Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Dancing with Dreams


Bodhigram is a nurturing  flow  of imagination to dance with the dreams. It is a call to action to experiment with creative possibilities of life and get excited to discover the beauty of the self, to go beyond the self to touch, sense and feel the life within and beyond time and space. It is a space to seek and discover the transformative options for people and planet. It is a work of art in progress.
Dancing with your dream in a playful rhythm is what make you and your dreams alive and exciting. Many a time many people are either prisoners of their dreams or end up imprisoning their dreams. Freeing your dreams and then dancing with your dreams as partners in the symphony of life make the world brighter with hope.
Daring to dream and dreaming dreams beyond yourselves require immense sense of freedom within and beyond to unleash your imagination and ability to inspire others to join the dream to translate it in to a work of art, an act of collective enterprise.
Never be fearful about realizing freedom. Freedom within comes in with immense responsibility to expand freedom beyond you and make change, happen within, around and beyond.
Fearless minds can only become real change-makers. And real change-makers do not seek quick return, or recognition or name or fame or wealth. They dance with their dreams; they play with history and they make change happen within and beyond. They dare to dream beyond their life-span.They dream beyond time and space. Their work is the creative expression of life.
Transformative leadership seeks to challenge and change within and beyond.
Transfomative leaders continuously seek to bridge the 'Being'- 'Doing' and 'Becoming'.It is the capacity to be honest with oneself; continuously transform oneself, be aware about the world deep with in ; and it is the freedom to learn and unlearn continuously with a sense of your being and growing and outgrowing within and beyond.
Transformative leaders transform gently with a sense of sharing and caring. They often transform the words, and deeds in a playful manner with a sense of meditative mission to softly dancing playfully with lives and making their life like a flute where dreams flow and spread like music.
Dancing with your dreams and playing with the music of life make life a creative journey of excitement.

In life , the mode and manner of travel is often more important than destination itself. 
 We need begin an exciting journey  within and beyond to touch, feel and sense life in its billions of manifestation. We need to touch lives of people in a gentle way to feel them and to identify with their joys, sorrows, hope and anxieties. We need to go beyond being prisoners of our own dream or simply imprisoning our dreams. We need to go beyond the self to touch and feel  the flow of life beyond the constraints of time and space. We need to love people everywhere irrespective of the caste, creed, gender, nationality and location. When we begin to listen to the songs of leaves, the hope of a tree, the resilience of roots, the flow of a spring, the ripples of water, waves of the sea, the mountains that touch the sky, the mood of  a bird, and beauty of life in all its expression, we begin to feel the rhythms of life and we learn to move beyond the little confines of the self. When we learn to love everyone, we also learn to truly love our  own life with a  detached sense of joy.  

Dancing with you dreams help to discover the aesthetics of the self to go beyond the self to touch, feel and sense life everywhere, in all its expressions.
Life is exciting. Live every moment with gratitude and love.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Attappady Diary

It was indeed a learning experience to spent a day to have some basic direct understanding of the process of marginalization and 'development' among the adivasi/tribal communities of the Attappady. I was in Attappady to conduct a workshop for the adivasi youth leaders and elected representatives of the panchayats on budget, TSP and local governance at Agali, jointly organised by Thampu and the ISDG.
What is known as Attappady is relatively a big region , as big as the Alapuzha district.
There are around 33500 Adivasies in the region adjoining the silent valley national park., in Palakkad district of Kerala. There are also number of rivers. However, the adivasi communities have been displaced from the natural and traditional habitat and also from their their livelihood over the last five decades. This is partly due to 'development' by the new settlers in the area who outnumber the tribal communities in many parts and also due to some government development projects, to 'develop' adivasies.
In fact, the biggest enterprise near Agali is a very popular Sehion meditation centre, which is fast becoming another centre like Potta.
And with the influx of new settlers from the 'Mainstream' over the last many decades, there also seems to be cumulative land alienation of tribal habitat.
Here the settler communities from the mainstream represent almost all communities. Over the decades, many of the adivasi communities moved up the hills with less acess to water and also alienated from the traditional livelihood, based on minor forests produce.
We have visited a relatively new adivasi habitat(Poothu vazhi) that came up few years ago when these communities were displaced from their earlier habitat near AHADS , Agali.. There are three hundred households. Many of them have concrete houses funded through TSP and other government schemes, though there is no livelihood. The relief efforts by the government is visible here.There is also a community kitchen. They have been given land on the hillside, though they can't use the land as there is no access to water and hence remain barren land.
Here the mode 'of development' indicates more a politics and governance of of patronisation rather than development that is enabling, empowering and sustainable in the long run. As a result, the habitat that I visited reminded me of the old Laksham veedu colonies for dalit communities ( another form of gattoisation) . Without any means for sustainable livelihood, their food security depends on the community kitchen(which is a short term relief measure). Most of them work as agricultural daily wage labours in the farms of settler communities.
There is a well designed government tribal mission hospital with in three km away from the hamlet. There are supposed to be 24 doctors there. I am told many of them are there to fulfill the criteria for getting admission for postgraduate degrees. My friends from Thampu, a grassroots civil society organisation of adivasies, tell me that there are no doctors for gynecology and pediatrics, particularly in the context of high rates of maternal and infant mortality among the adivasi communities.
However, there are also many good things happening. My friend Shaji KAgave many positive examples
There are more and more children from tribal communities completing 12 standard and joining college. There is a government college in Attappady. Last year seven children got admission in Sainik school due to the training efforts of one NGO. There are few engineers(with BTech) from the adivasi communities and one among them happened to be a young friend of mine. There is also a good school by a philanthropic activist, making a difference. I heard good things about Bethany Hospital by the Tribal Mission, a non-governmental charity initiative. I agree with Shaji that the best possible option in the long term is to invest in health, education and regeneration of environment.
Any mode of development become sustainable when people are empowered to claim their rights, choose the modes of livelihood and protect their habitat and environment.
I am told that there are some committed government officers such as the present sub collector and an officer from the Rural Development Ministry in Delhi who are trying to make a positive difference. And it is important to have organisations like Thampu that facilitates a process of dignity, empowerment and human rights among the tribal communities.
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Monday, January 2, 2017

