“Long ago we had made a tryst with destiny, and now the time comes to redeem
this pledge…..” little did Pt. Nehru knew what promises the Indian politics will
fulfill after the eve of independence. But he relied on the greatest instrument of
optimism: hope. Lately, or ever since that great speech of Nehru, that hope is a
flickering affair. Flickering because it has been just kept alive by that beacon of the
idea of India, or that ‘tryst with destiny’ which I don’t know when we made.
Anyways, one thing is confirmed. The breeze which challenges the pedestal of that
hope is largely the divide and hate propagated in some way or the other by very
our own leaders. It’s not something new that our nation is seeing. This was what
the British did to win over us, and this is largely what our so-called
‘representatives’ do to win our votes. India might be soon identified as reserving India, rather than developing India. This is not a stand for or against reservation but the depiction of actual India in writing.
The main instrument to spread these mass factions is the reservation politics.
Targeting a particular community’s vote bank becomes quite easy when you
promise them perks of special seats in government services and colleges. I should
make this clear that my aim is not to take a side on the reservation; in fact, it’s more
about the cause and effect mechanism of this kind of politics. The basis of such
politics is envisioning the people not as one, but as different communities with the
tag of ‘voter’ stuck on their forehead. Leave apart the hate; the kind of apathy this
reservation politics creates is more sickening.
When the leaders of our nation start seeing their people on basis of their religion,
caste, community or some other factions; the very idea on which this nation was
formed is questioned. And that question mark is inked on every page of our
constitution. Just take the example of Patel reservation demands in Gujarat or the
Jat agitation in Haryana. Leaders like Hardik Patel are searching a political corner
for themselves in the field of Indian politics by this empty demand, which has been
proved illegitimate by the court. The same goes in case of the Jat politics in
Haryana. Jats are one the most strong communities in the state and them getting the
benefits of reservation is very contentious. Recently mobile internet services were
banned in the state due to the fear of agitation during a Jat rally.
This kind of politics and demands are only dividing us. They instill the feeling that particular
group of people is better off than us, or the government favors them more.
What the Brits did was not much different. They divided in name of religion, to
rule over us. Today we are being divided in the name of reservation or some
insipid politics. It is our responsibility as a nation to not be lured by such petty
strategies of personal gains. It is our responsibility to preserve those values of
secularism, equality, fraternity, and unity inscribed not only on the constitution but
on the heart of this nation. And this awareness or understanding has to be spread
very soon; if not, then one day this sher of Galib will echo in every nook and
corner of India:
“ ye to mana ki tagaful na karoge, magar khaak ho jayenge ham tumko khabar