There might have been countless rebuttals already to the nearly famous Suchitra Krishnamoothys blog post (not her autobiography, surprisingly) about how the BJP is the worst idea since Hitler’s. This, nevertheless, won’t deter me to write another one.
First things first:
1) Let me start bottom up. In this blog post I talk about my views and my views only. I don’t talk on behalf of the 130 crore Indians as Ms Krishnamoorthy conveniently and unapologetically does in her own.
2) This blog post will lack the finesse, charm, use of metaphors and adjectives. This will not be a literary masterpiece. Far from it, actually. So if you are looking at reading something worthwhile which might give you a shot at GRE/GMAT, I would advise you to move on to some other, rather diligently written with that intent, blogs. I can point out some if you want.
3)I wish the BJP paid me to write this article. Unfortunately for me, it doesn’t. Quite a bummer that we bloggers have to do what the spokespersons of the BJP should be doing in newsrooms.
4)There will be a lot of grammatical errors. Grammar Nazis can have their fair share of laugh at my expense. I will be more than happy to grant you the little sadistic pleasure you might get after dissecting this post.
Now that I have set the expectations let me start with disagreeing respectfully with Ms Krishnamoorthy. The article is a mere reflection of how the media has been able to set the narrative that this is a ban-friendly government. Not only it is factually incorrect, it also puts forward her lopsided views and the unreal expectations she has with the government. The write up reeks of stereotypes that have been pushed down our throats in the last one-year or so. But I won’t blame her for the misguided non-egalitarian view she has of the government. If I had suddenly woken up from a slumber and watched the news channels day-in day-out without bothering about any sort of fact checking, I too would have held a similar view. It’s a perfect example of Goebbels Law.
I will skip the rhetoric and get on with the points she has put forward.
People have varied views of different political parties of India. BJPs hard-core supporters remember ABV’s 6-year rule that gave India the much needed push in development of physical infrastructure. It’s detractors however remember it for the infamous rath yatra carried out by its patron Lal Krishna Advani followed by his, and in turn BJPs, alleged role in the demolition of Babri Masjid and the riots that ensued. But I don’t think anyone remembers BJP for its mishaps in Karnataka. Karnataka, did you say?
Anyways, the battle of perception can go on forever. The sooner we move on the better is the probability of not losing the context.
Let us not get swayed by facts. Le us just believe the rhetoric about India turning into Banistan under Modis India. Beef ban has been in place in majority states before the BJP even took it’s first breath. But let’s for a minute assume that it was the BJP who had enforced the ban in most of the states. If they are in fact doing it, they are fulfilling their poll promise. The BJP promised an end to the pink revolution. It was a part of their manifesto. Frankly, I would have been disappointed if they hadn’t taken any action in this regard.
Anyways, the debate around cow protection has been going on since ages. Let’s not go so long back but to the post independence India. This is what Mr ZH Lari of the United provinces had to say:
It is interesting to note that even a Muslim member, Mr. Z.H. Lari of United Provinces, in the interests of maintaining communal harmony, stated that “ Therefore, if the House is of the opinion that slaughter of cows should be prohibited, let it be prohibited in clear, definite and unambiguous words. I do not want that there should be a show that you could have this thing although the intention may be otherwise. My own submission to this House is that it is better to come forward and incorporate a clause in Fundamental Rights that cow slaughter is henceforth prohibited, rather than it being left vague in the Directive Principles, leaving it open to Provincial Governments to adopt it one way or the other, and even without adopting definite legislation to resort to emergency powers under the Criminal Procedure. In the interests of good-will in the country and of cordial relations between the different communities I submit that this is the proper occasion when the majority should express itself clearly and definitely.”
Most of the Indian states except a few in north eastern states and Kerala have a ban in some form or other in place.
Let’s first look at what was banned, irrespective of the time it was banned. Open slaughterhouses had banned the sale of meat on the days where Jains celebrated their festival. What does this actually mean? That you would not have been able to purchase your meat from these places. Would you have been able to eat your meat at home? Yes. Would you have been able to eat your meat in the restaurants? Yes. Would you have been able to purchase the meat? Yes, but only at places where there was no slaughter of animals. The previously stocked meat could be easily purchased just like any other grocery item.
Now look at the history of ban. It was in the year 1964 that the resolution was first passed the order. Later on it was reaffirmed in 1994 and 2004. BJP didn’t exist in 1964 and wasn’t ruling in either 1994 or 2004. All the three years it was either the Congress on it’s own or in alliance with NCP had ruled the states.
What should a state government do when it is ordered by the High Court to implement its orders? Defy it or comply with it? I guess a sane mind would definitely go with the latter. This is what the state govt did. It translated the court order, which was a result of an affidavit filed by the then Congress led govt in the Bombay High Court, in Marathi and circulated it across. The Bombay High Court later asked the govt itself to not act on the order given by them.
The so-called fear of ‘fascism, despotism, and dictatorship’ has become boring. It has become a fashion by the self-declared intellectual class to demean the govt without knowing the facts. It has become agenda driven. In their hate for Modi, they have started oppose anything for the sake of opposition.