Guru Tamasoma was in a tearing hurry to implement his pet project, Akhand Bharat. He had a dual strategy to achieve this—Hindu Bharat and Tejomay Bharat (Shining India). “In your modern language, it is like ‘dual-SIM’ strategy,” he explained to Mantriji. “One, you should make Bharat purely Hindu vegetarian and get rid of all non-Hindus, and all those who don’t agree with you. Second, use Arthashastra to make your economy strong, with lots of foreign investment. Bas, once people make money-with jobs or contracts or heh-heh!—they will just shut up and put up with anything. Then Akhand Bharat will rule the world. “Chokas! Jai Shree Krishna!” Mantriji roared, and set about implementing the plan immediately.
Let me make plan clearer, Guruji said. “Bharat is only for Hindus. All secularwallahs we will fry and eat for breakfast with fafda-jalebi. Now look at Teesta Setalvad. She is thinking that Bharat is also for impure, non-Hindu communities, and on top of it, is fighting for justice! How we can build Akhand Bharat, if we waste time with undemocratic things like secularism and justice? She is going on fighting for justice for members of a certain community, who were killed in the 2002 Gujarat riots. Baap re, her organisations Sabrang Trust and Citizens for Justice and Peace have got about 120 convictions of our bhais and behens who are doing holy work for Hindu purity. How can we allow this? Mantriji, we must tie her up so tight in legal knots, and give her tareekh pe tareekh, so that she won’t have any time left to get justice for a certain community. Case par case lagao, FIR lagao, misuse of funds lagao, Foreign Contributions Regulations Act violation lagao, Ford Foundation funding par clearance lagao. Ministry of Home Affairs, CBI, Gujarat Crime Branch—sab ko bolo, usko line pe lana hai.”
Vidhushak fingered his chin. “Guruji, you are mahaan, of course! But I have a small question: if there are constant riots pe riots, counter riots, bombings and murders, why will foreign investors invest in Tejomay Bharat?”
But Guru Tamasoma’s wisdom was not to be scorned. After all, Mantriji was doing his bidding. “Now look at that other secularwalli, Rohini Salian,” he scoffed. “She is Special Public Prosecutor in Malegaon blast case, and told the media that the National Investigating Agency is pressuring her to ‘go soft’ on the accused. Ridiculous, how pure Hindus like Sadhvi Pragnya Singh Thakur and Lt. Colonel Prasad Shrikant Purohit are being chargesheeted! Transfer the case to a special court with a special judge. One who understands that only certain community doing bomb blast-murder is terrorist, but Hindus doing the same for Akhand Bharat will earn punya.”
Vidhushak was sceptical. “Wah, Guruji, greatness is your other name! But I have a small question. Certain community terrorists are hanged—Mohammed Afzal Guru, Ajmal Kasab, and perhaps Yakub Memon-—but other community terrorists doing bomb visphot-murder-burning in Ajmer, Modasa, Malegaon, Ballabhgarh, no problem. If Hindu Bharat keeps showing the world that justice and secularism have no place in our democracy, then Obama and global leaders will think, better invest in China. It is much cheaper anyway. So be careful, Guruji!
Guruji smiled. He explained, “It was Chanakya’s strategy: don’t attack the centre; attack from the fringes, from many sides, and the centre is bound to fall sooner or later. Thoda difficult to send full certain community to Pakistan. So let us do multiple, fringe attacks. Ban cow slaughter. Derecognise madrasas as schools. Catch those Christians also. Hindu Bharat must rule, whatever it takes—ghar wapsi “re-conversions” of Muslims and Christians to Hinduism, attacks on churches, sab theek hai. Who are all these people, anyway? They are all Hindus who have strayed. If the history textbooks don’t say that, just rewrite them, kai vando nathi. Everything begins and ends with the Saraswati.”
Vidhushak frowned. “Effulgent be your glory, Guruji!” he said. “But didn’t you just say that when you attack from the fringes, from many sides, eventually the centre will fall? That would be like a Bharat Dahan, wouldn’t it? But I’m sure I misunderstood your great wisdom. Please forgive me!”
“Ah, Vidhushak,” Guru Tamasoma replied. “I thought you were smart, but you are getting old. And you are mixing it up with some other story. You are forgiven.”
Meenakshi Shedde is South Asia Consultant to the Berlin Film Festival, award-winning critic, curator to festivals worldwide and journalist. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The views expressed in this column are the individual’s and don’t represent those of the paper.