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Home > News > Columnists > Tarun Vijay

Denying Ram is denying India

September 14, 2007

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Sonia Gandhi again played a masterstroke by taking credit for withdrawing the offending Ram Sethu affidavit. But this has also raised the question whether she did it in deference to Hindu sentiments or was she afraid of its negative impact on her party's election prospects. Since the United Progressive Alliance's ascendancy to power, a number of decisions have been taken by the government which hurt Hindu sentiments but none cared.

If suddenly her conscience took cognisance of Hindu sensitivities, then logically she should have also withdrawn the destruction of the Ram Sethu. One can only hope that political leaders understand that this issue concerns national sentiments and should be dealt beyond party lines.

After all, the affidavit was filed quite confidently by the State apparatus because the entire atmosphere of governance has a distinct 'offend the Hindus, get the Muslim votes' hue. Bureaucrats, being the most durbari species, sensed it, otherwise none would have dared to file such nonsense on a stamp paper during A B Vajpayee's regime.

It is this all-pervading air of 'bruising Hindus to get a pat' that the name that appears first on our lips since birth and lasts till the funeral pyre is lit was challenged so coolly by a government which is not run by aliens.

It has tried to delete all that stood for our identity and cultural traits that define us, our nationhood and soul. It shows utter disregard for the majority sentiment and the threads that weave a fabric called India, while distributing gifts of reservations and loans and opportunities for anyone declaring himself to be a non-Hindu. One Diwali our Shankaracharya was arrested and then Muslims were given reservations in jobs and educational institutions. No one ever, not even once, showed any concern for the Kashmiri Hindu refugees; rather illegal alien Muslim infiltrators were facilitated by enacting the Illegal Migrants Detention Act and when the Supreme Court struck it down, again brought it back through the back door.

This attitude sets the tone of the State machinery. So what happened in this case was nothing surprising. If the affidavit was honestly withdrawn to respect Hindu sentiments, then why was it not accompanied with an announcement to withdraw the destruction of the Ram Sethu also? If the offending affidavit is bad, then the destruction of the bridge connected with the same great icon of Hindus is worse.

Didn't the political masters who cleared the affidavit know that Ram doesn't need any birth certificate from occupants of the paan-stained dirty corridors of State? Faith of any hue and region has to be respected unquestioningly. It is faith that makes people live and die for a cause, and not political jugglery.

Ram defines our nation, our ancestry, our civilisation. Denying Ram is denying India. Gandhi stood firmly for Ram Rajya. He died with Ram's name on his lips. His samadhi in Delhi has only one inscription etched on it, He Ram. But Hindus are asked to provide proof of Rama's birthplace and the data of his bridge's construction plans.

Now they asked for proof of his existence. Next they may ask -- with this kind of Parliament it is quite possible -- to provide proof of who gave Bharat her name. Where are the records? And the ASI's poor director will file an affidavit: We do not have any 'scientifically' ascertainable records, only mythologies say this land's name is Bharat. Hence the name can be changed to any Nehru-Gandhi Clanistan, which will have proof authenticated by the New Delhi Municipal Corporation!

Mythology. The whole construct is a British anthropological revenge on us. We had a different tradition of recording events and writing history. The British and their cohorts taught that all that was mythology, a myth, and only the Western Christian world's methods are 'scientific'. Hence we adopted their standards, their calendar, their ways to greet the guests, their worldview became ours, and we discarded everything that we cherished, adopted their attire and weird uniforms (see our learned advocates sweating in black but still not complaining) to look modern and progressive.

Hence questioning Ram and Sita, humiliating ochre-robed sanyasins, converting ancient people and ridiculing their faith becomes part of cleansing the 'heathens and pagans' of their dark practices and emancipating them to the 'higher' levels of 'modernity'.

