What Does Jai Sriram Poster Mean?


 Kancha Ilaiah & his controversial book Samajika Smugglurlu Komatollu
Kancha Ilaiah & his controversial book Samajika Smugglurlu Komatollu

As the debate on the Arya-Vysya attack against me was taking place at the national and international level two things have happened. One, the Chandrababu Naidu Government in alliance with BJP in Andhra Pradesh arrested me in my home on 28 October, so that I would not go to Vijayawada (Amaravathi) and attend the public meeting. This public meeting was being held by the Samajika Joint Action Committee of Andhra Pradesh.

They also arrested thousands of people all across Andhra Pradesh (all of them are from productive communities, including Kammas, Kapus and Reddys. The Banias and Brahmins were opposed to that meeting irrespective of their parities). The SJAC was headed by Y.Koteshwar Rao (80) with a spirit of young man of 45, worked tirelessly and the police arrested him and several hundreds of people. At several places lathi-charges were made. From Karnool (the town where TG.Venkatesh owns massive properties and lives in a mansion), hundreds of men and women reached Vijayawada. There were more women in that team than men. They were all arrested at Vijayawada and taken to various distant police stations.

At Hyderabad, when more than 150 people belonging to T-MASS and other organizations started to go Vijayawada from my residence they were all arrested. That included U.Smabashiva Rao, well known social activist, Vimalakka, a well known folk singer, within Hyderabad town and put them in different police stations. Why Hyderabad police took this step when the meeting was in Vijayawada? Obviously the Centre got involved in the whole issue. Since Chandrababu functions under the direction of Delhi, he had no option but do this. The Hindutva Government at Delhi has inimical relationship to the right to freedom of expression. Unfortunately Chandrababu followed their dictate.

All this brutal suppression exposed the Arya-Vysya community to a more scrutiny of the SC/ST/OBC and the Sudra producers from village shops. In checking and mass auditing of their businesses across Andhra Pradesh more than in Telangana, is now being done by the village youth. This conflict between the producing sellers and the buying Vysyas in the Telugu states is going to be long term issue. This will have huge impact on the seller buyer relations for long time to go.

In the political domain every party has its own worry, as the Vysyas are the richest liquid cash donors for elections. The Most worried party is the BJP. The BJP gets highest amount of money in various form of donations. After the attempt to subvert the public meeting by arrests, as that itself had more impact in understanding the role of social smuggling in the business, the same force started another ploy of putting posters ‘Jai Sriram’ around my apartment. On 4th November, they put a poster Moorkudaina Ilaiahnu Skamiddam, Hinduisanni Kapadudam—Jai Sriram. It roughly translates “Let us excuse idiot Ilaiah and save Hinduism—Jai Sriram’’. One can easily understand what is its actual meaning. As I said in my police complaint at Osmania University police station on 6th Novemebr, 2017 on this poster issue:

“When they use the slogan Jaisriram it has a serious attack connotation.

If they were to say Jai Srikrishna, that would have connoted peace and love. In the whole country, the Yadava community (to which I am a part) uses Jai Srikrishna as God of animal grazing and production, but not as war hero. My community is the one which grazes sheep, goat, buffaloes and cows. In this context Jai Sriram has a dangerous warning signal to me”.

According Bheenaveni Ram Shepherd a young and upcoming social anthropology scholar, who teaches at Osmania University t “Krishna was born in a prison and later shifted to gokulam, a place of cattle-raisers. He was brought-up by his sociological parents Nanda and Yashoda as a cow and buffalo boy. Raja Ravivarma has shown only white cows around him. But Yadavs were in the Post-Harappa period grazed both the animals….. It is crystal clear that Krishna is not a strict follower of Varnadharma as he himself married to a Kshatriya (Rukhmini), Adivasi mountaineer (Jambavati), Naga (Nagajithni), and Satyabhama (Ahir/Yadav). Krishna was always an independent thinker and doer whereas Rama was dependent and loyal to Manu dharma. Krishna possessed the courage to disturb the Varnadharmic structures. This is why, Sangh Parivar took Rama as their icon and they made Krishna as a playboy”. This is a significant narrative that tells why the Yadavs adore Krishna but not Rama. This is amply clear in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar political battles, where the Yadavs stood up against these Jai Sriram forces.

However, why hate mongers or murder strategists use the divine images to communicate the plan to attack someone? The ISIS forces use the name of “Allah” to communicate similar game plans. The Hindutva forces use the name Ram to communicate their nefarious designs. They have used this slogan just before every communal riot.

Why did the Arya-Vysya community, which is said to claim that they follow the Gandhian tradition got into this vertex. Look at the big business and the capitalist immorality that sinks to the level of using the Nathuram Godse kind of strategy against me for writing a book, a book that was endorsed by the three men bench of the Supreme Court. The love for money and luxury of community can take it to any level, as against a movement of anti-caste and anti-exploitative order. The BJP owns all these strategies quite unabashedly. It is a ruling party in the nation. If a dissent voice is threatened with this kind of violence. We all must stand up and say ‘this nation will not allow this, death or no death”. If the capitalist ethic gets into the communal garb and threatens every working class voice with this slogan, I am sure that nation is on the way of moral and ethical death.

The capitalist exploiters have to be exposed in terms of their nefarious day-to-day designs, whether casteist or no casteist. Exploitation is exploitation. If the ruling party goes to the rescue of exploiters using religion or caste comfort zone, the left liberals should not be remaining silent as they are doing now thinking that what I coined ‘Social Smuggling’ that does not apply to the Indian mode of caste-class exploitation. Caste has a knack to keep opposite class views also in one basket. Let us join hands to see that the Jai Sriram slogan will not put our pens down.

( The Author is a member of T-MASS that works for SC/ST/OBC and poor people’s rights)


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