POSTED BY Buzz ON Sep 14, 2011 AT 23:06 IST ,  Edited At: Sep 14, 2011 23:06 IST

Samar Halarnkar in the Hindustan Times :

This is why we widely tolerate — even applaud — police brutality; why middle India will rise to back Anna Hazare but ignore Irom Sharmila; why we want Kashmir and Manipur to remain with India but could not care less about the Kashmiris or Manipuris.

India’s new nationalism demands conformity, not rebellion, and it will back only issues of self-interest; it proclaims all Indians are equal, while being blind to or condoning discrimination against minorities.

As the middle-class expands in number and aspirations — both material and political — its nationalism of self-interest will demand political subservience.

Narendra Modi realised very early that the middle class is growing, its soaring aspirations require good governance, and it will accept a strong, even autocratic, leader. Rahul Gandhi and the Congress are yet focused on old, paternalistic politics that promote handouts, loyalty and state munificence over efficiency.

This will change. No amount of Dalit homestays and parachute trips to troublespots will help Gandhi unless he engages with India’s new nationalism.

Elections, particularly national elections are complex issues,  and the Indian middle class is certainly not homogenous. Does the above seem like simplistic theorising? Or does it capture a reality?

 

POSTED BY Buzz ON Sep 14, 2011 AT 23:06 IST ,  Edited At: Sep 14, 2011 23:06 IST
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Daily Mail
Digression
6/D-68
Sep 16, 2011
01:59 PM

 Oops. That was Good, not "God" Governanance. Nothing Freudian, just a typo :-)

Tearful Onion
Jhumri Talaiyya, India
5/D-67
Sep 16, 2011
01:58 PM

"the middle class is growing, its soaring aspirations require good governance, and it will accept a strong, even autocratic, leader."

I hope so. Until God Governance becomes the norm, we can "tolerate" the people who deliver that. The only problem is dismantling the same leadership once their job is over.

"Rahul Gandhi and the Congress are yet focused on old, paternalistic politics that promote handouts, loyalty and state munificence over efficiency"

Absolutely. They are very much like Prince Charles and think in terms of Noblesse Oblige. If we had a majority of non-feudalistic voters (or atleast thinkers),   dynastic inheritance that is spreading across all political parties would look bizarre to us, and be the number one topic of discussion.

Tearful Onion
Jhumri Talaiyya, India
4/D-7
Sep 16, 2011
01:27 AM

 "This is why we widely tolerate — even applaud — police brutality"

Just curious. What police brutality was applauded?

Ganesan
Nj, USA
3/D-6
Sep 16, 2011
01:23 AM

 "Elections, particularly national elections are complex issues,"

Our national elections are complex only in the sense that they are series of state elections. National elections in India are not decided on national issues. 

The article quoted is pure garbage.

Ganesan
Nj, USA
2/D-56
Sep 15, 2011
11:51 AM

"India’s new nationalism demands conformity, not rebellion, and it will back only issues of self-interest; it proclaims all Indians are equal, while being blind to or condoning discrimination against minorities."

This certainly is true for this forum! It is also very true of the Tea Partiers in the US and of the Republicans in general (though not true of traditional Republicans such as Nelson Rockefeller, George Pataki or Christine Whitman). However it is probably not true of the liberal democracies of Western Europe. Why the difference? I don't know.

Anwaar
Dallas, United States
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