तक्षशिला से मगध तक यात्रा एक संकल्प की . . .

I am neither a politician nor a social reformer!

CHICAGO_1893_20x30_21_RGB_FINAL_00What was the purpose of Swami Vivekananda’s life? Though it may be deemed arrogant to ask such a question, for those who want to follow his path it is very important to address this basic query in right spirit. The purpose of life is what makes the personality what it is.

Swamiji as an Avatar?

Some devotees like to believe Swamiji to be an avatar and they would simply say the purpose of avatar is to establish Dharma and that’s what Swamiji did. But the founder of Vivekananda Kendra, Ma EknathjiRanade would consider calling Swamiji an avatar as an escapists’argument. By calling him avatar we are shunning our responsibility to follow his path. On the other hand it is belittling his achievements also. ”If he was a divine incarnation, I feel, what he did was not very much. But on the other hand if I think he was as human as any one of us then I feel that he has achieved a great height. At the same time, I get the inspiration to keep a noble goal before myself and to emulate his path to greatness.” Eknathji would argue.

What were Swamiji’s thoughts on the matter? He has uttered many a things about himself. He has also written about his life’s mission in some of his letters. But never has he called himself an avatar. That should be the ultimate test. Notwithstanding the vision of ShriRamakrishnaParamahamsa reported by some devotees to back their avatar claim; we will be more honest if we use Swamiji’s method to decide the issue. Narendra was also faced with the samedilemma about his Guru. Many devotees called ShriRamakrishna an avatar. Narendra himself had many miraculous experiences with the great master. He attained NirvikalpaSamadhi, had Shaktipat(Transfer of Spiritual power by touch) and also the SakaraDarshan(Vision in Form) of Mother Kali by the grace of the great Guru. Still he could not come to a definite conclusion as to Shri Ramakrishna being a divine incarnation till the very last days of Thakur. To resolve the dilemma he decides in his mind, ”I will accept him as a divine incarnation, an avatar, only if he himself directly tells me so.” It is documented that he got the answer then and there. As if the Guru was reading the mind of the disciple, Thakur, taking Narendra’s hand proclaimed very clearly, ”One who was Rama, who was Krishna, has now born as Ramakrishna”; leaving no ambiguity whatsoever.

Hence we must apply the same test for deciding whether Swamiji was an Avatar or not. According to the documented and available information he never claimed to be one. He was not shy of speaking about himself. As early as in1891 he is known to have said, ”I will burst upon the Indian society like a bomb”. He fulfilled this self prophecy. Talking to his disciple he extolled, ”I may leave this mortal body, but I will continue to work for next 1500 years.” So he does. But there is no mention of his calling himself an Avatar. Thus till any such new discoveries are found we are bound to take Swamiji’ word for his purpose of life as a human being rather than an Avatar.

References to his mission:

He has distinctly made a few comments on his mission which was dawned upon him in the intense meditation at the ShreepadShila in Kanyakumari. He had written in one of his letters to ShashiMaharaj, Swami Ramakarishnanda, ”Sitting on the last bit of Mother Bharat, I hit upon a plan”. He has explained his plan of campaign in a lecture in Madras after his triumphant return from the west. But we are after the purpose of his life. The mission and plans are to fulfill the purpose. What was the purpose of Swamiji’slife? He himself had struggled hard within and without to find this. He was convinced that there was a noble purpose but most of the time it was elusive. On Hatharas station he told the station master SaratChandraChakroborty, who later became his first sanyasi disciple, Swami Sadananda, ”I see my purpose of life like the hill covered by the morning mist. My destiny beckons me. I have to move on.”

What others say:

Many people have given him many lofty attributes and rightly so. Some called him the patriot monk, warrior monk, the savior of Hinduism, the second Shankarcharya, a social reformer. Bhagini Nivedita says about his address in the Chicago, “Of the Swami’s address before the Parliament of Religions, it may be said that when he began to speak it was of ‘the religious ideas of the Hindus’, but when he ended, Hinduism had been created.” Thus almost announcing him the father of neo-Hinduism. He has been creditedas one of the greatest pioneers of Indian renaissance in the 19th century. His own brother BhupendranathDutt talks about his (failed) plans of organizing political revolution to free India from foreign rule. Likes of Bipin Chandra Pal and Brajendranath Seal would agree to call him a political activist. This may not be authenticated by available documents but there is no doubt that his life and message inspired generations of freedom fighters both of armed and nonviolent type.