Politics as 'Spin' and 'spin' and Spin': How lies get recycled.

Mr Rijiju said the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) and state police forces personnel must take the lead as the nation is poised to join the leading economies of the world. " What does this indicate? Police and armed forces can make India a 'leading economy of the world'?
The entire story of the government version is a classic example of the 'spin' and 'spin' instead of telling the whole truth, tell what they want to project and mislead the people. When they say only 1% pay income tax, most may believe that 99% don't pay tax. And that is the biggest lie. Because almost everyone who buy anything from the market pay tax in India.
Every Indian pay tax as in India most of taxes are indirect taxes. The Union Budget for 2016-17 has projected net tax collections at Rs 10.54 lakh crore, out of which indirect tax collections, a reflection of production and trade activities in the country, are estimated to be Rs 7.79 lakh crore. This means major chunk is from indirect taxes. If I go for a lunch or dinner in a restaurant in Trivandrum, I pay 18.5 % as tax. I did a study of the rural household in Kerala, during an economic literacy workshop in my own village, with women from relatively poor household. They have to buy everything from the market. And they brought a sample of things they usually buy and the indirect taxes were at an average of more than 10%. It was the first time they realized that they pay tax everyday to the government. And one of them said : "government' pick pocket us'everyday".
So those who say only 1% pay income tax say only part of the story. If only one percent pay income tax , it akso means there are less than one percent of Indians earn enough income from a regular job in the government or private sector, where there is tax deduction at source. And the reason that relatively very less people pay income tax simply because most of the people in India do not have income to pay tax.
And India is emerging as one of the most unequal societies in the world.In India, 75 % of people live less than 2 dollars a day and 25% still form the largest number of poor people and millions don't have access to land or livelihood. So the straight reason for relatively less income tax in India (compared to developed countries) is that a vast majority of Indians simply don't have enough income to pay income tax.
Income inequality, along with social and political inequality, is on the rise in India. There are 65 dollar billionaires in India. And they pay relatively less tax( in relation to their high income) than the rest( due to the higher percent of the indirect taxes in India) and most of
the tax evaders happened to belong to the rich class in India. In India, the richest 1% own 53% of the country’s wealth, according to the latest data from Credit Suisse. The richest 5% own 68.6%, while the top 10% have 76.3%. At the other end of the pyramid, the poorer half jostles for a mere 4.1% of national wealth. compare this with the data in 2000.The Credit Suisse data shows that India’s richest 1% owned just 36.8% of the country’s wealth in 2000, while the share of the top 10% was 65.9%. Since then they have steadily increased their share of the pie. The share of the top 1% now exceeds 50%. As per the various estimates 95% of Indians have assets worth less than 6 Lakhs. And there are 125,000(1.25 Lakhs) dollar millionaires in India. So instead of addressing the real problem of inequality, poverty, lack of assets and lack of livelihood for the majority of Indians, there is no point in worrying that only one percent pay income tax.

Chief Executive Officer of NITI Aayog Amitabh Kant on Wednesday said just one per cent of India's more than 1.25 billion population pays Income Tax.
PROFIT.NDTV.COM

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Death of Ideologues and Politics as Perception