When Kalidas wrote Raghuvamsam, he described the entire dynasty beginning from Brahma. Lord Brahma created 10 prajapatis -- one of whom was Marichi. Kashyapa is the son of Marichi and Kala. Kashyapa is regarded as the father of humanity. Vivasvan or Surya is the son of Kashyapa and Aditi. Manu or Vaivaswatha Manu is the son of Vivasvan. He is regarded as the first ruler belonging to the Ikshvaku dynasty. Ikshvaku is the son of Manu and established his kingdom in Ayodhya. Kukshi is the son of Ikshavaku. Vikukshi is the son of Kukshi. Bana is the son of Vikukshi. Anaranya is the son of Bana. Prithu is the son of Anaranya. Trisanku is the son of Prithu. Dhundhumara is the son of Trisanku. Yuvanaswa is the son of Dhundhumara. Mandhata is the son of Yuvanaswa. Susandhi is the son of Mandhata. Daivasandhi and Presenjit are the sons of Susandhi. Bharatha is the son of Presenjit. Asita is the son of Bharatha. Sagara is the son of Asitha. Asamanja is the son of Sagara. Amsumantha (Ansuman) is the son of Asamanja. Dileepa is the son of Amsumantha. Bhagiratha is the son of Dileepa. Kakustha is the son of Bhagiratha. Raghu is the son of Kakushta.

The clan of Raghuvamsha started with Raghu. Pravardha is the son of Raghu. Sankhana is the son of Pravardha. Sudarsana is the son of Sankhana. Agnivarna is the son of Sudarsana. Seeghraga is the son of Agnivarna. Maru is the son of Seeghraga. Prasusruka is the son of Maru. Ambarisha is the son of Prasusruka. Nahusha is the son of Ambarisha. Yayathi is the son of Nahusha. Nabhaga is the son of Yayathi. Aja is the son of Nabhaga. Dasaratha is the son of Aja. Rama, Lakshmana, Bharatha and Shatrughana are the sons of Dasaratha. Lava and Kusha are the sons of Rama.

Oh my god, these Sanskrit names! Why couldn't they have Roman ones, to be pronounced better?

The entire East Asia reverberates with the tales of Rama and enactment of the Ramayana including the Muslim-majority Malaysia and Indonesia and countries ruled by the Communists. But a Hindu majority country's government, under a non-Hindu dispensation, destroys the great bridge associated with Rama's legacy and files an affidavit that smacks of an alien mindset.

This was a counter-affidavit filed by C Dorjee, director (monuments), Archaeological Survey of India, on behalf of the respondent Union of India through the ministry of culture in reply to Dr Subramanian Swamy's petition that seeks to put a halt on the Sethu destruction. The language of the affidavit and the way it addressed the Adam's Bridge issue smacked of an utter disregard for Hindus. They hate calling it Ram Sethu and feel quite comfortable with Adam's Bridge, a much later coinage. Same firang mindset!

The way the whole issue is being dealt with by the government of India right from the beginning stinks of dishonesty and an aversion to Hindu sensitivities.

There were five channels available for the Sethusamudram project. Why the government chose this particular one, which required the destruction of the Ram Sethu?

The Madras high court and later the Supreme Court had specifically addressed the question of putting a halt to the Ram Sethu's destruction till the hearings are on. The Madras high court order of June 19, 2007 said, 'We are not inclined to grant interim relief at this stage, as it would hamper further work in the project. However, we leave it to the Union of India to decide whether the actual cutting of Adam's Bridge/Rama Sethu could be postponed till the issues involved in these petitions are considered by this court.'

And the Supreme Court order of August 30, 2007 said, 'Till September 14, the alleged Rama Sethu/Adam's bridge shall not be damaged in any manner. Dredging activity may be carried out so long as it does not damage Rama Sethu.'

But the government defied it and everyday put up reports of the destruction progress on its Web site http://sethusamudram.gov.in/ProjectStatus.asp under the 'Progress of Dredging Work' head.

The ministers and officers supporting such actions represent the same spineless babudom of the colonial era who would stoop to immeasurable depths only to protect their interests.

Ram set the highest example of righteousness, as an obedient son, caring husband, great citizen king, and a warrior par excellence. He is the embodiment of Dharma, who inspires to eliminate the wicked and establish the rule of noble virtues. Those who worship him are there in every party and organisation, yet, to rise above selfishness and uphold Dharma is a rarity.

To make the State just and fair, representing Bharat, is the unfinished war of Ram.


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