“He was so great, so profound, so complex. A Yogi of the highest spiritual level in direct communion with the truth who had for the time being consecrated his whole life to the moral and spiritual uplift of his nation and of humanity, that is how I would describe him. If he had been alive, I would have been at his feet” Said Subhash Chandra Bose many a times. On the other hand Rajaji, Sri Chakravarthi Rajagopalachari calls him a savior of Hinduism, “Swami Vivekananda saved Hinduism and saved India. But for him, we would have lost our religion and would not have gained our freedom. We therefore owe everything to Swami Vivekananda.”BalGangadharTilak who had hosted Swamiji in Pune during his wanderings equates him with AdiShankaracharya, “It is an undisputed fact that it was Swami Vivekananda who first held aloft the banner of Hinduism as a challenge against the material science of the West. It was Swami Vivekananda who first took on his shoulders this stupendous task of establishing the glory of Hinduism in different countries across the borders. And he, with his erudition, oratorical power, enthusiasm, and inner force, laid that work upon a solid foundation. Twelve centuries ago Shankara was the only great personality who not only spoke of the purity of our religion… but also brought all this into action. Swami Vivekananda is a person of that stature.” Rabindranath Tagore when asked by the french Historian Roman Rolland, how can he understand the spirit of India? Said, “If you want to know India, study Vivekananda.”

Father of Hindu Nationalism:

The accolades he received during his lifetime and thereafter are countless and the list still continues to grow longer and longer. Even the critics of Hinduism in the modern times in search of the roots of Hindu upsurge during the Ramjanmbhumiagitation reach back to Swamiji for so called ideological foundations. They try to put the blame on Swamiji among others for the revival of Hindu Nationalistic spirit. He is considered to be father of Hindu Nationalism by those in favor as well as those against the idea.

Preacher of Vedanta:

There are many others who are fascinated by his depth of spiritual knowledge. The scientific way in which he articulated the mysteries of highest spiritual knowledge is unparallel. Hence he was called the foremost preacher of Vedanta in the west. It is also claimed by some that he conquered the west and converted many to Vedanta.

Swamiji’s personality and his message was multifaceted hence there are many ways of understanding Swami Vivekananda. Each one does it from one’s own respective point of view. This has made Swamiji the most acceptable, non controversial ideal of the modern times. People from opposing camps use his quotations to prove their side of argument and blame the other of misrepresenting him. The left ideologues who denigrate religion also accept Swamiji’s views on the regeneration of deprived masses. But in all this process, sometimes, there is a deliberate effort to dilute Swamiji’sNationalism, his in-depth understanding of the soul of Bharat. He was the first religious and spiritual leader to proclaim that the soul of Bharat was ‘Dharma’. He was the first proponent of the concept of Hindurashtra, the Hindu nation. This should not be forgotten and any effort to prove it otherwise is an attempt to twist his message to suit the present day vested political interest.

Self Prophesy:

In this cacophony of diverse and sometimes even contradictory claims about Swamiji how do we find the answer to our query? What was the purpose of Swamiji’slife? Here again we must rely on the original text rather than the interpretationswhich may be within or out of proper context. Is there any statement of the Swami about his own self? What was his view about himself and his work? There are loads of indirect references in his speeches in India. There are a few direct discussions recorded by his disciples which give us an insight in to his mind. But the most direct statement on the topic is,”I am not a politician, nor am I a social reformer. It is my job to fashion man…Man-making is my mission of life.”

To Fashion Man:

What a great statement? To Fashion man! What does it means when one uses the verb to fashion?  Rogers’s thesaurus gives us a lot of options – to design, to tailor, to style, to mould, to modify etc. When we apply it to humans what will be the most consistent meaning. To fashion man- is to transform. To use Swamiji’s own words, ‘to enable man to manifest the perfection already within.’ To fashion is to train to realize the potential divinity in practical life. To make one actualize the full potential.To make one realize the special purpose of his life and to progress on that path.

Swamiji did that all his life. He transformed the life of everyone he touched. The list is long and varied. Swamiji’s man making technology which Sister Nivedita later on qualified by adding its prime objective as ”Man Making for Nation Building” was unique for each of its beneficiary. To study this transformation brought about by Swamiji in hundreds of people is an interesting way to understand the science of human excellence and the various methods of unfolding it.

Self Transformation by Efforts:

The mission started early in his life. The first experiment of his self proclaimed job was on his own personality. It is an interesting saga of self transformation through intense enquiry, struggle within and without, experimentations and in short total and continuous efforts. The whole journey is in four distinct stages Biley to Narendra, Narendra to Sachchidananda/vividishananda (his sanyasi names during the initial wanderings), Kolkata to Kanyakumari -From Wanderer to a determined Vivekananda with a mission and finally the Missionary Vivekananda Chicago to Bellur. This is not the occasion to examine the whole journey but the methods of Fashioning involved. The prime urge was to realize, to experience. No pretence, no belief no acceptance without thorough logic and questioning. He not only questioned others, but his self questioning continued all through his life till the end. As confidant as he was of his mission and the success of it, still he kept on asking am I on the right path. His openness to discussions and acceptance to change at any stage is really inspiring. Though the process went on all his life the most important period of intense self-transformation is his encounters with Shri Ramakrishna. That fashioned the Vivekananda that we know. It was not an easy process. The struggle went on. Both of them suffered a lot. Each one sticking to ones own ways. Swamiji’s adamancy was to be tamed only by realization. He did many experiments under the guidance of his Guru. This acceptance of Thakur as Guru also came only after the mystic experience of the oneness through touch- Shaktipat. But the final surrender and giving up of the rigid ego was done by the greatest of the experiences – Vision of Kali as a Chinmayi (living, conscious mother). This was the turning point which made him realize that the divine was omnipotent, omniscient and can be realized in all forms. This made him internalize the revolutionary Gospel of ShriRamakrishna – Shiv BhaveJeevSeva. Serve the living being with the full understanding of its divinity. This becamehis life mantra, “Service to humanity as an offering to the divinity.”

