PM Modi, what about this dynasty? Yes, Modi hit out at the privileged 'Khan Market gang'

But can he target Nagpur too? After all, that system also represents similar privilege based on hereditary entitlements.

 |  6-minute read |   31-05-2019
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Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a powerful statement just before the election — that the ‘Khan Market gang’ did not build his image. He said the days of 'the gang' were over. In my view, he is right.

He was knowingly or unknowingly referring to typically St. Stephen’s-educated, upper-caste Brahminical Hindu and Pathan Muslim intellectuals, who have ruled Delhi for a long time. Some of them are in the BJP as well, such as his former finance minister Arun Jaitley.

narendra-690_053019064432.jpgNarendra Modi has rightly taken on the 'Khan Market gang' — but his job is only half done. (Source: PTI)

Modi’s prime targets, however, were Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi, whom he calls ‘namdaars’. They, however, are not the only ones.

St Stephen’s, where many elite people got the opportunity to study, is run by the Kerala Syrian (Brahmin) Christians, though established by the Cambridge Mission, all of the same class, with what I think is a hatred towards reservations for SC/ST/OBCs. This is the same group that made Indian English a Sanskrit-like language by encouraging only private schools to teach it to create a Brahminic Platonic class of philosopher kings.

There is no doubt that they should lose control over Delhi. The Khan Market of today is a post-modern (but not post-Hindu) adda owned and managed by supporters of the Nagpur priest network. The high-end shopowners are also supporters of Modi's party, the BJP, and most of them are also English-educated.

The brand of secularism that Modi keeps attacking constantly is not only aimed at protecting minorities, but also Brahminism, which can be found in abundance in his own party. The Brahminic gang operates cutting across parties and ideologies.

There is another lobby — if not gang — that Modi hardly knows about in Delhi. The India International Centre (IIC) lobby. This intellectual lobby also consists of all party elements — including that of the BJP. There, all kinds of theories were/are cooked to undermine BR Ambedkar’s legacy and do away with reservations in the long run. Of course, now, there is apparently some change at IIC.    

What does Modi want to do with all kinds of dynasties?

No doubt the dynasty that works around Khan Market has to abolished — but the dynasty that works from Nagpur is a much more serious threat, given its historical roots. 

khan-690_053019064450.jpgBeyond shopping: Khan Market has become a sign of entrenched privilege and entitlement. (Source: PTI)

The Nagpur high priest network educated in Sanskrit, like the St. Stephen’s English-educated lot, is totally opposed to reservations and no SC/ST/OBC is allowed to head it. The group pretends that the 10% reservation offered to the economically weaker sections (EWS) is acceptable to it. But the moment the state will be in a position to implement it, all Brahminic forces will rush to stall the move. That is the reason why we have such huge backlogs in the hiring of SC/ST and OBC candidates. 

As an OBC, what mechanisms has Modi put in place to break that nexus and implement reservations?

It is here that the non-Khan Market forces can emerge. But the BJP heads of institutions for the last five years proved that they are the worst anti-reservationists and pro-Khan Market walas in the last five years at implementation level.

What Modi does in this sphere is important.

By pointing at Nagpur, I am not trying to exclude the Communist culture that does not allow SC/ST/OBC people to head the Politburo. There is dynasty in India operated through the channel of caste. Can the PM do something about it is one question. But what about the Sanskrit high priest class that controls the entire country from Nagpur — the class that controls our institutions and trains people in Sanskrit Brahaminism? Should that be abolished as well or not?

The Nagpur class wants to build temples across the country. The high clerics here appoint priests to all maths and peethas. No party, so far, has opposed this structure as it has the power to shake their social base. Not that the Indian Catholic Church and Muslim mosques are really very democratic — they too are dynastic in this respect and classical Brahminism helped them as most of them are converts from this very land and caste base.

rss-690_053019064542.jpgThe gate is closed: Can Narendra Modi override the diktat of Nagpur? (Source: India Today)

Dynastic power structure is not uni-dimensional in India. In the context of Rahul Gandhi’s ‘resignation’ and the dynasty issue of his family, I wrote this one line mail to him: “Follow Mahatma Gandhi by becoming an embodiment of moral power by resigning to fight the present immoral state power.”

His personal PA wrote back, saying the message has been communicated.

But nobody can even think of writing to Mohan Bhagwat to resign from that post. Prime Minister Modi knows better as he lived in that organisation for decades. The consequences of such a message to Bhagwat would be serious.

But now, Modi is the most powerful Prime Minister who has emerged from the same ranks. Can he take it up? Can he say dynasty should not rule there also?  

All dynastic structures are anti-democratic. Whether that dynastic power is derived from spiritual textual sources like that of the Agama Shastra or family sources, through wealth and power, it goes against the moral and constitutional basis of India.

The dynastic centre of Nagpur has the power to summon even Modi to its headquarters — like the high priests of Jerusalem had the power to summon Herod the Great.

Jesus Christ was given the crucifixion sentence by the very powerful Pilate, even though he was against it, at the command of the high priests. Today, the Nagpur high priests have that kind of power. It is a caste-dynastic power and a lifetime position without any electoral process involved. What does Modi do about it?

There is a saying, “Do not judge as you will also be judged.”

modi-tf2i4ndiidbef-6_053019064653.jpgThe strongest PM of India: But can Narendra Modi challenge the caste hierarchy of the RSS? (Source: PTI)

But what Modi — an OBC leader — can actually do will depend on Nagpur.    

These are the times to wait and watch.

Also read: Aspiration vs entitlement: Potential and promise trumped dynasty and inheritance in the battle for Amethi

Writer

Kancha Ilaiah Shepherd Kancha Ilaiah Shepherd

The author is political theorist and social activist.

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