Let’s Say the Congress Got Subhas Chandra Bose Killed. Now What?

The ‘big explosive truth’ about Bose’s death, whatever it is, is useless for the common man. I absolutely support the idea that the truth about the case should come out – it’s much better than falsehood. But what after that?

Let’s say, hypothetically, the much hyped Bose files reveal that the Congress (or Nehru, the man everyone’s pointing a finger at) got Bose killed.

What do we do with this piece of information? Ditch the Congress and vote BJP in every election from now on – which is obviously what the BJP wants? Maybe even get the Congress banned?

Before we go there, we’ve got to deal with one small problem: the same Nehru, the same Congress, created the structure of the Indian nation today and wrote everything down in the Constitution. Oops, it’s is now poisoned!

If the Congress or Nehru indeed got Bose killed, wouldn’t it follow that there are criminal minds behind the Constitution of India? Shouldn’t we declare the Constituent Assembly’s work null and void and start all over again with people who have impeccable credentials?

The above would be the argument of those who take operational corruption really seriously and think that requires us to question the systems that operationally corrupt people built.

Mind you, that’s quite like what the BJP is doing today: they’re trying to expose operational corruption in the time of Nehru as a way of upholding their own ideology. But only, the BJP is not going the full distance. It doesn’t suffice to blame the congress. They need to blame the Constitution which the Congress created, too.

Be that as it may, my argument is different. I don’t give a damn about operational corruption as long as India’s primitive corruption thrives. I’m not worried about the book not being followed; I’m worried about the book being followed – because when it’s followed, primitive corruption thrives.

I don’t care if Nehru got Bose killed. Maybe he did, maybe he didn’t. It’s a useless piece of information because the real problem in India is not who runs the show but what show is run. That’s why I find it stupid for people to base their vote on how Bose or Gandhi or whoever-it-is died.

What show is run depends on the Constitution of India. I want it rewritten from scratch because the show has serious problems. Not because its creators could potentially have indulged in operational corruption, but because India’s primitive corruption has gotten into it all by itself. There’s no way it couldn’t have gotten there, whether the people involved were operationally corrupt or not.

Therefore, I’d like votes to be cast based on who can get the Constitution rewritten from scratch, today. Not based on how someone died ages ago, even if that someone is a tall figure like Subhas Chandra Bose.

The Constitution needs rewriting for the simple reason that it mishandles India’s diversity, notably of the linguistic kind, and makes the Aryan Pyramid of Corruption thrive all over India. This is the real issue in India, and it’s a problem when politicians and the media take attention away from it.

From this perspective, the ‘big explosive truth’ about Bose’s death, whatever it is, is useless for the common man. I absolutely support the idea that the truth about the case should come out – it’s much better than falsehood. But what after that?

On Rohith Vemula’s Suicide

The Pyramid of Corruption, which term is a metaphor I use for the caste system and everything that comes with it, cannot throw any light on Rohith’s suicide. I have to say this because people who don’t really read the book, or don’t understand its arguments when they do, have historically come to very hasty conclusions about what I’ve written.

Those on The Left, who are commenting on the suicide, are basing their statements on the thesis that Brahmins or other upper caste people, specifically in The Right, have somehow conspired to push this student to commit suicide.

Even if the allegation were true (I have no way of deciding either way), nothing in my book can explain it. This is simply because it would be an ‘operational’ crime, not a ‘primitive’ one. I have nothing to say about ‘operational’ crime or corruption.

In case you don’t understand the term ‘operational’ crime or corruption, it is crime or corruption which is of the nature of a deviation from “the system”. If the allegation were true, it would clearly be such a deviation, and I have nothing to say about deviations. My book is about “the system” itself, and what would go wrong if there is no deviation.

My book is about how the caste system has entered into the very foundations of the Indian Nation. I talk at the level of how entire South India, being mostly Shudra, is in a Vaishya Vacuum. This fact benefits North India because Vaishyas are almost entirely North Indian.

I talk at the level of why Sankritized Hindi is essentially considered superior to any South Indian language. I talk at the level of a depopulating South India and Aryan (i.e., North Indian) migration into the South, and consequently Aryan control of the South, right under our noses.

From the above, I hope you understand that I don’t differentiate between The Left or The Right. Both swear by the same constitution and my book is about what’s wrong with that constitution. I call for rewriting that book from scratch.

If my suggestions are accepted, I don’t think suicides like the one in question can be saved in the ultimate analysis. Only, New Delhi would have nothing to do with them. Such cases would be opened and closed within Telangana because they’re not inter-state matters.

Yes, Rohith Vemulas wouldn’t be worried about Yakub Memons that don’t trouble Telangana. Telangana itself would be a much safer place vis-a-vis attacks from potential Yakub Memons who don’t speak Telugu. Telangana would catch non-Telugus easily. Today it doesn’t and the Centre is itself non-Telugu for the most part.

