Thursday, October 28, 2010

Under Threat: Our Right to Dissent

इतना दम बाजु-ए-रमन में नहीं है कि नेहरु-गाँधी के 
खून के बलिदान को भुलवा सके-

जो ये इतिहास मिटाएगा
वो खुद इतिहास बन जायेगा.

The Right to Dissent, to voice disagreement, is central not only to the notion of modern Democracy but, as pointed out by the Nobel laureate, Dr. Amartya Sen, to India’s glorious if somewhat overlooked tradition of Heterodoxy. It is a fact those in government often tend to ignore: when all else fails, dissent is met with deterrence in the form of punishments; in many cases, these punishments do not have the sanction of Law.

Dr. Raman Singh’s government in Chhattisgarh is increasingly enforcing such unlawful punishments as a deterrent against lawful dissent: the object is to frighten would-be dissenters from taking up causes against it.

Very recently, the Chhattisgarh State Textbook Corporation was instructed by the state government to stop issuing framed pictures of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Lal Bahadur Shashtri, Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi- all former Prime Ministers- and Sardar Vallabhai Patel to state-run schools and colleges, and instead to replace them with those of Pandits Shyama Prasad Mukherjee and Deen Dayal Upadhyay. The reason for this decision is of course political; it has nothing to do with the merits of their contribution to the nation-building process. Nehru ji, Sardar Patel, Shashtri ji, Indira ji and Rajiv ji were all Congresspersons; Mr. Mukherjee and Mr. Upadhyay belonged to the erstwhile Jan Sangh (the precursor of BJP). What Dr. Raman Singh is trying to do, therefore, is nothing short of what VS Naipaul, another Nobel laureate, has termed as “the erasure of history” (albeit in an entirely different context).

This issue has been jointly taken up by the two youth frontal organizations of the party, NSUI and the Youth Congress. This afternoon, they staged a peaceful protest outside the Textbook Corporation’s head office at Raipur. They did not- nor did they have the intention to- hurt anyone. Even so, the district administration mercilessly lathi-charged the protestors, including the state presidents of both these organizations, Uttam Vasudeo and Sanjeev Shukla, and shut them behind bars. They were booked under section 151 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), which is a bailable offense. But the SDM was specifically instructed by the DM (Collector) and SP to make himself scarce so that the protestors would not have an opportunity to furnish their bail bonds. The purpose of this is clear: to send them to jail, where they would be kept in barracks like common criminals. “If I had my way,” the SP told someone, “I would keep them locked up till after Deepawali.”

They did the same thing two days ago, when NSUI President Sanjeev Shukla and his associates staged a fast-unto-death outside Pandit Ravi Shankar Shukla University at Raipur to urge the Vice Chancellor to issue degrees to more than 53000 students: they have been waiting for more than 3 years to get them. It is, to say the least, a most reasonable demand: without their degrees, they cannot even apply for jobs. The modus operandi of their protest was also not unreasonable: if anybody was being hurt, it was the students themselves. And yet, the police once again beat them up, and put them behind bars. Once again, the SDM made himself scarce, and once again, the students were forced to spend more than 2 days and 2 nights locked up in barracks like common criminals. For most if not all of them, this was their first time in jail. Naturally, they were terrified to be living alongside convicted criminals and the like, but it also gave them an insight into the inhuman conditions inmates are kept in inside our extremely corrupt jails. When they came out finally, they told the Press exactly what they saw and lived through.

For some reason- I can’t tell what- the state leadership of the Congress party organization has decided not to react to all this, let alone express support for the two youth organizations. It is most disappointing. After all, the removal of our Leaders’ pictures from schools and colleges is not simply a student- or even a youth- issue; it strikes at the very soul of our democratic culture. If we do not speak up now, there is no telling what they will do: at stake, is our Right to Think and Speak Freely. It is clear to me, now more than ever before, that when Dr. Raman Singh fails to buy our Silence (something I’m told he has become rather good at), he will stop at nothing to punish- and terrify- us into Silence.

The Gentleman Doctor’s Mask is slipping away; behold, a Tyrant emerges!

19 comments (टिप्पणी):

kapil purena said...

We will continue our fight,
This is the perfect opportunity to tilt the BJP government ..

vyankatesh said...

Vyankatesh Singh, Manendragarh
The act of BJP govt. is anti-national, education should not be used as means to create the faith of pepole in BJP. Atleast the structure of education should not be politicised in the name of any national party.
As far as the act of administ...ration is concerned as regard to the right of the pepole to desent in a peaceful manner, it is constitutional right guranteed under the constitution and one should not be deprived of it. After all we are democratic country in which every one has the right to express himself in a peaceful manner.
We must protest against it.

