Thursday 18 April 2013

The Transitional Period

"Hai maujazan ek kulzum-e-khoon kaash yahi ho
Aata hai abhi dekhiye kyaa kyaa mere aage "
----- Mirza Ghalib

Ghalib's sher which I have just quoted means :

"Before me is a turbulent sea of blood
But wait and see what is coming ahead"

In other words, worse times are coming in India. This transitional period in our history through which India is passing, from a feudal agricultural to a modern industrial society, is going to be a terrible period, just like the transitional period in European history,when Europe was passing through its transition from a feudal to a modern society, from the 16th to 18th Centuries. That transition was accompanied by tremendous turbulence, turmoil, wars, revolutions, social churning and chaos, intellectual ferment, etc. It was only after going through that fire that modern society emerged in Europe. India is presently going through that fire, that very painful and agonizing period in our history, which, as Ghalib predicted, is going to intensify in the days to come.

One wishes that this transition would take place quickly and peacefully, but unfortunately that is not how history functions. In a historical transition the old society is torn apart and totally uprooted, its values destroyed one by one, and a new society created in its place with new values. That requires a prolonged period of struggle, by the patriotic intellectuals as well as the masses.



  2. Mr. Katju how do you interpret Article 124(7) of the Constitution of India?
    "Art. 124(7): No person who has held office as Judge of the Supreme Court shall plead or act in any court or before any authority within the territory of India."
    Don't you think that by pleading for mercy for criminals you have violated the Constitution of India?
    Were you aware of this provision?

  3. Valid point.@James Bond
    its here

    i dont think he approched any court in defence of anyone.

    1. @ Rudolph D
      President and Governor will definitely come under "any authority within the territory of India"

  4. I remember you saying that since there exists a language with Dravidian dialect in NWFP of Pakistan,Dravidian migration has happened.

    Using the same analogy can we say that people in U.K must have come from India because English is widely spoken in India.

  5. Katju sir,

    1) when was time when a transition was not happening? Please tell me the time and I will tell you how that was transition only.

    2) Indian transitions happen like done by Nanak, Buddh, Gandhi, tukaraam and such people and not by revolutions/transitions in western style. Please know your India a bit deeper and feel it. It is bigger than events, people at any given point in time. It is forever new (Sanatan).

  6. what if nothing happens..will you accept ur ignorance.

  7. Galib wrote this probably just after 1857 and the waning of the Mugal Empire and the deportal of his ashraydata Bahadur Shah Zafar to Burma by the British. What came after that was the complete take over of India by the British and the colonial exploitation that followed - the great famines killing millions of people that became the hallmark of British rule, the duplicity of the imperial British and the frequent wars including the two World Wars and finally the agitations for independence and the holocaust of Partition.

    So Galib indeed foretold grim times in his couplet.

    But I doubt if things are as serious now. The current elite is firmly in saddle and there is no groundswell of opposition from the oppressed that could unseat them - except in pockets where the Maoists are active. The Maoists don't seem to be in a position to upstage the status quo, nor do they have a vision that could captivate the educated, patriotic Indian and win his wholehearted support, like the freedom movement led by Gandhi, Nehru etc., could.

    It looks like that things will continue as of now for some time. The current political class and their true masters, the moneybags of India and abroad, know how to keep the lid on the pressure cooker of Indian society and let off steam now and then to prevent it from bursting. The frequent changes of governments at election times are one such mechanism.

    So no cataclysmic changes, I am afraid, will happen in India. And you yourself have supplied the answer to this - 90% Indians are fools and they don't know what is good for them and their country. They are quite happy with their TV shows, inane films, cricket, and gizmos like their tabs and mobile sets.

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  9. The Condition of Europe about 500 Years ago and the Present Condition

    They risked torture and fire to liberate others. They were pacifists, teachers of literacy, who believe in the equality of all before God. They called themselves Brethren. This is their story, and of those who came

    The Villeins Trilogy--- Brethren, Villeins
    , Ausbund--- dedicated to prisoners of conscience, everywhere, who seek or have sought by peaceful means to change our world for the better, who suffer at the hands of injustice.

    500 years ago in Europe, the first information revolution was the printing press. The church and state were one power, and the people obeyed blindly. They were unschooled, and knew right only as whatever the priests and lords commanded. These virtual slaves were called Villeins. The Brethren were a handful of reformers who believed in the need of every man and woman to learn what was true, what was false, each for themselves. They saw awareness as a means of resisting evil. Their tool was literacy. If people could be taught to read the scriptures for themselves, the power of Christ’s message of love for all, might redeem their violent world. The church-state fought to keep its illiterate villeins in manageable ignorance, to slave on the land and to fight in war. Today there are many parallels to that time.

    500 years have passed, and yet we have seen a decade of pre-emptive war, much of it called a 'crusade' by the so-called Religious Right. Christianity has been yoked to the war policies of the state. The primal commands of Christ, to love one another, to love thy enemies, have been perverted into a conquering message of war. Today, the American flag stands on many pulpits, and has been wrapped serpentine around the cross. Globally, Christ has become a symbol of imperialism. And the church itself is being crushed under this weight of secular lies.

    Today, the second information revolution--- the world-wide-web--- binds humanity ever closer. This new unity, forced upon all peoples by technology, is the greatest challenge ever confronted by Mankind. Our only hope is a world community of fellowship. If love cannot wipe away hatred, we are all doomed.
    These were the beliefs of the Brethren, 500 years ago. Young and old, female and male, they pledged their lives to the liberation of others. They changed their world in ways they could never have foreseen.
    A great violence was coming that none could have foreseen.
    At stake for the church-state empire was control.
    At stake for villeins
    was nothing less than the birth of human rights.
    At stake for the little band of Brethren was life itself.