr-putr-aur-dharmayuddha-father-son-and-holy-war)

Double Edge
13 Jun 13,, 09:58
ok, so i'm also on the same page and wanted to see your reasons. For me its about the moderation thesis. A party that aspires to hold office and maintain it has to compromise to get partners to agree. The era of thumping majorities at the national level is over, its all about coalitions nowadays. BJP exited office in 2004, so they've had to mellow out if they have any hopes of returning.

Found a fascinating paper by a French prof, an india watcher, that seeks to 'refine that moderation thesis'. The moderation thesis derives from the behaviour of extreme left & catholic parties in Europe. Does it necessarily carry over to India. In some cases yes and in others no. It's not a definite yes or no. BJP compromises when it needs support of others and here their moderation is only selective rather than uniform but when its dominant can lead to excess. Its a mixed picture. Difficult to predict.

Refining the "Moderation Thesis" Regarding "Radical Parties". The Jana Sangh and the BJP between Hindu Nationalism and Coalition Politics in India | Sciences Po | Dec 2010 (http://www.sciencespo.fr/ceri/en/content/refining-moderation-thesis-regarding-radical-parties-jana-sangh-and-bjp-between-hindu-nation)

You mentioned the rough times in the 90s. well this paper goes further back and talks about the 50s & 60s when the RSS was just as uncompromising. RSS has been violent and then accomodating twice since independence. Oscillates between those two positions. India's case isn't linear as moderation thesis would suggest its more of an inverted U curve. There are additional factors that need to be considered as well as shown in the below two tables.

http://i.imgur.com/62RjJQ4.png

http://i.imgur.com/FyVt5a5.png

As far as the OP's article is considered, the charge of diluting secularism can be more directed towards Rajiv & Narasimha than Nehru or Indira. In the sense the latter pair were more rigid in the 50-70s when it came to following the consititution than the former two PMs. This weakening also results in more empowering of the radical hindu right.


The conclusion one may draw from the Indian case is not that democracy is not able to make radical parties more moderate, but that democracy cannot be reduced to elections. Democracy relies also on the rule of law. If this basic principle is not observed, electoral competition may result in “majoritarianism” (Kaviraj 1996), with the religious majority becoming a permanently dominant political majority. Such an ethnicization of democracy would inevitably weaken the rights of the minorities (be they religious or linguistic), whereas these rights are supposed to be protected in a democratic regime.

So far, the Indian political system has not shown the capacity to “lock in” the BJP’s moderation process at the center, mostly because its government lacked the political will to enforce the principles of the Indian Constitution.

Anand Patwardhan - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anand_Patwardhan) is interesting :)

anil
15 Jun 13,, 18:03
So you are aware of both congress and BJP's activities and it shouldn't stop you from adding 2+2 together

In most countries, the majority group remains fair and neutral unless taken granted. Since there are already many hindus around in india the average hindu does not feel the need to secure(practice) it. On the other hand, most indian minorities feel the duty(need) to secure(practice) it to the level of orthodoxy and even naked fundamentalism because their numbers are in minority. The majority too instinctively recognizes that much of the practice of islam and christianity in india is political, a form of resistance meant to provoke. In short, this is the actual battle. What part does secularism play here? http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/images/darksmiles/cool.gif

Far too many things happened in the nineties. Economic liberalisation, disinvestment, BJP govt, prabhu deva etc. Remember the mid nineties when TV and theaters were bombarded with dubbed southern movies like roja, kadhalan, gentlemen, hindustani etc. Something radical happened with the north and south in the mid nineties and very few people actually realise it. Again, notice the era. It's just a case of what works, what used to work and what doesn't work. From chaos to standardisation and from temple politics to development politics. One thing which hasn't changed is hindutva because this is eventually meant to cut down regionalism.

cataphract
15 Jun 13,, 22:06
So you are aware of both congress and BJP's activities and it shouldn't stop you from adding 2+2 together

In most countries, the majority group remains fair and neutral unless taken granted. Since there are already many hindus around in india the average hindu does not feel the need to secure(practice) it. On the other hand, most indian minorities feel the duty(need) to secure(practice) it to the level of orthodoxy and even naked fundamentalism because their numbers are in minority. The majority too instinctively recognizes that much of the practice of islam and christianity in india is political, a form of resistance meant to provoke. In short, this is the actual battle. What part does secularism play here? http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/images/darksmiles/cool.gif

Far too many things happened in the nineties. Economic liberalisation, disinvestment, BJP govt, prabhu deva etc. Remember the mid nineties when TV and theaters were bombarded with dubbed southern movies like roja, kadhalan, gentlemen, hindustani etc. Something radical happened with the north and south in the mid nineties and very few people actually realise it. Again, notice the era. It's just a case of what works, what used to work and what doesn't work. From chaos to standardisation and from temple politics to development politics. One thing which hasn't changed is hindutva because this is eventually meant to cut down regionalism.

http://i.imgur.com/fPYEh.gif

Wtf man, you went from hindutva to roja to economic liberalisation :confused:

No idea what you're talking about.

Tronic
16 Jun 13,, 00:06
Far too many things happened in the nineties. Economic liberalisation, disinvestment, BJP govt, prabhu deva etc. Remember the mid nineties when TV and theaters were bombarded with dubbed southern movies like roja, kadhalan, gentlemen, hindustani etc. Something radical happened with the north and south in the mid nineties and very few people actually realise it. Again, notice the era. It's just a case of what works, what used to work and what doesn't work. From chaos to standardisation and from temple politics to development politics. One thing which hasn't changed is hindutva because this is eventually meant to cut down regionalism.

Hindutva is meant to cut down regionalism, or meant to centralize the Hindu religion? Big difference between the two.