Nitin Bhansali said...

bilkul sahi kaha bhaiya ,aane wale chunav me ab hume raman singh ko itihash banana hi hai

Ahmed Rameez Raza said...

this is ridiculous ...such a shameful act

Shekhar Sahu said...

Thats shameful

Rakesh said...

shame on ye SAFEED KURTA PAYJAMA walon ko,saale saara desh bech kar kha gay.Isese to hum gulam aache yhe.In ki to maa.............

Rupchand Soni said...

I dont think BJP is doing gud job in chattisgarh but its Raman Singh who is really doing well

Tinku Memon said...


Saurabh Koutu said...

aap gandhi priwaar kay baaray main kitna jaantay ho?

kapil purena said...

i always wid u bhaiya...
Brother we are all with you, just that your guidance is needed ...
2013 is the choice we make Congress the government .. and the chief minister Ajit Jogi is to ..

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

your blog's hindi translation is not correct. this software wont work. it should be done have a big fan following in hindi speaking youth. pls. think about them.

Ameen Khan said...

politics must be what you add, not to modify or change the existing things..... energy must be used towards growth & development instead making vote banks & examples.

Anonymous said...

It is very interesting that the members of Congress - which brought about Emergency - where hundreds of RSS swayamsevaks were tortured and killed is now talking about democratic right.

And it is fine to put pictures of Nehru Gandhi parivar. We all know the "sacrifices" - people are asking about billions of dollars in Swiss banks.

And if you really believe in freedom of speech - just like Gandhi family defends Emergency while paying lip service to democracy, let this comment remain.

Anonymous said...

99.99 % neta are .......( plz fill in the blanks) ..wat abt Indian money which still in swiss bank ...why u people are not talking about that....

santosh said...

you do i become proud
so keep doing the things you are doing
let me be proud

santosh thakur gunderdehi,(bhilai),malaidabri,(dongargaon)

santosh said...

i think you are only the person who is active as an leader of opposotion , following ,respected shri ajit jogi ji , i dont know what happend to the other leader of opposition who says nothing about weakness of government, is it true opposition if its happend same how will the party succeed in next election. you keep going on and make my dream true to next cm again to respected shri ajit jogi and you become finance minister and shrimati renu jogi ji would homeminister , i think you need to more cocentrate on tribal area because factor says that the mostly leader want to take opportunity whatever government it is and not aware or constrating about development of the tribals and real needed person .whenever from ,only giving lolipop with the inougration of some statues and caste related party but it is not the development .we peole need to focus postgraduate courses, professional courses, metro experience, foreign experience , trade experience, new development experience broadband exerience experience. we need for the development for the people who are unware of what the real success is in term of modern indian world we need much more better education system so that development should be seen.......
it is says that tribals are alcoholic, but how much the selling of ,English alcohal
are being taken by the other than tribal s,it is not only the alcohol but system keeping far from real world to tribal ,development taking place in tribals but very slowly ,compare to other world in this condition we need to little faster in education system of tribals. to set up hostels in large no. 10000 to 100000 capacity per year from school to pg course to civils services course professionals courses. in city area like bhilai, durg, rajnandgaon ,raipur only not in the remote area . my adea is to make more hostels in systematematic way larger capicity in big concept like dps or other group it woud show the result we can see …………..! I am sure it would succed
and only you can do so, so please keep my adviseas an idea for future sir

santosh thakur gunderdehi,(bhilai),malaidabri,(dongargaon)

positive freedom said...

Whats happening in india big party blaming other ,it must be polight after getting
Proof of signature that if any even many big fishes would under any even many big scandle under side,reason from side many have been found guilty. what actually the constitution should stand , it must watching big fish and either many fig fishes would out from both or any one big fish would sacrifice for the othier means,means one would have to be go.
Then other would be polight that if again we shout, than ……………………………….
Is it the game of janseva or khao mewa .
Actually they should be satisfied for their life, their childrens life only, then they would think about janseva. overnight nobody can become dhirubhai but, may be compare then muunabhai.
It is the matter of satisfaction ,life style if person have hobby himself, money collection would never be hobb, more then need. We have example in histry gajnabi, or many destroyed kingdom .
So politics must have hobby rather than collection of money more then need or from illegal source. Hobby likehockey, cricket football, any other sports or real samaj seva,or any what we teach to our children,money distribution should not be samaj seva but self physically contribution for mandir nirman or cleanness of ponds etc. or an dirt remove work.
person should show happiness like family .satiscfaction like confront mother or father or children . we should see face of family in the world. Then world must be happy. Thenperson would not cross the limit.

santosh thakur said...

i wish you and your family very happy happy new year 2011

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Amit Aishwarya Jogi
Anugrah, Civil Lines
Raipur- 492001
Chhattisgarh, INDIA
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