Lifestyle

… and the government is dedicated to the task of reducing this blight on our nation

I dont know why people are coy about saying it out loud and proud. I dont know why someone who has said it in a speech, not once but twice, quite clearly, should then try and retract and deny and do all this criss-crossing of legs: I said it, I didnt say it, I said it, but what I meant was, I half said it, but what I half meant was, I never actually said that, that is not what I said, mischievous people are misrepresenting and so on and so forth.
Here, let me just say it for you: In India, we have too much democracy and this government, from Day One, has been dedicated to the task of reducing this blight on our nation with the single-minded aim of eradicating it completely! Also: No government has done as much towards removing democracy, towards uprooting it completely, as this government has!
Previous governments may have tried, but they were ultimately lily-livered, they only half did, or part did and then fell into the trap of trying to please the people! So, as Niti Aayogs Amitabh Kant makes it clear, unlike previous governments this government is determined to push five companies to become Global Champions! Because we need them to be Global Champions without letting what the people of India want to get in the way! For too long peoples needs have sabotaged Indias grand ambitions!
Clear chronology
High appointees of this regime can add: The focus shown by the ruling combination is an inspiration to all who work under them! From the beginning the chronology has been clear: use this too-much democracy to capture power, doesnt matter if you have only 31% of vote share for your party and 38.5% for your alliance; if that allows you to get into the drivers seat you are allowed to drive the bus off the cliff. In the next four years you are to pay no heed to the vast majority of the population who did not vote for you (if you actually believed in democracy you would); till the time the next elections come around, you maintain the facade of democracy while hollowing out its political institutions. While shouting about the evils of corruption you bring in the mother of corruption-encouraging legislation with electoral bonds; and since the checks and balances are crippled no one can effectively challenge the law legally.
So, with ten times more money than your rival parties, you can come in with an even bigger majority in the next elections. And even if with all your machinations you cant manage more than 37.4% vote share for yourself and 45% for your larger syndicate, you can proceed to claim that all 1.3 billion Indians are behind you each time you do something outrageous. In the meantime that pesky import from the West, that damned democracy, is degrading nicely and rapidly. Just as money pulls in more money, disaster attracts more disaster, delusion-fuelled self-destruction fuels more delusion leading to deeper self-destruction ek dhakka aur doh.
Strata of complicity
The thing is, the regime is buoyed by a creamy layer of self-serving hypocrites and delusional Trickle-Down addicts in various positions of power and wealth. Actually, you could say the rulers and their various Gauleiters are in the position they are, doing what they are, because of this thick strata of complicit, unquestioning upper and middle-class people. For them, the protests against the CAA-NRC were purely obstructionist, no matter that huge discrimination against Muslims was being made into law.
For them, the JNU, Jamia and AMU students were asking for trouble and so deserved to have thugs walking in under police auspices to beat up the students. For them, some of the farmers demands have merit but how dare the farmers threaten to block all roads to Delhi? Round up their leaders! One of them even says, Believe you me, I hate the Modi government for its focus on Hindutva, which actually goes against the grain of Hindu philosophy, but I cant fault them for trying in bring in some good change.
What this last commentator of the WhatsApp world doesnt understand is that there is no good change in the pipeline. Everything stems from the focus on Hindutva, the allergy to too much democracy, and the one-point agenda of achieving a janatantra-mukt Bharat.
Ruchir Joshi is a filmmaker and columnist.