Politics , to some extent, is perceptions of power. Power is not what you have but others perceive you have. And perceptions are often shaped through mediation of words, deeds , images and spectacles. What we see depends on how we are 'trained' to see or told to see and depending on from where do we 'see'.
Leader as the ideologue
It is the 'printed' word that determined the 'mediation' of 'ideas' and 'ideals' for the last few centuries. Without the printed words, and their multiple interpretation to construct analytical models/knowledge frameworks and multiple 'world views', no 'ism' in their 19th or 20th century versions would have been possible.Hence the interpreters of the 'word'( ideas/ideals) became more important to construct and communicate 'world views' about the world within , around, and beyond.
Hence most of the political leaders that emerged in the twentieth century were 'ideologues'- interpreters of certain ideas and ideals. And 'ideologues' were seen as those who have access and understanding of 'received knowledge' and their 'appropriate' interpretations ( hence all 'isms' got multiple interpretations) and the legitimacy of such 'leaders' came through their legitimacy as those who 'mediate' knowledge .They used 'knowledge' as a symbol of power.
They wrote many books- their politics was always an interpretative dynamics that shaped the perception of the 'masses'. Perceptions of the 'masses' about the leaders 'privileged' access to knowledge and history gave such leaders political legitimacy.
Nehru was such an example- the leader as an ideologue- who 'discovered' a new ideals for India and interpreted the history and society for the masses- and also showed them 'glimpses of the world history'. EMS too was the leader as an 'ideologue' mold. All leaders emerged till the late seventies - also sought to become 'ideologues'. There are so many examples all all over the world- across the 'ideological' spectrum. Including Hitler and Stalin tried to become leaders as 'ideologue'- model. The early 1990s witnessed a paradigm shift in the political process due to tectonic shifts in technology and communication. All of a sudden the leader as ideologue became extinct.
Leader as the telegenic performer
With the fall of the Berlin wall and the advent of the TV, the leader as the 'ideologue' simply faded away and eventually died and buried in the libraries in 'collected volumes' often sleeping eternally. The mode of technology influenced the modes of communication and the mode of communication influenced the mode of perceptions. The written and contemplative words in the books ,subject the multiple interpretations, gave way to the fast moving images on the TV screen. With the death of the ideologues, the new kind of leader emerged as a telegenic performer.
If we look at the kind of leaders who began to call shots in the post- 1990s, they are all TV performers. In the era of ideologues, EMS mattered more, and in the era of TV - performance, VS Achutandandan emerged as TV performer of par excellence. Even the former CM Nayanar became very 'dear' through his TV persona. The telegenic leaders with a capacity to perform in the TV studios or to play a performance in alignment with the new 'image' market of the TV, became prominent.. Mamata Banegi was a better performer on TV than Budhdebdas Gupta. Lallu enthralled everyone through his TV performance.
Modi learned the trick of the drama- and words with punch more as a TV performer or performing for the TV. There are any number of telegenic leaders, with hardly any mass-base, or direct links with people, emerged through TV studios or through performance that fit to the TV images.
 All over the world, telegenic TV performers mattered more than the good old 'ideologue'. Ideologues ceased to be leaders- and ideologues become professors far away from the people, more visible in libraries and less on TV.
 Entire Marxist project was built on 'ideologue' as leader- and among the other crisis one of the crisis of the Marxists is that their ideologues have become made themselves as redundant and they found refugee in some university departments somewhere- and politics ended more as theoretical mind-game for many , in the hay days of the 'leader' as a performing actor.
It is in this era of leader as a telegenic performance actor, many new 'faces' emerged- and it did not matter that they hardly mobilized any people nor had any direct links with the people. Arun Jaitly, Chidambaram, Kapil Sibal, Sitaram Yetchury and many of those who emerged in the 1990s were more of telegenic performers.
But the telegenic performer is also going to be extinct species very soon as there social media begin to eclipse both the print media and the TV entertainment. Less and less young people read news papers or watch TV political dramas as they depend more on their androids or i-phones to interface with the society and the world. Virtual reality has begun to eclipse the reality. Experience and perceptions began to mediated online at a time everything is mediated through 'APPS'!
Leader as the networked demagogue
While the world of TV created 'image' centric politics of quick perceptions based on the performance act of the telegenic or entertaining leader, the dramatic shift in the mode of technology and communication brought a paradigm change in the mode of perceptions and interventions in politics. Now the 'game' of constructing and communicating images and perceptions escaped from the TV studios to the floating and fluid field of social network and media.
What makes this age strange is that there is so much of 'face' without books- in the 'facebook'. These faces also have access to voice and means to voice. In the era of 'ideological politics' as interpreted by the 'official ideologue' of a particular world view, only the social and knowledge elites had privileged access to the received knowledge or the evolving framework of knowledge. However, even when they had access, they did not have much of voice as the real 'Voice' came from the interpreter - and in the case of the TV the 'anchor- as hero/heroine arbitrated' the 'Performance Act' of the politicians. There too the ordinary people did not have 'voice'.
In the privileged times of books- as the depository of knowledge and then the TV anchor as the arbitrator of 'image' perception industry, it is always a very small elites of 'interpreters ' and actors of dominant politics that controlled the show. It is often the nexus of political elites and media elites who manufactured consent and marketed privileged versions of politics and policy. And they formed the establishment.
With the explosion of the social media, anybody and everybody with a mobile phone and connectivity can afford to have a 'voice'. It is not only the elites, but the underclass, the political lumpen, the anti-elites, the angry and the bitter people all have a new access to fleeting words and floating images. They neither have time nor patience to read the book or bother to listen to the 'ideologue' . Their attention span has reduced to few minutes in the fast moving highway of fleeting images, impressions and perceptions. They are not interested in the 'old news' in the News Papers. They neither read books nor the news papers. With the new excitement of a new modes and spaces for expression, those who were away from establishment began to challenge the establishments in a subversive, contagious and populist manner. It is easy to build echo chambers to create a 'make- believe world' in the social network. Rhetoric eclipsed reality as the virtual reality constructed impressions like instant noodles: ready to serve anywhere and everywhere!
In the age of such fleeting words and fleeting images, perceptions get formed in a fast and furious space. Battalions of foot soldiers get on the social media network with their own modes of violence and weapons of mass destruction( anything and everything can be hacked) were deployed by leaders to manipulate perceptions and to give them the 'anti-establishment' advantage against the 'old politics.'
Both Obama and Trump are paradoxically are the protagonists and products of such anti-establishment and anti-elites politics of fleeting perceptions. While Obama emerged as a rallying point of all those who hated the Bush Mania establishment , at the the first phase of social network, Trump too made use of this fleeting images and words to create a fleeting image of an 'outsider' ( a businessman) who does 'straight-talk' ) who played to the gallery of those who perceived themselves as those who lost power to the establishment elites, who were seen as the proponents of 'old politics'.
All the demagogue, pretty aware about the fleeting characteristics of words and images also know that such a space of multitude of 'voices' help to sell 'fleeting dreams' and 'fleeting promises'- as what they want to is create quick impressions through manipulating the perceptions in the cacophony of the noises. Their arguments did not have to follow the logic of the old politics of interpreted ideals and values. Their logic was the 'punch' statement. They could get away with lie- as they were not making an interpretative argument based on the old 'ideologue' logic.
Here whole many people may feel they have a 'voice' - actually a demagogue will transform the possibilities of 'voices' in to multitude of 'crowd' noises in his/her favor. For everything, they will have APP. And all demagogues get in to the muddled water of the cacophony on the social network to catch fish , with fleeting tall promises and punching 'rhetoric'. They unleash their trained foot soldiers to shout with high volume in multiple echo chambers to sell delusions of development and promises of politics. It is with the millions of trained foot soldiers on that they manage to construct a 'face' without even a book in the 'face book'.
So in a paradoxical way, democratisation of social media and knowledge also provided an opportunity to manipulate perceptions and populist image of demagogues. The tens of thousands of trained foot soldiers became often violent lumpen gangs on the social media. And they attack anyone and everyone who question their 'favorite leader' whom they are trained to worship. They could create fake news, they could spread rum-ours of impending disaster. They practice 'cut and paste' politics of false impressions about 'majority' support. The demagogues launched themselves through 'rent' a crowd online and manipulated perceptions in the 'make-belive' world.
In the last five years, demagogues have become social networked hate mongers. They use 'insecurity' of the underclass and those who lost out in the economic and social inequality to create a politics of insecurity and politics of hate. And they use their own well orchestrated campaigns to give 'fleeting promises' and fleeting perceptions to create a majoritarian echo chambers. on the social network. Now that people , particularly the anti-establishment and anti-elitist under class can express their anger and 'insecurity' it is easy to harvest such anger and angst .with support of social network mafia and gangs, to construct a new politics of insecurity, fear and consequent hate.
The rise of the Rodrigo Duterte in Philippines , the rise of Trump USA and the fleeting promises of Modi in India also indicate the rise of a new class of populist authoritarian leaders who practice the politics of subverting fleeting perceptions on the social network. They are all leaders with a face - and not with a book, though they depend a lots of face-book to create their faces for communication and mass consumption.
The ideologue-leader is dead and gone. The telegenic performing artists became too familiar and predictably redundant in their role and relevance. However, the socially networked demagogues have arrived. And they have created millions of loyal foot soldiers to unleash violence on the social network.
Hence, the counter discourse and counter politics to the new populist demagogues will have to be shaped differently from the old mode of politics.