The self acceptedvocation to Fashion man continued more vigorously after the Guru left the mortal form. The initial period of 3-4 years was very testing. The domestic situation was worsening. Thakur had given him the responsibility to keep the Sangh, the monastic order of young disciples together. The householder devotees had their own ideas. During this period Narendra kept all his brother disciples in constant contact and saw to it that they did not forget the call of the master as well as their inner fire of Vairagya was kept alive. It was a daunting task. The whole well meaningworld of relatives, families and even the householder followers of Thakur were against the idea. But Narendra kept it alive in the tough times and gave it a shape in VarahnagarMath.

This man-making mission continued throughout his life and even there after. We see great examples of total transformations in this journey. There are examples like Swami Ramtirh, a Professor of Mathematics in Lahore, who attended Swamiji’s lectures there on Common Bases of Hinduism and Vedanta and got so inspired that he renounced and became a great Sanyasi. But there are few example of Man-making that will give us the insight into the science of the art of Human Fashioning. We will try and study some of them in detail in the next part.


मई 5, 2014 Posted by | English Posts | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | टिप्पणी करे

केवल पर्दा उठने की ही देरी है

गत सप्ताह भारत के सर्वोच्च न्यायालय ने दो ऐतिहासिक निर्णय दिये। किसी भी लोकसेवक के विरूद्ध अभियोजन के लिये सरकार की अनुमति का प्रावधान ब्रिटिश राज की व्यवस्था की अनेक देनों में से एक है। जिस अधिकारी पर भ्रष्टाचार का आरोप है उसके विरुद्ध कारवाई करने हेतु अनुमति उसी के वरिष्ठ अधिकारी अथवा मन्त्री से प्राप्त करनी पड़ती है। इसके पीछे का तर्क यह था कि अनावश्यक रुप से शासकीय अधिकारियों को कानूनी झंझटों में घसीटे जाने से बचाया जाय ताकि वे अपने कर्तव्य को निर्भय होकर निभा सके। वर्तमान सड़ी व्यवस्था में भ्रष्ट अधिकारियों को दण्डात्मक कारवाई से बचाने के लिये इस प्रावधान का दुरुपयोग हो रहा है। अनेक बार जिस मंत्री के आदेश पर भ्रष्ट अधिकारी कार्य कर रहा होता है वही अनुमति देनेवाला होता है। ऐसे में निर्णय को लटकाये रखने का चलन सामने आया है। सर्वोच्च न्यायालय ने अब इसपर 4 माह की समयसीमा लगा दी है। आदेश का सर्वोत्तम पहलू यह है कि इसने सरकार को निर्णय लेने पर बाध्य किया है। अपराधियों को बचाने के लिये निर्णयों को लम्बित रखने की बाबूगिरी अब नहीं चलेगी। सर्वोच्च न्यायालय ने स्पष्ट कर दिया है कि चार माह में निर्णय ना किये जाने पर अनुमति मान ली जायेगी।

इस प्रावधान का सबसे बड़ा व तात्कालिक असर सुब्रह्मणियम स्वामी द्वारा प्रधानमंत्री से सोनिया गांधी के विरूद्ध अभियोजन के लिये मांगी अनुमति पर होगा। यदि शासन समय सीमा में निर्णय नहीं लेता है तो वह परोक्ष अनुमति ही हो जायेगी। यदि समय सीमा में प्रधानमंत्री तथ्यों को जानकर भी अनुमति नकारते है तब वे भी भ्रष्टाचार के सहयोगी हो जायेंगे। वर्तमान अर्थशास्त्री प्रधानमंत्री अंग्रेजी शासन की कुख्यात देन प्रशासनिक सेवा के अधिकारी रहे हैं अतः निर्णयों को लम्बित रखने को उन्होंने एक कला का रुप दे दिया है। प्रधानमंत्री नरसिम्हाराव अत्यन्त संवेदनशील मुद्दोंपर चुप्पी साधने के विशेषज्ञ थे। उन्होंने कहा था कि ‘‘कारवाई ना करना भी अपने काप में एक कारवाई है।’’ मनमोहनसिंहजी ने उनके पदचिह्नों पर चलने के नये आयाम स्थापित किये है। अब सर्वोच्च न्यायालय के क्रांतिकारी निर्णय से उनको इस उंघाउ नींद से जागना होगा। वैसे भी युवराज का अभिषेक करने को लालायित काँग्रेस कभी भी इस सर्कस के सिंह को सेवानिवृत्ति का आदेश दे सकती है। हे वीर खालसा सरदारों को दशमेश की दी पगड़ी जीवनभर धारनेवाले सिंह अपने सिंहत्व को एक बार तो दिखा दो और जाने से पूर्व सोनिया के विरूद्ध अभियोजन की अनुमति दे ही दो। सारा देश आपके सब अपराधों को भूल आपको सर आँखों पर रख लेगा।

