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Ayodhya development: 'Clear fusion' of state power, Hindutva and corporate interests

By Harsh Thakor* 

With the inauguration of the Ram Mandir at Ayodhya, there appears to be a clear fusion of state power, Hindutva and corporate interests. India's leading corporate faces participated in the event along with the entire BJP-RSS leadership and individuals in top constitutional positions. The construction of Ram Path has reportedly advocated the destruction of a 2,200 shops, 800 houses, 30 temples, 9 mosques and 6 tombs.
The motive of developing Ayodhya as a world-class tourist destination has charted an invitation to Adani and other corporate groups to take advantage of the rise profitable business of land market in the region, which is bound to hit local farmers and farming, even as environmentally destroying in the eco-sensitive zone on the bank of river Saryu.
The corridors being constructed in Varanasi and Mathura have already led to considerable demolition of old buildings, shops and even small temples. The same plans are being followed in Ayodhya.
The crystallisation of the new order turned prominent with every passing day ahead of the Ram Mandir consecration. Not only the inauguration of the temple became a massive state event, to 'prepare' himself for the 'consecration ceremony' of the idol in the new temple, the Prime Minister ventured grand temple tour across the country, with even members of his security staff donning traditional religious attire.
The inauguration was celebrated by a half-day public holiday in all government offices and establishments, even many hospitals. Sought to be used as an electoral trump card, what was set aside is the fact that the Ramayana is one of the most evergreen epics, a reflection of India’s cultural diversity.
Negative tendencies among those who are said to be opposing the consecration ceremony continue. A joint convention in Kolkata from 22-25th January praised the India of 1947 as democratic and secular, but ignored how the Ram idols were placed in the Babri Masjid in 1949.
Intervening night of 22/23 January 2024 marked 25th anniversary of horrific lynching of Australian missionary Graham Staines
While most of the opposition parties refused to attend the ceremony sensing RSS-BJP’s political motive in it, many among them in North India commemorated the event. It was forgotten that the intervening night of 22/23 January 2024 marked the 25th anniversary of the horrific lynching of the Australian missionary Graham Staines and his sons Philip (aged 10) and Timothy (aged 6) by a mob allegedly instigated by Bajrang Dal leader Dara Singh.
Meanwhile, the working class continues to be trapped in the morass or quagmire of Hindutva and national chauvinism, with Leftist forces unable to extricate it from the poisonous influence. Lack of a powerful organised movement on class lines on the burning issues of the peasantry and working class paved the road for ascendancy of Hindutva.
Organisations preaching Hindu philosophy, like Chinmaya Mission, appear to leave no stone unturned in championing Hindutva. Regretfully, there seems to be no Hindu religious organisation that speaks out against Hindutva.
Historians have have failed to probe into the roots of the Hindu psyche or what has instilled such a deep endorsement of Hinduism. They haven’t analysed whether Hindu philosophy had progressive aspects towards liberation, and whether over centuries Hindus felt the impact of their culture and philosophy being victimised, or facing brunt of repression.
Possibly, the Marxists and the revolutionary democratic camp historically came out too hard on Hindu philosophy and Bhgavad Gita, negating or disrespecting their progressive and spiritual aspect or how it enriched knowledge.
*Freelance journalist


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