ദേശീയഗാനമല്ല പ്രശ്‍നം...

                                                                                                                        ജോണ്‍ സാമുവല്‍

കഴിഞ്ഞ രണ്ടു കൊല്ലമായി ഇന്ത്യയുടെ മേല്‍ക്കോയ്‌മ രാഷ്‌ട്രീയ വ്യവഹാരം രാജ്യസ്നേഹം-രാജ്യദ്രോഹം, അഥവാ ദേശസ്നേഹി-ദേശദ്രോഹി എന്ന ദ്വന്ദ പ്രതിബിംബങ്ങളില്‍ ആണ്. ഈ ദേശസ്നേഹി-ദേശദ്രോഹി കപട ദ്വിന്ദം നിര്‍മ്മിക്കുന്നത് സംഘികള്‍ ഉണ്ടാക്കിയെടുത്ത ഇന്ത്യന്‍ ഭരണഘടനക്കും അപ്പുറമുള്ള ഒരു കപട ദേശീയതയിലാണ്.
സ്വതന്ത്ര ഇന്ത്യയുടെ ദേശീയതയുടെ അടിത്തറ ഇന്ത്യന്‍ ഭരണഘടനയാണ്. ആ ദേശീയത സ്വാന്ത്ര്യത്തിന്റേതും മനുഷ്യാവകാശങ്ങളുടെയും, സാഹോദര്യത്തിന്റെയും, ഇന്ത്യയിലെ നാന-ജാതി മതസ്ഥരെയും ഉള്‍കൊണ്ടുകൊണ്ടുള്ള ദേശീയതയാണ്. അതിനെ തുരങ്കം വക്കുന്ന മേല്‍ജാതി ഭൂരിപക്ഷ ഉത്തരേന്ത്യന്‍ പശു പക്ഷ ദേശീയത ഇന്ത്യന്‍ ഭരണഘടനയില്‍ ഉറപ്പു നല്‍കിയ സ്വതന്ത്ര-സാഹോദര്യ-മനുഷ്യാവകാശ ദേശീയതയെ തകര്‍ക്കുവാന്‍ പല രീതിയില്‍ ശ്രമിച്ചു കൊണ്ടിരിക്കുകയാണ്.
ഇന്നത്തെ രാഷ്‌ട്രീയ വ്യവഹാരത്തില്‍ സര്‍ക്കാരിനെ വിമര്‍ശിക്കുന്നവരെ രാജ്യ ദ്രോഹികളായി മുദ്രകുത്തുവാന്‍ പോലീസും, ശിങ്കിടി മീഡിയ സിണ്ടികേന്റുകളും സംഘി ഭക്തന്മാരും പലവിധത്തില്‍ ശ്രമിക്കുന്നുണ്ട്. അതുകൊണ്ടു തന്നെയാണ് മനുഷ്യാവകാശ പ്രവര്‍ത്തനങ്ങളെ കപട ദേശീയവാദികള്‍ രാജ്യ-ദേശ ദ്രോഹമായി ചിത്രീകരിക്കാന്‍ തിടുക്കം കാണിക്കുന്നത്.
അതുകൊണ്ട് തന്നെയാണ് ശിങ്കിടി മുതലാളിമാര്‍ രാജ്യ സ്നേഹികളും അവരെ വിമര്‍ശിക്കുന്നവര്‍ രാജ്യദ്രോഹികളും ആകുന്നത്. അതുകൊണ്ടാണ് അംബാനി-അദാനിമാരുടെ ബ്രാന്‍ഡ് അംബാസിഡര്‍ ആയി പ്രധാനമന്ത്രി രാജ്യസ്നേഹത്തിനു മാതൃകയാകുന്നത്‌. അതു കൊണ്ട് തന്നെയാണ് ഈ രാജ്യത്തെ മാധ്യമങ്ങള്‍ എല്ലാം പിടിച്ചെടുത്തു ഗുജറാത്തു മോഡല്‍ രാജ്യസ്നേഹം വിളമ്പി നാട്ടുകാരെ കളിപ്പിക്കുന്നതു. അതുകൊണ്ടാണ് ഏറ്റവും വലിയ വായുള്ള അര്‍ണാബ് ഗോസാമിക്ക് z കിങ്കരമാരെ നല്‍കി രാജ്യദ്രോഹികളെ കൂകി ഓടിക്കാന്‍ ആളും അര്‍ത്ഥവും കൊടുത്തുആക്കിയിരിക്കുന്നത്. ലോകത്തു ഏറ്റവും കൂടുതല്‍ പട്ടിണിക്കാരും ദരിദ്രന്മാരും ഇന്ത്യയില്‍ ആണെന്ന് പറഞ്ഞാല്‍ അതുകൊണ്ടാണ് ഇവരെ പോലുള്ള രാജ്യസ്നേഹികള്‍ക്കു സുഖിക്കാത്തത്. ഇവര്‍ ഒരു വശത്തു അംബേദ്കറിനെ പ്രകീര്‍ത്തിക്കുകയും