दूसरा निर्णय भ्रष्ट वाणिज्यिक संस्थानों पर कड़ा प्रहार था। जितना राजनैतिक तन्त्र भ्रष्ट है उससे कई गुना अधिक कलुषित कार्पोरेट जगत है। दोनों के गठजोड़ ने पूरे देश को गिरवी रख दिया है। प्राकृतिक संसाधनों की अंधाधुंद लूट मची है। 2जी मामले में 122 लाइसेन्स रद्द करने का निर्णय इस दिशा में अत्यन्त सार्थक कदम है। न्यायालय ने दिखा दिया है कि जो भी अपराध में लिप्त है उसे उसकी कीमत चुकानी ही होगी। राजनेताओं को भ्रष्ट कर अपना स्वार्थ सिद्ध करने वाले व्यावसायिकों के लिये यह चेतावनी की घण्टी है। केवल स्वार्थ व लालच के लिये ही धंधा करनेवाले लोगों से हम जगने की अपेक्षा तो नहीं कर सकते किन्तु पीढ़ियों से नैतिक व्यवसाय के लिये जाने जा रहे टाटा व बिड़ला जैसे समूह तो आगे से भ्रष्ट नीतियों द्वारा अनुचित लाभ के प्रयत्नों को विराम देंगे ऐसी अपेक्षा की जा सकती है।

उत्तर प्रदेश के महत्वपूर्ण चुनावों से पूर्व इन न्यायालयीन निर्णयों तथा सरकार को दी गई स्पष्ट फटकारों से यु पी ए शासन की पूर्व से ही कलंकित साख और अधिक गर्त में गिर गई है। अपने गृहमंत्री के कुछ समय के लिये बच जाने से सरकार राहत की सांस भले ही ले ले किन्तु विशेष सी बी आय सत्र न्यायाधीश के निर्णय की भाषा उच्च न्यायालय में कुछ विपरित निर्णय आने की आस लगाती है। ऐसा यदा कदा ही होता है कि न्यायाधीश तथ्यों की तो पुष्टि कर दे किन्तु उनके अपर्याप्त होने का कारण देकर याचिका को बरखास्त कर दे। न्यायालय ने माना है कि संचार मंत्री के निर्णयों को बदलने का अधिकार होते हुए भी तत्कालीन वित्त मंत्री ने उन निर्णयों से सहमति दिखाई। इस तथ्य को मानने के बाद न्यायाधीश महोदय इसे आपराधिक षड़यन्त्र मानने के लिये अपर्याप्त मानते है। इस भाषा में इस बात के लिये जगह बन जाती है कि अधिक पूछताछ व छानबीन से कुछ और तथ्य सामने आ सकते है जो अपराधिक नियत को स्पष्ट करें। ऐसे में आश्चर्य नहीं होना चाहिये कि सर्वोच्च न्यायालय सी बी आय को जाँच के आदेश दे।

इसी सप्ताह कनाड़ा के एक अदालती मामाले में तत्कालीन उड्डयन मंत्री प्रफुल्ल पटेल को रिश्वत दिये जाने का मामला सामने आया है। अब प्रश्न केवल यही बचा है कि इस सरकार में कोई एक भी इमानदार मंत्री बचा है क्या? या केवल पर्दा उठने की ही देरी है। यह तो निश्चित है कि कलंक से घिरी यह सरकार देश पर शासन करने का नैतिक अधिकार खो चुकी है। विपक्ष, सामान्य जनता व सबसे महत्वपूर्ण देश के प्रबुद्ध नागरिक इस सरकार को बिना विलम्ब पदच्युत करने के लिये आंदोलन प्रारम्भ करें।

सिंहासन खाली करों कि जनता आती है।

फ़रवरी 8, 2012 Posted by | सामायिक टिपण्णी | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | टिप्पणी करे

Fractured Democracy : Demands Surgery

People’s power was amply exhibited in different protests in the year 2011. In a democratic setup public opinion is very important factor in policy making. Hence there is always a concerted effort on the part of the establishment to mange the public perception. With the explosion of media of mass communication this task has become more and more specialized. Print media has its own influence in the class of people in the polpulation but the spread of electronic channels and then the sudden explosion of social media has given the masses multiple avenues to express there opinion. The first two are influenced by the government by spending enormous amounts on advertisements. But the internet being an open forum without much financial involvement it is very difficult for the governments all over the world to effectively control this.

