Why is it Cool to Abuse India?

NewsBharati    03-Jul-2024 17:24:42 PM   
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If you want applause, cheering and claps as an Indian, anywhere in the foreign land and also in urban India- you must abuse your own nation! This works like magic. No exaggeration, this is a hard fact and the entire ‘Lubral Brigade’ is thriving on this fact. The best part is that even if you abuse India on the Harvard or Oxford University campus, the cheerleaders are your fellow Indians. They take pride in it and if you praise India or Indians the same fellows will either remain uncomfortably silent or boo you out!

Abuse India

Some of these guys have made it into a lucrative profession. It is at the center of the standup comedy. You criticize India in a foreign university you will be loved for it- a cheap way of cheap publicity. Not a penny spent- Vir Das not so vir though, got a free fame for a week from such a deed some months ago. Do you ever cheer the Pakistani or south African cricket team in a T20 match when playing against India? You have to be insane or an outright traitor, how can you even think of this?

Criticism of your Country at the Center of your Profession- CCCP. People are making millions out of it. If you do not like a leader- in this case poster boy is PM Modi- then keep it within limits. They cross the line and in this ‘game of groan’ they demean their own country- money ke liye kuch bhee karega- they have no ethics, morals or national integrity, they don’t know what it means. People like Dhruv Rathee take a dig at India sitting in Germany- thousands of miles away. See he figures in this article too- not you or me. You can’t blame him alone- people want it no? If you have 4 million followers, your own fellow Indians what more you want- they love what you say- they love their country being slandered in public. You have a captive audience. You call him a cockroach and all the 4500 species of cockroaches become famous and rejoice with him. The more you abuse/troll them the happier they are. If you are loved for hate and not love, what is the big deal as long as you are cheered by your fan base. These guys are professionals. I don’t know how much they actually hate their nation, but they put up an act very well. But the audience is genuine- they love someone hating their country- and that is more worry some.

And they don’t pretend- they do it with heart and soul! I am not sure if people from any other country do it. One can vouch for the Japanese and Americans and even the entire Europe. Most of the Indians experience this often but many will not know why. Why on earth do you still need validation from the West, more from a white man? One feels sad that top of the line Indian toothpaste brand has to show it as a great product being used by a ‘Japanese’! Or Shane Warne in the HDFC advertisement ‘Sir utha ke jiyo’.

This cannot be brushed off like ‘one of’ kind of stuff and the moot question is ‘why this has been happening for more than three quarter of a century of independence, and will we ever be able to put a stop to this?’
Palki Sharma a brilliant orator and patriot at heart, a journalist shared her anguish at The Ranveer Show – TRS podcast. She was speaking for India in a British University and she said that people who made her uncomfortable were fellow Indians!

The malaise is much deeper

The rot has seeped in deep and may require surgery or blood transfusion equivalent. Surgery of soul is not simple. You need to find the root of the disease and then look for solutions- diagnosis and then treatment.

This is more to do with our colonial past of around 200 years. If you want to rule a race, you need to rule their minds first. ‘Soch’ is the essence of soul. The Brits did exactly that- they created a class within the class.
Macaulay-ism and Macaulay-isation of Indian education system and Indian Mindset.

‘Each of you possesses the most powerful, dangerous and subversive trait that natural selection has ever devised. It's a piece of neural audio technology for rewiring other people's minds. I'm talking about your language.’ Mark Pagel
There was a well thought out philosophy to thrust English language on us with the purpose of training Indians in English to make Indians more submissive- destroy their language and then they are themselves destroyed was the basic idea. The term Macaulay-ism is derived from the name of British politician Thomas Babington Macaulay, who was instrumental in making English the medium of instruction for higher education in India.

He was of the opinion that western culture was superior to the Indian culture and could be taught only in English. Macaulay produced his famous Memorandum on Indian Education system in which he argued that Western learning was superior, and could only be taught through the medium of English.

There was therefore a need to produce—by English-language higher education "a class of Indians, English in opinions, in morals and even in intellect" who could in their turn develop the tools to transmit Western learning in the vernacular languages of India. And Indians were quick to follow their master’s voice.

Macaulay recommended immediate stopping of the printing by the East India Company of Arabic and Sanskrit books and that the company should not continue to support traditional education as far as possible- limiting to only a couple of colleges.

The Empire’s day is celebrated on 24th May every year by the British. It was celebrated in India during the Raj. We loved to celebrate their festivals. We proudly hosted and participated the ‘May Queen Ball’, where we brown sahibs and brown memsahibs danced and waltzed on the dance floors with English music played by a live band. A May queen- the most beautiful girl could be Indian- was crowned. It was in most major cities of the country and celebrated till date. Many don’t even know why are they still dancing? As they say ‘King is dead long live the king’. Macauly Khush hua.

We started looking down at our own language and even ourselves and Herr Macaulay won.