I think I can say that Rohith Vemulas wouldn’t worry about an all India “Dalit” caste, which is just a recently invented collective noun. They’d stick to local caste names and would therefore worry less. Also, caste distinctions would get slowly erased because of the increased focus on Telugu from every caste, and the collaborative effort to make Telugu fit for all modern purposes.

Further, the Centre would be a Government of Governments, not a Government of People, and therefore there would be no central Human Resources Development minister or ministry to begin with. No Central Universities either. The Hyderabad University would be answerable only to the State Government. Let me also say that Telugu, with a high degree of focus on native words, would be the preferred medium of education.

And hey, there’d be no Telangana either. There’d only be a united Andhra, because the Centre wouldn’t have the power to create or destroy states, and all the states of my conception are linguistic ones. ‘One language, one state’. Not like Ambedkar’s ‘one state, one language’.

I hope this short journey into the book gives you an idea of what the book is and is not. I hope you too, stop worrying about these ‘operational’ issues and take a look at what’s wrong in a ‘primitive’ sense.

2 Simple Points Which Will Seal the Argument About Sabarimala

Social transformation is none of the state’s business. It is because we don’t understand this fully that we allow all sorts of social disasters. Hindi imposition, for example. Also, of what value is a protest against men’s clubs in a democracy?

1. The question of menstruating women entering the Sabarimala temple lies in the domain of society, not state. So, those who want it must discuss with the temple, not the state. It’s a different matter that our state likes to poke its nose everywhere. The Supreme Court has proved it time and again. But that doesn’t take away the fact that this is state transgression into society. Social transformation is none of the state’s business. It is because we don’t understand this fully that we allow all sorts of social disasters — Hindi imposition, for example.

2. Even if one were to allow the state’s transgression into society for argument’s sake in this case, of what value is a protest against men’s clubs in a democracy? That’s what the Sabarimala temple is. You can’t oppose it without looking like a medieval lawmaker. What’s wrong if a set of males want to gather, climb a hill, and offer prayers to a certain deity, without letting menstruating women come near?

The Permanent Solution to Jallikattu-like Problems

If Tamil Nadu didn’t have to knock on the doors of a court outside its borders, if the matter were to be settled by Tamils alone, a ban on the tradition is unthinkable.

Jallikattu, an ancient Tamil tradition without which Pongal isn’t Pongal, has been turned illegal by the Supreme Court in which Tamil representation is miniscule.

Such things are possible in India because others have a stake – actually, more stake – in everything here.

If Tamil Nadu didn’t have to knock on the doors of a court outside its borders, if the matter were to be settled by Tamils alone, a ban on the tradition is unthinkable.

It’s a pity that Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has to literally beg powers that be outside of Tamil Nadu to save a Tamil tradition.

RSS/BJP supporters thankfully understand the importance of this tradition, but thankfully is the problem.

When the decision is not with us, we have to be thankful to others if they understand our concerns (and vote them).

What if they change their stance tomorrow (a happening over which we have no control)? Even if they don’t change, why have a system in which the decision is with others?

The permanent solution to problems like this is not believing that some “national” party is always going to be on our side. Nor is it to hope for a central Judiciary which can be made to tilt towards us on an issue-by-issue basis.

The permanent solution is to create a central Judiciary which has no stake – yes, no stake – in intra-state matters. Let it deal only with inter-state issues.

In a democracy, there’s no reason why someone in Delhi, with a theory about animals, should be a stakeholder in a case related to people 2,500 kilometres away. It doesn’t help that the stakeholder can sometimes see our point.

The only thing that can help – permanently – is for that stakeholder to vanish.

What is the Root Cause of Terrorism?

Let me state it loud and clear: it’s people crossing diversity borders for political or economic reasons. As I point out in my book, Gandhi, Ambedkar, and Tagore held similar views. Let me produce some quotes from these three thinkers (I’ve used them in my book).

Let me state it loud and clear.

The root of all global problems today is the fact that people are crossing diversity borders for political or economic reasons at an unprecedented rate.

As I point out in Chapter 3 of my book, three of India’s most important thinkers, namely Gandhi, Ambedkar, and Tagore, held similar views.

Let me share some quotes from these three thinkers (I’ve used them in my book).

Mahatma Gandhi pointed out that people become ‘confounded’ when they come in contact with others of different natures, religions, etc. His point was that the very meeting should not take place. He literally considered the British-introduced Indian Railways evil:

[Man] is so made by nature as to require him to restrict his movements as far as his hands and feet will take him. If we did not rush about from place to place by means of railways and such other maddening conveniences, much of the confusion that arises would be obviated. Our difficulties are of our own creation. God set a limit to a man’s locomotive ambition in the construction of his body. Man immediately proceeded to discover means of overriding the limit. God gifted man with intellect that he might know his Maker. Man abused it so that he might forget his Maker. I am so constructed that I can only serve my immediate neighbors, but in my conceit I pretend to have discovered that I must with my body serve every individual in the Universe. In thus attempting the impossible, man comes in contact with different natures, different religions, and is utterly confounded. According to this reasoning, it must be apparent to you that railways are a most dangerous institution. Owing to them, man has gone further away from his Maker.