Professional perception managers are employed to meet this unprecedented challenge. The art and science has been developing gin the developed countries for more than decade now but we are experimenting with this in last couple of years. This government is learnt to have used most expensive professionals available in the field. It was reported in some news papers that these agencies have been advising the prince of the ruling party on matters like how to dress? How to speak? How to pick up a child at appropriate moment to be photographed etc. Same report claimed that the couple of day’s growth seen on the face is also a planned move suggested by PMs –Perception managers. On a more serious stage an example of effective perception management was the Mumbai fast of Anna. It was reversal of perceptions that worked against India Against Corruption. Earlier IAC had successfully created a perception (without any professional help) that Janalokpal is the key to all the problems related to Governance. The central government very cleverly managed to put forth that they have come up with Lokpal. May not be copycat of JLP but nevertheless a Lokpal is here. This created an overwhelming impression in the public mind that Mumbai fast is just an ego boosting exercise. Hence we did not see the response as before. It was naive on the part of team Anna to think that they are in an honest fight. They proved to be politically immature to match the choreography of the political managers of the government. Basically Bharatiya Public wants to believe in the Rule of law. They tend to follow the government even if little less than perfect. Agitation is only an extreme measure. The UPA had failed to give this room for an alternative earlier in April and August. After the 4th June crack down on the peaceful gathering of fasting protestors including women and children in the Ramlila grounds created an out rage. Public felt cornered hence the agitations got mass support. This time around the government was successful in creating a perception that the effort is on and there are parties like TMC apart from the opposition who are grinding the Govt for strong Lokpal, hence no need for extracurricular measures. This is most typical how Bharat works.

There is another extreme in the discourse. They claim that the system and not the governing group are responsible for the mess. The Democratic set-up adopted by Bharat is the root cause of all the problems. Even the team Anna members criticized the practice MPs following the party line. They demanded removing the provision of whip so that individuals can vote in the parliament according to their own thinking. This is height of duplicity. On one hand we are talking about people’s right to recall and on the other we want the MPs not to follow party discipline. The legal provisions of whip were strengthened by anti defection law after the repeated horse-trading episodes in the 1980s. An MP is elected on the party symbol. It is not his individual win. The party policy is projected to the public in the election; they are supposed to have voted accordingly. To claim that the individual will be in a better position to take moral position than within the party mandate may open flood gates for more dangerous corruption in the houses of Parliament. In fact the present irony of coalitions is also a great drama of our flawed democracy. The parties which fought against each other in the election come together and form the government. On one hand at the central level support of parties is bought by CBI threats or relaxations, on the other hand the same parties are target of vicious campaign at the State level.

But can we blame Democracy for all this? Contention that Democracy is the root cause of all the evil does not hold good in an objective analysis. Any other alternative will be inherently more prone to dishonesty and exploitation. Democracy as such at least notionally has the potential of generating people’s power as witnessed in the “Samagra Kranti” led by Jaiprakash Narain in 1977 and again during the Ayodhya agitation in 1992. The same was done apolitically last year. We can definitely infer that present form of democracy has created systemic faults that are responsible for the failure of governance mechanism in the country today. But to say that per say Democracy need to be negated does not go with the times. We will have to win the game by following the rules of the game. Reforms are no doubt needed in our democratic system. But we will have to demand reforms in accordance with the evolved system and not totally out of box.

Theoretically speaking, there are two forms of practicing Democracy. A > Direct Democracy – This is said to be practiced in the city states of Athens or some of the Ganas in the northern Bharat at the time of Alexander’s attack. The citizens directly participate in the governance process in legislature and they elect the executive, even the Judiciary in some cases.

B> Representative Democracy- The Westminster model that we have adopted as a legacy of British Raj. In this the representatives are elected by the citizens and they in turn ‘choose’ the Executive. Mostly the Judiciary is not elected but selected.

Both the models have their pros and cons. US has hybridized the two systems. It has direct elections for the executive heads in the states as well as at the Federal level. At the same time there is a representative houses for legislation primarily but it also serves as a regulatory authority on the Executive.  It seems the Judiciary is also elected in most of the States in US.

We, in Bharat seem to have made a total mess of the democratic principles. The most important of which is the Rule of the majority. Whether in the direct or representative democracy it is the majority that should decide the policy. The elections should ensure that the winning representative of the citizens should have the backing of at least one more than 50% of the polled votes. Here, in Bharat the Decorative head, President, is elected by indirect elections. The more damaging constitutional provision is that the executive Head, Prime-minister, as well need not even be elected directly. Present PM is Rajyasabha member, where the election does not involve citizen’s vote directly. But to continue as the Prime-minister he must always have backing of Majority Members of Loksabha. There 1+50% is mandatory. But the MPs are elected by a process where they do not need to have majority vote in their respective constituency. So, we have MPs who won the elections by securing only 7% of the polled votes. There are hardly a few members who can claim to have got more than 50% of the polled votes in their own Loksabha seat.

