Regionalism in India

On 15th of December 1953, when Potti Sriramulu succumbed to death not able to sustain 52 days of marathon fast that was undertaken to demand a separate state for Telugu speaking people, little did he realize that his death would become a launch pad for the dawn of Political Regionalism in India – that would in course of time alter the landscape of India.

But the brand of regionalism that evolved after Potti Sriramulu’s death was legitimate, genuine and logical. It reflected the aspirations of people at that time. It stood for fulfilling the longstanding want of people to have their own linguistic state. Thus, Andhra Pradesh became the first linguistic state of India. Today, Nellore district of Andhra Pradesh is renamed as Potti Sriramulu.

After the death of Sriramulu, reluctant Nehru was forced to agree to various cries from other parts of the country with similar demands. In 1954, a States Reorganization Committee was formed with Fazal Ali as its head, which recommended the formation of 16 new states and 3 Union Territories based on the language people spoke in those respective regions. This heralded a new phase in the Indian politics.

The later movements for separate states and territories gave birth to a slew of regional parties which eventually became prominent at the national level becoming crucial in the formation of governments – heralding a ‘coalition culture’ in Indian politics.

Regionalism: Meaning

Regionalism is a feeling or an ideology among a section of people residing in a particular geographical space characterized by unique language, culture etc., that they are the sons of the soil and every opportunity  in their land must be given to them first but not to the outsiders. It is a sort of Parochialism. In most of the cases it is raised for expedient political gains but not necessarily.

Growth and Development

Regionalism in India can be traced back to Dravida Movement started in Tamil Nadu. The movement initially focused on empowering Dalits, non-Brahmins, and poor people. Later it turned against imposition of Hindi as sole official language on non-Hindi speaking areas. Finally, the movement for some time focused on seceding from India to carve out their own Dravidastan or Dravida Nadu. The movement slowly declined and today they have become prominent regional parties after many splits and factionalism.

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Throughout India regionalism persisted. In Maharashtra Shiv Sena against Kannadigas in the name of Marathi pride and recently MNS activists against Biharis; in Punjab against non-Punjabis that gave rise to Khalistan Movement and earlier Akali Movement; in Andhra, Telangana Movement with an aim of separate state; in Assam ULFA militants against migrant Biharis and Bengalis; in North-East against other Indians.

It can be traced that regionalism slowly turned from non violent means to violent means to achieve their goals. From Potti Sriramulu’s non violent means of fatsing to Maharashtra Nav Nirman Sena (MNS) and ULFA’s violent means, regionalism has come a long way.

Regionalism in contemporary India is readily used for political gains by petty politicians and secessionist organizations. Economic reasons are exploited for political dividends.

When violence is used against people in the name of regionalism it is a criminal act and is punishable. Article 19 of the Constitution of India provides a citizen of India to move freely throughout the territory of India, to live and settle in any part, and to practice any profession, or to carry on any occupation, trade or business. When ULFA (United Liberation Front of Assam) militants or MNS (Maharashtra Navnirman Sena) activists used violence against poor migrant workers, they clearly violated the law of the land and also the Constitution which is above all, even above the Parliament.

Do we need to fear Regionalism?

No. Regionalism in India is only a short cut to meet the political ambitions by emotionally exploiting the sentiments of the people. The fear of Balkanization is void of any logic. India is bound by a common culture that has flourished on this land many thousand years ago. I may be Kannadiga or Tamil but I am an Indian first. My identity outside India is that of an Indian.

The states which fought for complete independence are now part of Indian Union and they have renounced violence to some extent ; they include Mizoram, Nagaland, Kashmir, Bodoland, Tamli Nadu. India is too big for these states to fight against and win.

Today regional parties define how the governments are formed and conducted both at the Centre and the state level. Indeed it is a good development as some political entities such as RJD, BSP, LJP, DMK, AIADMK, BJD have to some extent represented those people who were neglected in the political process for a long time. As long as they thrive for regional development without discriminating against outsiders, regionalism is good for India.

Every Indian is  son of this soil. A Bihari becomes Mumbaikar when a bomb explodes in Mumbai and a Mumbaikar becomes Bihari when Kosi wrecks havoc in the plains of Bihar. We are united by an idea called India and that unity is imperative if we want to realize the dream of becoming a superpower.

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58 Comments

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58 responses to “Regionalism in India

  1. Hello there. I was sent a link to your blog by a friend a while ago. I have been reading a long for a while now. Just wanted to say HI. Thanks for putting in all the hard work.

