Thursday, 14 July 2016

A Nation of 90% fools deserves to be befooled
A genuine freedom struggle is never peaceful. That is because no ruler gives up his Empire without an armed struggle. Did the Americans wage their War of Independence ( from 1775 to 1781 ) against the British rulers by satyagrah and offering them bouqets of flowers, or by raising a Continental Army under George Washington ? Did Ho Chi Minh fight against the French by going on a fast like Gandhi ? Did Bolivar, the great Liberator o...f many South American countries from Spanish rule fight against the Spaniards by salt marches, or by raising battalions ?
Our own so called freedom struggle under the leadership of that hypocrite Gandhi was a fraud, and resulted in a phoney Independence in 1947.
Our real freedom fighters like Bhagat Singh, Chandrashekhar Azad, Surya Sen ( Masterda ), Bismil, Ashfaqulla, Khudiram Bose, Rajguru, etc were hanged or killed by the British, and have been marginalized in our history books, relegated to the footnotes, and treated as mavericks, while that fraud Gandhi has become the Father of the Nation.
A nation of 90% ( or is it 95% ? ) fools deserves to be befooled
Hari Om

Three questions to Umar Khalid of JNU

Umar Khalid of the JNU has called Burhan Wani another Che Guevara. I would like to ask Umar three questions.

1. Che had an idelogy ( which one may or may not agree with ). What was the ideology of Burhan ? Was it Islamic fundamentalism ? And does Umar Khalid agree with that ?

2. Burhan Wani, and probably Umar too, want azadi for Kashmir.
Now the test of every government and every system is one, and only one : does it raise the standard of living of the people ?
If azadi for Kashmir will result in raising the standard of living of the Kashmiri people I will agree with them and will support the demand.
But Burhan and the other Kashmiri separatists, as well as Umar, never spoke, or speak, of this. They never discuss how azadi will result in raising the standard of living of the Kashmiri people. All they talk of is azadi. What they forget is that azadi can only be a means, not an end itself. The end must be raising the standard of living of the people, i.e. abolishing poverty, unemployment, malnourishment, corruption, price rise, lack of healthcare, etc.

3.Unless poverty and the other social evils mentioned above are abolished, there can never be genuine azadi. If Kashmir becomes azad from India, it will come under the rule of some other power, because a poor country cannot be economically independent, but must remain dependent on aid from some other country, and thus become subservient to that country.

I await Umar Khalid's answer. If he has not read this fb post, will someone from JNU or elsewhere forward it to him. My email id is mark_katju@yahoo.co.in

The Kashmiri separatist militancy


Burhan Wani, who was killed recently, is being hailed as a hero by many people.

But I regard him as only a pawn who was being used by some people. But which people ? Some say it was the Pakistanis, but in my opinion it was the Chinese. So let me explain my views.

The separatist Kashmiri militants are obviously getting arms, supplies and other kinds of help from some government. Arms and supplies do not fall from the sky. The question is which government ?

Now here we have to rely on some conjecture. We obviously will not get direct proof. But we can draw logical inferences and put two and two together. After all, apart from direct evidence there is also circumstantial evidence.

Pakistan had earlier allied itself to America, but after Modi took India firmly into the American camp, Pakistan had to seek a new sponsor. The only second super power in the world today after the collapse of the Soviet Union is China, and so now Pakistan has allied itself to China.

Today the established super power of the world, USA, and the rising super power, China, are on a collision course, as is evident from their disputes over the South China Sea, etc. The question is : who will control South Asia, with its markets, raw materials and cheap labour ?

Politics is concentrated economics, and so to understand politics, we must go behind it and see the real economic forces at work.

After years of economic growth, China has gone down from being the world's chief growth engine to becoming its biggest risk factor. While the Chinese still claim a growth rate of 6% in their GDP, more reliable sources say that the real growth rate is about 3%---a far cry from the double digit figures of growth of the Chinese economy for over a decade.

So to relieve their distress, China desparately need more markets for their goods, and cheap raw materials to lower their cost of production.

