Tikait Episode & Socially and Politically adroit Mayawatiji

Caste: The Weapons of Mass Hatred

Tame The Violence Within


Praful Sakya


          ‘What is in the mind and quite common in private conversation when uttered publicly, more often than not, creates furor in the caste sensitive India.’



he net resultant of any derogatory remarks with reference to caste, which are common in private conversations amongst the personal  groups of the communities, but when publicly uttered creates tensions and thus spreads pangs of hatreds and exchange of derogatory remarks against each other, sometimes verbal clashes even turned into violent attack that leave a few dead or dump the area in curfew mode that cripples the economic activities with destruction of public and private properties . What is the worst effect of these kinds of things it perpetuates caste-hatred amongst the inter-caste in a country where the so called Uppercaste boast of its cultural diversity, mutual respect and the amicable existence of various ethnical groups. It punctures all the tall claims of human rights, protection of the rights of the Underclass and the extreme ill-effect: it damages the intercommunity relationships, fairly, beyond repair.


            No one could have expected the drama over the issue of the caste derogatory remarks made with reference to the Utter Pradesh Chief Minster Mayawatiji, by the Uppercaste leader of Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) Mahendra Singh Tikait, followed by his arrest, would bring to the fore so much intercommunity negativity. Mr. Tikait was charged with making a derogatory reference to Mayawatiji at a farmers’ rally in Bijnor on Sunday 30, March 08. A case was filed under the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. The county witnessed a furor of high magnitude. What was more discouraging the way opposition parties, predominately Uppercaste dominated, behaved and tried to ferment caste prejudices was quite exceptional. No one rose above the caste and religion and condemned Mr. Tikait for his remarks; instead dousing the fire of caste hatred they preferred to put oil of prejudicial-inflammatory property. What can be more damaging to the evolution of a caste-prejudiced free society of equality leaning than this? What should have been the right thing to do was not exercised. It made the state plunged into politicization of issue that should never have been politicized. It exemplifies the level of deterioration of the politics (of personal nature) and use of the caste, have reached.


            The opposition parties exhibited their anti Underclass mentality by supporting Mr. Tikait. It was the congress who in recently concluded two day Sate Pradesh Congress Convention held in Kanpur in the month of March deliberated on the issues concerning the plight of the underclass and precarious condition under which they are livening, very overtly without any justification held Mayawatiji responsible for it, this time too kept strategic mum on the issue. The Man, Digvijay Singh (Who was at the fore front of attacking Mayawatiji over the alleged corrupt practices in her government and tried to project his party and himself as the true social-improviser of first order) who in his 10 years of rule in Madhya Pradesh, alleged involvement in the corruption almost brought the state on the brink of administrative collapse, neither had a track record of good administration nor masterminded any substantial changes in the lives of underclass, did not come out open in condemning the issue.


            Chairman of the National Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes Commission Buta Singh who was initially did not show any interest (Might be he was asked to do so and his affiliation are known to the country), how come all of sudden after five days of incident woke up and talked about the possible legal fall out of the remarks of Mr. Tikait. Its credit goes to Mayawatiji had she not demanded his resignation he could never have shown such an agility in making the statement. Here also the Lady of CM stature did not get the support of the Commission so easily. She had forcefully demanded for it.  The socially, politically and economically feeble underclass should from this event learn a lesson that the commission is not for them, if CM is straggling so much then they should calculate their worth before demanding for their legitimate rights. This event exemplifies the efficacy of the commission and on whose behest it acts.


            Mayawatiji said that in all likelihood Mr. Singh had been asked to keep mum by the Congress. Stating that the party’s view on the SC/ST Act displayed its anti-Underclass mentality, she said the manner in which the Congress, the BJP and their supporting parties supported Mr. Tikait showed that they wanted to prevent the implementation of the SC/ST Act. But she, as a head of state and responsible administrator made it clear that that the SC/ST Act would be strictly implemented in Uttar Pradesh, but at the same time it would be ensured that the Act was not misused. What else one would expect from a lady who had wrested power from the Uppercaste by wining the confidence of all the segments of the society and caste groups? The message is loud and clear: she is there for all, all inclusiveness and developing amicable relations amongst the various groups of the society is motto of her governance and her every action indicts her cent per cent commitment.   


            ''Mayawati can't hope to get a majority next time even if she tries. Whenever there is a majority government, Mayawati shows an attitude. When there is a coalition government, we get lathicharged at court,'' said Ajit Singh, President, Rashtriya Lok Dal. This too shows the caste superiority attitude of the Ajit Singh, who should have first condemned the incident but he has his political interest that restraining him from doing it. It is the duty of the government to control rousing mob, it has nothing to do with the targeting any of the specific group of the society. Has it happens regularly that the caste group that the Ajit Singh has in his mind is routinely victim of any excesses? The Uppercaste have an attitude that whenever Mayawatiji takes any stern actions (for which she is known for) the Uppercaste leaders misled the caste groups that she is against them. But their real cause of worry is that the Mayawatiji is day in day out winning the confidence of all the sections of the society and that really jeopardizes the electoral success of these leaders. Mayawati’s rival, the Samajwadi Party, has supported Mr. Tikait and the Centre appears to be going soft. The ire of all opposition parties is on the issue of the way Mayawatiji had handled the issue and made Mr. Tikait surrender but their justification does not support their claim.