This is systemic failure of the democracy. We do not have democracy in practice here even in the constitutional provisions, it is only notional. Hence the rise of elite ruling class and also the evolution of increasingly divisive politics based on all the possible fault lines of caste, region, language or religion. The only thing the politician has to make sure to win an election is to divide others into enough groups to make his group largest. This is inherent in the system.

We can not hope to have any reforms unless we change this basic flaw in the democratic set-up. Two basic demands need to be put forward.

1)      Direct election of the head of the executive, Prime minister in present scenario. This will need constitutional amendment hence very difficult in the era of coalition politics in which even small regional parties have disproportionate importance and value. But we must start a discourse to create a demand for this. The other alternative is Presidential form of government with direct election of the President being the first step.

2)      Demand for making 1+50% as the winning criterion in all the elections from Panchayat to Rashtrapati. This is relatively easier. It can be done by amending the Peoples Representative act. This can be done by simple majority. The major two political parties are expected to benefit most by this reform so it can be done with consensus. It is morally and logically very sound argument and no one ca deny that those who are denied support by the majority of the voters in their constituency have no right to represent people.

These are not the magic wand reforms which will cure all the evils of our system. Ultimately we need to go beyond the historical experience of just a couple of centuries. The present day system has evolved out of the British raj and has its Historic roots in the colonial period. But for the final cure we will have to go to root cause and for that we will have to still deeper in the Historical experience of the nation. We have known history of more than 5000 years with a golden era every second century. We led the world in economic prosperity, Education, Science and Technology and most importantly a peaceful socio-political system. We had variety of political experiments. We can not bring back the diverse political systems which existed in different parts of Bharat. Hindus have always believed in diversity of expression of the same principle. We followed it in political systems also. The Chakravartis respected the existing system of the conquered state and allowed it to continue. We had so many variations of political systems Gana-rajya with total direct democracy on one end of the spectrum to different forms of complex structures like the Magadha Empire. There were systems where only women ruled. But the basic principle of rule was Dharma. That was the common thread.

What we lack today is the Dharmik System. Today we have to accept the system that has evolved and apply the Dharmik principles to it. That is the Hindu way of digesting the alien. We need a fresh Smriti to interpret Sanatana Dharma according to present day society and to codify Yugadharma. This is our indigenous idea of constitution. We need a Smriti instead of this cut & paste document, that we call Constitution of India.

The parliament house has drawn inspiration for its architecture from the Chausath Yogini Temple in Mitawali, Madhya Pradesh in the same way our democratic structure needs to be based on the sound foundations of the principles of the Dharma of the land. The fractured Democracy demands a complete surgery not just cosmetic make-over.

जनवरी 7, 2012 Posted by | सामायिक टिपण्णी, English Posts | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 टिप्पणियाँ

अण्णा आंदोलन का जमा-खर्च

29 अगस्त के न्यू इण्डियन एक्स्प्रेस में स्वदेशी चिंतक श्री एस् गुरुमूर्ति जी का लेख छपा है। हिन्दी पाठकों की सुविधा हेतु सारांश सहित मूल लेख प्रस्तुत है।
भ्रष्टाचार के विरुद्ध भारत (India Against Corruption) नाम से इस आंदोलन का प्रारम्भ हुआ। आंदोलन की आधिकारिक वेबसाईट के अनुसार ‘‘यह आंदोलन भ्रष्टाचार के विरुद्ध जनता के सामूहिक क्रोध की अभिव्यक्ति है।’’

इसके संस्थापकों में अण्णा हजारे, बाबा रामदेव, महमूद मदनी, आर्चबिशप विंसेण्ट एम कोंसेसाओ, सईद रिजवी, न्या तेवतिया, बी आर लाल आदि बताये गए है। जनवरी 2011 से ही सारे देश में आग्रा से सिल्चर, चेन्नई तकअनेक आंदोलन के विवरण आपको साईट पर मिलेंगे। बाबा रामदेव जैसे आंदोलन के नेताओं ने भ्रष्टाचार के अलावा कालेधन जैसे मुद्दों को भी उठाया है।

पर धीरे धीरे सारा आंदोलन केवल जनलोकपाल के पारीत कराने तक सीमित हो गया और नेतृत्व भी टीम अण्णा के नाम पर 4 लोगों के हाथ सिमट गया। ये कैसे हुआ?

