It’s Introspection, Course Correction Time For Indian Intellectuals

Bimal Prasad Mohapatra
Updated: August 25, 2022 18:13

For Indian intellectuals and their fraternity in civil society, it is time for in-depth self-introspection of their past and ongoing omission and commission, and to go for long due course correction. We, ordinary Indians, humbly and sincerely hope you, major stakeholders in the country’s all-round development story, won’t fail to recognize your foolishness anymore. India is in the last quarter of the first century of her freedom from nearly 10 centuries of Abrahamic subjugations. During this period of self-rule, you have a huge role and responsibility to get back India’s lost glory.

Since Independence, Indian intellectuals, by and large, have been sherpas of the Western so-called value system, which preaches tolerance, but in practice, that has been facilitating the destruction and demonization of Indian history, culture, and civilizational values that existed since ancient time – before Christ (BC) – using their strong dollar power. Also, at times, terror means appropriating the victim’s evergreen early scientific inventions.

Now, the new generation of tech-savvy Indians at large is no more enthusiastic to listen, forget about accept, your hypocrisy-wrapped intellectual greatness being narrated often in ornamental verbatim in Queen’s language; and so also, the Western political leadership from MENA to The White House via EU and from Tokyo to Canberra. Yes, the new generation is ready to endorse Queen’s language, but refuse to do so in regard to narratives her language delivers. The new generation is now very selective unlike their past generations.

Here, I would like to remind all the works of a young technocrat-turn-banker-turn-historian 41-year-old Dr Vikram Sampath, who ventured to write biography of a freedom fighter Veer Savarkar. Savarkar has so far been maligned and his works not allowed to get evaluated by established historians simply because he was an ardent supporter and propagator of Hinduvta philosophy, while fighting for freedom of the country. Savarkar’s contributions to freedom movement and social reforms have been thrown into the dustbin with an excuse that he appealed to the then British India government to release him from decade-long rarest solitary confinement in Cellular Jail — otherwise called infamous Kala Pani — for his crime of waging war against India’s subjugator, the King of England.

So far, Dr Sampath has been successful to bring to limelight the truth about Savarkar’s patriotism by presenting undeniable documents blacklisted by mainstream historians having known the Left and Nehruvian allegiance. What does young man Sampath’s venture mean? Is the so far denial of historical justice to Savarkar not intellectual hypocrisy? Many of Savarkar-like patriots face the same fate. The new generation is more concerned about truth than anything else. Dr Sampath’s argument that history as a subject is “evolving” with discovery of new evidence has more or less been accepted. In future, more and more researchers may venture into so far forbidden territories to ferret out historical truths and to disprove the traditional line of thinking that has mostly denied India her rightful place in the world of rich civilizations.

In the recent past, during an ideological encounter with Grand Old Party’s former president Rahul Gandhi in the presence of CPIM General Secretary Sitaram Yechury and regional party RJD’s tallest leader Tejashwi Yadav in UK’s Cambridge University, 31-year-old Indian IRTS officer-cum-Commonwealth scholar Siddhartha Verma told Gandhi scion that India a ‘union of states’ was ‘destructive’. Note, this expression and disapproval is an eye-opener. Has anybody ever heard a budding bureaucrat challenging politicians over ideological issue? Disputing Rahul’s view, Verma told that, as a political leader, his idea of India was “flawed”, “incorrect”, and “destructive” because it tried to “whitewash history of thousands of years”. Academic and The Print columnist Shruti Kapila, who was anchoring the Cambridge programme, said that the term “rashtra” means kingdom, to which Verma replied that it is the “Sanskrit word for nation”. Gandhi then added that “nation is a Western concept”. There was also a buzz in the crowd when Verma said, “A Constitution cannot make a nation, and nation makes the Constitution.”

Talking about Gandhi’s statement, Verma later said, “I do not understand the motive but I assume that there had been an attempt to whitewash India’s ancient history. There is also an attempt to negate pre-Independence India… they only talk about the post-Independence formation. If one reads the Constitution properly, it is there right in the Preamble that India [is] a nation.” “I think there is a lack of awareness about ancient history. I think Indian history should focus on ancient India a little more,” Verma added. Hailing from Lucknow, Verma describes himself as a “Commonwealth scholar”, “civil servant” and “patriot” in his Twitter bio. What does this rare incident denote? Certainly, there is a lesson for Indian intellectuals, who blindly follow Western intellectualism, which has been discrediting Indian indigenous intellectualism and value system.

Even Indian intellectuals are not so honest in their endorsement of so-called Western value system which they often refer to while commenting over present system of governance in India. In a response to a newspaper question: The election for Congress President is coming up. Will you be a candidate?, the eminent scholar, former UN diplomat and now Congress leader, MP Shashi Tharoor, replied, “Just wait for the election to be announced and see what the options are. I am not saying I would necessarily be a candidate. If the “heir apparent” chooses not to be a candidate, then others will come forward and we will have a good set of choices.” Note the mention of “heir apparent”! What does he mean to justify when he uses the phrase such as “heir apparent”? Is the party Presidentship in a democracy hereditary? If the party President post is accepted as hereditary today, the revisit of 1975’s slogan that “India is Indira and Indira is India” with names such as Rahul, Tejashwi, Mamata, etc. replacing Indira with intellectuals approved hereditary governance of nation is not very far? Decades back, we heard, “Jab tak hey samosa mey aloo, tab tak hey Bihar mey Lalu.” What kind of democracy promotes this kind of sloganeering? It is different matter that since then Lalu Raj has seen many ups and downs.

Will the concept of right of “heir apparent” not destroy the beauty and essence of India’s democracy? Is this in practice in Western democracies which have been an inspiration of Indian intellectuals? This exposes Indian intellectualism is nothing less than opportunism which the new generation Indians are not ready to bear anymore.

Now, despite massive anti-India campaigns in the West and the Middle-East, mostly promoted and funded by White Supremacists, Evangelists and Islamists, their democratically-elected or otherwise-made political leadership refuse to succumb to the propaganda anymore. Whether they have understood their past foolishness of supporting radicalized preaching in India or not needs an exclusive in-depth academic research to ferret out and ascertain the truth. But, certainly, they have started realizing that their past acts have weakened culturally-rich Hindutva and democratic India and they now need to fight totalitarian China in Far East and Islamic terror in Middle-East and South Asia in order to safeguard their commercial interests as well as their world leadership status. The US allowing India’s military attaché for unescorted entry, and long queues of Nordic countries’ head of governments, the countries allegedly have been major source of a lot of money in evangelization, and promoting so-called Western defined Human Rights and secularism using India’s so-called intellectual sherpas in India, to meet Hindutva icon PM Modi during his recent past tour of the region, are no less significant to note. And in MENA, many countries have been eager to build cordial political, commercial and cultural relations with India, so they sign the FTA.

In view of the above, any loss of time in reading the writing on the walls on the part of Indian intellectuals may be suicidal as their present attitude is leading them towards national irrelevance. It is not good for any thriving nation. Let us go for course correction to remain in the safe side, and positively contribute to nation’s growth story during Amrit Kaal.

Bimal Prasad Mohapatra is a Senior Research Fellow, Defence Research and Studies and Faculty of Management Studies, Trident Group of Institutions

Disclaimer: Views expressed above are the author’s own

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