“Ram did not exist. No Ram, no Ram Sethu,” says Sonia’s UPA
By R. Balashankar
Not even the British or the Mughals would have made this outrageously inane statement. The centre’s affidavit before the Supreme Court where it vilified the existence of Sri Ram only shows the UPA government is totally out of sync with the people it is ruling.
It is appalling that a democratically elected government is capable of losing its balance to such an extent that it does not find anything wrong in defiling the faith of almost the entire population of the country. Is it that the Congressmen under the tutelage of the Italian Catholic leader have stopped worshipping Sri Ram?
Does it mean that if the Sonia Congress has its way, it will dissuade people from reciting Hanuman chalisa, singing Tulsidas Ramayan and celebrating Ramlila? For, there is no sense or reason behind the central government’s blasphemous proposition that if there was no Ram what Ram Sethu are the Hindus talking about? This came more as a shock—for the disdain and audacity of the rulers defy all logic, cultural heritage, collective wisdom, tradition and history of this country. And a government supposed to represent and promote all this to deny the very ancestry of its people is baffling, to say the least.
To denounce Sri Ram the government has quoted the Constitution. It cites the need to develop scientific temper in the country. Who told the UPA that faith in Sri Ram militated against scientific temper? Are all worshippers of Sri Ram fools? If the life of Sri Ram was a myth was Mahatma Gandhi deceiving his people when he set the ideal of Ramrajya before the country? Was he wrong in playing Ram dhun in all his public appearances? Why did the makers of Indian Constitution decorate it with scenes from Ramayana, if all its “characters were fictitious”? Why are the walls of Rashtrapati Bhavan adorned with paintings of Ramayana?
There is no India if there is no Ram. Every fourth Indian has a Ram in his name. Sri Ram is etched in the psyche of this nation so inextricably that there is no Indian literature that does not trace its inspiration in Ramayana. No other text in history has evoked so many interpretations and translations and renditions as Ramayana. No other life has influenced and guided the thinking of so many millions of people across the globe as Sri Ram since the dawn of civilisation. Yet Sri Ram is fiction for the South Block mandarins.
Unwittingly, the UPA has shifted the goal post. It is not Ram Sethu but Sri Ram the issue. It really has confronted the nation with the question whether it is Ramrajya or Rome Rajya. Before the Supreme Court was a petition seeking protection of the Ram Sethu and declaring it a national monument. The apex court asked the centre to file its affidavit on the arguments justifying the destruction of Ram Sethu for the Sethusamudram project. Many alternative alignments were offered so that the Ram Sethu also a natural protection in the Indian Ocean against the threat of tsunami was saved. Scientists and environmentalists have opposed the Sethusamudram project because of the colossal damage it can wreak on the habitat and natural symphony of the three states in the south. It was feared that the huge thorium deposit, crucial for India’s nuclear energy and weaponisation strategy, would be depleted. The project in fact did not make any economic or development sense. All these aspects have been covered in these columns earlier supported by experts of unchallenged authority.
Yet some quarters had a sneaking suspicion that the UPA was bent on erasing from this country every shred of Hindu ancestry and this project was part of the ploy. The overenthusiasm of T.R. Balu on the subject is understandable. For, he belongs to a creed that always revelled in sympathizing with the heroism of Ravana, the abductor of Mata Sita.
Development and progress are not the issues tormenting the UPA. For under the same Balu and the Sonia-Manmohan regime the infrastructure projects have come to a standstill. The prestigious national highway projects, mission mode initiatives of Vajpayee government, for instance, have come to a limbo. And Sethusamudram which after completion cannot navigate ships beyond 34000 DWT, and which is likely to be a white elephant because of the huge annual silting and dredging costs is not the crying priority before the nation. Then why this indecent haste? Maybe this is very lucrative for Sonia and her flunkies.
The centre converted the opportunity offered by the PIL to widen the canvass and define the place of Sri Ram in Indian history in consonance with its world view. In this it exceeded the brief. The question asked was the feasibility of Sethusamudram. It could have answered, confining to its perception of Ram Sethu as a natural formation and appended supportive so-called scientific evidence. Rather it went about ridiculing and disputing the historicity of Sri Ram. This same gang had earlier said Dwaraka did not exist, Saraswati a myth and shelved the project altogether.