B. R. Ambedkar issued words of caution to be exercised whenever there is the intermingling of diverse peoples. According to him, if diverse peoples are ‘forced to take part in a common cycle of participation, such as Government’, there can be neither fellow-feeling nor peace because of racial and cultural conflicts which arise due to sheer ‘enforced juxtaposition’:

Why do Tamils hate Andhras and Andhras hate Tamils? Why do Andhras in Hyderabad hate Maharashtrians and Maharashtrians hate Andhras? Why do Gujaratis hate Maharashtrians and Maharashtrians hate Gujaratis? The answer is very simple. It is not because there is any natural antipathy between the two. The hatred is due to the fact that they are put in juxtaposition and forced to take part in a common cycle of participation, such as Government. There is no other answer. So long as this enforced juxtaposition remains, there will be no peace between the two.

Rabindranath Tagore wrote profusely about how India’s task from time immemorial had been to make social adjustments to deal with racial differences between Aryans, Dravidians, Greeks, Persians, Mohammedans of the West and Mohammedans of Central Asia. In an environment charged with fervent Indian nationalism and Gandhian claims of ‘oneness’ in everything that mattered all over India, Tagore was deeply conscious of India’s diversity and deeply worried about its rising neglect. India was ‘naturally many, yet adventitiously one’, and therefore, a reconciliation of race differences was central to India’s mission on earth:

Races ethnologically different have in this country come into close contact. This fact has been and still continues to be the most important one in our history. It is our mission to face it and prove our humanity by dealing with it in the fullest truth. Until we fulfil our mission all other benefits will be denied us.

Clearly, nobody cares for the words of caution issued by these three great Indian thinkers any more.

Today, it has become stupid – even antinational – to think like this in India. How can a patriotic Indian think pan-Indian trade is evil? How can travelling on the Indian Railways be evil? How can someone even think Tamils and Andhras are in any sense different? They’re both Indians! And how can someone talk of different races on Indian soil? And finally, how can someone talk as if international trade is evil? It’s the crown gem of humanity!

(For the sources of the above quotes, please refer The Pyramid of Corruption)

Understanding Paris

Last night’s brutal shootings in Paris have proved that the old European model of nation-states has officially collapsed.

Last night’s brutal shootings in Paris have proved that the old European model of nation-states has officially collapsed. Francois Hollande was quick to proclaim that the attacks are an ‘act of war’ by the ISIS. But remember that the ISIS is not an accepted nation-state by the Frances of the world.

Therefore, it’s not a war between two nation-states as the West knows them. It’s a war between a nation-state and something the West cannot understand, but uses the word ‘terrorist group’ to identify.

Why can’t they understand it? Because they’re unable to think outside the nation-state model that they’ve laid down for the world. This is also the reason why not only France, but every nation-state is incapable of containing what is known as ‘terrorism’.

Nation-states have armies, navies and air-forces so that they can fight other nation-states coming out to fight a professional war. But those days are clearly gone. What happened in France isn’t a war of this sort. Just think of Mumbai – was it such a war? Was 9/11 such a war? No.

This is exactly the reason why Islam, a religion and not a nation-state, gets the blame for these ‘wars’. Just think about it: people blame a religion for a war on a modern nation-state. As if someone thousands of years ago has chalked out a plan for unleashing the kind of violence we’re seeing.

Despite the fact that some parts of the Kuran can indeed lead to interpretations in which which organizations like ISIS can find their own legitimacy, I find it impossible to believe that any religion can be the source of the kind of violence that Paris witnessed yesterday.

When we’re not ready to see our own role in our misfortunes, we end up pointing a finger at all sorts of entities. Therefore, ‘Islam’ (popular among all other religious groups), ‘religion’ (popular among atheists), even ‘Islamic civilization’ are blamed for these attacks.

The last of these is used by those who think these are attacks on ‘western civilization’, the concept of ‘freedom’, etc., etc. Such analysts seem to realize that the violent attacks in question target not one particular nation-state but something intangible that links all the nation-states of the West. There is truth in this viewpoint.

However, the West refuses to admit any role played by itself in the whole matter. Hence the widespread belief that the shootings in Paris are one hundred percent unprovoked. That’s why the word used is ‘terrorism’: they’re unleashing this sort of violence because it’s simply in their DNA. No provocation necessary for the ‘barbarians’.

Sorry, this is impossible to believe. Newton’s third law applies.

The fact is, Western imperialism is already a provocation. What the nation-states of the West have done to the peoples of the Middle-East, Africa, etc., in the last four or five centuries, must count as provocation. Only, the provoked aren’t organizing themselves in the only way that the west understands: as formal nation-states. Western thought may require it, but it’s not necessary.

Understandably, it is difficult for the current generation of the West to recognize this provocation. It was something they did long ago. It’s not as if Africa was colonized yesterday and the shootings happened today. It’s not as if the Middle-East was destroyed yesterday and the shootings happened today. Therefore, they don’t see the provocation. That doesn’t mean there isn’t any.

