Secularists must confront UP truth

ChandraBhan Prasad

Goebbels, the Nazis' propaganda minister, relied heavily on the "untruth". He believed the "untruth" could be converted into the "truth", if repeated over and over again. And India's secular intelligentsia seems to be emulating Goebbels' doctrine of untruths. It has repeatedly told the nation that "the BSP in UP has tied up with the forces of Hindutva", giving the latter an opportunity to enlarge its communal fascist agenda in India. Mr Kanshi Ram and Ms Mayawati are regularly called "power hungry, unprincipled politicians", waiting to be sold in the country's political mandis.

We, on the other hand, have been arguing that India's citizens, political leaders and parties are primarily known by their Varna/caste origins. The BSP-BJP alliance in UP is essentially a social coalition of Dalits and Brahmans who, for different reasons, have come together to share power in the state. We have argued that while the Dalits, under the BSP, are expectedly bringing along artisan-OBCs and lower caste Muslims; the Brahmans, under the BJP, are carrying along the Kshatriyas and Vaishyas. This social coalition has come into being because the upsurge of aggressive Upper Shudras is now threatening all other social groups.

Crooked secular mobsters have been refusing to consider caste a major determinant of UP's politics and their heavy reliance on untruth, has now exposed them completely. The English daily The Hindu, in its front page story Backwards coming forward to forge unity in UP, carried on May 23, 2002, has eloquently reported on emerging caste equations in UP. The story begins with the lead comment: "Uttar Pradesh seems to be heading towards a new era of unity among the backward castes, who have felt threatened by the alliance of Dalits and the so-called upper caste Hindus, represented by the Bahujan Samaj Party and the Bharatiya Janata Party respectively."

The story goes on to narrate how Mulayam Singh Yadav of the Samajwadi Party, Kalyan Singh of the Rashtriya Kranti Dal and Sonelal Patel of Apna Dal have tied up to mobilise the OBCs of Uttar Pradesh. According to the story: "Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav has expressed his determination to lead the battle on behalf of the 54 per cent backwards who, he alleges, have been facing humiliating discrimination since the present coalition government was installed in the state."

The OBC trio have announced the holding of a "Grand Backward Class Convention", with the immediate objective being to resist implementation of the SC/ST Atrocities (Prevention) Act, popularly called the Dalit Act. Recent developments in UP's politics clearly show that the OBC block has no confusion about the BSP-BJP coalition indeed being a social coalition of the Dalits and Brahmans and accordingly, that they are mobilising the OBC masses against the Dalits and Brahmans. In fact, the OBC politicians are perhaps politically more honest than the secular intelligentsia, which blindly backs them up. The OBC block hardly ever uses the term "secularism" in UP but the secular intelligentsia, without any sense of shame or guilt, terms this OBC mobilisation "secular" mobilisation.

During Mayawati's second term in UP as Chief Minister, the United Front, under Mulayam Singh Yadav's leadership in UP, had launched a Halla Bol Andolan, demanding stoppage of what they called "misuse" of the Dalit Act. And yet, the secular intelligentsia called the OBC mobilisation a secular mobilisation and condemns the BSP for "joining hands with communal forces". Similar was the response of the secular intelligentsia when Laloo defied the anti-incumbency factor and won the Assembly elections. We were arguing that Bihar was witnessing an over all OBC mobilisation, and the secular intelligentsia went about describing this upsurge of social fascist forces as the "mobilisation of secular forces in Bihar". Ultimately, Laloo won on OBC strength, who have turned into the Dalits' immediate tormentors. Laloo remains the darling of the secular intelligentsia.

Similar things were said about the South. Chandrababu Naidu was once described by the same secular intelligentsia as "good Prime Ministerial material" and his social base as the flag bearer of third force. We then argued that since the Kammas were Naidu's core social constituency, he has been conditioned to unleash the anti-Dalit agenda. But even now, if he leaves the NDA, the secular mobsters will accord him a red carpet welcome.

Jayalalitha, too, was hailed as a great secular politician, when she pulled out of the Vajpayee Government. But what about her core social constituency of Thevars, who are the immediate tormentors of the Dalits in Tamil Nadu?

The time has come to nail the lies of the secular intelligentsia, and UP can be a test case. The OBCs in UP are going to launch an agitation against the Dalit Act, and we must monitor the stand the secular intelligentsia takes.

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