A Farce That Is “Appeasement of Muslims” in India

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Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath welcomes Ram, Lakshman and Sita on their arrival at ‘Deepotsav’ celebration hosted by the Tourism Department of the Uttar Pradesh government in Ayodhya.


The concerns of Hindus about “appeasement” of Muslims, and to a lesser extent about the schemes favouring Dalits and OBC Hindus, emanate from the desire to continue the centuries-old domination of upper caste Hindus.


DR. JAVED JAMIL

CHIEF Minister of India’s largest state Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath spent Rs 195.89 crore for the grand Diwali celebrations in Ayodhya. Of this, Rs 133.70 crore has been sanctioned by the Union government.

But when some leader holds an Iftar party during Ramadhan, the Hindutva brigade feels hurt and wastes no time in declaring it “Muslim appeasement” worthy of utmost condemnation. At the same time, the all-out pampering of Hindus is a sign of secularism and justice for them.

However, they are right in using the word “appeasement” for what is usually done for Muslims in the country. They only get what can at best be called “appeasement” to make them feel that if nothing substantial can be done for them, in accordance with their needs, at least their emotions can be appeased through some occasional “gifts” of hollow words. Pampering, of course, is reserved for the Hindu community and the maximum part of it is reserved for certain sections of the Hindu community.

Yogi Adityanath has come up with another proposal to build a 100-metre tall statue of Lord Ram.  An Indian Express report says, “The Yogi Adityanath government plans to build a “grand statue” of Lord Ram on the banks of the Saryu River in Ayodhya, as part of its plan to showcase “Navya Ayodhya.” The proposal was presented to Governor Ram Naik as part of the state tourism department’s initiatives to promote religious tourism. The government’s slideshow put the height of the statute at 100 m but some officials said that wasn’t final.

According to a press communique released from Raj Bhavan, Principal Secretary, Tourism, Awanish Kumar Awasthi made the presentation.

…The communique stated that the statue will be built at Saryughat after clearance from the National Green Tribunal….Also part of the plan is a Ram Katha gallery on the banks of the river, a multi-purpose auditorium in the Digambar Akhara premises and various public utility services. For this integrated development of Ayodhya, the state government had sent a detailed project report (DPR) of Rs 195.89 crore to the Tourism Ministry at the Centre and the Ministry has so far provided Rs 133.70 crore to the state.”

Whatever Yogi does, nobody dares ask him, if he is a Hindu first or an Indian. And there is indeed no need to seek an answer, as the true answer is known to everybody. (Personally, I am not against government spending on religious sites provided it covers all communities.) Yesterday, in his speech he talked of innovating all the sites of Hindu religious importance in the state.

The truth is that not only specific Hindu pampering has always been there, the policies of almost all the governments in the past and present have benefited Hindus hugely, more than minorities and again mainly a few Hindu castes.

The forces of Hindutva want to ensure that nothing substantial is done to help Muslims recover from its huge backwardness. The Hindutva brigade seems to derive pleasure in the alienation, backwardness, helplessness and fear of Muslims and other minorities.

For them, doling reservation to 50 per cent Hindus is no appeasement of Hindus; making all schemes that benefit upper caste Hindu corporates is no appeasement of Hindus; celebrating Yoga Day as a national event is no appeasement of Hindus; making special arrangements for Hindu pilgrims; giving almost all the party tickets to Hindus; giving daily statements to please Hindus and harass Muslims; changing educational policies to inculcate what they call Hindu-Indian culture; giving only copies of Gita to foreign Presidents – all this is not Hindu appeasement.

If the government plans smart cities, small villages, FDI retail moves, even the bank and insurance schemes — all these percolate to benefit the corporates, almost all of whom are the upper caste Hindus.

Yes, they are right. Ideally, it should not be called appeasement; it is, in fact, total surrender and apportioning of all benefits to Hindus. And again, doling of few cosmetic benefits to Muslims can only be called political appeasement and no substantive assistance.

All these concerns about “appeasement” of Muslims, and to a lesser extent about the schemes favouring Dalits and OBC Hindus, emanate from the desire to continue the centuries-old domination of upper caste Hindus. In the remote past, Kshatriyas ruled with the help of the intellectual power of Brahmins and the money power of Vaishyas. Then Brahmins started ruling the country with the help of the money power of Vaishyas and the muscle power of Kshatriyas. More recently, Vaishyas have taken the reins in their hands turning democracy into Corporotocracy, with the help of the intellectual power of a section (not all) of Brahmins and the muscle power of Kshatriysa. This is the most dangerous phase because when money rules, morality soon gets cremated.

The list 0f 100 richest Indians (Forbes List) is enough to show how Vaishya community has already monopolised India’s wealth, and to perpetuate it, they will, of course, try to use politicians, media and bureaucracy.

Not only is the consumer industry largely controlled by the Baniyas, even the Ministry of Education is dominated by them. The mushrooming of tens of thousands of private institutions of all kinds in the country has introduced another kind of reservation — reservation for the rich, which again hit the Muslim community in a big way because less number of Muslims are likely to be able to pay the exorbitant fees that good private institutions demand. Privatisation has also benefited the upper caste Hindus on the business front in a big way.

There was a huge political and social response to the implementation of Mandal Commission Report in the 1990s and the media was abuzz how this would be a grave injustice to the students who do not fall in the reserved categories. But, the rapid industrialisation of education has seen no mass movement against it because the big business is involved and it supports the rich (most being upper caste Hindus). No one is arguing that the policy of promoting private institutions in the country has resulted in the virtual reservation of the rich.

The ones who can afford to pay the fees can get admission in management, technical and other professional courses in reputed private institutions, even if they have less than 60 per cent marks in intermediate. Those who cannot afford cannot get admissions even if they have more than 80 per cent marks. These institutions develop partnerships with major companies and their products get good placements. Again, this reservation of rich is hitting the Muslim community in a bigger way than others. With lesser percentage in private institutions, their percentage in private sector services is going to further decrease.

From what has happened at Ayodhya, it now seems clear that Ram Mandir movement is already underway in a renewed form. Having failed on the economic front, this is the only plausible way to ensure victory in 2019.


Dr Javed Jamil is an eminent Islamic scholar and author. All opinions and views expressed in columns and blogs are those of individual writers and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Caravan

 

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