A long time to react doesn’t make a reaction a non-reaction. Nor does it rule out an original action.

To summarize, I find it impossible to believe that ‘terrorism’ is unprovoked. One needs a special instrument to recognize the provocation. It’s called a mirror. One also needs an eye for detail and the readiness to remove the elaborate intellectual make-up, together with the old foundation, before looking in it. The make-up may make us appear pretty, but that’s not the goal here.

Narendra Modi got it one hundred percent right in Wembley. India, and only India, has the solution to the ‘terrorism’ problem. But that’s not the same as saying India is on the right track today – and that’s a completely different topic.

We, the People, Became Independent in 1947. Not the Judiciary.

The people need to have control over the Judiciary and nobody can deny it. What’s so sacrosanct about it, anyway? After all, it’s a machine with human parts interpreting a book mostly written by the British and amended here and there by Indians.

A lot is being said about ‘independence of the Judiciary’. The members of the Executive haven’t shown how poking their nose into judicial appointments via the National Judicial Appointments Commission increases this independence, but even they say they respect it.

In other words, nobody seems to question the independence of the Judiciary. But let us do that: should the Judiciary be an independent body?

Not at all. It wasn’t the Judiciary which became independent in 1947. The people of India did. The people need to have control over the Judiciary and nobody can deny it. What’s so sacrosanct about it, anyway? After all, it’s a machine with human parts interpreting a book mostly written by the British and amended here and there by Indians.

Everything in the Constitution of India can and must be questioned by every generation of Indians. It’s a fundamental right whether or not it’s endorsed in the book, and we shall have it. Even the idea that the ‘fundamental structure of the constitution cannot be changed’ is unacceptable. Who decides what’s ‘fundamental structure’? If it has already been decided for us by dead men however smart and patriotic, how are we, the living, in control?

Therefore, the whole debate triggered by the NJAC, and the Supreme Court’s decision to strike it down, sidesteps the real issue. That issue is that people don’t have control on how they’re governed in this country.

Bots with usernames like Judiciary and Executive run the show here. (Notice how the Legislature doesn’t even figure in the debate. There are several reasons, the foremost being the fact there isn’t any real separation of powers between the Executive and the Legislature in India. Remember that the Lok Sabha appoints the Prime Minister.)

Why do I call them bots? Because we, the people of India, have no real control on either the Judiciary or the Executive/Legislature. I’m talking about the Central Executive and the Central Legislature. It’s they who matter. Their State-level counterparts are designed to nod to everything passed down from the top. In fact, State Governments have often been described as “glorified municipalities”. And needless to say, there is no such thing as ‘State Judiciary’ in the real sense of the term.

Who controls the Judiciary bot? The Constitution of India which, as I said, is mostly British and tweaked some by a set of high-power Indians at a time when the people of India weren’t exactly known for their political acumen. It’s a book that controls the Judiciary, not us. The book needs to be rewritten from scratch as I argue in my book, but the Judiciary won’t have it. If we can’t change what’s written in the book that ultimately controls us, it’s a misnomer to say we’re in control.

Who controls the executive/legislature bots? They say we vote these ‘institutions’ to power, and there is an iota of truth in it. But they lie at such a large distance from the people of India that it’s impossible to say that we control them. No, they’re better called bots, and they do whatever they want, all on their own. They regularly get their batteries recharged and as soon as it’s done, there they go. Their State-level counterparts are better suited to be termed as “controlled by us”, but heck, they don’t have any real power; almost all power rests with the Centre.

So, this is the real problem. As usual the entire establishment wants you to look elsewhere. It’s designed to make you look elsewhere. In fact, it was designed when you were looking elsewhere, too. That’s why it needs a complete redesign.

‘Meant to be’? Who cares?

What has Mr. Guruswamy written at all? Just this, that some R. Khan has already given the ideal blueprint for restructuring India into 56 states based on population. Has he said anything new? No. He has only reiterated what he thinks is meant to be.

“India was never meant to be a union of linguistic states, but a union of well governed and managed states,” writes Mohan Guruswamy in the opening paragraph of a recent article. I got to know about this article (and its author, frankly) when my good friend Sandeep Kambi wrote an article about it.

That one sentence of Mr. Guruswamy gives away the poverty of imagination with which the rest of his article is written.

Imagination is important. It’s not as if everything that India ever needs to be has already been imagined. Sure, our forefathers have had their spiels, but they couldn’t have imagined everything. Besides, they were human. Their imaginations must be challenged day in and day out.

If we refuse to use imagination, or worse, don’t recognize that faculty in us, the future is going to be dark. That’s a given. If we’re going to talk only about what something is meant to be, we’re not doers here; we’re just commentators sitting in a box and changing our emotions and emotional out-pours to fit the game on the field.

Imagination isn’t the only thing lacking in Mr. Guruswamy’s article. There’s information, for example.

You see it in his claim that linguistic states have no historical basis. Suffice it to say that Kannada Nadu (like Tamil Nadu, yes) was a state whose name was called out in the earliest work of rhetoric, poetics, and grammar of Kannada, viz., the Kavirajamarga, which dates back to 850 AD.

