The people of Gujarat have become accustomed to vulgar, lewd and uncivilized statements. All this has become normal for us. Here ‘100 crore girlfriends’ becomes a joke and PM Modi’s anti-feminist comments garner applause as proof of his ‘sense of humour’.
Ahmedabad: Rahul Gandhi to his ‘all thieves, be it Nirav Modi, Lalit Modi or Narendra Modi, why Modi in their name?’ He was disqualified for the membership of the Parliament for the statement.
For any journalist from Gujarat, this statement of Rahul Gandhi is nothing more than a dull and careless political statement. The reason is that many of us have been watching and listening to Narendrabhai Modi permanently and continuously. If I talk about myself, I have been seeing him since the time when I was a young reporter with the Indian Express and was covering the Gujarat leg of the Somnath to Ayodhya Rath Yatra. His hard work was considered instrumental in the formation of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in Gujarat in 1995. After that his exile began and after the earthquake in Gujarat in 2001 he appeared again ‘divinely’.
So, from the 1990s to 2001, Narendra Modi was a goal-oriented, well-educated man whose greatest strength was reading the public mood. He often supervised the busing of hundreds of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) workers. He used to talk about the corruption of the Congress, about nepotism, that the Congress is only a party of the marginalized and the poor, that the Congress is harming the upper caste community. It worked. But to be fair, at that time he did not use vulgar, divisive and uncivilized language.
I even met his Muslim barber, who used to trim his beard for more than 20 years near Kankaria. He used to talk good things about Modi. In short, Modi had not become a ‘cult’ by that time. But this happened in 2002.
A ruthless politician who is both messiah and guru – this ethereal figure has won the two general elections of this large and extraordinarily diverse country of 1.3 billion people with a thumping majority. But who is the real Modi?
In order to find out, I kept returning to three questions over and over again. Which country does he see himself leading: India or Hindu India? Are they protecting Indian democracy or digging its roots. And is he, as he repeatedly says, a genuine economic reformer—or a fanatical religious nationalist for whom modernization is a tool of supremacy—using reforms for communal gains?
I have come to the conclusion that these questions cannot be resolved unless they are bent towards one end, because Modi is the name of an unsolvable puzzle. Modi, a staunch Hindutva in his youth, now operates within a quasi-Western political framework that he half accepts and half rejects, and so far he has not tried to radically change it, or can say that he wants to. Have not been able to do so.
widening existing partitions
It didn’t take long for Modi to realize that it was easy to tap into the anti-Muslim sentiment among a sizable section of Hindus, and he immediately seized the opportunity.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has been disqualified from the Parliament for a statement he made in 2019, in which he casually named Lalit Modi and Nirav Modi and said why Modi in the name of all thieves in India these days Is thought? Gandhi’s speech was in English and it was being translated into English. It is necessary to make it clear here that I will not in any way support Rahul Gandhi or any person who indulges in lewd, obscene or even careless public discourse.
But when I was present in Kollar in 2019 and heard Rahul Gandhi, I did not find anything lewd, obscene or indecent in it. I was covering the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Rather I felt that Rahul’s comments were sharp and his political attacks were getting sharper and sharper.
condition of gujarat
I am from Gujarat. Since 2001, I have been witness to the murder of decency in public discourse. It should be clarified here that even before this BJP was in power but it did not do the work of mud-slinging at this level. In 1998, when the BJP’s National Executive meeting was being held in Gujarat, I had asked Atal Bihari Vajpayee what his vision was for the BJP.
He had said, ‘I want the BJP to rule India. But we have started from the land of Mahatma Gandhi. Gujarat is special for us. We will follow the ideals set by Mahatma Gandhi. Today perhaps the soul of poor Bajpayee must be in agony!
Prime Minister Modi is undoubtedly a master of the art of oratory – in Gujarati and now to a greater extent ,. When he speaks in Gujarati, he can mesmerize the crowd. His Hindi has also improved a lot. Despite the aid of a teleprompter, his English is more humorous than the language of serious dialogue.
Returning to decency in public discourse, then who else but Modi can be blamed for killing it?
The secret of Modi’s old speeches
Surprisingly and in a way, as expected, we cannot find any of his 2002 Gaurav Yatra speeches on YouTube. But here I would like to point out a link which I was able to find after spending a lot of time and effort.
In another event, he said clearly, ‘How will the country progress? ‘Tum Paanch, Tumhare Bachis’, in which he apparently targeted Muslims, who are allowed four marriages by law. They were inciting the general feeling of religious fanatics that because of this they have many children.
If it wasn’t lewd, to what category would you put these comments of his for the women of Gujarat? That malnutrition is a misconception. Our women’s focus is on looking beautiful. She likes to be slim.
If Sonia Gandhi’s low political remarks hurt Modi and she made it a national issue by projecting herself as the victim, Sonia Gandhi should be given credit for silently tolerating Modi’s words. It is sad that his sluggish party did not take any proper action on them. Today, Modi and his efficient digital empire have erased from digital platforms all evidence of indecent videos in which he can be seen flouting decorum and making derogatory comments on his political rivals.
For example, in Gujarat he commented on Sonia Gandhi, saying, ‘Soniaben to ek jersey cow chhe, aa Rahul to ek hybrid bachdha chhe’. (Sonia Gandhi is a Jersey cow and Rahul is a hybrid calf). Modi also added in a blistering attack that Sonia is a foreigner, just a dumb cow and since she is married to an Indian, Rahul is a Rahul a hybrid calf.
After this he said, ‘Me 20 loko no poochyu koi Soniaben ne clerk ni nokri no ape ane Rahul Patwala ni. Awa loko ne aapya aapya desh hai? (I asked 20 people. No one wants to make Soniaben a clerk and Rahul a peon.)
Since it was Gujarat, people clapped for this too.
We have become so used to vulgar, lewd and uncivilized statements that few people in Gujarat paid attention to Rahul’s statement of being Modi in the name of these thieves.
And it has all become normal for us. Here ‘100 crore girlfriends’ becomes a joke and PM Modi’s anti-feminist comments garner applause as proof of his ‘sense of humour’.
(Deepal Trivedi Vibes of India website CEO and Founding Editor.)
(Click here to read this article in English.)
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