Of the two super powers, China is more dangerous to world peace. A rising super power is always more aggressive and expansionist, than an established one. For example, Hitler Germany, being a rising super power in the 1930s and 1940s, was more dangerous than the Western powers.

Today, China has a huge foreign exchange reserve, estimated at 3.23 trillion dollars in January 2016. This is a huge amount of hot money, hungrily looking for investment opportunities, markets to infiltrate and capture, and cheap raw materials, and indeed it has grabbed many in Asia and Africa, including some in India. So the victim of imperialism upto 1949 has itself become an imperialist now.

The dispute between USA, which is facing a recession, and China, whose economy has slowed down considerably, for control over South Asia, is now spilling over into India and Pakistan.

Modi has taken India firmly into the American camp. His recent visit to USA is only a culmination of the process started earlier.

So China is making its own counter moves. It is dominating Nepal, has come closer to Pakistan, and is arming the anti-Indian insurgency in Kashmir and the North East, in an attempt to carve out of India an area of its own influence and control.

Earlier, Pakistan was under the grip of Americans. But now that Modi has taken India firmly into the American camp, the Pakistanis, too, must find a new master, and the Chinese have decided to take a grip over Pakistan.

The Chinese-Pakistani trade, which was only of a few hundred million dollars a year upto the year 2000, has gone upto 16 billion dollars last year ( though heavily tilted in China's favour ).This was no doubt facilitated by the Free Trade Agreement between China and Pakistan which came into effect in January 2007. Also, today 47% of all Chinese international arms sales are to Pakistan.

In April 20, 2015, China’s President Xi Jinping visited Pakistan in what the government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif self-flatteringly called a “historic occasion”. During this visit, Xi announced the Chinese plans to invest 46 billion US dollars in Pakistan’s transport and energy infrastructure, including the construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) that will connect Kashgar in China’s Xinjiang region with Gwadar Port in Balochistan over the next 15 years. Since that announcement, several high-level Chinese government officials and top executives of several Chinese companies, have visited Pakistan, and have shown keen interest in setting up Chinese industries in Pakistan.

The militants who keep committing terrorist acts in Kashmir, are obviously getting arms from some power. The only logical inference is that they are getting them from China, via Pakistan. Similarly, the militants in the North East appear to be getting arms from China. It is evident that China is on an expansionist path, as Japan was in the 1930s and 40s. But America too has its economic interests in South Asia to safeguard. So a collision is inevitable.

Of course,the Americans and Chinese will not fight each other themselves. They are both nuclear powers, and have too much invested in each other's economies for that. But there is nothing to stop them fighting proxy wars, which they will. And India ( and Pakistan ) are directly in the frontline.

I therefore have strong reasons to believe that the Kashmiri militancy is being covertly sponsored by China, though via Pakistan.

Of course Burhan Wani and many other separatist Kashmiri militants may not be aware of this, but when does a pawn know of the man who really moves it ?

Umar Khalid of the JNU has called Burhan Wani another Che Guevara. But Che had an idelogy ( which one may or may not agree with ). What was the ideology of Burhan ? Was it Islamic fundamentalism ?

I have said in an earlier post that if azadi for Kashmir will result in raising the standard of living of the Kashmiri people I will support it
. But the Kashmiri separatists never talk of this. They never discuss how azadi will result in raising the standard of living of the Kashmiri people. All they talk of is azadi. What they forget is that azadi can only be a means, not an end itself. The end must be raising the standard of living of the people, i.e. abolishing poverty, unemployment, malnourishment, corruption, price rise, lack of healthcare, etc

To the people of U.P.


Although I am a Kashmiri, for all practical purposes I am a U.P.ite.

My family left their homeland Kashmir many generations back. I was born in Lucknow, but grew up in Allahabad, where I spent most of my life.

My family and I have eaten the salt of the people of U.P. and whatever we are today, is due to the kindness and generosity of the people of U.P. who embraced us, gave us high honour and positions, and never made us feel as outsiders.