It insulted the faith of millions of Indians. No proof, it said. “Contents of the Valmiki Ramayana, the Ramcharitamanas by Tulsidas and other mythological texts ….. cannot be said to be historical record to.. prove the existence of the characters or occurrence of the events, depicted therein”, the centre told the apex court. The affidavit further emphasised, “the contents of mythological texts, the accuracy of which is largely unascertainable…” cannot be relied upon. The centre cited lack of archaeological evidence to buttress its view. But the ASI in the Babri structure case many years ago had unearthed tangible evidence where it had told the court that excavations at the disputed site showed evidence of “features associated with temples”. So it is the politics that dictates the ASI.
We have always suspected this government in its implicit, both intrinsic and explicit approach to be anti-Hindu. Now it has proved it to be anti-Ram as well. What is this allergy cancerously consuming it? Is it the Christian, western loyalties of its master? Prime Minister Manmohan Singh a confirmed religious Sikh should have known better. For the holy Gurugranth Sahib, Holy Guru Bani of revered Guru Gobind Singh is known for their salutations to Sri Ram.
Sonia Gandhi will not know. She will never understand this country. No foreigner can fathom the place of Sri Ram in the lives of the people of this country. Sri Ram is the identity of India. But the UPA action was premeditated and calculated.
Last Friday on August 31, arguing against the apex court stay on destroying Ram Sethu, Additional Solicitor General Gopal Subramaniam had questioned the existence of the epic age to which Sri Ram had been associated in the Hindu scriptures. He had said that the court should wait for the affidavit and that there was no evidence of Sri Ram. That the UPA was meditating on this course was clear from the ASG’s submissions in the apex court.
What the ASG tells the court is the government’s view. The government cannot now claim that it was the view of the Archaeological Survey of India. The ASI can only give its opinion or input. And if the additional affidavit that the centre is proposing to file is the genuine stand of the government then what about the plea of the ASG on August 31 before the apex court?
The fact is Hindus can no longer trust this dispensation. On every possible occasion the UPA has tried to undermine and systematically destroy the Hindu character of this country. Its new-found enthusiasm on neo-Mandalism and communalisation of reservation are solely aimed at fragmenting and depriving the Hindu society. It is hell-bent on seeing that only castes and regional entities along with minority vote banks clamour for a share in the power structure. The Hindu as a national entity is never recognised or allowed to grow though they form the majority in the country.
The Union Law Minister H.R. Bharadwaj is a zealous driver of the Sonia brigade. He might be a bad minister but is extremely swift in sniffing the Madam’s wish. Bharadwaj was so quick to ridicule the Allahabad High Court judge’s innocuous opinion last week, to follow Bhagawat Gita as a national dharma shastra. The judge did not make any extraordinary suggestion. He only repeated what every great man in the country has often said.
The UPA Law Minister could have ignored it if he did not agree. But he instantaneously rejected the suggestion again reassuring every hecklers in his gang that Gita is just another book in the long list of religious texts and the judge’s suggestion should be condemned. Every Indian leader who tried to emancipate this country not only found his way through the Gita but each one of them tried to understand and interpret it in his own style. But they were people who loved this country and its rich heritage. They were no time-servers.
I cited this recent example to emphasise the atmosphere of antipathy towards Hinduism. This was not the situation in the country before the UPA came to power. The UPA has no problem banning the Da Vinci Code because some fanatic Christians opposed it though it violated freedom of expression. We too supported the ban because we respect others’ faith. But the same UPA will defend M.F. Hussain in the name of freedom of expression when he violates the serenity of Hindu gods and goddesses and Bharat Mata. The UPA has no problem adjusting the route of the Metro to accommodate every single mazar, mosque or dargah, the Metro route is shifted to protect Qutub Minar and even the commercial Taj Corridor project is abandoned to protect the monument. One can go on recounting any number of such instances of over-sensitivity to minority sentiments and total disrespect to the faith of the Hindus. Now the ancient-most symbol of Hindu civilisation Ram Sethu, which crores of Hindus believe, was built by Sri Ram is sought to be destroyed disclaiming the historicity of Sri Ram. If this is not political vandalism and double standard what else you call it? Sheer insensitivity or a vicarious pleasure in heaping insults on the majority community? Is it a crime to be a Hindu and that too a believing one in UPA’s India?