Gandhi and his principles


In the midst of all the political mayhem in the country we observe 144th birth anniversary of father of our nation, the man who was titled Mahatma- Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. I don’t consider him the sole leader responsible for bringing independence in India, but there can never be any doubt over Gandhi’s greatness and grandeur. He was the kind of leader India will never have again.

He shook the British in his own gentle way, we have grown-up reading about Khilafat movement, quit India movement, non-cooperation movement and the dandi salt marchThis messiah of non-violence and satyagrah (truthfulness) has been strongly criticized by the likes of Christopher Hitchens and Andrew Roberts.  Roberts, a British Historian called him “a sexual weirdo, a political incompetent and a fanatical faddist — one who was often downright cruel to those around him.” Christopher Hitchens, too penned down similar views, in his essay- The Real Mahatma Gandhi.

I beg to differ from the above views, yes, Gandhi unlike Nehru was a religious man, a staunch Hindu but he never had a predilection for a particular religion. Muslims accused him of being the harbinger of Hindu ‘Raj’; Hindu nationalists accused him of being insufficiently dedicated to their cause. His idea of religion was not totally esoteric. He knew that every religion was connected with some belief system supported by rituals. He tried to get rid of the rituals as far as possible. To Gandhi religion was a human institution made by human ingenuity to solve practical affairs as well as spiritual matters. All his life he struggled and fought against inequality. It is absurd to accuse or misinterpret him on these lines.

And as far his sexual behavior is concerned, that is not for us to discuss, there was nothing immoral or moral about it, a man has the right to choose his sexual preference.

Moving on to his politics, which was debatable a number of times, but necessary during British rule. His policy of self-suffering and fasting moved masses. That is how he obviated the riots in Bengal from getting worse after independence, this is just one example. He always managed to ignite a spark among all Indians, whatever religion they belonged to. He fasted in 1932 to protest the voting scheme for separate political representation for Dalits; Gandhi did not want them segregated. Although none of these policies will work in modern India, which was ostensible when Anna Hazare tried fasting. Modern India has narcissist, demented and retarded leaders, the country now needs a miracle to bring in a good government.

Gandhi’s economic politics was probably one policy most of us will disagree with. Gandhi challenged Nehru and the modernizers in the late 1930’s who called for rapid industrialization on the Soviet model; Gandhi denounced that as dehumanizing and contrary to the needs of the villages where the great majority of the people lived. He was probably what we can call a neo-luddist. His model of progress and development was definitely not ideal.

We have to agree Gandhi did not adopt the most conventional principles, he was criticized, condemned, redeemed and defended throughout his life. But we need to accept despite all his flaws and fallacies, he was a man of unmatched greatness and no one was or will ever be capable of what he manged to do.

The Storm Called Arnab Goswami


If you are an avid news watcher, there is no way that you haven’t watched at least one of Arnab Goswami’s debates. He is the guy who probably makes the politicians wet their pants and makes Barkha Dutt look sweet and subtle on her shows. The NEWS on Indian channels has seen a paradigm shift. From the monotonous NEWS readers on DD to the war-like discussions we witness now. I am not a fan of the prime time debates on all the channels. All the people featuring on these debates to me look like chickens arguing over which one of them laid maximum eggs, exactly that’s how pointless I find all these debates.

I can’t reason what we are learning from discussing “Whether Bollywood item numbers have a role to play in the rapes happening across the country” or  “Where did Owaissi go wrong with his speech.”  The debates, if at all we can call them debates are absolutely meaningless and a pain to ears.

Source: fakingnews.com

Source: fakingnews.com

Arnab, the most visible face on television today, is probably the only journalist who is not politically biased and popular for asking the politicians the toughest questions putting them in a spot. Remember Renuka Chaudhary’s face when she last came, looked she was going to burst into tears? But, I wonder are these debates conventional enough. Being the anchor shouldn’t he wait for people to answer and listen to them instead of butting in every two seconds to give his personal opinion? Arnab, the nation needs to know why exactly you call people when you don’t let them complete their sentences?

Honestly saying it out loud and blaming politicians for each and every thing is not the answer, it doesn’t help either. Yes, it does put the politicians to shame, probably makes them want to hide their faces but do we ever get a solution? I remember Arnab hosting a debate where he called Abhijeet Mukherjee, president’s son and he kept asking him why he gave the “painted and dented” statement. Mukherjee incessantly kept saying he had withdrawn the statement, but the macho man, the savior of the country; Arnab Goswami kept pressing the issue. Mukherjee, forgive me for the language, is an absolute buffoon to make a statement like that for women but pursuing him that way on the national television didn’t solve the problem either, correct me if it did.

Arnab points out at the issues, sometimes not so precisely, throws facts at generally ignorant guests like he is firing cannonballs at them, makes them uncomfortable, questions his own questions ( I have not seen even one debate concluding productively, there are no answers). His skill lies not in journalism but in creating controversies and providing entertainment through dumbed down, rhetorical news. The nation needs an answer from him, what is the point of News Hour? We demand an answer NOW!!