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Monday, Oct 18, 2021
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Forever Young And Dead

The 50th anniversary of the Naxalbari uprising offers us an opportunity to look in the rearview mirror and ask: did they all die in vain?

Forever Young And Dead
Forever Young And Dead
outlookindia.com
2017-04-15T10:36:35+05:30

Idealism kills. This warning, which should always be printed in bold in the manifestos of martyrdom, got smudged in the spring shower of 1967. It was just two decades after independence, after the creation of a new Republic. There was still hope. The syndicate, the sycophants and the old feudal lords were firmly in the saddle, but the Indian state was still a new beast and the young thought that they could tame it to be more humane, just and equal. So, they lighted a lamp and burnt themselves to keep the flame alive. Most of those young, angry and beautiful people didn’t wait to grow middle-aged or practical. Their lives and deaths have influenced politics, movies, poetry and much else. Now, the 50th anniversary of the Naxalbari uprising offers us an opportunity to look in the rearview mirror and ask: did they all die in vain?

It is impossible not to admire these people who gave up everything for absolutely nothing in return. They thought they were going to change the world. Their previous generation, the Gandhian freedom fighters who founded the Communist Party of...

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