The Butterfly Effect

It hurts my heart a great deal when a narrow view by masses of people of their identity becomes a danger to themselves. Recent failed attempt of riots by Raj Thackeray is just a passing example in the long alley of Indian history of violence. It is not identity politics that is being played by Raj but it is separatist politics that he is trying his hands on. In a pluralist democracy like India it is not only a setback to see such incidents but it creates insurgence and continuous strengthening of a virus that is crippling backbone of multi-façade India.

Let us get into more details by using mantra of Atanu Dey: Cause and Symptom. The problem is not that Raj Thackeray is playing the card of separatism and state-pride. His ability to play the card is just a symptom of another underlying problem. The problem is that his followers are blind enough to be provoked by a mere statement of their leader and can go to the extent of killing their own Indian brothers. This problem is not only limited to MNS(Maharashtra Navnirman Sena), the problem lies with every political party that tries to amass their troops on the call of separatism. And cause of this blind faith is very simply their ignorance and inability to weigh good and bad by their own judgment. If not this cause the person in concern is compelled to do this because of his unemployment and abject poverty. These both causes ‘ignorance’ and ‘Poverty’ are in turn a symptom of serious problem with Indian social and economical condition. The cause and solution both to these problems is simply ‘education’.

More has been elucidated in Educating the education minister by Tavleen Singh.


  Harsh Satya

19 February 2008 at 23:27

i beg to differ. ignorance and poverty is not a problem in this country. i say this because there is no ignorance on anyone's part. those who follow raj thackeray are not ignorant people. they are fully aware of the fact that this is road to power. everyone, educated of uneducated is aware that raj is after power. the people who did all the rioting were not ignorant or poor people. they were professionals. u may find the same people rioting the next month for some other issue raised by some other party.
rioting is a well planned act, which cannot be carried out by someone who is ignorant. u need to be pretty smart to be a successful rioter. u need to have great networking to carry out riots.

  Sukesh Kumar

20 February 2008 at 18:23

I am delighted buddy that you differed.
The riot will be instigated by leaders only which will be intelligent and they want to solve their political purpose. The propaganda goes from biggest leader to smaller ones.
But at the root of hierarchy is common man, to whom these leaders actually want to allure and trap. And the allured common man is either poor or ignorant.

Even people who know "this is road to power", are following this path of petty politics because they can not earn a good living with civilian methods. If you are saying power is bigger reward than just income then think of what a small comrade of MNS will get from this violence. Will party give him a ticket for MLA election etc.??


26 March 2008 at 18:41

I find myself agreeing with both of you, though not entirely. While I agree that the rioters were professionals, the fact that they suceeded says something about the mindset of the society.

I wouldn't call them outright "ignorant", but yes I would say they are missing the bigger picture, focussing on short term gains. But I totally disagree with poverty being the driving force or even the catalyst. Poverty I think influences the choices people make in life but rich people are equally capable of violence.

Would I be instigated by identitiy politics or separatist politics? Quite a bit by the former and rarely by the latter I think. But that has to do more with my basic animal instinct of "protecting my territory" and my human instinct of "sticking with brothers".

I find it amusing when people say things like "Mumbai belongs to everybody, not just the Marathis", though.

I don't think enough thought is given to the effect migrants have on the locals. Or the fact that migrants can be insensitive soemtimes. But then again, migration seems to be inevitable in the present India, even the so called locals may have to migrate some day. I don't think there is way out of this mess. I find myself arguing from both ends and losing too.