2009 के चुनावों के समय आड़वाणीजी ने काले धन का मूद्दा जोरदार तरिके से उठाया। यु पी ए सरकार के चुनाव जीतने के कारण यह मुद्दा 2 साल कुछ पीछे चला गया। पर जब भ्रष्टाचार के महाकाण्डों की सुनामी सी आई तब रानीतीज्ञ, उद्योगपति व अपराधी इन सब के विदेशों में छिपाये भयंकर काले धन के बारे में जनता आक्रोश सामने आया।

मिडिया ने सोनिया गांधी का काला धन विदेशी बैंकों में होने की बात कही। तब भ्रष्टाचार से लड़ने के लिये यु पी ए सरकार ने लोकपाल का शगुफा निकाला ताकि बाकी मुद्दों से ध्यान हटाया जाये। यह एक शिकारी का घात था। IAC इस चाल में फँस गया। उन्होंने सरकारी कानुन को लचर जानकर अपने विशेषज्ञों से एक जनलोकपाल बिल बनाया। कोंग्रेस को तो ये बढ़िया अवसर मिल गया। अब लड़ाई सरकारी लोकपाल व जनलोकपाल की हो गई थी।

भा ज पा ने हिमालयी भूल की जब आड़वाणी जी ने सोनिया को सामान्य शिष्टाचार के अन्तर्गत खेद जताता पत्र लिखा। मिडिया ने उसे काले धन के मुद्दे पर माफी के रुप में प्रचारित किया। भा ज पा के मूक होते ही काले धन व भ्रष्टाचार का मुद्दा बाबा रामदेव व अण्णा जैसे गैर राजनैतिक नेतृत्व के हाथ रह गया।

यह कोंग्रेसी रणनीति की जीत थी। मुद्दा गैरराजनैतिक हो गया, भा ज पा के हाथ से निकल गया। कोंग्रेसी रणनीति के अन्तर्गत ही अण्णा आंदोलन ने पूरे राजनेताओं पर ही प्रश्न लगा दिया। यह भी कोंग्रेस के लिये लाभकारी था। साम्प्रदायिकता को छोड़ अन्य किसी भी मुद्दे पर भा ज पा के साथ जोडे़ जाने में कोंग्रेस का ही लाभ होता है। पहले अनशन के दौरान नरेन्द्र मोदी की तारीफ करनेवाले अण्णा के साथियों ने अण्णा को उनके विरुद्ध घोषणा के लिये पे्ररित कर भा ज पा को आंदोलन से और दूर कर दिया।

जब अण्णा की जिद व स्वयं की भूलों से सरकार फँस गई तब फिर उन्होंने भाजपा को अपने साथ घेर लिया। विधायिका बनाम जनता का मुद्दा बनाकर भाजपा के अन्दर के संविधानवादियों को भी इस बातपर साथ ले लिया।

पर रामदेव की तरहा ही अण्णा को जिस प्रकार दबाने का सरकार ने प्रयत्न किया उससे मिडिया बिफर गया और 24 घण्टे अण्णा आंदोलन में लग गया। ‘वन्दे मातरम’ और ‘भारत माता की जय’ के नारों से पूरा देश गूँज गया। ये उद्घोष संघ के कार्यकर्ताओं को अपने लगने ही थे। और अनेक संघ के कार्यकर्ता बड़ी संख्या आंदोलन में जुड़ गये। इसी कारण भाजपा संसदीय दल की नाराजगी झेलते हुए भी नितिन गड़करी को अण्णा आंदोलन को पूर्ण सहयोग की घोषणा करनी पड़ी। इससे संसदीय दल सहित भाजपा पूरी तरहा अण्णा के साथ आ गई ओर अण्णा का पलड़ा भारी हो गया। पर फिर एक बार कोंग्रेस ने “Sense of the House” प्रस्ताव को पारित करने में भाजपा को अपने साथ जोड़ लिया। बहरहाल अण्णा टीम को और मिडिया को जीत का दावा ठोकने का अवसर मिल गया।

अण्णा आंदोलन का कुल जमाखर्च ये है। कोंग्रेस के साथ जुड़ने से भाजपा का ही नुकसान हुआ कोंग्रेस का नहीं। कोंग्रेस अण्णा पर विश्वास नहीं कर सकती अण्णा कोंग्रेस पर विश्वास नहीं करते। देश प्रतिक्षा कर रहा है कि जनलोकपाल बिल का संसद में क्या होता है? संघ प्रसन्न है कि सेक्यूलरवादियों द्वारा तिरस्कृत ‘वन्दे मातरम्’ और ‘भारत माता की जय’ इन उद्घोषों को अण्णा ने सर्वमान्य बना दिया।



Anna stir – a balance sheet

S Gurumurthy

Last Updated : 29 Aug 2011 01:04:19 AM IST
With the ‘Sense of the House’ letter from the Speaker reaching Anna Hazare, the Anna fast has ended. And the Team Anna and the media have proclaimed victory. Now the nation is relieved from the non-stop 24×7 screams of the media. It can think now! It can now draw a balance sheet of the Anna stir to know what are its giveaways and takeaways. Now go back to where the agitation began.

What is now known as the Anna movement started as India Against Corruption (IAC), whose website says, “India Against Corruption movement is an expression of collective anger of people of India against corruption.”