    Jennifer Lancey

  2. Sachin

    Links for certain important keywords have really helped
    to know more about your article.

  3. J HIND

    Regionalism is good as well as bad, obviously it adds to ones identity but also distracts people from the bigger picture of being Indian

  4. v rishi

    u did a very good job. a good and interesting starting point for anyone looking at origins of regionalism in india

  5. willsjohnrulez

    EXCELENT WRITEUP KEEP IT UP VINAY

  6. willsjohnrulez

    dear vinay where do u stay give me ur address

  7. give me ur mail id.
    i am from Karnataka, India

  8. gautam

    thanx vinay.
    i found your materials helpful for my projects.

  9. Santosh

    The constitution declares we are a Union. Has the regionalism and regional leaders proven to be India’s greatest boon or bane. Please let me know both about bane and boon.

  10. reshu

    hey gud work!!!

  11. jagu

    thank you it was really a very useful for me

  12. MM

    MEANING OF REGIONALISM GOT REALLY USEFUL TO ME……..THANK YOU

  13. jeffshawnjose

    great post…really useful…

  14. RUPESH

    Congrats for such a bold article but it could have been more thought provoking and engrossing if some light was thrown on regionalism at more grass root level which includes how common man reacts to regionalism etc.
    But anyhow a good one for it being such a complex and controversial issue.

  15. pooja

    it helped me a lot in my exam.

  16. zedz

    very nice post……it helped me understand regionalism in India a lot better !!

  17. pooja

    it was a god article and it helped me for my presentation ……thanks……and keep it up!!!!!!!!!!!!

  18. thanks Pooja and Zedz 4 ur feedback

  19. hey,
    thank you helped me alot
    thanx

  20. thanx
    this website is really good

  21. workineh muleta

    Dear friend ,Good job i got a lot from it God bless you. I am from Ethiopia

  22. Thank you Mr. Workineh Muleta :)

  23. Rashmi

    hi vinay…you have done a very good job…keep it up…GOD bless you.

  24. Bhagirath

    hi sir you have done well work. India is federal state bbut we are under a union and single citizen ship is there so we are indian. Our constitution says in article 1 that india is union of states. So we should not think about any independent state. Thanks

  25. s a raza

    thanks vinay for ur keen information about the state division.

  26. Asha Sharma

    Dear Vinay,
    I am going to work on a big way on Regionalism. Basically my area has been Communalism. I am taking up Regionalism and its impact on National Integration. Keep in touch,it will be very meaningful.I would need your advice. I am in Chandigarh(an Academic)Asha

  27. D.H.Pradeep

    Good article. I was born into a family from Kerala, which migrated into Delhi about 40 years ago. I have vivid recollections of my childhood, when I was hounded off as a ‘Madrasi’. And God! I was too young to know what ‘Madrasi’ meant. I grew up in the Delhi-UP border, and my parents having been raised in a rather caste-neutral (effectively, may be due to the communism in Kerala, where they were raised) kept me ignorant of the implications of caste system in our coutry. I merely read about it in my books, especially history text books- ….and thought till I was 18 that it is all HISTORY.

    However, when I entered college in DU, I met people from UP who somehow thought that I am Brahmin, and that Brahmins have ruined the Indian society. At that point of time in my life I realized that had I been caste-senstive and aware of this strong sentiment, I may not have suffered so much in my childhood.

    If I think in retrospective, my (nuclear) family environment was more or less parochial. I am sure if I am being baised when I say that – perhaps being adults, my parents were hit more often by the Madrasi thing (what is a Madrasi- A Madrasi is a person who cannot fight on the streets, like the people who belong to the maritial castes or riot-prone northern parts of the country, who does not beat up people and is scared. And is also not as hugely built as a Jat, Sardar ……the list goes on….martial castes of India). The effect of this parochial upbringing on me was disastrous, as the repurcussions that I had to bear from the society (as a kid and a teenager) were immense- because I would evangalise strict parochial Mallu-South India views (South Indians are intellectually superior to North Indians, South Indians are smarter than North Indians, South Indians are more educated that North Indians, Never trust a North Indian because in the end since they are castiest or parochial in their own ways, they will never support you….and the list of this bull shit goes on).

