Aftermath of the Baba-giri

Back to square one. That’s what happened at the end of the fasting drama of Baba Ramdev. Everything remains the same except that we got to see Ramdev in a churidhar, Ramdev’s alleged ties with communal elements, a high-profile fasting stage and finally Ramdev quitting the biggest political entertainment show on mere promises. The man who claimed that yoga could cure the incurable diseases have finally given up to the doctors who have advised him “to abstain from yoga for two-three days and take rest“. Hmm..

Sonia Gandhi and Congress party must be laughing at all this. Had someone more credible and popular were on the forefront of these fights, they would have been in trouble handling the situation. But for their luck, the mass movements in the new India are always led by wrong people like Hazare or Ramdev who have questionable personality and stand on various issues. So the UPA government, the most corrupt government that we have seen in the recent history of India, could thrash the movement and go on to justify it. And the folks like Ramdev passed the ball to the UPA court that even the police mishandling of the Ramlila ground situation has been pushed down the memory lane.

But Ramdev did not say “at times like this, you do pranayam” as he did once. Instead, the yoga guru said he would form up an army of 11000 soldiers who would be trained in arms. Something that we can now call ‘the Baba-giri’. With the Congress on the revenge and has ordered many inquiries into the Yadav-turned-Dev Ramkrishna’s empire, we might see more entertaining news in the coming days about the yoga guru.

On another news, a Sadhu who also was on a fast-unto-death finally died in the same hospital as Baba Ramdev was admitted. There were no cabinet ministers to see him and discuss his demands and no long lines of sadhus or common man who were in support. His cause, a genuine one, was against the illegal mining to save Ganga river. On other such news, Irom Sharmila is still fasting, even after 10 years and is still being force-fed. Not many, including much of the middle-class crusaders, are bothered about it. And the middle-class arm-chair activists have now begun justifying their silence on these issues over several forums in the Internet. They say that middle-class cannot relate with the issues of Binayak Sen or Irom Sharmila, hence the silence. Reminds me of the poem/quote by the anti-Nazi theologian Martin Niemöller:

First they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Jew.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.

Then they came for the communists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.

Then they came for me
and there was no one left to speak out for me.

Ramdev Lila

The sad state of India is that even the agitations in the name of common-man are hijacked by people with vested interests. So the right movements are lead by the wrong people. Wrong people who support other wrong people and the wrong causes. People who are more interested in fame and publicity. People who have an eye on being in the line of power. That is what happened with Jan Lokpal Bill and now the fight against black money.

I have written earlier about Anna Hazare and his show. Now it’s the turn of Baba Ramdev, the yoga master. Like Jan Lok Pal Bill, I so very badly want to see some action done on the black money put in the foreign countries but like the JLP bill, this movement is also lead by the wrong man, or a man who has authoritative, suspicious and intolerant views on core issues. Ramdev asked for death penalty to the corrupt people and that’s going over the top. He wants sex education in schools need to be replaced by yoga education. He wants 100% swadeshi movement. He says homosexuals are sick people and English education should be replaced by Hindi.

I see utter non-sense, intolerance and ignorance in his views. This fellow clearly doesn’t understand how economy or global trade or free-market works (I don’t believe in a full-fledged free-market but a government controlled free-market). He is also pushing us to the back of the time and is being insensitive to the non-Hindi speaking regions when he pushes Hindi instead of English. The contribution of English to the youth and marginalized in this country is more than what this guy knows.

And who chose him to represent the 121 crore Indians as he claims himself? As far as I know he represents only his followers from across different parts of India and nobody else. He doesn’t have the right to speak authoritatively for the common man without the consent of the common man through a democratic process. The same so-called torch bearers of democracy need to learn a thing or two when they or their followers makes demi-gods out of them. Shanthi Bhushan said, “Ultimately the power is with Anna, so whatever Anna says has to be accepted” and as an NYT article claims, Baba Ramdev seems to have said, “I am very powerful“. Seems that the motto now is not power to “the” people but power to “some” people. The yoga guru seems to have said, “what the people need is honest, brave and responsible leadership” and what better example than himself to show the bravery of trying to escape the police in a churidhar!

Those who are clearly benefiting from all this is still the Congress party. Fortunately for them, the leaders of the movements against corruption and black money are such hypocrites so it is easy for the Congress party and the UPA to drive things their way, though I am sure they must be regretting the way they handled Ramdev issue with the midnight eviction episode.

And the churidhar-clad Baba, who has full support from the Sangh Parivar elements, has now warned the government that “next time in Ramlila, it will be Ravanlila“. We can only wait and see the turn of events.