The IAC website lists as founders besides Anna Hazare, Baba Ramdev, Mahamood Madani, Arcbishop Vincent M Concessao, Syed Rizvi, Justice D S Tewatia, B R Lall and others. Click the January 2011 archives of IAC website, it is full of “March against corruption” in every nook and corner of India from Agra to Chennai and Ahmedabad to Silichar.

The leaders of the IAC, particularly Baba Ramdev, had raised, besides corruption, the emotive issue of Indian black money abroad. But the IAC receded into the oblivion and the apolitical movement against corruption, got reduced to merely a fight for Jan Lok Pal (JLP) Bill. The Anna movement emerged, narrowed into just a battle for a just JLP Bill, marginalised other founders and reduced its leadership to just four, the ‘Team Anna’. See the effect of these changes.

This was how Jan Lok Pal Bill replaced black money and corruption as the core agenda of the IAC? In the Lok Sabha elections in 2009, thanks to L K Advani, the black money issue had become a huge issue; it remained dormant after the UPA victory. But after the Tsunami of corruption hit Indian politics, the public roar against black money stashed abroad by politicians, businessmen and criminals became stentorian.

The media alleged that Sonia Gandhi had huge monies stashed away abroad. It was then that the UPA II suddenly thought of a Lok Pal Bill to ride out of the tornado of corruption and black money. It was a trap. Soon IAC walked into the trap. It dismissed the government version of the Lok Pal Bill and insisted that the draft prepared by its think tank, the Jan Lok Pal Bill, should be accepted. The Congress party saw it as a blessing in disguise to make its Lok Pal Bill fight the Jan Lok Pal Bill, to keep corruption and black money out of headlines.

Meanwhile, the BJP committed a Himalayan blunder. L K Advani wrote a personal letter to Sonia Gandhi for the hurt caused to her. That was made public to make it appear that it was to regret the charges made in the BJP Task Force Report on black money that Sonia Gandhi family was keeping huge illegal funds abroad. The BJP’s move against black money became moot, leaving the issue to the apolitical Swami Ramdev, Anna being confined to JLP Bill.

The Congress, thrown on the back foot by corruption and black money issues, saw in JLP Bill an opportunity to obfuscate both. When Anna started his Jantar Mantar fast, Sonia Gandhi – charged with hoarding black wealth abroad – offered to partner him in his battle against corruption! The result, the Congress successfully divided the IAC agenda between Anna with JLP Bill issue and Baba Ramdev with black money and corruption issues.

The first fast of Anna was thus subsumed into this Sonia-led Congress strategy, leaving the BJP – thanks to its own follies – with no issues. The collateral benefit to the Congress was that Anna helped to depoliticise and rob the BJP of a highly political issue. The Congress strategy also did more damage to the BJP. It helped to club all political parties, including both the ruling party and the opposition – read the Congress and the BJP – as one and the same.

Clubbing the BJP with the Congress on issues other than secularism helps the Congress and harms the BJP. Yet the elite leaders of the BJP allowed the Congress to succeed in its strategy. So after the first fast of Anna the Congress virtually dictated the agenda. Meanwhile Team Anna got Anna, who had first praised Narendra Modi, to talk against him so as to move the Anna movement further away from the BJP. This was the setting for the second Anna fast.

But the simple Anna proved increasingly difficult. He demanded a JLP Bill that included the PM down to everyone in the net. The Congress raised the plea that Anna could not dictate to the Parliament and got the BJP into the trap again. It got the constitutionalists in the BJP to endorse its view, again clubbing the BJP with itself!

But, the Congress strategy to handle Anna like it handled Swami Ramdev failed miserably with the media, which had no other headlines, focussing on Anna 24×7. With the media screaming ‘Anna’ and ‘Anna’ all the time, the Congress was on the run. Alas the BJP also found itself running with the Congress, against Anna. But, RSS workers enthused by Anna’s cry of “Vandemataram” and “Bharat Mata ki Jai” – both branded as RSS slogans – joined the movement in large numbers forcing the BJP president Nitin Gadkari to disregard the BJP Parliamentary Party and write to Anna offering support to his demands.

This forced the BJP Parliamentary Party also to side with Anna, rationalising the shift as the “evolving” stand of the BJP! This tilted the scale in Anna’s favour. But again the Congress would not leave the BJP. It joined with the BJP in the ‘Sense of the House’ exercise. The media claimed victory for Anna and for itself.

Here is the balance sheet of the Anna movement as of date. The BJP bracketed with the Congress loses; the Congress does not. The Congress cannot take Anna for granted; Anna cannot trust the Congress. The nation waits for what the Parliament will do about JLP Bill. The RSS is pleased that the two slogans “Bharat Mata Ki Jai” and “Vandemataram” long ostracised by Secular India have been secularised by Anna.

The writer is a well-known commentator on political

and economic issues.


अगस्त 31, 2011 Posted by | सामायिक टिपण्णी | , , , , , , , , , | 8 टिप्पणियाँ


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