Skip to main content

Top Hindutva theorist declares against caste-based reservation, opines it leads to votebank politics

By Our Representative
Hindutva offensive against India’s reservation policy continues unabated, despite BJP and RSS making frantic attempts to deny they are against caste-based reservation. A well-known US-based Hindutva theorist and businessman, Rajiv Malhotra, hailed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for “glorifying our priceless heritage”, has now declared that there should not be any caste-based reservation in India.
In a video he has posted on Facebook, Malhotra is heard telling an interviewer that reservation should be given “on individual, merit basis, on individual economic basis”, adding, he “does not like” the idea that people in groups, caste, religion, or whatever, are “clubbed” and are considered “victims”, and are given “special quota.”
Last year, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat came in for criticism for his suggestion for to “review” the reservation policy. Coming ahead of Bihar elections, Bhagwat had to retract his statement, saying, reservation is needed as long as social discrimination exists, with BJP leaders, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah, too, strongly coming out in defence of reservation.
Suggesting that caste based reservation “would encourage conflicts” with “irresponsible politicians” utilizing it for “votebank", Malhotra who has been one of the most prominent propagators seeking to provide intellectual basis to Hindutva, says, “There is absolutely no reason that a Dalit millionaire is given privileges”.
Introducing his video on his twitter account @RajivMessage, Malhotra says, it talks of “caste reservations as a vote bank/lobby group.” On a query by Counterview, whether it means the “top Modi follower is anti-reservation” and is “following RSS chief”, he immediately clarified, “Please do not misquote me. I am FOR reservations based on INDIVIDUAL factors, not collective identities/politics.”
When queried whether he thought untouchability should be the basis of reservation, Malhotra evaded reply, with some of his supporters seeking the "definition" of untouchability in the “current context of India”, wondering if it could be “evaluated objectively” (@vakibs).
Malhotra’s supporters on Facebook said that for the first time a “renowned writer and speaker" spoke about reservation."Reservation should be covered individually on the ground of economic social status rather than club approach. It’s really appreciable debate”, it was suggested.
However, an opponent of Hindutva, in his critical remark to Malhotra’s on Twitter, said, “So the cat is out of the Hindutva bag? Reservations should promote market economics and not community?” (@BHPanimalwatch).
On Facebook, one Sarath Prasannakumar was more explicit: “Whatever you say we don’t accept this. Because the economic and social disparity in this nation is based on caste. It’s an after effect of centuries old caste system. So to bring the Dalits and tribals as equals reservation will continue to stay till the Dalits and tribals reach equality, socially and economically. Once they reach it take this reservations away and then put it for open competition.”
Malhotra received much media attention spring this year after he declared the need to “protect” Indian culture from western “takeover” through an online petition. He wanted the ouster top Sanskritist Sheldon Pollock as chief editor of the Murty Classical Library of India, a private project floated by IT giant and Infosys founder NR Narayana Murty and his son Rohan Murty in order to "create" an intellectual heritage of ancient India.
Earlier, Malhotra was involved in a controversy when his book “Indra’s Net” was charged with plagiarism by Indologist Andrew J Nicholson, author of “Unifying Hinduism”. Nicholson went so far as to blame Malhotra that he "does not know Sanskrit, so he has to rely on others who do in order to amass the raw materials he needs for his books” Malhotra denied plagiarism charges.

Comments

Arthur Gibbs said…
I am Rajiv's follower and its shameful how you are ready to sell out your own country.

Did you bother to go into reason's of why we want to remove "Sheldon Pollack"?

Or check Rajiv's reply on plagiarism charges? Did you try to find truth (it would have taken simple google search).

Anonymous said…
Biased report. The core issue of 'why reservation for a Dalit millionaire' is conveniently skipped.
Anonymous said…
1. Have you been taught critical thinking by your teachers/parents/masters?
2. Do you know ethics of Journalism?
3. How much money have been paid to you for being slave?
4. Do you know What is your master's strategy to enslave India?
5. Do you belong to thief caste?
6. Since when, your generations are slaves? What are you doing to make your neighbors slave?
7. Why don't you come out and do some real journalism to find out the truth?
8. Have you sold your sons/daughters for money? Shame on you and your Ideology for low thinking !!
Jag Jivan said…
Why are you Anonymous? What are you afraid of?
Jamna Das said…
When you don't have arguments, best thing is to say you are sold out, who paid you, even go so far as to use abusive words, as the second Anomymous person seeks to do. A typical mindset of extremists of all hues. Are you one, Mr Anomymous?
Unknown said…
Junk article probably written by Doniger and Pollocks love child.
Jag Jivan said…
Even reporting EXACTLY what Rajiv Malhotra makes one Doniger and Pollock love child? There's not one comment against Shri Malhotra here, yet it seems his supporters dont like to be shown their face

TRENDING

Bill Gates as funder, author, editor, adviser? Data imperialism: manipulating the metrics

By Dr Amitav Banerjee, MD*  When Mahatma Gandhi on invitation from Buckingham Palace was invited to have tea with King George V, he was asked, “Mr Gandhi, do you think you are properly dressed to meet the King?” Gandhi retorted, “Do not worry about my clothes. The King has enough clothes on for both of us.”

