The Supreme Court’s Supreme Wisdom in the Kaveri Matter, Explained

The combined population of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu is 142 million poeple, but of course, a handful of us know better. We have passed a judgment in our supreme knowledge and authority, and you better behave.

Many states share a river in this world. Dissatisfaction about water sharing is common everywhere. But the issue is almost completely handled by the states in question without a third party poking its nose into the matter.

But India, as Gandhi would have liked to say, is…

A state “like none other in the world”

So we’ve very much got the Third Party. It’s called the Govt. of India and it wants to completely decide the matter. In fact, it would like Karnataka and Tamil Nadu to stop having any say.

In fact, the Third Party is not convinced that the people of these two states (or any state for that matter) can behave appropriately. In the interest of world peace, and in order to hasten the process of making thy kingdom come, the Third Party can’t let the barbaric races of the world make decisions.

No wonder, therefore, that the judicial wing of this Third Party, a.k.a. the Supreme Court of India, whose pronouncements continue to be echoes of the colonial whip, had the following to say about the ongoing Kaveri river water protests:

“Behave”

We expect the inhabitants of both states, TN and Karnataka, shall behave and the executives of both states are under the constitutional obligation to see that law and order prevails.

The combined population of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu is 142 million poeple, but of course, a handful of us know better. We have passed a judgment in our supreme knowledge and authority, and you better behave.

We know your water. In fact, it’s not your water. We can’t trust behaviorless people with water, so it’s ours.

We have plenty of proof that you aren’t very good at behaving. We’ve been observing it from several millennia. How can you be when you don’t even?

So leave everything to us and learn to behave. We’ll teach you how to do that. In fact, that’s our burden. Only we, with our with superior blood, we who follow the only true religion, know how to behave. So learn from us, or else.

And you two – the executives of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka – make sure what we, the Third Party, have ruled, is implemented without any events. If required, get your police (with their toys) to scare all those behaviorless people away, or just give us a call. We’ll be there with our army which, of course, is something for people with behavior.

Hey, who’s that standing in the corner?

Did you see him? I saw him. He’s called Uncle Sam (the Queen’s grandson), and he wants to apply the same logic for river-water sharing between India and Pakistan. He has ample proof that India and Pakistan are much more ill-behaved. And of course, behavior is his middle name. Uncle Behavior Sam.

Violence by language

The idea of a pan-Indian lingua franca is violent. The question is not which language must be the lingua franca, but why any one language must be. The most common answer is that Indians need a common language to communicate with each other. But what is conveniently forgotten is that any lingua franca expands to become the one and only language that ultimately prevails. As I write this, I myself find it next to impossible (even a major waste of time) to write in two languages.

We are also made to conveniently forget that we need to alienate ourselves from the people closest to us to support an all-India lingua franca. For example, elite Kannadigas who think India needs a common language also necessarily give in to the violent idea that it’s okay for them to divorce themselves from tens of millions of Kannadigas. Let the idiots catch up if they have what it takes, or let them be wiped out by ‘survival of the fittest’ – this is the unstated feeling we have for our own brethren.

Patriotism is the offered justification for this violence, but the real one is simply the insatiable desire to get ahead of others in the race for material resources. Far, far non-violent than this is to have state-level lingua francas. That is, Kannada in Karnataka, Tamil in Tamil Nadu, Bengali in Bengal, and so on and so forth. Of course this does not eliminate the violence entirely, but it reduces it by degrees of magnitude. There is no perfection in the material world; the question is whether one is moving towards it or away from it.