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To these professionals, Modi is a "nation builder", as if this is happening for the first time in independent India

By Sanjiv Bhatt*
There’s something to be said about Narendra Modi. Though he is a photoshopped demagogue, he has been able to dumb down the minds of people who I (mistakenly) thought would be able to have a more discerning sense of what’s going on. What I see now is a shocking case of brain meltdown. These people are not the street ruffians of the VHP.
They are also, at least ostensibly not, RSS brown shirts. They are professionally qualified people, with good life skills, and also reasonably honest in what they do with some sense of what constitutes ethical behaviour and practice In their respective professions. What beats me is the way in which these people have swallowed Modi’s hogwash hook, line, and sinker.
They believe, like incredulous infants, that whatever Modi is doing is happening for the first time in this country. From surgical strikes to currency demonetisation, everything is descending from the grace of Narendra Modi. The fact that every such action has been done in the past does not cut any ice with them. Take the case of currency demonetisation. High value Indian currency has been demonetised twice before, once in 1947-48 and in 1978.
While the former doesn't count for this purpose, the latter was done with the specific objective of curbing `black’ money; but it failed. Many subsequent attempts to do so through various other means also failed, or had only a passing effect. Why would demonetisation succeed now? For the believers the answer is simple: because Modi says so. Unbelievable, unsurpassable logic.
The sad fact that those people who have no credit worthiness, and most Indians don't, are now being forced to sell their 500 rupees notes to sharks for 400 rupees or less in various places is also a fall out of the Modi demonetisation.
Then there is the anger in these people against criticism of the great leader. Criticising Modi for his personality or policies is almost akin to being part of a Pakistan sponsored conspiracy against the nation. Kiran Rijju voiced this when he said that people are developing a bad habit of asking questions from politicians and the armed forces.
They conveniently forget the most savage kind of criticism they had unleashed against Manmohan Singh, and the virulent abuses they continuously heap on Arvind Kejriwal, and on the `JNU-type' liberals. When they criticise, it is considered their democratic privilege; but any criticism of Modi is against national interest, and has to be thrown into the dustbin.
Why? Because for them Modi is busy `nation building’, and criticising a nation builder is not good. This chills my blood for this is exactly what was said of Hitler by many middle-class, upwardly mobile, Jew-hating Germans in the 1930s; and it is almost the same class of people who are saying the same thing in India now.
Modi is said to be`nation building’, almost as if this is happening in India for the first time. However, the incontrovertible fact is that the story of India since 1947 is a story of `nation building’.
The basic mortar of this nation, its Constitution, was not the gift of Modi and his ilk, but the honest toil of a legion of liberal-minded, thinking-politicians who consciously tried to make India into an inclusive-secular nation in the face of the toughest opposition from the political lineage to which Modi belongs.
The nation that Modi wants to build is an ideological child of that lineage, a Hindutva-inspired, majoritarian illiberalism; and this is what today’s well-heeled are celebrating as `nation building’. This is not only shocking; it is just plain shameful.
As for me, I’m still waiting for Narendra Modi to bring back all the `black’ money parked in Swiss bank accounts and deposit 15,00,000 rupees from that into my bank. I’ll of course pay 33 percent tax on it, for I am honest too, but not brain-washed, or brain-dead. Fortunately!
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*Former IPS officer, who resigned from service. Source: Sanjiv Bhatt's Facebook timeline

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