The script is ready. Action on! The nation is being hijacked by some religious fundamentalists. They enjoy political backing. They have the benediction of those who do not believe in secularism. They are instigated and inspired by those who want to rewrite or even demolish the Constitution. Their intent is to usher in a new nation called the Hindu Rashtra.
The BJP may have apparently distanced itself from Anant Hegde’s statement that his Hindu Parivar is determined to demolish the Constitution if not today, tomorrow. As a Central Cabinet Minister, he had sworn by the secular Constitution. The very same man wants to demolish it. He was only mouthing the RSS intent. The Sangh Parivar is gathering all nuts and bolts to shape the Hindu Rashtra constitution. Just as the roof, the pillars, the floor tiles and the carvings are ready for the new Ayodhya temple. It is not a secret. It may be revealed in bits and pieces, in oblique and subtle remarks, open statements by its spokespersons, by its members, ministers and all. But the writing on the wall is clear.
As a prelude to this, they are converting India into a laboratory of terrorism. Their diktat has to run. They have been telling us what to eat and what not. They have been ordering us as to what to wear and how to dress. They punish us for marrying persons of our choice. There is no dearth of diatribe against Muslims, Christians and other minorities whom the Hindutvawadis consider enemies.
Their foot soldiers are out to demolish churches and religious shrines belonging to minority communities. Christian gatherings of Christmas 2017 were disrupted and pastors and people were attacked. Carol singers announcing peace on earth were detained at police stations at the order of the terror groups.
Attacks on minority religious institutions by right wing groups are on the increase. The Modi government’s sinister silence speaks volumes. Mumbo jumbo statements by government spokespersons that these attacks are just a law and order problem are dished out for public consumption. The government had declared Christmas day as Good Governance Day as a clever ploy to derecognise the importance of a very important Christian festival. It appears that it lends its silent cooperation to the strategic ways of harming Christian religion and religious institutions. Adding insult to injury, the foot soldiers dictate orders to Christians not to celebrate Christmas.
When Hitler wanted to de-Christianise Germany, he strategized to tackle Christian feasts like Christmas. He ordered to celebrate it the national way by adopting Christmas and adapting it into a nationalist framework. Writer Erin Blakemore in his article, ‘The Nazis’ War on Christmas,’ spells out the Nazi strategy. ‘Si lent Night’ song was converted into ‘Exalted Night’ by a Nazi song writer as part of an attempt to apply Adolf Hitler’s hateful ideology to Christmas.
Though Hitler’s attempts to create a national church failed, his party’s attempt to redefine religious celebrations was more successful. To do this, they used ideology and propaganda to put the holiday in line with the national socialists’ anti-Semitic values. The Nazis’ problem with Christmas was baked into Christmas itself. After all, Jesus was a Jew -- and both anti-Semitism and the goal of eradicating Jews and Jewishness were at the very core of Nazi ideology.
In order to emphasize the role of pagan rituals in modern Christmas traditions, says Blakemore, Germanic (Aryan) tribal rituals were recreated by the Nazis. The date of Christmas was shifted to the date of Winter Solstice, a non-Christian feast.
Seen with the coloured glass of Indo-Aryan ideology, minority religions in this secular India are alien and not according to the taste of the Aryan Rastravadis. The word ‘secular’ is a pain in their neck. Minority institutions are consistently and strategically coming under attack. Abuses are hurled upon them to categorise communities or sections of people. Muslims are derisively called ‘Babar ki aulad,’ and those who speak English are called ‘Macaulay’s children.’ Such name-callers do not realise the hypocrisy of their doings.
For instance, the very people who mock Macaulay’s system of education are the very ones who will leave no stones unturned to get their wards admitted in English medium schools. Not just that. Seeing that Christian schools make headway in education, they start kindergartens and nursery schools with English medium and christen them with the names of Christian saints like St. Xavier’s, St. John’s, St. Martha’s etc. The mockery of it all was that even before Mother Teresa died, one clever non-Christian started a kindergarten and named it ‘St. Mother Teresa School of Education.’ So Macaulay’s system can be used as a good business tool under private devotion, but derision and calumny will be heaped on it as a public display.
Where were the RSS storm-troopers hiding when belly dancers were gyrating and booze was flowing at Meerut medical college, with bartenders, including women in Christmas caps, serving doctors? Adityanath Swamiji, Modi’s favourite Chief Minister, needs to explain the contradiction in the Parivar speech and performance.
Today, Nehru’s concept of secularism is suspect in their eyes. Moreover, while he did not get the word secularism inserted in the Preamble of the Constitution, it was his daughter Indira Gandhi who did it in 1976. So, what was the need for it, ask the Rastravadi zealots. Their contention is that India was secular even before 1976. So, why make it explicit from 1976 onwards? A seemingly logical question! But, whatever was Indira’s intention during that tsunami of emergency, a formal insertion of the word ‘secular’ in the Constitution acts as a blessing in disguise, given the sinister trends of the Rashtravadis now digging the foundation for a religious nationalist India.
The secularist India cannot afford to hand over its destiny into the hands of saffron zealots whose colour is getting more and more clear. The celebration of India’s cultural and religious diversity under the secular constitution cannot be made to disappear by the magic wand of the RSS-Sangh Parivar conglomeration. Any attempt to re-write the sacred Constitution of India will be taking this nation to a precipice. We trust our elected representatives to stonewall such sinister attempts and organise people for a liberation movement, if need be.