What About Open Defecation of Hate and Hysteria?

Date:

A Pakistani soldier patrols a village in Bhimber near the Line of Control in Kashmir during a media trip organised by the Pakistani army on October 1, 2016 (AFP Photo/Issam Ahmed)
A Pakistani soldier patrols a village in Bhimber near the Line of Control in Kashmir during a media trip organised by the Pakistani army on October 1, 2016 (AFP Photo/Issam Ahmed)

War frenzy, hate mongering and propaganda rend the air on the birth anniversary of this great man, best known as a symbol of non-violence, truth and peace. The country which owes a great deal to him for its freedom and its journey to the path of a progressive, secular and democratic nation today has changed track and crossed the Rubicon with its hatred soaked diarrheal open defecation of war and aggression

ANURADHA BHASIN JAMWAL

With its ambitious Swacch Bharat Mission, the BJP may have been successful in reducing Mahatma Gandhi to a mere symbol of cleanliness but not in reducing open defecation, which is the core of the theme. The success of the scheme is marred by the gap between the target and the achievement in terms of construction of toilets, the gap between the addition of toilets and their use and the simply unaddressed question of poor sewage and the manual cleaning of manual. On Gandhi Jayanti, this year, there is a much larger worry than the gap between the propaganda about Swacch Bharat and its real dividend.

War frenzy, hate mongering and propaganda rend the air on the birth anniversary of this great man, best known as a symbol of non-violence, truth and peace. The country which owes a great deal to him for its freedom and its journey to the path of a progressive, secular and democratic nation today has changed track and crossed the Rubicon with its hatred soaked diarrheal open defecation of war and aggression.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi wields a broom with NDMC workers to launch the “Swachh Bharat Abhiyan” at Valmiki Basti in New Delhi on Thursday. PTI
Prime Minister Narendra Modi wields a broom with NDMC workers to launch the “Swachh Bharat Abhiyan” at Valmiki Basti in New Delhi on Thursday. PTI

There couldn’t be a bigger irony than the timing of this changed strategic military language and action by the country and the long jump from a policy of restraint to aggression, and its larger euphoric echo inside, especially by politicians and media.

Whatever be the truth of the claimed surgical strikes and its so-called retaliation by Pakistan, which remain a point of contestation between India and Pakistan, the extremely raised pitch of this brinkmanship does not augur well for the future of the country or for rest of South Asia. The purported aim of the strikes was to teach Pakistan a lesson and seek revenge for Uri attack, even though there is as yet no concrete evidence that the terrorists in Uri struck at the behest of Pakistan establishment.

It is a known fact that Pakistan’s ISI and Army have been patronizing terror groups but Pakistan has also been a victim of this terror factory, revealing that terrorists also sometimes strike against the Pakistani establishment’s desire and design. That Pakistan has not being doing enough to rein in terrorism and has been caught in the grip of its own confused policies and political dichotomy of both fighting terrorism and appeasing jihadi political sentiment at the same time is a fact. But to jump to conclusion that damaging Pakistan militarily would deliver the apt message may be a case of counting the chickens before they hatch.

So far, apart from Indian propaganda matched by Pakistani propaganda, there has been a measured restraint from the other side. But to presume this to be permanent would be a false calculation. Political and military pressure within Pakistan increases the possibility of a military or jehadi retaliation in the offing. In such an eventuality, with India having so highly raised the pitch of enmity, hatred and war, it would be difficult to evade a full-fledged war.

The language of war is already in vogue. Millions of people from the border areas have been uprooted. They ultimately pay the price of such brinkmanship the most. The last time that the two sides came close to a war during Vajpayee’s regime, the border residents were homeless for more than two years because even after the confrontation was called off, they could not visit their homes because of the biggest ever land mining operation launched by both India and Pakistan in their respective territories.

By the time, they returned back, many villages had been fenced out, partially or fully and many complained that their fields had turned fallow. The same was true on the Pakistani side. In the last two years, civilians on the borders on either side have suffered far bigger casualties of ceasefire violations and retaliatory firing than the soldiers.

The war jargon this time seems to have taken all peaceniks and cultural personalities in its swoop. In a shocking discourse against cultural ties, Pakistani actors working on Indian films have been sent back home with the worst possible bouts of hate soaked curses, a slur for India’s liberal values and its tradition of hospitality. Peaceniks are being targeted and are at the receiving end of the war mongering abusers in media and social media.

This brinkmanship is going to take a heavy toll of civilians and soldiers on both sides, will severely hit cultural and trade relations and will also impact business investments, increasing inflation and hampering economies on both sides. Any probability of war will result in even more large scale devastation and in the eventuality of any side tempted to push the nuclear button, the damage and destruction would be unimaginable.

Who stands to gain out of war and this war jargon, other than the political groups who want to use it for oiling their vote bank politics or the corrupted media which loyally becomes a handy tool to promote this ultra-nationalistic discourse and perpetuate more hatred for petty gains. Wars have never served any purpose other than bleeding countries and their people and the claimed victories are only a mis-interpretation to give some respectability to wars.

Modi-Versus-Rahul

There seems to be a near unanimity of war echoes across the political spectrum so let the likes of Narendra Modi and Rahul Gandhi for a change become comrades in arms and lead a mixed army of politicians, war mongering retired generals, blood thirsting strategic experts, ecstatic TV crews and the rich elites, all of whom know they are safe in their shelters far from the war zones.

Yet, if some hate mongers are blood thirsty for wars, why should the poor hapless people be made to pay for their vain egos and sense of machismo? The tragedy about war discourse is that those who itch for wars to begin never really bear its brunt. If war indeed must be fought, let us first change that reality. Let the war mongers on either side be sent to war, instead. Let the army, which is already been over spent fighting its own people in Kashmir and north-east be given a slight break.

There seems to be a near unanimity of war echoes across the political spectrum so let the likes of Narendra Modi and Rahul Gandhi for a change become comrades in arms and lead a mixed army of politicians, war mongering retired generals, blood thirsting strategic experts, ecstatic TV crews and the rich elites, all of whom know they are safe in their shelters far from the war zones.

To ensure that the border people do not pay a price too big when all these war mongers occupy their lands to wage their ugly battles, the war mongers before leaving for the war front should first evacuate their plush homes and buildings where the border people can be rehabilitated with dignity.

Only when the new set of warriors can feel how and where the war pinches, would they learn the language of peace. Let us try it this time on both sides, send them with the guns and artillery. I am sure they will return back with roses in their hands. And then we can all heave a sigh of relief and talk peace without a hindrance. Then we can have a Swacch Bharat, at least cleansed of the open defecation of hatred and war mongering.

theclarionindia
theclarionindiahttps://clarionindia.net
Clarion India - News, Views and Insights about Indian Muslims, Dalits, Minorities, Women and Other Marginalised and Dispossessed Communities.

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