Therefore, I’d like to offer Mr. Guruswamy a piece of advice: don’t get into the historical basis of states. It’s states like Karnataka which have it, not the one manufactured by the British and which you seem to think has basis even in physics: India.

Moving on, Mr. Guruswamy claims that regional affinity is stronger than sub-national identity. What’s regional affinity? His word for love of regions half their current size (a strange sort of love, indeed). And what’s sub-national identity? His word for linguistic identity which isn’t meant to be.

That Mr. Guruswamy dislikes the term linguistic identity is more than obvious, but not so the fact that he has the temerity to force something unreal on to his readers. Namely, the idea that there’s a mathematically proven national identity to begin with, under which all other identities must be subsumed.

So, where does Mr. Guruswamy go with regional affinity? Strangely (for a person who wants more states), he laments the fact that people have this affinity, or rather, that it is leading to political mobilization (think Telangana).

Instead, he wants the creation of new states to be based on a strange map drawn in 1973 by a certain Dr. Rasheeduddin Khan of Hyderabad. On what did that man base his map?

Perhaps we should take a cue from the fact that Mr. Guruswamy goes on to argue that India’s states have become unmanageably large in terms of population. They have too much power, too, leaving the Central Government begging for some, as it were. This power in the states, he argues, must be further decentralized like it’s been done in Honda, Toyota, General Motors, and Ford.

That’s his theory to replace warlords like K Chandrashekhar Rao of Telangana. Let there be more Telanganas, he says, but not the political mobilization around regional affinity. Instead, let the “indestructible” centre destroy the existing states and create some Telanganas. That would hopefully illustrate the centre’s powerlessness which Mr. Guruswamy “has always held”.

So, in summary, what has Mr. Guruswamy written at all? Just this, that some R. Khan has already given the ideal blueprint for restructuring India into 56 states based on population. Has he said anything new? No. He has only reiterated what he thinks is meant to be.

Unfortunately for him, those who want change can never accept meant to be even if it’s written in the constitution. As far as they’re concerned, there’s no meant to be. Even what they do is tentative. It’s up to future generations to decide whether or not to retain it.

As far as I’m concerned, I want India to be a weak but indestructible federation of strong and indestructible linguistic states. As I’ve argued in the book, that’s the only way the post-independence Indian nation can become an ethical entity.

Of course I know this isn’t meant to be, but who cares? For the British, even an independent India wasn’t meant to be. Did we care? No, Mr. Guruswamy, welcome to politics in general, and democracy in particular, where the future is something the people imagine and bring into existence.

A Point-By-Point Rebuttal of Mr. Hitesh Shankar’s Editorial in the Panchajanya

Mr. Shankar says those who oppose Hindi (imposition) are creating vaimanasya about Hindi – and I read it as difference of opinion about Hindi. If his point is that there was an existing opinion about Hindi which the anti-impositionists want changed, he’s absolutely right. Yes, we want to change what people are thinking about Hindi, because they’re thinking wrong. For example, they — and that includes Mr. Shankar — think Hindi is India’s national language (rashtrabhasha) but that’s incorrect, even unconstitutional. We want to fix this misunderstanding in people. Yes, we want to bring this vaimanasya about.

It was quite an effort for me to understand Mr. Hitesh Shankar’s editorial in the RSS’s Hindi-language mouthpiece panchajanya. I hadn’t read any Hindi in some twenty years. It’s a foreign language for me and some 65 million people around me, so I couldn’t exactly call up someone and ask what words like labaadaa or aguaa mean. With whatever Hindi I’ve been force-fed at school (as third language) and what I’ve managed to gratefully learn from my friends when I was at IIT Delhi, it took some ten hours for me to say ‘I think I know where this is going’.

Before I comment on where I think it’s going, I’d like to explain something obvious, viz., why this article is in English, another foreign language. I have to do this because I’m sure to get asked.

First, I’m writing in English because you’re reading this, and it’s you who I want to reach out to with this article. Even those who think it’s hypocritical to call Hindi foreign from within an English article are reading this. Second, if I write this only in my mother tongue, Kannada, I’ll lose 95% of my readership in India (Kannada speakers are roughly 5% in India). Third, if I write this in Hindi, you won’t (or rather can’t) read it: it’d be close to Greek to you. Is the train male or female? What about animals? Do they have gender? All of them? But let me still make an offer for anyone willing to publish a Hindi version of this article from me: just let me know. I’d love to take up the challenge on condition that publication is certain.

These are the facts. There’s close to four hundred years of history of English imposition on Kanandigas. It’s deeply entrenched in education and employment. Hindi imposition, unfortunately for Hindiwallahs like Mr. Shankar, is too recent. What’s worse, it’s being tried in a free country. Independence, as Mr. Shankar would tend to agree, has come.

Let me come to the editorial in question.