Some other ...people could have said " You Kashmiris ( or Bengalis or Punjabis or Tamilians ) are taking away the jobs which should have gone to our children, so get out ". But you never behaved like that, and made everyone who came to U.P. feel welcome. There was never any ' son of the soil ' movement in U.P. 

So now as a fellow U.P. ite I regard it my duty to tell you, and warn you, that the whole country is now looking at you, and will keep looking at you for the next 6 months, in view of the coming State Assembly elections scheduled in January, 2017.

Yours is the biggest state in India, and in a way is the heartland of India. So how you behave will greatly influence the future of India.

Powerful vested interests will try to stoke up and fan communal and caste hatred and violence, to secure their vote banks.

As I had said in an earlier post, the interest of the nation is directly opposed to the interest of most Indian politicians. While the national interest demands destruction of feudal thinking and practices like casteism and communalism so that we may rapidly modernize and become a highly developed industrial nation with all its people enjoying a high standard of living, the interest of our politicians is only to win elections by hook or crook, and for doing so they have to rely on caste and communal vote banks, i.e. appease feudal forces. In other words, far from destroying casteism and communalism ( which are essentially feudal forces ), our politicians further aggravate them.

So before the coming U.P. elections the politicians will leave no stone unturned to inflame communalism and casteism.

On your part you must not fall into their trap. You must expose them, and present a united front against their wicked designs, as you did in the Great Mutiny of 1857 against the Britishers, in which Hindus and Muslims fought together. If you do that, the whole nation will applaud you, and look upon you as their leader, but if you do the contrary, you will disgrace the nation and bring shame on all of us
.


Wednesday, 13 July 2016

Changing people's minds


Today the real problem in India is that most Indians have backward minds, full of casteism, communalism and superstitions. And it is this backwarness which is the root cause of our poverty and a host of other socio-economic problems.

It is relatively easy to change the environment. It is much more difficult to change people's minds. But without changing people's minds, we cannot change the environment.

Our people must modernize. But what is the meaning of being modern ? Being modern does not mean wearing a smart suit or jeans or fancy skirt. It means having a modern mind, which means a rational mind, a logical mind, a scientific mind, and a questioning mind.

The ancient Greeks questioned everything ( read the works of Plato and Aristotle ) and that is why they made such great progress in mathematics, science, etc. Similarly, many of our ancestors questioned everything ( see my blog on 'Sanskrit as a language of Science' and 'Indian Philosophy' ). The method of shastrartha was developed, which were debates in which the participants questioned each other before an assembly.

But before the minds of our masses is changed, the minds of our educated class has to be changed, and made truly modern. Intellectuals give leadership to society, because without intellectuals society is blind. Unfortunately most of our so called educated section of society is not truly educated, and so they are not genuine intellectuals. Their heads are crammed with bookish knowledge, without adequate reflection and questioning, and lacking creativity.

So my job is to educate the 'educated' in India. I do not have to educate the uneducated masses. I target the 'educated', and once they get truly educated, my job will be over, for then these truly educated intelligensia will educate the masses.

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

The Intolerance and bigotry of Wahabis


I am giving some examples of the intolerance and bigotry of the Wahabis :

1. A Muslim friend of mine went to do Haj in Mecca. There he wanted to kiss the grave of the Prophet, but the Saudi police prevented him from doing so, saying this would be worship of a grave, when Islam permits worship of only Allah.

My friend explained that by kissing the grave he would only be showing his respect for the Prophet, not worshipping the grave, but the police did not listen to him.

The Saudis also do not permit building of dargahs, which are shrines built on graves of sufi saints, saying this would be butparasti or worship of graves. In fact when people visit dargahs they only show their respect to sufi saints who preached love, compassion and brotherhood, and not that they worship these graves.

2. When I was a Judge in Allahabad High Court a case came before me filed by Deobandis saying that they will not permit taking out of a procession in Sahranpur by Muslims on the occasion of Eid Milad un Nabi, or Bara Wafat, which is the birthday of the Prophet, since this would be worshipping the Prophet, while Islam says that only Allah should be worshipped. I told the petitioners that this was a free, secular country, and if they did not like such processions they need not take part in them, or even look towards them, but how can they be prohibited ? I dismissed the petition.