Most- almost all Indian politicians delivered speeches abroad in perfect English and we took so much pride in it that our chests swelled with pride. One can see the change very recently. There is a reversal of this trend. But some of us are not happy with this change in stance- as they say ‘Angrez Chaley gaye, aulad chchod gaye’.

A common man thought that Good English is equal to ‘padha likha’ equal to employment.

Creation of Brown Brigade

There were approximately 30,000 British officers of different levels who ruled millions in fact crores of Indians for close to 200 years. This is an enigma of sorts for most but let me dig a bit deeper to examine the methodology. We must grant the devil its due. Yes, they were smart rulers and administrators and understood our psyche very well. ‘Rule through the ruled’ was the way forward. They understood that we Indians are class conscious- ‘oonch neech- upper and lower’. They did not learn our language and also made no effort to learn it – may be on purpose. They devised a very smart method for themselves. ‘Pump a few to dump’ the rest was the strategy and it worked.
For that, they created a parallel second-grade tier of ‘English Speaking’ Indians who were their flunkies in a way. They had started three universities quite early that was in 1857 for this purpose. These were the people who were close to them and thought very highly of themselves as ‘close to the power center’- like dalals in the corridors of power even today. The idea was to create Indian ‘Chamchas’ with Indian brown skin, flesh and blood but English tastes- brown sahibs- who would be loyal to them. They created a huge pool of English speaking, good at drafting letters in English and writing in English as clerks, assistants, babus and stenographers. Right under their thumb and these brown sahibs loved it. Very few, most loyal and efficient rose to get officer ranks to fill the lower positions. A cigar or a whisky in cut glass decanter was enough to pep them up. Donning a pin stripe suite and a tie with a tie pin with polished brogue shoes gave a different kick to these newly anointed brown sahibs. They had access to the white Sahibs and their Mem sahibs. Sometimes were let into a party or two or a bar, sometimes dance with a white lady too!. This was a privileged lot. All the riff raff work was done by these brown sahibs. It became their karo-BAR. Yet they were kept at a distance ‘A bar too far’. Let them keep craving to come closer the gora winked. Eating with Knife and fork on the same table as masters was the biggest kick they got!

In fact, class of JCO (junior commissioned officers), Naib subedars, Subedars and Subedar Majors was created for the army for a similar role- grade II officers. They were made to wear pips with stripes on the shoulder to differentiate between British officers and also keep them in place! They could communicate to their Indian troops in local languages and were also in a way two way communicators. They conveyed the problems of Indian troops to the British white officers and showed to the troops that they could curry favors from them from the white sahibs. So, a false sense of authority pumped them up.

The whites drew the power from the British crown and Indian babus drew power from the White sahibs. Some were pumped up with ‘Khitabs’ or titles of Rai Bahadur or Rai sahib.

We after independence retained the same classification. English speaking babus became our bureaucrats. It is like snakes shedding their skin. (ICS, Indian Civil Service during British Raj became IAS, Indian Administrative Service). Remember, a leopard never changes its spots. The total strength of IAS ruling the nation is less than 5000 officers today across India- it is like a super cadre to control 1.4 billion Indians today. They have also created a grade II buffer cadre of state services. The state level jobs (can’t call riff raff though) are done by them and the IAS is like British officers- though brown in color.

The senior police officers during British Raj were mostly Whites. The Subordinate Police Service consisted of Inspectors, Sub-Inspectors, Head Constables (or Sergeant in the City forces and cantonments) and Constables, consisting mainly of Indians except for the higher ranks.

“Sarfaroshi ki tamanna ab hamare dil me hai, dekhna hai zor kitna baazu-e-qaatil me hai” – Ramprasad Bismil

Even the jail superintendent who escorted Bhagat Singh to the Gallows was an Indian.

‘At 7.30 p.m. of 23 March 1931, just as twilight was setting in, when the Chief Superintendent of Central Lahore Jail, Major P. D. Chopra, escorted a lean, young man of twenty-three years to the raised scaffold in the grounds of the jail. Looking on, was Deputy Jail Superintendent, Khan Sahib Mohammad Akbar Khan.’

‘Guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism.’- George Washington

As we became Independent the white men left us but left behind their clones as ‘Brown kings’; our politicians. They just donned Indian clothes – pajama, Kurta, sandals and a Gandhi topi. But most of them had the British soul! They were mostly Oxford or Cambridge qualified. They maintained superiority over their subjects- yes subjects- through the English language. They were seen by an ordinary Indian as ‘Padha likha sahab’ – a bridge between them and the rest of the developed world especially the officers of the British Raj- a bridge too far and too long for an ordinary Indian (non-English speaking) to fathom! Of course language was the barrier between those who ruled and those who were ruled. Now Indians ruling the Indians through English.