*

Right off the bat, Mr. Shankar makes it clear that he cannot differentiate between Hindi imposition and Hindi. Non-Hindi speakers are opposed to the former, Mr. Shankar, not the latter. Why would anyone oppose Hindi, or Greek or Zulu or whatever? But come knocking on my door and tell me your language is more national or official than mine, and I oppose that with all my might. So my humble request to Mr. Shankar is that he should understand what non-Hindi speakers are opposed to. Not keep going on and on about what he thinks they oppose because it’s easier to tackle.

Mr. Shankar says those who oppose Hindi (from now on, I take it as those who oppose Hindi imposition) are creating vaimanasya about Hindi – and I read it as difference of opinion about Hindi. If his point is that there was an existing opinion about Hindi which the anti-impositionists want changed, he’s absolutely right. Yes, we want to change what people are thinking about Hindi, because they’re thinking wrong.

For example, they — and that includes Mr. Shankar — think Hindi is India’s national language (rashtrabhasha) but that’s incorrect, even unconstitutional. We want to fix this misunderstanding in people. Yes, we want to bring this vaimanasya about.

Next, Mr. Shankar’s thinks those who oppose Hindi imposition are proponents of English who want to make Indian languages fight amongst themselves and ensure that the position of rashtrabhasha is left empty. Both these allegations are false.

First, those who oppose Hindi imposition don’t do it to promote English. As a Kannadiga, I don’t even want to use a language other than Kannada. It’s India and its political and economic policies which force me to use another language.

If Kannadiga politics and economics didn’t have non-Kannadiga stake-holders like Mr. Shankar, I wouldn’t give a damn about any language other than Kannada. Yes, there’d even be IIT Dharwads which run entirely in Kannada. The foreign language I’m forced to use is English and not Hindi because, as I said earlier, it’s been imposed on my people for some three or four centuries more than Hindi.

Theoretically, it’s possible to convert Kannadigas like me over to Hindi with another three or four centuries of Hindi imposition. But theoretically, Kannadigas are not colonial subjects anymore.

Second, it’s outrageous to think that those who tweeted #StopHindiImposition want to make Indian languages fight with each other. In fact, those who tweeted that hashtag illustrated an idea of India which the RSS is alien to: Indians speaking multiple languages coming together without wiping off their own linguistic identities and, in fact, asking for linguistic equality.

I think it’s a pity that they had to come together for something negative such as “stop” this or that, but hey, how about “quit” as in Quit India?

Finally, even the allegation that anti Hindi-impositionists want the position of rashtrabhasha to be empty is wrong. No. They want every Indian language mentioned in the Eighth Schedule to take this position. Since wiping off diversity is central to the ideology of his school, Mr. Shankar speaks as if the question of language in India is a bipolar one involving only Hindi and English. But that is exactly what it isn’t from the point of view of the anti-impositionists. For them, the question is of every language in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution.

*

Moving on, Mr. Shankar claims that the anti-impositionists are afraid of some strange power of Hindi. Which power? The power to bind India together (with one rope or whatever it is). Why are they afraid of this? Because they want to imprison (not bind) India using the chains (not rope) of the language of dependence, viz., English. Wow.

First of all, Hindi has no such power. It is this kind of Hindi chauvinism which is creating fights within India, not those who oppose it. Let me repeat this: Hindi is foreign to most of India. The Gujarat High Court recently made it very clear that Hindi is foreign in Gujarat. By induction, that applies to most of India. If Hindi continues to be imposed on non-Hindi people, that by itself has the power to destroy India. The more people like Mr. Shankar think Hindi can unite India, the more division actually happens on the ground.

Secondly, I’ve already made it clear that anti-impositionists use English not because they want to replace Hindi with English but because they want their language to get the same status as Hindi. They use English for the reasons that I’m writing this article in English (which I’ve already explained).

Also, Mr. Shankar’s metaphorical statement that anti-impositionists want to imprison India using the chains of the language of dependence, English, is a very serious allegation on them. Metaphors make the mind imagine. When those minds are allowed to imagine in only one direction, they imagine a lot of wrong things in that direction including, for example, that the anti-impositionists are funded by the Western Church. It’s so easy for numbed minds in Mr. Shankar’s audience to come to this utterly false conclusion. His metaphorical language hasn’t ruled it out.

*

Next, Mr. Shankar claims that English cannot fight with Hindi head on. That bloody language of General Dyer doesn’t have an iota of the courage. It’s kabaddi time now, so remember Bharat must win.

Here, of course, Mr. Shankar is on the right path inasmuch as some parts of North India, which speak Hindi, are concerned. It would be idiotic to think English can win the kabaddi match against Hindi there.

But Mr. Shankar displays the exact same idiocy when he talks as if he can cover all of India by mentioning one language, Hindi. No, Mr. Shankar, Hindi is not the language of all of India. If Hindi and English are the only two languages allowed to play the kabaddi match in (say) Karnataka, I’d even go to the extent of saying that Bhaiyya migrants in Bengaluru suffice to destroy English. But hello, who said only Hindi and English are allowed to play the match?

