“Dont let these bullies push you around. They are terrified of poor, weak Indian people getting a voice. Question them at every single step.” Thus spoke the Original Wise Man (Rahul Gandhi) at JNU.
I took the sage advice given by Rahul Gandhi. I am not “poor” or “weak” but I am an Indian and I feel a right to question is available to all. Rahul Gandhi being an original thinker will surely agree with this proposition.
Rahul Gandhi did not include himself in the category of “bullies” but the exclusion notwithstanding he can yet be questioned. Rahul, being wise, can have no objection.
And as the question can be raised at every single step I am definitely not late in questioning. Rahul Gandhi is surely man enough to accept it.
Using Rahul Gandhi repeatedly can be tedious and Original Wise Man though appropriate is too long so I will substitute both expressions with the pronoun “you” – an expression which will assume significance for different reasons later in this article.
You asked a question about “who anti-national people are” and answered yourself that they are the ones “suppressing the voice of JNU”. What according to you is the “voice of JNU”? Is it of the students who eulogise Afzal Guru and pray for India’s disintegration or those who oppose this point of view? Why did you not address this question while dealing with a very pertinent issue of defining “anti-national people”?
You talked about the “real Indian people” but chose not to elaborate about who constitutes this class. Why did you fight shy of developing the concept? Were you afraid of un-personing those who do not share your point of view or are only those people “real Indians” whom you approve and certify. I feel Kanhaiya who is accused, among other things, of shouting anti-India slogans can justifiably be tried for sedition under the Indian Penal Code. Does that take me out of the category of a “real Indian”?
You said that in “crushing you” they will make “you stronger”. Who is the “you” here and who are “they”? “You” is a pronoun and refers to the ones being addressed. Does it follow only those who listen to you and cheer you are the ones who should be empowered and made “stronger”? Was the free and enthusiastic crowd (the “you”) cheering you (without inverted commas) yelling approval to what you (not the other “you”) spoke a “crushed” people? I will not cheer you for what you did in JNU but will roundly condemn you. I am part of “they”. Are you suggesting I am for that reason any less Indian?
You also said “they feel fear”. It is obvious in your scheme of things I am “they”. But I feel no fear when you talk the way you do. I feel disgust. And I feel pain. And while I am not “crushed” – not because you have spared any effort but because my spirit is vigorous than your resolve – I will yet be strong to secure my country which for you is merely a slogan.
If anyone is “terrified” its not “they” (I mean me) but you (not the “you”) and the speech appears only an attempt by you to rationalise for yourself your own rejection. You claim to speak for the “real Indian people who have a voice”. It is a false claim. The real Indian people voted your party out of power. Or is it that you feel they are not “people” or are they not “real people” or that they are a people who should be denied a “voice”?
There is an essay “In Praise of Folly” which was a attack on certain traditions of the European society and Church in which “Folly “praises itself. “Folly” in that essay is nursed by “ignorance” and has “flattery”, “self-love” and “madness” as companions with “intemperance” as God. I feel you read it for the literal meaning. The essay was meant to be a satire. And being a satire the expression was meant to be different from if not opposite to what was suggested.
Which brings me to the final question. Will we now have an encore? Or do you feel you are not to be questioned!