Can Sonia be blamed ?

via Dr. Vijaya Rajiva published on June 8, 2011

The savage attack on the non violent peaceful demonstrators at yoga guru Ramdev’s camp on the Ram Lila grounds shortly after midnight will go down in the annals of India’s modern history as the second Jallianwalla Bagh. It is also being compared to the Emergency of 1975 which suspended democratic freedoms. And significantly also to the arrest of Mahatma Gandhi during the Quit India Movement of 1942. Mirabehn, the Mahatma’s disciple remarked : “ They came like thieves in the dead of night . . . . .”

Here too, a nonviolent yoga guru who was sleeping along with his followers after a day of prayers, bhajans, yoga and fasting was rudely woken up and later detained. The lathi charge and the use of tear gas left many elderly men, women and children disabled. Some suffered severe and critical injuries. One elderly woman sustained severe spinal injuries, and lies in a hospital bed with all four limbs paralysed. Her only crime was that she participated in yoga and fasting. While the Delhi police and their ruthless masters tried to offer explanations and justifications, the entire nation (except some hangers on of the ruling dispensation) has been outraged.

The blame game has begun. But the finger points directly to the Congress Party President and her willing partner in the government, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. She has with superb cunning tried to distance herself from the proceedings of June 4-5. But no one takes this seriously. There are three relevant committees who have a bearing on the decisions to attack the yoga guru. One is the Cabinet Committee for Political Affairs, the second is the Core Committee, and the third is a committee that links the party and the government. This was pointed out by one of the CNNIBN reporters, on June 5, 2001.

All were in the know and it is impossible for Sonia Gandhi not to have known. Indeed, the press and the nation have already indicted her, so it would seem from the press reports. In the succeeding days there has been some backtracking with the media taking the cue from the Congress that the party and the government were divided on the question of the attack on the yoga camp.

The Congress Party will undoubtedly go into damage control mode and try to shield Sonia from blame. However, as in the scams and corruption cases (Commonwealth and 2G) her involvement has been pointed out by many astute commentators. Senior lawyer Ram Jethmalani has on more than one occasion hinted at the links by referring to the powerful persons connected with the black money stashed away in Swiss banks. Baba Ramdev was also calling for the repatriation of the black money from Swiss banks. It was the central issue of Baba Ramdev’s satyagraha on June 4, 2011.

But can Sonia Gandhi be seriously blamed for the attack on a Hindu sant/sannyasin ?
Her attack dog Digvijay Singh, himself allegedly a shady character during his tenure as chief minister in Madhya Pradesh, calls the sannyasin a ‘thug.’ This is something no Hindu congress member is likely to do so openly. What then is the significant link between Digvijay Singh and his patrone ? He is not Hindu. A quick google search will inform the reader that he is a Christian. He has tried to conceal this fact, for reasons best known to himself.

That he is an opportunist is clear. There are large numbers of Indian Christians who remain loyal to the nation and who behave respectfully towards the majority religion of Hinduism and its gurus. The motley crew who are subservient to missionary propaganda are relatively few, if vocal, and have been bribed by the missionaries. In Digvijay Singh’s case his hypocrisy in pretending to be a Hindu must be called. During the June 4 days he said on public television that Baba Ramdev was not in the tradition of our Sanatan Dharma. The phrase he used was ‘hamare sanatana dharma’. Digvijay Singh is not a Hindu and therefore cannot speak about a Hindu sannyasin. Who is he trying to fool ?

With regard to his patrone can she seriously be blamed ? Ever since the Nicene Council of 325 CE when Emperor Constantine gathered together the bishops of the day and promulgated Christianity as the official doctrine of the realm, Italy has been a Catholic country. It historical memories are those of a Christian culture. Its art, religion, culture etc. are West European /Italian. Sonia Gandhi came to India as a young woman and married Rajiv Gandhi. She remained an Italian citizen for 16 years before she took Indian citizenship. She still holds her Italian passport. It is reported that her son Rahul also holds dual citizenship. This is clearly against Indian rules of citizenship.

Unlike Indian Catholics who are converts from Hinduism and whose ancestral memories are Hindu and whose attachments are to the land that is Hindusthan, Sonia Gandhi’s historical memories and attachments are to her native ancestral land and religion. She has no understanding of Hinduism and has made no effort to understand this vast and complex country whose main feature is Sanatana Dharma. Nor does she have the educational background to make up this deficiency since she does not seem to have anything beyond high school, if even that. It was possible for a very well informed and educated Julia Roberts to understand Hinduism and there are many others like her from the West.

But Sonia Gandhi does not quite fit the bill. Hence, she could without the least embarrasment order a brutal crackdown on a Hindu sannyasin (if the media reports are to be believed) while all the time her attack dog kept up a blitzkrieg of scurrilous verbal attacks on this same Hindu sannyasin.

While the present writer is fully in agreement with all the various political parties, organizations, NGOs and other individuals that the midnight attack on Baba Ramdev’s yoga camp in the Ram Lila grounds was a horrific blow against Indian democracy, it is also important for Hindu India to sit up and take note that it was not an ordinary political figure but a peaceful nonviolent Hindu sannyasin who was attacked that night.

The colonial British rulers managed to quell the sannyasi revolt of the 18th century. Baba Ramdev in the 21st century is both an Indian citizen peacefully and non violently protesting against corruption in high places and calling for the repatriation of black money from Swiss banks and he is also a Hindu sannyasin in the tradition of Swami Vivekananda.He cannot be easily silenced in independent India by the patrone of the Congress Party. Nor should she be blamed for trying to do so. She has neither the understanding nor respect for India, for reasons beyond her own control. It is time the nation called her for her deficiencies and set things right.

(The writer is a Political Philosopher who taught at a Canadian university).

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