Sunday, 8 January 2012

What ails the BJP .... the principal Opposition party in India today

What ails the BJP, the principal Opposition party of India? Has the party itself bothered to sit up and take note of where the fault lies! Before I start this article, I wish to make it absolutely clear that these views are absolutely personal, and they are not meant as a criticism of the principal Opposition party, but are glaring facts which if taken note of, will help them in letting the people know and decide, that they are indeed an alternative to the ruling party. First and foremost, there are problems with their ideology. That is the main reason why they have been branded as communal. India is a country of diversity, there is diversity in language, diversity in culture, diversity in religion, diversity in prosperity and diversity in ideology. Yet we speak of unity in this diversity. When we speak of unity in so much of diversity what comes to our mind immediately? That the people of this great country come from various religions, various backgrounds, various different languages, various different cultures, yet they all fall under one umbrella. This umbrella is our country, our mother India. What happens if even one of these children is not allowed to come under the umbrella, and kept out only on the ground of religion or caste?Would it be fair on that child? You would at once say, this would not be fair at all, and would lodge a protest against any such discrimination. Now apply this example to our country. Would it be fair to discriminate against any person in this country, propagate against any person of this country on the grounds of his, or her, religion, or caste? It would be grossly unfair, unjust and discriminatory to single out any such community on the ground that they belong to a particular religion or caste.

When we say that the BJP is communal, we don't mean that it has no ideology, but the ideology it follows does not fit in with the social fabric of our country. This country does not belong to any particular caste, community or religion. Like a beautiful garden contains a large variety of fantastic and exquisite flowers, some big, some small, some scented, some colorful, others not so colorful, yet they all go towards increasing the beauty and serenity of the garden. Similarly the people of India combined together, go to contribute to its uniqueness. Even in its diversity, the people of this country are bound together by one common thread, that they all love their country,the feeling of oneness towards this country, and can proudly proclaim that they are all Indians. Whether they are Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, Christians, Parsis, or may belong to any other religion, inside their hearts they all feel and know that they are proud Indians. Ample proof of this, was there for all to see, when India won the World Cup in cricket, in 2011.  People from all communities, from all parts of India, whether East or West, North or South came out on the streets to celebrate, even politicos like Sonia or Rahul Gandhi couldn't stop themselves from celebrating. What was common to all of them? The spirit of euphoria, the feeling of being one with the Country, and what did they carry in their hand, the Tricolor of India. Could anyone, seeing this mass of humanity, point out and could have said, which community, religion or caste these people belonged to? Not at all! At that supreme moment of glory, they were all Indians, nothing more, nothing less!

 If this is the case, can you say that the people of one community, let's say the majority community, have more right over India than the members of a minority community? That would be playing around with the basic social structure of this country, that would be tearing the basic social fabric of this country, which binds one from the other. Why do we feel alarmed when passions are whipped up by any political party, in the name of religion, caste or creed? Why do we feel alarmed when we see members of one community attacking the other and vice versa? And we want this crazy mayhem to stop immediately. Because we feel threatened that if it does not stop at the earliest, it could be a potential threat to our country, it could divide it, and we love our country dearly to let anything like that happen to it. We have to learn from the experience of other major countries of the world, like the United States of America for instance. In a country where initially there was hatred against the Blacks and they were pushed in a corner in almost all spheres of life, with Civil War breaking out,  now we have a person no less than Pres Obama leading that country as its President. I'm not saying that all are tolerant towards each other, but at least they have shown unity, and have risen up to the occasion and and shown that each and every citizen, whether its white or black, can  have equal opportunity and it would not be fair to discriminate against any particular community, on the basis of  the color of their skin. We in India today, need also, to rise up to this occasion, and demonstrate that as a country we need to remain united. At the time of partition of this country, choice was given to every community to choose the country of their choice to live in. If the Muslims of our country have chosen to stay on, then it becomes their country too, and it would be totally unjust and unfair to single them out, or to try and keep them out of the progress of this country. India is a magnanimous country, it can only progress, if it carries along with itself, the various hues and shades of diversity, of its people which live here, and form part of India.

The BJP, which is the principal Opposition party has come a long way since it was formed. From a handful of seats in Parliament,  now they have a substantial number of seats which keeps on varying, with every election, but has never given them a comfortable majority to rule on their own. Their communal agenda is responsible for this, and is their biggest enemy. The sooner they realize this, and shed this image of theirs, the better it will be for them. I say this because if we have to have two party system in India and give the people of our country a valid choice at the time of elections, they should have something more formidable to look forward to. After all we don't want to hand over our country to a party which looks at a particular community with their blinkers on. This criticism is based on the facts and figures facing India, and there is no denying the fact. Let no one think that only the majority community lives in India, the other communities too stay here, and have a similar and equal role to play, in shaping its destiny. The sooner every party realizes this, the better it would be for our Great Nation. As a humble citizen of this Country I make a sincere appeal to all the political parties of this great Nation. Don't ask for votes in the name of religion or caste. Do away with this practice. Just speak the language of development and you will see the difference. Whichever party does better development will get voted to power and let development alone, work for this country. The beauty of India lies in its cultural, religious ethos and its historical diversity. Let's not destroy it in the name of vote bank or hate politics. Cheers to that sentiment!

I end by repeating, what I said in the beginning, that the purpose of this article is not to hurt the sentiments of any political party, but to awaken it, so that it is in tune with the cultural and social ethos of our country. 

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