3. When I was a Judge in the Supreme Court, a case came before me in which the petitioners, who appeared to be Wahabis, said that an order be passed that no one should be allowed to say ' Ya Ali ' or ' Ya Gharib Nawaz '. I again dismissed this petition too, saying that this was a free, secular country, and so how could I prohibit saaying this ? The petitioners were free not to say it, but others were free to say it

I just cannot understand the attitude of Wahabis. If someone goes to a dargah, is he cutting off anyone's head, or chopping off anyone's limbs ? Hindus believe in several gods and goddesses, while Islam says there is only one god, Allah. But by saying there are many gods, are Hindus cutting off anyone's head, or chopping off anyone's limbs ?

Sunnis believe that after the Prophet's death there were 4 Khalifas, but Shias regard the first 3 as usurpers. Are Shias cutting off the heads of Sunnis or chopping off their limbs by believing this ?
Ahmediyas believe that in the 19th century there was another Prophet or Nabi called Ghulam Ahmed, though orthodox Muslims believe Mohammed was the last Prophet. Are Ahmediyas cutting off the heads of orthodox Muslims or chopping off their limbs by believing what they do ? At most orthodox Muslims may say that Ahmedis are non Muslims ( just as Ahmedis may say the same about orthodox Mulims ), but where is the justification of killing Ahmedis, burning their houses and mosques and beating up their children as is frequently done in Pakistan ? This is nothing but goondagardi.
This is a free, democraatic and secular country. Let anyone believe what he wants, and pray in whichever way he wishes.

This is a country of great diversity, and so there must be tolerance if the country is to hold together and progress. There is no place for Wahabis here. All religious extremists and bigots should be suppressed with an iron hand

Some blunt questions to Mr. Modi


Mr. Modi had come to power in May 2014 on the issues of vikas and good governance, and had promised ' achche din ' to the people of India.

Since then over 2 years have passed, and it is time now to put some blunt questions to him :

1. When will the crores of unemployed youth in India get jobs ?


2. When will the skyrocketing food prices go down ?...

3.When will the farmers suicides stop ?

4. When will the 50% children in India who are malnourished get nutritious food ?

5. When will the Indian masses get healthcare, and how long should the poor people, who cannot afford to go to private hospitals, clinics and diagnostic centres, be compelled to go to quacks, or die 
without proper medical treatment ?

6. When will work be done for the people in government/municipal offices without taking bribes ?

7.When will the perpetrators of communal violence in Muzaffarnagar, Ballabhgah, Dadri, etc and people who gave communal hate speeches like Sadhvi Pragya, Adityanath, Sakshi Maharaj, Giriraj Singh etc be chargesheeted and arrested ?

8. When will the Ganga and other rivers really be clean ?
P.S.
I am raising real issues, and not those connected with 'jumlas' like giving 15 lac rupees to everybody, which may be overlooked

Solving India's economic woes


The Indian economy is in the doldrums, with no manufacturing growth, negative figures of exports, sluggish real estate market, skyrocketing food prices, alarming level of unemployment, etc

Ruchir Sharma, the Chief Global Strategist of Morgan Stanley, is the latest economic 'wizard', after Raghram Rajan, diagnosing India's economic problems and suggesting a remedy.

His statement that the official figure of India's GDP growth of 7.9% is bogus, is correct. But his remedy for solving India's economic woes is superficial. He says that there must be increase in private investment in India.

" GDP is overstated, higher private investment is needed " says Ruchir Sharma

But who will invest in India when there is a recession going on ? Where is the demand ? And there is lack of infrastructure, corruption, red tape, etc in many parts of India. Businessmen are not doing charity, but seek profits.

Most of the economists in the world are totally superficial, and have no genuine solution to the 
worldwide recession.

