The BJP party and government(there is actually no difference.) has crossed all rational limits to crush the little but numerous vibrant signs of revolt under the steamroller of the state.Such responses are also absurd to the point of being ridiculous.The gagging of the BBC documentary and frantic persecution of some viewers and platforms betray the growing insecurity and apprehension of loss of power and popular support.Its strategic response is to further extend the strength and reach of State terror as well as hate-based mobilization .
The disorganized disheveled opposition has naturally failed to unite on strategy,given diverse aims and stakes.Only Rahul Gandhi has taken an initiative departing from routine appropriate to the situation.Now it has got to be taken to the people to unite them and share it with allies and other potential comrades.
The Left responses have also been comparatively hesitant ,low-key and tepid.Though they understand better than other democratic parties the nature of the threat to democracy,they seem strangely cautious in marking out the size of the menace. Whether because of certain studied tactical reason or natural caution in formulating the kind and degree of the danger, people are not shaken by their words.
Though everyone has realized that it is an unprecedented threat to democracy leaving far behind the overreach of the Emergency, everyone is joining the conspiracy to underplay it. It is a massive offensive on several fronts against the liberties and rights of the common citizen and the Constitution and constitutional safeguards.To spell it out it is necessary to speak the word Fascism.
There is undeniable shrinking from calling out the full horror of the looming disaster.Perhaps there is political reticence so as not to alarm people.More probable that just by political management and election they are waiting to overcome the frightening danger to democracy. Meanwhile they are going hammer and tongs to crush all vestiges of Constitution by suppressing press freedom and turning all institutions designed to stand guard over actual functioning of the state into mere dummies.Charges of huge corruption are routinely hurled against their enemies by compromise but right under their noses from the pores of the regime to its highest levels,the stink of corruption (seldom coming to the level of enquiry) is overpowering.
The highest judiciary after years of abject surrender of their independent authority have lately sporadically asserted it.But its lack of executive power makes it tough to enforce its rational decisions,as it came out during the finale of the Pegasus trial pathetically.After this what hope for independence? The highest court has been able to function meaningfully only because in some small matters the ruling regime have conceded some ground.Obviouly this is a process in transition concluding only in total subservience of the judiciary. Where a law exists they bend and twist it to serve their will.Where there is none their will becomes the law.
The pressure under which the Supreme Court works can be imagined from the orchestrated attacks on the Constitution which is the courts’ Bible.From suavely reasoned smooth articles on its basis in the 1935 Govt of India Act and therefore ‘colonial’ and ‘repressive'(!!), to downright denunciation as hostile to age-olld Hindu wisdom(RSS Organ ‘Panchajanya’),probably hinting at MANUSMRTI, these attacks also betray the Fascist camp’s frustration and rage.Very much on the lines of the present government.
The fact is BJP is a party guided from behind the scene by a Fascist organization on strategy and every tactical move.People forget that the entire cabinet of the first BJP-led government visited RSS Office in Delhi to formally present performance report! Evidently the government had found it tough to negotiate limits to its power set by the Constitution.The party had to its discomfort also performed in opposition brilliantly as champions of constitutional principles,the very opposite of what it is destroying today.Some old fans still rue the sad change!
Hence the campaign against the constitution as the root cause of the ‘colonial’ hurdles to its offensive against civil liberties and rule of law.They have become forgetful of the fact that during the colonial regime they had friendly relations with it,a fact well-documented enough to need evidence.
The groundwork for building a grand Fascist monolithic edifice is already there.Any sharp criticism of the Prime Minister by a common citizen has become a crime against the state in the eyes of the police,some authorities like social media regulating authority and of course legions of BJP supporters.And the police in all BJP-ruled States behave as lawless guardians of the law.
Most important,the work of converting a huge section of the population into a fascist-like rabble supporting and celebrating any hate attack on minorities,civil rights activists and the left has been successfully completed.Many people once holding decent liberal and democratic views now seem to mouth rabid repressive reactionary views.The final and decisive push is expected by many such circles in or after 2024.
There are however two silver linings in this gloom.First,unlike Hitler’s cabinet of thugs with the help of economist Hjalmar Schacht curbed unstoppable runaway inflation and ensured that people had enough to eat,their Indian disciples purvey only disarming statistics to people with famished stomachs.That naturally moves them to the ranks of resistance and to liberating initiatives like the
Bharat Jodo Yatra.
The second is that Hitler first seized power, brought the state under its complete control and then went ahead to talk to monopoly capitalists to firm up a mutually beneficial partnership.Modi rose to power with Adani close behind.Neoliberal economy makes it impossible for the state to control monopolists from outside the world market.Inside it is forced to play some other game as partners.
Hiren Gohain is a political commentator