മറുവശത്തു അംബേദ്‌കറിന്റെ ആശയങ്ങളെ ക്രമേണ നിര്‍മൂലം ചെയ്യാനുമാണ് ശ്രമിക്കുന്നത്. ഗാന്ധിജിയെ കൊന്നവര്‍ ഗാന്ധിജിയുടെ വക്താക്കള്‍ ആകുകയും ഗാന്ധിജിയുടെ ഉള്‍കൊള്ളല്‍ (Inclusive) ദേശീയതയെ നിഷ്കാസനം ചെയ്യാനുമാണ് ശ്രമിക്കുന്നത്. ഇന്ന് ഇന്ത്യയിലെ എല്ലാത്തരം ന്യൂനപക്ഷ വിഭാഗങ്ങളും പാര്‍ശ്വവത്കരിക്കപ്പെട്ട ജനവിഭാഗങ്ങളും കൂടുതല്‍ അരക്ഷിത അനുഭവിക്കുന്നവര്‍ ആണ്. അവരുടെ രാജ്യസ്നേഹം പോലും ചോദ്യം ചെയ്യപ്പെടുന്ന അവസ്ഥയിലാണ് ഇന്നത്തെ അപകട രാഷ്‌ട്രീയം എത്തിനില്‍ക്കുന്നത്.
ഇന്നത്തെ രാഷ്ട്രീയ വ്യവഹാരത്തിൽ സർക്കാരിനെ വിമർശിക്കുന്നവരെ രാജ്യ ദ്രോഹികളായി മുദ്രകുത്തുവാൻ പോലീസും , ശിങ്കിടി മീഡിയ സിണ്ടികേട്ടുകളും സംഘി ഭക്തന്മാരും പലവിധത്തിൽ ശ്രമിക്കുന്നുണ്ട് . അതുകൊണ്ടു തന്നെയാണ് മനുഷ്യാവകാശ പ്രവർത്തങ്ങളെ കപട ദേശീയവാദികൾ രാജ്യ -ദേശ ദ്രോഹമായി ചിത്രീകരിക്കാൻ തിടുക്കം കാണിക്കുന്നത് . അതുകൊണ്ടു തന്നെയാണ് എന്‍കൗണ്ടര്‍ എന്ന പേരില്‍ പോലീസ് പൗരന്മാരെ നിഷ്കരുണം വെടിവെച്ചു കൊല്ലുന്നതിനെ ചോദ്യം ചെയ്യതാല്‍ നിങ്ങള്‍ പോലീസിന്റെ മനോവീര്യം തകര്‍ക്കുന്ന, ഭീകരവാദികളെ ന്യായീകരിക്കുന്ന, രാജ്യദ്രോഹികളായി മുദ്ര കുത്തപ്പെടുന്നത്. അതുകൊണ്ടു തന്നെയാണ് ഇന്ത്യയിലെ 90 ശതമാനം ജനങ്ങളെയും പീഡിപ്പിക്കുന്ന നോട്ട് അസാധുവാക്കല്‍ രാജ്യസ്‌നേഹം കൊണ്ടാണെന്നു പറയുന്നത്. ഇന്ന് എല്ലാ കള്ളന്മാരും ഏറ്റവും ദുരുപയോഗം ചെയ്യുന്ന പദമാണ് രാജ്യസ്നേഹം.
ദേശീയഗാനം പാടി എഴുന്നേറ്റ് നിന്നാല്‍ ഒരാള്‍ കൂടുതല്‍ രാജ്യസ്നേഹിയോ, ഇരുന്നു കേട്ടാല്‍ രാജ്യദ്രോഹിയോ ആകുന്നില്ലന്നു തിരിച്ചറിയുക. ഈ രാജ്യത്ത് നമ്മളുടെ വോട്ടു വാങ്ങി മേലാളന്മാരായി ചീറിപ്പാഞ്ഞു നടന്നു അഴിമതിയും അധികാരാഹങ്കാരവും സ്വജന പക്ഷപാതവും കാണിക്കുന്ന മാന്യന്‍മാരെല്ലാം ദേശീയഗാനം പാടി കൊണ്ടാണ് കള്ളത്തരങ്ങളും ചതിവുകളും കാണിക്കുന്നതെന്ന് മറക്കാതിരിക്കുക.
സര്‍ക്കാര്‍ സന്നാഹങ്ങളുടെ അകമ്പടി ഉള്ളവര്‍ക്കോ അത്‌ സ്വപ്നം കാണുന്ന മാന്യന്മാര്‍ക്കോ ഇന്ന് സംഘികള്‍ പൊതുബോധമാക്കുവാന്‍ ശ്രമിക്കുന്ന കപട രാജ്യസ്നേഹം വെള്ളം തൊടാതെ വിഴുങ്ങുന്നതില്‍ പ്രയാസമില്ല. അതിനു ഇടതെന്നും വലതെന്നും ഉള്ള വ്യത്യാസം പോലുമില്ലാതായിരിക്കുന്നു. ഇങ്ങനെയുള്ള ഒരു മേല്‍ക്കോയ്‌മ കപട ദേശീയ രാഷ്‌ടീയ സാമൂഹിക