Indian Democracy Tag

Posted On November 19, 2012By SandeepIn Commentary, Indian Politics, Tracking Leftism

A Nightmarish Legacy

This piece was first published in Center Right India. Posted here in full. Of all “Days” that India celebrates every year, only Engineers’ Day is meaningful, and Children’s Day, the most wasted. It stretches the limits of even fantasy to find a link to Jawaharlal Nehru and children. It boggled my brain way back in primary school when the lesson told me that November 14, Jawaharlal Nehru’s birthday was celebrated as Children’s Day because “Nehru was fond of children” and “he gave a red rose to every child he met”Read More

Posted On September 10, 2012By SandeepIn Indian Politics

Disquisition or Publicity?

Note: These are excerpts from D.V. Gundappa’s Kannada book entitled Vrutta Patrike (Newspaper) first published in 1928 then reprinted a few times. The book is a collection of essays derived from D.V. Gundappa’s speeches and writings roughly beginning in 1928. My translation uses the enlarged edition published in 1968, which is the one available today. The excerpt published in this piece is from an essay titled Vicharave pracharave? (Disquisition or Publicity?) Any translation error is mine. Journalistic writings of the past were mostly intellectual in nature. An editor typically usedRead More
Yet another annual August 15th where we celebrate yet another progressive step towards realizing Nehru’s tryst with tyranny. The nation calls it Independence Day but nobody asks, Independence from what? From British tyranny? To which I question in turn: do you prefer home-grown tyranny over foreign tyranny? Because that’s what we’ve been living under for the past 65 years. If you think tyranny is an extreme term to use, consider these.Read More
Preface Let’s call things by their proper name. What is continuing to unfold in Assam is soft Jihad. It isn’t an ethnic strife, much less a riot. It is soft Jihad not in terms of the scale or intensity of violence but because it is not explicitly unleashed by an Islamic state—or by an Islamic terrorist-superstar like Bin Laden—against a non-Islamic state. It follows a theological dictum from which emerged a time-tested pattern, which has been consistently repeated across both world history and geography. I argue that: What we’re seeingRead More
Starting about two months ago, the spate of attacks in the media and elsewhere on Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi has been relentless. Narendra Modi is no stranger to having all sorts of abuses, denunciation, and innuendo heaped upon him—for about a decade, he’s faced heat on exactly one issue. Now that the Gujarat riots issue cannot be milked any longer, he’s being attacked for his supposedly authoritarian style of governance, his “false” claims of Gujarat’s growth story, and even silly things that resemble a schoolboy’s complaint to his teacher.Read More
So the Narendra Modi baiter extraordinaire has been suitably rewarded. Social activists Teesta Setalvad and Shabnam Hashmi have been ‘rewarded’ by the UPA-II Government for what seems like their pro-Congress, anti-BJP  activities. The HRD Ministry has nominated them in the high-powered decision making body for education in India. Appointing Teesta to a panel that advises the government on education is like appointing Aurangzeb to manage Hindu temples. Not that the current dispensation is any different from Aurangzeb in matters that concern Hindus. Equally, this “appointment” is just the latest illustrationRead More
Introduction I’d have been surprised if this hadn’t happened at Osmania university. It was past midnight on Sunday when the organisers of the festival located one of the students who strongly opposed inclusion of beef in the menu and stabbed him. They also torched a media van deployed at the university for covering the beef festival. Early on Monday, the protesting students set on fire a state road transport bus passing through the campus. And I won’t be surprised if it happens again and again in future—either at Osmania orRead More
The latest news item to cause a fresh bout of uncontrollable loose motions in the Indian English media is seeing Narendra Modi’s picture on the cover of the Time magazine. Here’s the picture in question: Being the long-time Congress-cultivated Pavlovian breed that they are, the media wasted no time in giving wide coverage to the Congress party’s trashing of Modi instead of actually examining what the piece says. In a line, the Time piece authored by some Jyoti Thottam repeats the same lies about Modi’s involvement in the Gujarat riots,Read More
I find psephology tedious. At a level, it reduces democracy to a savage farce of a triumph of numbers over ideas, ideals, even philosophy. But the times we live in makes it a necessary evil and like everybody else, I give that evil its due. I consume psephological data at a bare minimum: I abhor trend-spotting, and analysis of every vote polled and every seat won or lost or retained. Out of the wisdom gleaned from experience, I’ve placed my faith in the historical sense and it has served meRead More

Posted On March 5, 2012By SandeepIn Commentary, Indian Politics, Media Watch, Nehruvianism

Brazen Bias

It looks like Salil Tripathi, of late, has been in the news for all the wrong reasons. First it was this piece on Center Right India that examined his claims of being a libertarian, pro-free market, etc that led to some delightful exchanges on Twitter. And then he wrote an opinion piece in Mint titled Incredible Impunity, which should actually be titled Brazen Bias. Of all the responses I read to this piece, only Kanchan Gupta’s two–part series that takes apart Salil’s hitjob on Modi is the best.Read More
Are death anniversaries celebrated? “Celebrated” is an unfortunate choice of word to use in the same breath as “death.” And no, that word choice is not mine. It is the media’s. Somebody’s death anniversary is not celebrated unless that person is someone like Stalin. Speaking of which, Jawaharlal Nehru was the only head of a democratic state in the world who mourned the death of “Marshall” Stalin. Death anniversaries of the truly great and noble people rightfully deserve the label Memorial Day. Does anybody “celebrate” Jallianwallah Bagh? If the answerRead More
Apart from those active in the Arts, the only class of people who fully appreciate the enormous power of symbolism are those in politics. Politicians are true artists in that sense. While artists create and/or use symbolism merely as an aid and/or device, politicians practice it. Indeed, a politician endowed with genius is, so to say, better than the artist because the effectiveness of an artist’s symbolism is typically limited to one or a few works. Beyond that it descends into the realm of the cliché. However, a genius politicianRead More