The Kashi-Kyoto (dis)connect, rise of Chandrashekhar Azad, and why parties should return to the masses

Here is a list of five stories that you must read over the weekend

GN Bureau | June 2, 2017


#Bhim Army   #Kyoto   #Kashi   #AAP   #weekend stories   #Chandrashekhar Azad   #Maoists  


In 2014, Varanasi and Kyoto came in a ‘partner city’ relationship, a non-financial affiliation under which private firms (and not governments) from both cities finalise a set of themes and take them forward. Kyoto mayor Daisaku Kadokawa and the then Indian ambassador to Japan, Deepa Gopalan Wadhwa, signed the pact in the presence of Narendra Modi and Japanese premier Shinzo Abe. The agreement proposed cooperation between the cities in areas of art, culture, academics and city modernisation. 
Three years have passed since then. The agreement of cooperation and redevelopment of Varanasi on Kyoto lines, however, seems to be dying.
 
 
Varanasi is still celebrating its status of one of the oldest cities, its great history and political and religious significance. But it is yet to see achhe din. Thousands of kilometres away, in Kyoto, Japan, nothing is like Kashi. Back in Kashi, nothing is like Kyoto. The Kyoto-Kashi pact has been reduced to a sarcastic idiom for use by locals. Even so, this ancient city has the potential to become a good, livable city – without diluting its identity and without being compared to Kyoto.
 
 
Of the total 1,730 people killed in insurgency hit areas of Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Odisha, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal from 2011 to April 2017, as many as 642 were security forces personnel. The worst month was April when 25 security personnel were killed by Maoists in Chhattisgarh. In spite of the rise in the fatalities among CRPF personnel, the ongoing exercise to arm the forces with modern equipment and training is tardy.
 
 
Despite its missteps and irrespective of its failure, what the Aam Aadmi Party experiment shows is that there is enough space for alternative politics based on the principles and probity in public life. Indians are yearning for principled politics. Any political formation that taps this yearning is in all probability likely to be suitably rewarded. Once on the downside, AAP fell back on traditional strategies of mobilisation: publicity mongering, allegations of corruption in high places, advertising and blame game. The more the AAP relied on the traditional methods, the more it distanced itself from its middle class support base that had brought it to power and went against the very grain of its creation.
 
 
BJP leaders might be dismissive of the Bhim Army, but it does signify a new, aggressive phase in dalit politics in western Uttar Pradesh that is also spreading to Haryana, Delhi and Rajasthan. Saharanpur, close to the Haryana and Uttarakhand borders, with a mixed population dominated by Muslims and dalits, is known for wood-carving, cottage industries, basmati, and mangoes. In Chutmalpur, some 30 km from Saharanpur and close to Deoband,everyone knows Chandrashekhar Azad of the BhimArmy, which they say he founded in July 2015 to fight caste oppression. 
 
 

Comments

 

Other News

Imperative omissions in the Constitution

The making of the Indian Constitution and its subsequent adoption on January 26, 1950 required the founding members to go through several pieces of the legal document that the country already had during the British rule, let alone the Constitution of other countries. Until 1857, these laws, although applie

R-Day parade showcases India’s military might, cultural diversity

President Ram Nath Kovind led the Nation in celebrating the 73rd Republic Day today as part of ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’ across the country. The celebration saw a series of new events conceptualised by the defence ministry during the main parade on Rajpath along with ‘Beat

INS Khukri to be handed over to Diu administration today

As the nation celebrates its 73rd Republic Day, INS Khukri will be handed over to the Diu administration in a ceremonial event at the Khukri Memorial. INS Khukri, the lead ship of the Indian Navy’s Khukri class corvettes, is an indigenous surface-to-surface missile fitted vessel that h

The perils of metro roads – A Delhi/NCR context

The anxiety and chaos that we face on our city roads are endemic, dangerous, and deadly. It emerges from a combination of too many vehicles, road conditions, ineffective traffic controls, poor planning and lack of innovative corrections, loose enforcement, and lacking traffic discipline in the commuters, t

‘Classified’, a scintillating expose of the ISRO spy story

Classified: Hidden Truths in the ISRO Spy Story By J. Rajasekharan Nair Srishti Publishers, 280 pages, Rs 350 The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) was rocked by a spy case in 1994, taking down in its wake six persons, including S. Nambi Narayanan. The

If Rahul is in race to prove himself a better Hindu, our efforts have paid off: Ram Madhav

Ram Madhav, a member of the RSS National Executive, has said that Congress leader Rahul Gandhi proudly proclaiming to be a better Hindu is a welcome step and the opposition’s newfound claim that their Hinduism is superior to the Hinduism of RSS is the new competition in India.   &nbs

Visionary Talk: Ram Madhav, Member Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh with Kailashnath Adhikari


Archives

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter