Friday, August 17, 2007

Is Bharat India ??

Strange Title. But it suddenly striked me as I started thinking about India and its (as most people say), glorious past. Why is past always glorious ? I dont know.
Maybe, we always love to live in the past. Since we dont like the present, we imagine that past was glorious. Ha!Ha!Ha!Ha! Good enough reason. I patted myselves in the back getting this idea.
What prompted me to write this post is the discussion I had with a few of my colleagues in the office cafeteria today evening. This post is the continuation of the discussion along with the other discussions (or rather say heated arguments) with my eldest brother, Kiran, past many years. One of my grand father's is a rightist and the other is quite a famous communist. So, we were brought up with the best of the two by our parents who have given us freedom to express our thoughts and feelings.

Now, coming to the title. Bharatvarsha consists of present day India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and parts of Afghanistan. Please post your comments and correct me if I am wrong. So, Bharat is NOT India. Frankly, India was never one nation - until Mahatma Gandhi proposed it.
Shifting the topic to Mahatma Gandhi........people always misunderstood him and disliked (and sometimes hated) him for what he has not done to the country and in the
process, forgetting what this great human being had done.
Albert Einstein once quoted "Generations to come will scarce believe that such a one as this ever in flesh and blood walked upon this earth". If we donot follow the
non-violence theory of Mahatma Gandhi, I sincerely believe our coming generations would forget about the existence of such a person who had become a role model to other great people like Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu, etc.

It is quite easy to list out the reason why people like Mahatma Gandhi. There is only one reason why people dislike Mahatma Gandhi - Partition of the Indian Sub-continent. Hindus who dislike Gandhi ask "Why did Gandhi let Muslims stay back in India?". This is the only one reason why people dislike him. Simple question but difficult to answer. For that, we need to have vast knowledge of our history and ofcourse the biography of Mahatma Gandhi too. I will try to summarize with my limited knowledge. Please correct me where ever I had gone wrong through your comments.

India is made up of hundreds of princely states and a majority of the rulers always cared about increasing their riches then for the empowerment of their subjects.
One of the main reasons for the failure of the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857 (people call it as "First War Of Independence" although I consider not) is that only the kings revolted with a very limited support from their subjects. For the common man, end of the day, whether it is their own king or the British, there going to be no change in their status. That's the main reason they didnt took part it the Mutiny actively. Also, the East and South India are least affected by the affairs of the North.

South India is a bit lucky to have better kings and that since it is not near the borders, could not be touched by the Ghaznavis or the Ghouris or the Nadir Shah's.
The British conqured India only becuase India was never united against a foreign aggressor. We were fighting among ourselves and small countries like Britain, France and even Protugal dared to rule us. The British gave boundaries to the country and named it as India. The land on the other side of the River Indus is India.

Indus is derived from "River Sindhu". From Sindhu came Hindu. Iam not sure from where we got the name "Bharat". But, Bharat is the son of King Dushyanth and Shakuntala from the Hindu Mythology. Another Bharat is the younger brother of Lord Rama.

Mahatma Gandhi always believed that if we Indians (both Hindus and Muslims) lived together, Britishers would themselves leave the country. Even though the western press calls him a Hindu Spiritual Leader, Gandhi himselves never considered one. He never expected Mohammad Ali Jinnah to demand a separate state for Muslims. He was never ready for the separation of the country and he once said that India would be partitioned upon his corpse. But Jinnah was not willing and planned a "Direct Action Day" (for the achievement of Pakistan) on 16th August 1946. Jinnah declared "We shall have India divided or we shall have India destroyed". Riots started in Calcutta pitting the Muslim League Government in the Bengal against Hindus. The local government declared holiday on the Direct Action Day and thus let loose a reign of terror by the Muslim League on Hindus. The death toll is put at 6000 dead - mostly Hindus. Such events as these sowed seeds for the eventual Partition of India.
Partition was a painful chapter in the history of the country. The result of the Direct Action Day have a significant impact on Gandhi. That may be one main reason why he okayed for the separation. If India was not partitioned, there would have been a internal civil war which might have destroyed the belief that Indians can rule themselves. But when partition was inevitable, as a true Hindu, Gandhi demanded that Jinnah be given equal rights.

When India was celebrating Independence, Gandhi was busy putting down the communal fires throughout the country. That shows Gandhi's humility. Since Gandhi believed that Hindus and Muslims should live together, he made sure that India be a Secular nation rather than a Hindu country as Hindus are always secular at Heart. Hindus put country before religion. That is what Gandhi did.

Another reason why people dislike Gandhi is that he didnot ask for the pardoning of Bhagat Singh, Raj guru and Sukhdev's execution from the British Government. We need to understand that Gandhi is a messenger of peace and non-violence and Bhagat Singh and his friends believed that India can achieve Independence through violence. I believe, there is no reason why Gandhi should plead for the lives of someone whose ideals directly go against his own.
Bhagat Singh believed that Indians would revolt against the British upon their execution. But, nothing of that sort happened. This only proved that they judged the
mentality of Indians wrongly. The same goes for Chandrasekhar Azad and also that of Subhas Chandra Bose.

Since I mentioned Bose........when the entire world is united in fighting Hitler (Germany), Benito Mussolini (Italy) and Hirohito (Japan), Bose requested help from
these three people who have been perfectly performing ethnic cleansing of Jews and Chinese. If Iam wise enough, I dont go and ask help from the losing side !!

Violence would only lead to further violence. Non-violence is the only way we have. Gandhi was a perfect weapon against the British. He was like a Brahmastra (Nuclear Weapon) for the Indians. No wonder he is aptly decorated as "Father Of The Nation".

I bow to thee O Mahatma !! Kindly forgive my fellow countrymen who have got you wrong!!

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Blogger cindrella.2727 said...

very thought provoking and inspiring article...

4:42 PM  

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