Friday, March 13, 2009


Well, to begin with let me admit that I have not been a big fan of Mr. Gandhi (Not that I did'nt respect him, just that it was a 'borrowed' sense of respect i.e. not coming from within). Then what brings me to this subject? Well, I was in Ahmedabad for work purpose; I visited the Sabarmati Ashram there, despite taunts from my boss explaining the heaps of pending work I had in hand. I thought he was just panicking as the work wasn't that much. So, coming back to the topic of Sabarmati Ashram. Once in the Ashram, I (once again) was deeply moved by the history of our independence movement and finally ended up purchasing "My experiments with truth" (for just 100 bucks, I guess this was a subsidised price though).
I am still just about half way through this book... but Mr. M.K.Gandhi has already transformed into a Mahatama for me. Well, he is still not my ideal, as I do not believe in a lot of things that he preached... but yet he has risen to the level of a Mahatama for me.
I was expecting his autobiography to be a drab; but quite surprisingly I am finding it very interesting. Primarily because he has been brutually honest with the book - It reveals a lot of unknown facets of the man India hails as 'Father of the nation'. And reveals the world (not just India) during that century through the eyes of an Indian.
Also, I think he is a good story teller (though I am reading the English version)... He doesn't dwell on a particular topic for too long. It moves quickly from his personal life to social issues and back.
... More about the book (and why I disagree with Gandhiji) later once I finish reading this! For now, I will leave you with the images of Gandhiji's hut and room at the Ashram...

Sunday, March 8, 2009

'Divisive' politics

I have been hearing a lot of political parties using the word 'secular' to gang up against a particular one - apparently they always are looking to present an 'anti-communal' front. (nothing new, we have been hearing that for a long time...) . They say B** is a 'divisive' party.

My question is: Is being 'anti-communal' enough? Communalism divides our population into broadly 80:13:2:5 sections. Which is bad, but in my view not as bad as the other kind of division i.e. the caste.

Casteism divides our society hundreds of n1: n2: n3: n4...... sections... but guess what!!: nobody terms these parties based on 'caste ideologies' divisive!! In my view these parties are much much more divisive then the 'commual' one! We should be anti-divisive and not just anti-communal.
One good thing that this 'communal' party has done (in my view) is that it has not divided people into thousands of caste-based sections: Gujjars, Jats, OBCs, Scs, STs, Brahmins, poor brahmins,
rajputs etc... which in my view is great because I think casteism is the worse enemy of country.
If we can't unite the 80% first, how can we dream of uniting 100%?
What we need to understand is that a division is a division. So, if asking votes on grounds of
religion is bad, why do we not consider voting on grounds of caste as bad, if not worse?? So,
media doesn't make a hue and cry when the likes of Mayawati act as a 'messiah' of the so-called
backward castes; on the other hand Advani is criticized hoarsely for talking about 'Hindu
Going back 60 years, the country's politics was still dominated by religion, but not so much by castes. Haven't we actually regressed??
The best way to unite people is to erase the divisions, not harp on them day in and day out! But thats what the political forces and the media (alike) have been doing - So, its ok to say that xxx is a Gujjar leader, yyy is an OBC leader, zzz is a Rajput leader... but saying Mr.A is a Hindu leader in - Oh! he is a communal politician!! Agreed, but what about the other leaders being divisive. Religion-based parties should have no place in a secular country; but, you know what, the same should go for caste-based parties.

The British used 'divide and rule' and partitioned our country; these numerous political parties are partitioning our parliament on the basis of caste!!! x% seats for such a such caste. y% jobs for such a such caste... and so on!

A division is a division is a division.

PS: There is a strange way that the word 'communal' is used in the Indian context but shall discuss that later sometime...

Friday, March 6, 2009

News News News!!

Well, the News is that I recently got a piece of jewellery as gift... though that in itself doesn't make it worthy for news, there is a little addendum to that: that jewellery is supposed to be worn on a particular finger of my left hand.... Ahem ahem, yes you got it right... I got engaged on Feb 20th :)
It was a small family gathering of about 40 people (well, those aren't many considering there were two families). A bit of cultural confusion for my family and ME TOO!... But I guess thats what inter-caste, 'inter-region' (I am dilli (/UP) ki kudi and he is a Bengali boy) marriages are made of...
Would regret the fact that I was well 'not in control' - I was nervous, 'not my own self', confused, embarassed. And then I was waiting for him to drop in and take the charge, but he was probably in the same level of shock as I was... well, inspite of being my super-hero, he is humane too!!
So, the ceremony somehow was mixed, I enjoyed parts of it and few other parts..umm... but I am very happy with the end-result!!!