            As a political opponent (Try to be more responsible) they should learn a lesson or two from her by the fact that the way she showed an exceptional courage to go against the rousing mob and book a man who is threatening the unity of country. It has nothing to do with the caste. As a head of state she left everything behind. She is there to govern the state as per the guidelines of the constitutions. She did not bother for her votes support if she goes a little harsh to tame the mob which was went into temporary mode of frenzy. When she acted she was quite confidant that the people will understand and support her action as the people do not wish to indulge in cheap things like making derogatory remarks with reference to caste and take political mileage out of it. They are for the Unity of the Nation. And the social and political adroitness that Mayawatiji exhibited will go a long way to ensure the unity of the nation intact.     


            The event was exhibition of typical caste-prejudicial mindset of an Uppercaste BKU leader Mr. Tikait who is just one or two step above the ladder of caste order compared to Mayawatiji. We need a social-psychologist who would only have told us what’s demonic satisfaction is there in making such remarks and kind of pleasures that one would draw from it. Unfortunately it is quite a common phenomenon that it gives immense pleasure to some one who is above the other in caste order to make derogatory remarks with reference to caste. After the independence due to social mobility there have been number of positive changes happing in the Indian society. People no longer practice, though halfheartedly, Untouchability. And the economic benefits that some could managed to get from the underclass are still hit where its hurts more and that is derogatory remarks with reference to caste,  at will, from the so called Uppercaste, and god knows why we should not talk about those who are still socially and economically feeble.


            Mayawatiji did not want to exercise the power but she was forced to do so by the Tikait supports, she with no intention of any bad feeling towards him but only to uphold the principalities of rule of the soil made sure that the law should be enacted. It was not a personal fight but it was question of the pride of the all underclass that necessitate the action. She had no intention of belittling any one but only to ensure that the law and administrative willingness is there to protect the rights of the underclass and establish the cordial relationship amongst the all caste-groups of the society. She did not wish risking the positive image of government and made Mr. Tikait eat his words. 


            The man who was at the forefront of protecting the rights of the Kisan indulges in such a cheap act, what can be more shameful thing than this. He has been president of Bharatiya Kisan Union. He has led a number of mass movements against the state and central governments in India to support the rights of the farmers. After the death of former Prime Minister of India late Ch. Charan Singh in western U.P. he was called the second 'messiah' of kisans. On 17 October 1986 he formed a non-political organization named 'Bhartiya Kisan Union' to protect the interests of all the farmers of India who form an overwhelming majority in the population of the country. He has headed many movements and as a result of these agitations, many times he was arrested and sent to jail, yet he remains committed to protect the interest of all the Kisans of India. The man who knows what ‘Rights’ means and what it takes to protect the rights what can be unfortunate than this that the man despise someone else’s rights. What Mayawati done is that she showed him that ‘Rights are Rights’ and no one should dare to badmouthed them or despise them. Sisauli is a small town in Uttar Pradesh's Muzaffarnagar district, headquarters of the powerful farmer’s organisation, the Bhartiya Kisan Union, where actually the whole drama took place. And sooner or later the people of the Sisauli will support the action taken by Mayawati, if they really believe in upholding the Rights of an individual higher than anything else and then the nation will follow the suit.  


            The caste which does not goes is called Caste (Jati jo nahi jati who hi kahalti hai Jati). Well, it is not the real question whether Jati goes or not the real culprit is those who take refuge in making derogatory remarks with reference to caste, and hence keep its perpetuation. It is entirely in the hands of the Uppercaste that they should refrain themselves from doing such an act that would jeopardize the unity of this nation in which we all have so much pride. If one visits any of the village in India he would find that in some or other way the Untouchability of some sort is being practiced. The caste the real powerful weapon of mass hatred should be defused collectively other wise it would take its toll on the very unity of this nation. The Uppercaste may have complain that Underclass threats them suing under the Atrocity act unfairly, it may have truth in it, but considering their lower social and economical statues, general apathy of the police department and bureaucracy how many of them would real get the justice. It is always wrong to abuse the law but what can be more abusing than not implementing the law at all. So this event is an eye opener for all of Us and we should learn a lesson from it, and it is for the countries sake we all should shed our prejudices and should work towards strengthening the Caste-Mosaic. There is too much violence in our society so take collective pledge to tame this violent nature within us is the message straight from the Chief Minster Office.


Gyan ka Kya hai Pariman?

Namo Buddhay! Namo Dhamay! Namo Sanghay!

Praful Sakya (econfab@gmail.com)