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Temples, Toilets & Minority Politics


We as a people have a weakness in that we look for idols in our leaders and put them on a pedestal. An idol’s word is gospel; his actions are above reproach. After all, ‘A Caesar can do no wrong!’ An idol’s actions never, ever come under scrutiny. His actions are always explained away with altruistic motives. Calling an idol’s actions into question is blasphemy.    When a society treats a leader as an idol, all criticism is blanked out. The feedback mechanism is disabled. A leader who is blindly worshipped becomes blind to public opinion. It is not in the public interest. A leader’s belief in his infallibility gives way to a certain conceit. As the leader comes to dislike criticism, his followers automatically screen it from him. It lays … Read entire article »

Filed under: Hinduism, India, Islam, Politics

Telangana And Political Ploys


For nearly ten years Congress, the ruling party at the centre brushed aside demands for a separate Telangana state. This is the fourth time that the issue has become a national political issue since the formation of Andhra Pradesh in 1956. Political leaders and parties either raised the demand for a separate state or supported agitations purely based on electoral considerations. Marri Chenna Reddy’s somersaults on the issue are a case in point. In 1956 he was for a united Andhra Pradesh. He later changed his stance and became a votary of a separate Telangana state. In 1968 the AP High Court annulled his election to the state assembly and debarred him from contesting elections for six years. ‘Vandemataram’ Ramachandra Rao of the Arya Samaj (and later the BJP) challenged … Read entire article »

Filed under: India, Politics