There’s this thing called Kannada, remember? If Kannada is allowed to play the match, which is what the anti-impositionists are campaigning for, farmers in Bidadi suffice to destroy English (and the Bhaiyyas would be happy to join in with the farmers, speaking in Kannada themselves).

But Mr. Shankar isn’t ideologically open to the possibility of Kannada attaining adolescence in Karnataka (or Tamil in Tamil Nadu, and so on) so he moves on to talk of how the language of those cowards who ruled us for three centuries, English, trembles in front of the “family of Indian languages whose aguaa is Hindi”. What’s an aguaa? I googled. According to The Telegraph of Kolkata, that means leader or patriarch. Nice on the swayamsevak’s ears, but outrageous in reality.

First of all, there isn’t one family of Indian languages. There are at least four: Indo Aryan, Dravidian, Tibeto-Burman, and Austro-Asiatic. Hindi sits in the Indo Aryan and my language, Kannada, in the Dravidian. We should really talk about families, not family.

But let’s relax the rules here a bit. Since families can be imagined across matrimonial lines in metaphorese, let me also use the term “family of Indian languages”. Okay, now what? How did this family suddenly get an aguaa called Hindi? With about three hundred years of history, Hindi is more like the bollywood-softporn-intoxicated new kid on the block compared to Kannada, Tamil, etc. Writing in these languages has a history of some one and a half thousand years. Now imagine speech. With such languages in India, how did Hindi become the aguaa? By the power of the imposer’s imagination, of course.

In reality, English trembles not in front of Mr. Shankar’s imagined aguaa but the multiple real aguaas already listed in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution. Needless to say, his next point that those who oppose his pet imagined aguaa want to divide “the Indian language family” by way of using English should now appear meaningless to the reader.

We don’t want to divide “the Indian language family”. We want to constitutionally uplift every member of that family to the status of rashtrabhasha where now an imagined aguaa sits after having entered it through the back door.

*

The metaphor thickens. Mr. Shankar moves on to point out that Hindi cannot become an opponent of Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, or Bengali. In which way? In exactly the same way as Ganga cannot become an opponent of Yamuna, Kaveri, Godavari, Narmada or Teesta.

Nice try, Mr. Shankar, but your metaphor is badly chosen. Rivers don’t oppose each other, of course, but rivers don’t flow into each other’s homes either. Given that your idea of India requires one particular language to flow into the home of every other language, you should’ve been more careful.

If the Ganga comes to Karnataka claiming it’s home, it’s a disaster Karnataka can’t recover from. You’re advocating for the Ganga of Hindi coming to Karnataka (it’s a disaster in progress) but do you realize that the Kaveri of Kannada isn’t welcome in Delhi? Do you realize that if this continues, Kannada will have no home? You might realize but not care because you think it’s a small price for Bharat Mata’s children to pay, but we don’t think like that. We think that idea of India which requires us to sacrifice our language must lose.

When you mess with the natural boundaries of languages, there’s opposition. You get mountains on the way. You get deserts, forests on the way. Every stone, every grain of sand, every thorn tells you to back off, but if one is blinded by a false ideology like that of Mr. Shankar, one tends to continue with brute force.

Continuing with the editorial, Mr. Shankar writes, redundantly, that there’s no hatred for her sister languages in “Hindi’s mind”. Needless to point out, the idea that languages have minds is mindless. It’s people who have minds, and it’s people who have the power to make one language take over its sisters’ homes and make them die a slow death.

And you know what, Hindi is spoken all over India. Suddenly. Just like that. To hell with the census and all that. Mr. Shankar just knows these things off the top of his topi. And this aguaa is so good to its sister languages that it happily borrows from — and this is his full list — Gujarati, Bengali, and Marathi. Even assuming it does, why should Kannadigas and Tamils feel happy if one foreign language borrows from three other? In fact, why should even Gujaratis, Bengalis and Marathis feel happy that Hindi uses words from their languages? Does that help their own languages grow, or does it help Mr. Shankar’s aguaa grow? Which one should they care for?

Now this generous-borrower aguaa, says Mr. Shankar, is very powerful. Bow, ye young men, power cometh. It’s so powerful that it’s beaten English black and blue when it comes to news, advertisements, market, politics, etc.

What Mr. Shankar conveniently stops short of mentioning is where. Where does Hindi beat English in these fields? In Karnataka? In Tamil Nadu? In Kerala? In West Bengal? In Gujarat? In Maharashtra? Aren’t these states part of India? Does Mr. Shankar have even a glimpse of ground realities in non-Hindi states? It’s surprising that such an empty narrative passes off as intelligent in the alma mater of the party running the central government today.

To set the record straight, let it be known to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh that it’s Kannada in Karnataka, Tamil in Tamil Nadu, Bengali in West Bengal, and so on, which beat English black and blue, not Hindi. The language of the common man is winning the kabaddi match against English in the states, but Mr. Shankar’s aguaa theory won’t change just because there’s data. In fact, he doesn’t seem to differentiate between “language of the common man” and Hindi. It’s a sort of blindness.