The Whites ruled us by creating awe, the brown Sahibs just changed their outer shell (clothes) and still ruled us with more awe. They spoke and wrote good English- better than Queen herself. They addressed all world level meetings in Angrezi and maintained their buffer zone between Sarkar and the praja. The people of the nation thought that they were their best bet to run their free nation now- seen as a superior class, fit to govern.

Remember a speech called "Tryst with Destiny" which was an English-language speech by Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India, to the Indian Constituent Assembly in the Parliament House, on the eve of India's Independence, towards midnight on 14 August 1947. The speech was on the aspects that transcended Indian history. It is considered to be one of the greatest speeches of the 20th century and to be a landmark oration (in perfect English) that captures the essence of the triumphant culmination of the Indian independence movement against British colonial rule in India. He declared the end of the colonial era and called on citizens to recognize the promise and opportunity of the moment- Voila!

Indians in the rural India and also the urban guys said ‘Kya angrezi bolta hai yaar’.

It should have been delivered in Hindi!

The English hang over

One has to accept that English has its own limitations as far as phonetics is concerned. Indian languages in comparison are tongue twisters for the British. Forget Kannada or Sanskrit they could not even pronounce simple Hindi names. They could never even pronounce Jaipur correctly and said ‘Jaiypour’ instead for 200 years they were on our soil. These dhakans can’t pronounce ‘dhakkan’ too.

And lo and behold, instead of retaining ours we started calling Jaipur as ‘Jaiypour’- those who wanted to still be one up.

We have such a flexible tongue as compared to the English stiff or a frozen tongue, yet we were fully brainwashed.
We have yet to take pride in our own mother tongue or respect our own languages. May be a time will come pretty soon. We still prefer greeting each other with good morning and starting a mail with hi instead of a Namaste.
So much so even today a middleclass person in a metro speaks in English to impress upon his driver, maid or a peon to prove that he is ‘educated’. We now speak Hindi in English- ‘Toom Kahaan Jata hai’ ‘ Hum jab ayega to tum jayega’.

Yet our cinema especially the ‘Bollywood’ (again rhyming with Hollywood) has contributed a lot in terms of keeping our languages alive and kicking.

Yet we have not been able to set an appropriate narrative- we are far behind.

Cultural shift is required.

It is a long shot but one must start now- and it has started at last.

Culture is such a powerful construct that no nation can afford to avoid it. If you have culture, you have a lot you can bank on. India may be 75 years old as an entity called a nation state but to deprive India of patriotism would be taking away that which held its civilization alive and kicking for more than 5,000 (some would say 10,000) years.
We are the only civilization in the world which has an unbroken or continuous history of rituals, traditions and practice, knowledge that constitutes a living culture that survived a thousand years of invasion, conversion and colonialism. As perhaps the only true civilization state, a sense of pride for the land and culture is inevitable in India. Not only are our epics linked to geography (there is in our memory an Ayodhaya, a Dwarka, a Kashi, a Mathura; For a former colony, patriotism is the lifeblood of the nation state; for a civilization state, it is the raison d’être- reason to exist. American culture is found only in yoghurt.

Somehow our Brown Sahib rulers disregarded the power of culture and may be gave it a lip service alone. They neither themselves connected to Indian pride nor let the rest of their countrymen do it. These Brown sahibs behaved like whites, lived like them and emulated the white colonial masters of yesteryears. In this quest of imitating the whites they inspired other Indians to become brown sahibs too. So every Indian wanted to adopt the foreign language in the most perfect manner, some even speaking like the whites! That was the high bench mark set by the quasi Indians and no wonder even today only those are considered educated who know this foreign language that is English!

When Sadhguru was asked a question as to what has changed in the last nine years beginning 2014, he said ‘For the first time an Indian is ruling India’! And that is a fact one cannot miss or undermine. And many cannot digest it.
We are not getting into future shock but are shocked by our past heritage- which was cleverly or inadvertently masked for close to sixty years. By none other than our own clan! From Macau-lisation to Congressisation via Nehruvian-ism.

No wonder today the Communist Party of China is back to celebrating Confucius and Chinese civilization around the world. Chinese patriotism has thus been fused with a sense of civilization which is now propagated even by the Communist Party. Today, following the vision of Premier Xi Jinping, the Chinese Communist Party holds lessons for its leaders in embracing its 5,000-year-old culture.

What China is struggling to achieve ought to be effortless for India- India today has a different directional and benevolent leadership which is not shy of doing what it has to.

Virender Kapoor

A thinker, educationist and an inspirational guru. Kapoor is an Indian who wears many hats. An educationist of repute, he was the Director of a prestigious management Institute under the Symbiosis umbrella. He has emerged as a leading think tank in human behavior, motivation and success. As a celebrity author, his name appears with the likes of Thomas Friedman and Dale Carnegie. He has authored more than 30 books as of now which are on Amazon worldwide and several of his books are in the pipeline.