Displaced from Bangladesh, Buddhist, Hindu groups without citizenship in Arunachal

By Sharma Lohit  Buddhist Chakma and Hindu Hajongs were settled in the 1960s in parts of Changlang and Papum Pare district of Arunachal Pradesh after they had fled Chittagong Hill Tracts of present Bangladesh following an ethnic clash and a dam disaster. Their original population was around 5,000, but at present, it is said to be close to one lakh.

What's Bill Gates up to? Have 'irregularities' found in funding HPV vaccine trials faded?

By Colin Gonsalves*  After having read the 72nd report of the Department Related Parliamentary Standing Committee on alleged irregularities in the conduct of studies using HPV vaccines by PATH in India, it was startling to see Bill Gates bobbing his head up and down and smiling ingratiatingly on prime time television while the Prime Minister lectured him in Hindi on his plans for the country. 

Anti-Rupala Rajputs 'have no support' of numerically strong Kshatriya communities

By Rajiv Shah  Personally, I have no love lost for Purshottam Rupala, though I have known him ever since I was posted as the Times of India representative in Gandhinagar in 1997, from where I was supposed to do political reporting. In news after he made the statement that 'maharajas' succumbed to foreign rulers, including the British, and even married off their daughters them, there have been large Rajput rallies against him for “insulting” the community.

Magnetic, stunning, Protima Bedi 'exposed' malice of sexual repression in society

By Harsh Thakor*  Protima Bedi was born to a baniya businessman and a Bengali mother as Protima Gupta in Delhi in 1949. Her father was a small-time trader, who was thrown out of his family for marrying a dark Bengali women. The theme of her early life was to rebel against traditional bondage. It was extraordinary how Protima underwent a metamorphosis from a conventional convent-educated girl into a freak. On October 12th was her 75th birthday; earlier this year, on August 18th it was her 25th death anniversary.

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Youth as game changers in Lok Sabha polls? Young voter registration 'is so very low'

By Dr Mansee Bal Bhargava*  Young voters will be the game changers in 2024. Do they realise this? Does it matter to them? If it does, what they should/must vote for? India’s population of nearly 1.3 billion has about one-fifth 19.1% as youth. With 66% of its population (808 million) below the age of 35, India has the world's largest youth population. Among them, less than 40% of those who turned 18 or 19 have registered themselves for 2024 election. According to the Election Commission of India (ECI), just above 1.8 crore new voters (18-and 19-year-olds) are on the electoral rolls/registration out of the total projected 4.9 crore new voters in this age group.

Stagnating wages since 2014-15: Economists explain Modi legacy for informal workers

By Our Representative  Real wages have barely risen in India since 2014-15, despite rapid GDP growth. The country’s social security system has also stagnated in this period. The lives of informal workers remain extremely precarious, especially in states like Jharkhand where casual employment is the main source of livelihood for millions. These are some of the findings presented by economists Jean Drèze and Reetika Khera at a press conference convened by the Loktantra Bachao 2024 campaign. 

Mark Lee: A spiritual leader who thought conventional religions are barrier to liberation

  By Harsh Thakor*  The Krishnamurti Foundation of America (KFA) lost Roger Edwin Mark Lee, who was a devoted disciple of Jiddu Krishnamurti, one of the greatest and most self realised spiritual philosophers of our time. Mark passed away due to pneumonia complications on April 6, 2024, at he Ventura Community Memorial Hospital in California. His exit was an irreparable loss to the spiritual world.

Fossil fuel projects: NGOs ask investors to cut TotalEnergies’ main sources of finance

By Antoine Bouhey, Lara Cuvelier, Helen Burley*  Reclaim Finance has joined 58 NGOs from around the world, including Banktrack, in signing an open letter calling on banks and investors to stop participating in bonds (loans granted by investors and facilitated by banks) issued by TotalEnergies. The 58 NGO signatories include 350.org , Amazon Watch, BankTrack, Centre for Environmental Law and Community Rights (CELCOR, Papua New Guinea), Justiça Ambiental (Mozambique) and Friday for Future (Uganda), Oil Change International and Urgewald (Germany).