*

Now comes the policy guideline. If Hindi is so powerful, as you’ve already learnt by now, then why should anyone fear for it? Mr. Shankar answers his own question by returning to his two-language theory: we should fear because English still lurks in colonial institutions such as the judiciary. Therefore, says Mr. Shankar, the work in front of us is to get rid of English in all those colonial institutions and posit Hindi everywhere. Fine prescription except for the fact that the anti-impositionists want their languages to take English’s position in their respective states. Not another foreign language. Not again. Not in a free nation.

But of course, the plural in “languages” is antinational for Mr. Shankar. He didn’t salute the Sangh’s flag shaakhaa after shaakaa to talk plural. So he claims that the constitution had originally intended to end English’s career in India by replacing it with “the svabhaashaa” by 1965. The words in quotes, of course, mean “our own language”, and one tends to think that means “our own language”. But Mr. Shankar means Hindi. Yes, after all else has failed, Mr. Shankar seems to be left with no option but to simply inject the meaning “our own language” into the word Hindi. By just calling Hindi as the svabhaasha, he hopes it becomes that. If only it were that simple!

To set the record straight, the constitution had intended to use Hindi everywhere instead of English, no doubt, but it didn’t call Hindi everyone’s svabhaashaa. Not that the anti-impositionists agree with what the constitution wanted to do, though.

Finally, Mr. Shankar openly calls the anti-impositionists as anti-nationals who remain even 68 years after independence. They’re Britishers who must go, that is. These elements have to be identified and “the problem solved”, he says. Why? Because strengthening Hindi is strengthening India. In fact, other Indian languages (like Kannada) tremble in front of English but find solace in Hindi, so it’s all the more important to give Hindi a “place of pride” in policymaking.

I’m like: “Hello! In which world do you live?”

#GiveItUp and Automate Sacrifice Using the Government

You find #GiveItUp damn appealing, don’t you? You get to be the hero for all those who are serving you day in and day out. Not to mention all those stingy colleagues at work who make you pay for coffee all the time. What better way to do yajna in these modern times than automating the damned thing, you think. Don’t you? You’re in for a surprise.

Wherever it has an outlet — and does it have any? — the Government of India is asking people to #GiveItUp.

For Macaulay’s children, a.k.a. the creme de la creme of India, the fact that an uber-dull thing called government is making a point with a hashtag adds an element of cool — and persuasion.

Let me come to the point. It is that they, the said children, should give up their LPG subsidy for the greater common good. Targeted. Clear. Appealing. Isn’t it?

They’re not exactly reaching out to all those idiots who don’t get what a hashtag is. Nor is it for those who can’t #GiveItUp because they haven’t got any.

In other words, it’s for you.

Not your housemaid, your gardener, your driver, etc., etc.

You find it damn appealing, don’t you? You get to be the hero for all those who are serving you day in and day out. Not to mention all those stingy colleagues at work who make you pay for coffee all the time.

What better way to do yajna in these modern times than automating the damned thing, you think. Don’t you?

After all, that’s what you’re doing when you pay tax. So why not add some change on top of it? This time you get to tweet your sacrifice using a government-sponsored hashtag, and you’re on your way to stardom.

Surprise.

You’re just fooling yourself. It’s impossible to automate sacrifice. Even tax is the worst form of service we can do to our fellowmen.

So is this #GiveItUp money.

Even a foreigner can be as much a hero as you by just paying tax and now this LPG subsidy to the government.

By the way, who is a foreigner? I always refer to what the Gujarat High Court called Hindi: “a foreign language in Gujarat”. It follows that every Indian is a foreigner when he’s out of his or her own linguistic state or region.

Aren’t you in a better position than a foreigner to serve those immediately around you? Do you have to pay tax to do so? Do you have to #GiveItUp to do so?

Do you really believe a government can help automate sacrifice? That too, a government made up almost entirely of foreigners?

For a Kannadiga or a Tamil, a Gujarati or a Marathi, the Government of India is made up entirely of others. Foreigners, to be precise.

The best way for a Kannadiga to help poorer Kannadigas – is it to put money in the modern version of Queen Victoria’s empirical treasury?

Why put your money in such a long loop, especially when the loop has wolves waiting to devour anything coming on the conveyor belt?

Those wolves aren’t going to send any money to your housemaid, are they? They’re not going to help that auto-driver dying in the pollution, are they? They’re not going to help “underprivileged children” get education, are they?

No, my friend. Forget they. If you really want to do something for those around you, get the idea out of your head that you can automate it.

Get out of your house, away form your computer. And throw away that smartphone.

Get talking to those who you want to help.

Learn from them, because they know more than you do. They’re just not hashtaggy, and money doesn’t want them.

Talk to them day in, day out.

Learn their language. If you already know it, proceed to…

Enrich it with what you know.

Make it yours.

Fuck money.

They don’t need money.

This is the real #GiveItUp.

What the government is asking you to do is #GiveItToMe. They just got the hashtag right, like I got the title right for this article.

Don’t be fooled.