Economists with high sounding degrees from Harvard, Yale, London School of Economics, etc have made economics an arcane, esoteric subject. But it is not so. Let me therefore explain the present crisis step by step:

1. The present world wide recession is due to slow down in manufacturing in most parts of the world. But why is there a slow down in production ? It is because of decline in sales, because who will manufacture if the goods manufactured cannot be sold ? And the decline in sales is because of decline of purchasing power in the masses. Let me explain.

2. There is competition in the market. To face the competition in the market and survive, industries have to reduce their cost of production, and for this they have to do two things (1 ) become more and more capital intensive, rather than labour intensive( to reduce labour costs ) and (2) become larger in size ( to effect economy of scale ).

3. Cost of labour is a big chunk of the total cost of production, and so by becoming capital intensive ( by introducing automation or new labour saving technology ) industrialists reduce their cost of labour, and thereby their cost of production. Even though they may have to pay interest on the loans taken from banks to buy the new machinery, this cost is far less than the saving in labour costs by laying off workers.

If an industry does not do this ( introduce automation or capital intensive machinery, and grow larger ) its rival will do it, by becoming larger and and reducing its labour costs, and thereby reducing its cost of production, and eliminate the former by underselling it. So every industry must do it to survive. But in the process it is generating widespread unemployment.

4. This is because the worker is not only a producer he is also a consumer. A steel worker does not merely produce steel, he and his family also consume food, clothing, shoes, and a host of other articles. If he loses his job his purchasing capacity is drastically reduced, and consequently he has to drastically reduce his consumption. He will now buy only essentials like food and medicines ( to survive ) but he stops buying most industrial goods like cars, gadgets, etc

This reduction in spending leads to reduction in sales, and since the same process is broadly followed in most industries, it leads to increasing unemployment, and thereby widespread reduction in the purchasing power of the masses

5. At the same time, industries have to grow larger in size . Large scale production means one can sell at a cheaper price than small scale production ( by effecting economy of scale e.g. by buying raw materials in bulk, and thereby cheaper ). If a businessman does not do that his business rival will do it, and thereby eliminate him by underselling him.

6. Thus the very dynamics of industrialization introduces two contradictory tendencies. On the one hand, production increases ( since industries are growing larger ). On the other hand, purchasing power decreases, as more and more unemployment is being generated ( as automation or capital intensive mashinery is introduced ). How will the goods produced be sold ? This contradictory tendency sooner or later results in a crisis, i.e. a recession, which leads to more unemployment, thus intensifying the crisis. It is a chain reaction.

7. The solution to the problem is therefore to increase the purchasing power of the masses. There is no difficulty in increasing production, but how will the goods produced be sold when most people do not have the money to buy ?

8. The French economist Jean Baptiste Say propounded his well known ' Say's Law ' which says that production will find its own demand, and Adam Smith in his ' The Wealth of Nations ' spoke of ' the invisible hand ' which will lead to unending progress.. But subsequent developments, particularly the Great Depression from 1929 to 1939 have proved these theories false. Keynes theory ( propounded in his book ' The General Theory of Employment, Money and Interest ' in 1936 ), which prescribes large scale government spending as the way out of the contradiction, was really a temporary palliative, and presents no real solution to the problem.

9. Hence the problem is not how to increase production ( that can easily be done with the large number of competent engineers and immense natural resources we have ) but how to raise the purchasing power of the masses, so that the goods produced can be sold. But how is this to be done ? This is the problem to which all serious thinkers must now apply their minds.

10. In socialist countries the method of raising the purchasing power of the masses, and thereby rapidly expanding the economy and consequently abolishing unemployment, was broadly this :

(a) Prices of commodities were fixed by the government.
(b) These prices were reduced by 5-10% every 2 years or so
(c) This resulted in steadily increasing the purchasing power of the masses, because with the same income people could buy more goods. In other words, the real income of the masses went up even if nominally it remained the same ( since real wage is relative to the price index ).
(d) Simultaneously, production was stepped up, and this increased production could be sold in the domestic market, as the purchasing power of people was steadily rising.
(e) This led to rapid expansion of the economy, leading to creation of millions of jobs and thereby abolition of unemployment.