സാംസ്കാരിക രാഷ്‌ടീയത്തെ തിരിച്ചറിയാന്‍ സാധിക്കാതെ, സിനിമ തീയേറ്റര്‍ ദേശീയഗാന കലാപരിപാടിയെയും അതിനു എഴുന്നേറ്റ് നില്‍ക്കാത്തവരെ രാജ്യദ്രോഹിയായി ചിത്രീകരിക്കുന്ന രാഷ്‌ട്രീയക്കാരും സര്‍ക്കാര്‍ ബുദ്ധി ജീവികളും ഫാസിസം എന്ന അര്‍ബുദം ബാധിച്ചു കൊണ്ടിരിക്കുന്ന രോഗാതുരമായ ഒരു സമൂഹത്തെയാണ് കാണിക്കുന്നത്.
ഇന്ത്യ എന്റെ രാജ്യമാണ്. എല്ലാ ഇന്ത്യക്കാരും എന്റെ സഹോദരീ സഹോദരന്മാരാണെന്നു നെഞ്ചത്ത് കൈ വച്ചു പറയുവാന്‍ ഈ മോദി രാഷ്‌ട്രീയത്തില്‍ എത്ര പേര്‍ക്ക് കഴിയും?  ദേശീയ ഗാനം പാടുന്ന സ്ഥലങ്ങളില്‍ ഞാന്‍ എഴുന്നേറ്റ് നില്‍ക്കും. അതു സ്‌കൂളില്‍ പറഞ്ഞു പഠിപ്പിച്ച ശീലം കൊണ്ടാണ്.
അതെ ശീലം കൊണ്ടുതന്നെ ദേശീയഗാനം ഒരു ഇഷ്‌ട ഗാനമാണ്. സാമ്പാറും അവിയലും ബീഫ് ഒലത്തിയതും ഇഷ്‌ട ആഹാരമായതു പോലെ തന്നെ. അതുകൊണ്ട് തന്നെ ദേശീയ ഗാനമല്ല പ്രശ്നം. ദേശീയഗാനം എന്ന പാടി പാടി പതിഞ്ഞ പാട്ടിനെ ഉപയോഗിച്ചു രാജ്യസ്‌നേഹികളെയും രാജ്യ ദ്രോഹികളെയും നിര്‍മ്മിച്ച് ജനത്തെ അനുസരണയുള്ള കുട്ടികളെ പോലെ വരുതിയില്‍ നിറുത്തി രാജ്യസ്നേഹം തെളിയിക്കാന്‍ പറയുന്ന കപട ദേശീയവാദി സര്‍ക്കാര്‍ സന്നാഹങ്ങള്‍ ആണ് പ്രശ്നം. ഇതെല്ലം ഒരു പ്രത്യേക സ്വേച്ഛാധിപത്യ പ്രവണതകളുടെ അടയാളപ്പെടുത്തലുകള്‍ ആണെന്നത് മറക്കാതിരിക്കുക. അനുസരണയും പേടിയും ഭയവും ഉള്ള ഒരു ജനതയെ വരിയില്‍ വരുതിക്ക് നിര്‍ത്തിയാണ് ജനായത്ത സ്വാതത്ര്യത്തിനു മൂക്ക് കയറിട്ടു സ്വച്ഛാധിപധ്യം അരങ്ങേറുന്നത്.
ഞാന്‍ തികഞ്ഞ രാജ്യസ്നേഹിയാണ് . പക്ഷെ എന്റെ രാജ്യസ്‌നേഹത്തിന്റ നിര്‍വചനം ഇന്ത്യന്‍ ഭരണഘടനയുടെ ആമുഖ സന്ദേശവും എല്ലാവര്‍ക്കും ഉറപ്പാക്കിയിട്ടുള്ള സ്വാന്ത്ര്യവും, തുല്യ അവകാശങ്ങളും ആണ്. അങ്ങനെയുള്ള ദേശീയത സാര്‍വ്വദേശീയതയില്‍ ഉറച്ച മനുഷ്യവകാശങ്ങളുടെയും മാനവ സംസ്കാരത്തിലും എല്ലാവര്ക്കും എല്ലായിടത്തും ജീവിക്കുവാനുള്ള അവകാശത്തിലും വിശ്വസിക്കുന്ന കാഴ്ചപ്പാടാണ് .
ജനഗണമന അധിനായക ജയഹേ
ഭാരത ഭാഗ്യവിധാതാ,
പഞ്ചാബസിന്ധു ഗുജറാത്ത മറാഠാ
ദ്രാവിഡ ഉത്‌കല ബംഗാ,
വിന്ധ്യഹിമാചല യമുനാ ഗംഗാ,
ഉച്ഛല ജലധിതരംഗാ,
തവശുഭനാമേ ജാഗേ,
തവശുഭ ആശിഷ മാഗേ,
ഗാഹേ തവജയഗാഥാ,
ജനഗണമംഗലദായക ജയഹേ
ഭാരത ഭാഗ്യവിധാതാ.
ജയഹേ, ജയഹേ, ജയഹേ,
ജയ ജയ ജയ ജയഹേ!
http://www.asianetnews.tv/magazine/john-samual-on-national-anthem-issue

