Relevance Of V.P.Singh And His Politics
By Vidya Bhushan Rawat
25 June, 2011
Today, we remember V.P.Singh on his birthday. We know that on his death anniversary our friends do not have time except to shout loud of the hotel Taj and how India was attacked that day. The forces of status quoists always find ways and means to undo everything that comes in the way of social justice and social change.
I did not intend to write this article today but somewhere I always felt that we have done great injustice to the man himself. Even when the forces of hatred continue to speak loudly and in deepest condemnable term, we keep quiet or just listen to it. We may not be VP Singh’s fan but definitely we must understand why he is being abused even today by the caste forces, most of them, who would happily go at Ramdev’s fast or Anna’s tamasha at the Rajghat.
It brings us to the question that the caste Hindus always suffer from the disease of ‘merit’. This merit which has not brought any laurel to India, no invention except the caste system and its worst form. It is a unique country where majority suffer and minority rules. It is a unique country where the participation of the marginalized is resisted powerfully. If you understand, please note the point of convergence between Anna Hazare and Kapil Sibbol-Chidambaram-Pranab Mukherjee gang. Despite their differences, they share common hatred towards the Dalits and the OBCs. They want to be the leaders of every Indian but just get panicky when the issue of reservation is raised. Whenever the issue of marginalized comes up, our political leadership buckled under the pressure and became media savvy.
Those of us, who have followed the heady days of anti mandal agitation in Delhi and other parts of North India, know well how much courage it needed for a prime minister to face an adverse atmosphere. We know every suicide that time was glamorized by media, supported by editors as fight against injustice. The whole story cooked up by the crooked editors as if the High Caste Hindus are facing the discrimination at the hands of ‘Dalits and OBCs’.
It needed lot of courage to implement such a path breaking decision whether knowingly or unknowingly, which actually cost him his own government. Why did the National Front government fell? It fell for two important causes of India. One for the implementation of Mandal Commission Recommendation and secondly and more importantly protecting shrines which the Hindutva forces were ready to destroy and celebrate. Yes, V.P.Singh did not allow the Babari mosque to be demolished yet years after when Narsimharao connived with the Sangh Parivar in destroying the mosque at Ayodhya, nothing happened to him. He still remains a ‘pratasmaraniya’.
Those who say that equity has been achieved will not get shocked when the Chair person of National Commission for Scheduled Caste is denied entry in temple in Orissa simply because he happen to be a Dalit. Many meritorious Dalit students are forced to commit suicide because the academics have clearly shown their caste character in most of our academic institutions. But the caste Hindus have kept their eyes shut.
Today, when Anna Hazare is claiming to fight against corruption. None of his colleagues ever remember V.P.Singh because they fear the caste Hindus. Why ? Why do the castes Hindus not want to remember his anti corruption campaign? Is it so because they are afraid of even the ghost of V P Singh? He was the cleanest among his peers, honest than any other prime minister India has so far and was involved in direct interaction with people. There was no ego when any body went to meet him. He was ready to go to the hunger strike, sitting, dharanas and even fight with police. We all know how he reached village Bajhera Khurd one early morning and ploughed the land acquired by Reliance Power Plant. This was time when Mulayam Singh Yadav had handed over three thousand hectare land to Anil Ambani for a Gas based power plant in Dadri, near Noida, much against the wishes of the farmers.
To understand V.P.Singh, one needs to see his campaign and political strategies. He might have weakness like any other politician but he had conviction. At this moment, when we suffer from the hyper Hindutva and an aggressive upper caste lead Congress Party, we really miss this space of opposition which V.P. had the capacity to unite and organize. He was an elderly statesman who could have united the forces of social justice and secularism.
India needed him more at this moment. We miss him because we see the two upper caste parties sucking India’s blood and undoing everything that has happened since 1989 with massive participation of Dalit-OBC-Adivasi-Muslims political leadership. That leadership needs a statesman today who could bring them together and fight against this Hindutva corporate nexus. The war is put on us. Our land is being acquired in the name of ‘development’ and our jobs in the name of ‘merit’. Let us be clear, it is not time to pitch one against other. Reservations provide us opportunity to be in power structure and land reforms are important point of entry to attain social justice. Well, the caste Hindus want to grab everything in the name of their own constructed theories. They are active every where to cry against everything. Whatever, they may claim and spread, the fire that V P burnt has ignited all those who aspire to change and fight against this corrupted system. A small effort of a man in power can change many things so V P might not be an ideologue but he stood with his convictions and always remained with people’s movement till his death. The abuse hurled at him shows his strength and relevance to the polity of social justice.
Vidya Bhushan Rawat is a human rights activist. He blogs at www.manukhsi.blogspot.com
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