Sunday, January 24, 2010 - Future of Indian Politics

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    • Future of Indian Politics
    • Amitabh Tripathi
    • Hindu nationalist ideology comprises the third segment in Indian politics and was very much in existence before independence when the British replaced the Mughals. The whole freedom struggle and fight for independence was part of an unfinished Hindu renaissance carried out by several sages, political personalities and organizations. Even Mahatma Gandhi adopted the methods of the Bhakti movement with his Ramdhun in order to reach out to the masses. His call for swadeshi was mixed with emotions of economic independence, political independence as well as cultural independence. When India got freedom it was able to get only political freedom, and the ongoing Hindu renaissance was frustrated without political clout, but the unfulfilled desire for Hindu Rashtra did not die and it is very much alive.  
    • Hindu nationalism in India has always been a romantic idea. The recent defeat in the general elections led some senior Congress leaders to taunt the BJP defeat as a mandate against its idea of the nation. Certainly the BJP lost two consecutive elections; but BJP paid the price for not being able to translate Hindu subconscious aspirations into political constituency. Hindu nationalism does not depend on the survival of any particular political group, and even after independence some leaders in the Nehruvian Congress dared to sustain Hindu nationalism and their efforts were more commendable than those of the BJP which played a crucial role in putting Hindu nationalism on a ventilator.


      In future Hindu nationalism will find its place in the Indian political system not because of the BJP’s efforts, but because of natural developments.

    • The theory of Hindu nationalism rests on the aspirations of Hindus to sustain the continuity of spiritual, dharmic and cultural identity. Indians follow the principle of plurality but are not ready to shed their unique identity, and in the last two decades Hindus have become more assertive about their identity and more worried for their future generations. This concern for the future will make them more active and Hindu nationalism will gain much attention in fields of academia and power centers.


      The unique phenomenon which will emerge, and the liberal-leftists will be unable to digest, is the evolution of Hinduism as a fashion with political clout in domestic politics and in global politics.


      India is synonymous with the Hindu Nation, but for long was unable to express herself because staunch Hindus lacked the political clout to convert it into a modern phenomenon. But the last two decades have made a difference and coming years will witness some radical change in Indian assertion and politics.    

    • The writer is a Hindu social activist and promoter of the Indo-Israel Friendship Forum  

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