We love this country.


The carefully constructed and marketed myth of the man is beginning to crumble. He was projected as an 'able administrator' , a man of 'good governance' and a man of 'development' , and a man who could 'deliver'. When the demonetization was announced with the drama and rhetoric in consonance with the myth, many mock liberals, pure bhakts and sanghi propaganda machines shouted from the roof top about the 'brilliant' move by a 'brilliant' man. But each of the constructed myth through image manipulation, paid social media propaganda managers, trained sanghi squads in the media, are beginning to get exposed.
The rhetoric and drama of demonetization made fourty days ago proved to be a complete sham. Today every middle class person who pay tax every single day will have to stand in a ques to access a ration of her/his hard earned money. Many countries have asked tourists to avoid traveling in India .Poor people simply dont have cash or jobs. So many self employed in the informal economy simply don't have business. And the economy is adversely affected and so many have already lost daily wages and jobs.. And still most of the ATMs don't work or don't have enough cash. And see the cruelty of the irony when there is cash crunch among more than 90 percent of people , ask them to go cashless and pay by card in the 'national interest'?
Meanwhile all the money-hoarders of black money managed to get fresh 2000 notes from the backdoor and ATMs does not have money to dispense cash to the ordinary people. Highly advertised new 'catch,' fresh 2000 notes worth crores in way expose the sham. How come all the money-horders get fresh 2000 noted worth several millions and a billion of people don't get enough cash from banks or ATMs?
They changed rules almost everyday. Changed the rhetoric everyday. Changed the goal post everyday , exposing that they have been clueless. First it was for the 'national interest' against terrorists across the boarders. Then it was to fight 'black money.' Then it was to fight 'corruption'. Then it was a 'sacrifice' for 'long-term' good of the nation.. Then it was for 'cashless' economy. Anyone questioned any of these were painted as those support corruption and black money. And often termed as 'enemies of the nation' !! And now in a disaster mitigation mode that is yet to deliver.
Despite changing goal posts, the fact of the matter is this badly conceived and boisterously implemented demonetization drive completely exposed almost all carefully constructed myth about the man. This is a classic example of bad governance, bad administrative coordination and worst record of delivery.
And the top of it oil prices that is already high is increased again. And political parties, with lots of access to black money can easily deposit hundreds of crores of ' donation' without tax or penalty! So why should political party establishments worry as their cash is safe ?
This is time for a real assessment of the government , devoid of the myths. Almost all the rhetorical promises failed to deliver on the ground. And those who speak against corruption look the other way around when there are huge instances of corruption in MP and Maharashtra. One can't bring 'good governance' and 'development' by mere rhetoric or by spending thousands of crores our taxes for advertising propaganda.
If there was a committed and competent opposition, there would have been a nationwide protest seeking the resignations of all those who are responsible for the mess of demonetization. Sadly the biggest strength of the government is the absence of a credible opposition with imagination, integrity and political will. And the so-called opposition is clueless , making some noises here and there, without mass politics or challenging the government on the ground.
So despite all the troubles of demonetization, government is trying to move forward without bothering about the opposition or voices of dissent on the ground. In such a situation they go in the ' business as usual' mode. When the billionaire buddies are happy enjoying the 'ache din' why worry about a billion people who are suffering in silence and happy in their new found 'patriotic spirit' ?
And ordinary mortals will stand in the ques and confirm as a large number of them are too scared to speak out. When a country becomes a republic of fear with a culture of silence, we have to weep for the Constitution and substantive democracy of our very dear country.- the largest democracy in the world. Can myths fill the bellies of a republic of hungry people in this county of the largest number of poor people in the world? How long a Republic channel of the propaganda boy of the rich and powerful feed us on his brand of new 'Patriotism' and sales pitch for the lie of a 56 inch chest?
Because, a day will come when the silent majority of ordinary people will wake up and realize that the emperor was always naked, despite all paid news owned by billionaire buddies. Because our country is too dear and too diverse to be fooled for a long time. India is too much of a democracy to be taken for granted by any rulers or leaders. Our Republic and the constitution is too dear to us to be silenced by proponents of the politics of hate and fear. Our hard earned freedom can' t be bartered as we love this country and our democracy too much. We love this country too much to give up hope.