During the Great Depression which hit the Western economies in 1929 ( it continued till the breakout of the Second World War in 1939, despite the New Deal of President Franklin Roosevelt ) when about one third or more people in Western countries were unemployed and factories were shutting down, the Soviet economy was rapidly expanding and unemployment abolished in the Soviet Union by following the above methodology.

Of course this was only possible in a socialist economy, where the problem was solved by state action.

I am not saying that we must necessarily follow the method adopted by socialist countries. We can adopt any other method if thereby we can raise the purchasing power of the Indian masses and thereby rapidly expand the Indian economy, which is the only way of eliminating the recession and abolishing unemployment in India.. The central point, and therefore the main problem before India, is how to raise the purchasing power of the masses ?

Monday, 11 July 2016

Kashmir Violence


I am deeply sad at the recent incidents of violence in Kashmir after the killing of Burhan Wani, the Hizbul Mujahideen commander.

I am myself a Kashmiri, and I have always condemned atrocities against Kashmiris, whether Pandits or Muslims. The fact that presently Kashmiri Muslims are being killed or injured makes no difference. Their DNA is the same as mine.

However, I would like to express my views here.


The test of every system or political act is whethe...r it will raise the standard of living of the people.
Many Kashmiris demand azadi from India. If they can demonstrate that such azadi will raise the standard of living of Kashmiris I will support their demand. But Kashmiris never seek to demonstrate that. All they demand is azadi.

Kashmiris forget that azadi can only be a means to an end, not an end itself. The end must be raising the standard of living of Kashmiris. But Kashmiris never discuss how that will be achieved in an azad Kashmir ( assuming it is created ). 

Moreover, the pro-Pakistani slogans blared out from loudspeakers of nearly all mosques in Kashmir, and the call to wage jihad, makes me very suspicious as to who is really behind this ' azadi ' struggle ?
So called ' freedom struggles ' having a religious colour e.g. the Sanyasi Revolt in Bengal in the late 18th century ( which is the historical background of Bankim Chandra's reactionary novel ' Anand Math ' ), Ayatollah Khomeini's movement, Muqtada al Sadr, ISIS, etc. tend to divide and weaken the peolple. 

If azadi is achieved in Kashmir, will the outdated feudal Sharia Law be imposed there ? And if azadi means azadi from India but joining Pakistan, will the jackboots of the Pakistani army not fall on the necks of Kashmiris, replacing one jackboot by another ?

Real azadi is azadi from poverty, malnourishment, unemployment, hunger, lack of health care etc. Did Burhan Wani and his comrades ever think of this, and how it will be achieved in an azad Kashmir ? Have the 'brave' JNUSU and Jadavpur University students who supported this demand of azadi for Kashmir ever thought of that ?

It is not enough to be brave, it is also necessary to have brains, but about this I have my doubts

India's Great Leap Forward


India has to take a Great Leap Forward, to rid itself of the feudal filth of casteism, communalism, superstitions, and other backward ideas, customs and practices which have accumulated over the centuries, and which are a huge obstacle and stumbling block on the path of our progress. Without this, we will be doomed to remain in our present state of poverty, malnutrition, unemployment, lack of healthcare and good education, etc.

For this, a mighty struggle has to be waged in the realm of ideas by our patriotic modern minded intelligensia, to replace the present feudal backward ideas with modern scientific ones, so that India emerges as a modern, powerful, highly industrialized country, with its people enjoying a high standard of living and leading decent lives.

A new idea usually arouses furious opposition at first from a large section of the people when it is presented, for example, the idea that there is nothing wrong for a non dalit to marry a dalit, or that there is nothing wrong in eating beef, or that wearing burqa is stupid. So the pioneers who initially advance such ideas will have to be ready for irate, hysterical, and often savage abuses, tirades, calumnies and denunciations.

But despite this hostility, the patriotic modern minded people must continue their struggle day in and day out for several years, perhaps even decades, talking not just to a small circle of people, but to everyone, patiently and coolly, giving reasons for what they say, and unmindful of abuses, calumnies 
and invectives.

Its a long way to Tipperary