Politics of pride and prejudices.

Worth reading the article in the NEWYORKER. Given below is my own quick perception after reading the article.
In 2003, many predicted the outcome of the Bush-Blair adventure, largely based on the deep personal pride and prejudice of the junior Bush. When the history of the last fifty years is written the Reagan-Thatcher combine and the Bush-Blair combine of American-Anglo power nexus brought the world where it is : A mess of economy and the spread of politics of pride, prejudices and hatred. And the mistrust that undermine freedom, rights and democracy everywhere.
Many scholars and activists warned. But Bush-Blair combine was so preoccupied with defiant arrogance of Saddam and now history is clear about the Bushful adventure. I was actively involved in the antiwar campaign that resulted in the largest mobilization of people across the world. Millions of people all over the world marched. I too join the march and wrote how the war will destabilize the region and will result in untold miseries of death and destruction. The entire was based on a false rationale derived the big lie of weapons of mass destruction. They never found it. The US war-military-weapon industry manufactured the war in Afghanistan and Iraq. And they made mess out of it.
The fact of the matter is that US never won a war of its own anywhere in the last so many years. They never actually fought war on the ground during both the First and Second World War, though derived immense political economy profit from both. The US role in the Second World War simply killing thousand by dropping the atom bomb in Nagasaki and Hiroshima, and not fighting a real war on the ground. In Vietnam, they simply failed and had to take a humiliating retreat and after so much of death and destruction.
They created Taliban as religious extremist antidote to communist USSR. In the process, they made a complete mess in Afghanistan and Pakistan and eventually giving rise to virulent forms of violent Islamist extremist politics and it different manifestation.
Somehow many of the US establishment leaders live in a make believe world of power, weapons and self-fulfilling grandeur. It is a country of migrants which began with smell of the blood of 'Red Indian' community ; a country without the depth of history and civilization. Many of its leaders are less interested in learning from history and more interested in geography of power and economy. Result is evident. A country often gets the President it deserves. And Donald Trump is all set bring the Trump 'Tower' to the White House'. Though he is a product and protagonist of the American Business establishment, he is paradoxically there as he is outside the traditional 'political elite establishment. So vote for him was partly a vote against the establishment. Interestingly the enthusiasm about Obama was also that he was outsider to the political establishment. The charm of Obama was that he was fresh, young and came outside the traditional Washington DC establishment.' Though both Obama and Trump come from diametrically opposite political, cultural and ideological spectrum, both of them came from the traditional power-establishment. And this must be the first time in the recent history that a businessman is going to do business of governance in the White House.
Saddam was indeed a dictator and he was indeed nurtured by the US power-establishment to fight a proxy war against Iran from the 1977. A he was a war-hardened demagogue and dictator, fully supported by the US for more than a decade. And the reason for removing him and killing was not necessarily due to his authoritarian tendencies. Bush at that time claimed the he was bombing Iraq to bring 'freedom and democracy'. That was twelve years ago and now Saddam must be laughing in his grave!!!
While the connection between the war to depose Saddam and the election of 2016 is indirect, it is etched in history.
NEWYORKER.COM|BY JOHN CASSIDY