    Later in my life, I worked in Mumbai and studies in Pune. I was confronted my language chauvnism there. Educated locals in offices and class rooms spoke with one another in Marathi in my presence (when I was supposed to be a part of these discussions). I consider this very impolite and shameful.

    And now I am in Hyderabad…..Telengana…the rest we know (believe me…this movement has hit the grassroots here).

    Please read ‘The Jewish Century’ by Prof. Yuri Slezkine (Berkley Uni). Please keep all ghetto mentalities at home and spare children your neighbourhood.

  28. Thank you Asha,

    I am not so learned as to advice you. Anyway i will be in touch if you want some help.

  29. Pradeep,

    We can’t fight discrimination here without educating the masses. Here education implies broadmindedness. With multiculturalism and huge diversity we must learn to live with million opinions and behaviours. At the end of the day, howsoever the diversity is, one must learn to respect other people – irrespective of their race, sex, gender, region, nationality, religion, caste and status.

    Thanks for the comment and sharing your personal experience.

    Regards,
    vinay

  30. D.H.Pradeep

    What led to the formation of this nation?- was it only because of a common colonial master? Why did I get to hear from highly qualified academicians in Pune that Hindi is not our national language, and that although we have a national flower (lotus), national bird (peacock) and a national animal (….), yet we do not have a national language. In many part of the country Hindi seems to be treated as an imposed language. While studying in Pune, I met Rajasthanis from far flung places to small towns of that state, with tons of cash, blackberries but enough stupidity to fight with one another because one set was of ‘Rajputs’ and the other of ‘Jats’. What kind of emerging economy is this? This means that emerging economy does not imply that the society develops as well. Maharashtra seems to have it all- Mumbai for jobs, money, opportunities, Pune for education….I feel that every Maharashtrian should be forced to stay in UP, Bihar, Delhi, Eastern part of India, etc. Only then should they be allowed to speak about the nation. I had many arguments with many of the local (frogs in the well) about our country, and I found that although they may be educated (i.e. INDIAN STYLE- academically qualified!), yet their perceptions about the rest of the country is heavily based on media inputs and grapevine. Do they think that they are too superior to be a part of the same country to which UP and Bihar belongs? Do they want to replace the colonial masters, and civilize the wild, uncivilized rest of India? I feel that they prefer South Indians over North Indians, because more often than not the latter set of people would take less crap from them in comparision to the former. O! God! why are there so less martial races in South India.

    I don’t buy the opinion that regionalism is only caused and limited to politicians. Many a times a common individual (local) indulges with great sadistic pleasure, his/her torture (of the outsider) limited only because he/she has a common man’s life to lead.

    Why can’t we be like China? If our such old culture is mostly misunderstood and is more often used fashionably (and aped) than with a good purpose, then why not limit it to exhibitions and Republic day parades? If any meaning of regional cultures means dividing and segregating people, why have them?

    Why do Punjabis in Delhi moan for Pakistan? Do Tamilians have a yearning for Pakistan? Why was the IPKF sent to Sri Lanka? Why did India not give atleast a tacit support to Tamilians in Sri Lanka? – is it because most of the Indians are NORTH INDIANS?

    Need a break from venom spitting….catch u guys some time later.

  31. Ratnesh Shrivastava

    Vinay says education is needed. He concludes “At the end of the day, howsoever the diversity is, one must learn to respect other people – irrespective of their race, sex, gender, region, nationality, religion, caste and status”. Pradeep says: “I don’t buy the opinion that regionalism is only caused and limited to politicians. Many a times a common individual (local) indulges with great sadistic pleasure, his/her torture (of the outsider) limited only because he/she has a common man’s life to lead. ”

    Well the world appears complex because we make it complicated. What Man makes is called artificial. What nature or God has made is real or is the truth. So keep it simple the way God did. All identities of religion, race, nation, caste, region, language and sub-groups of each of them across the world divide Man into small packs each ready to battle the other like wolf packs. The leader aspiring to the head of each pack is ofcourse a politician – the head wolf – the wolf of the most dangerous variety. But individuals are guilty when they join or remain in a pack. All these are directed by the bad or the baser instincts or the animal like instincts in Man making Man the most dangerous animal on earth. Man stands ready to trigger events that could destroy not himself but all life on earth. So let us look at Man through the window of his good instincts and through what he needs to do acting on his good instincts.

    In truth Man is one. Simply put you can not find from any tests that a new born baby has a particular identity. Religion, caste, language and region are artificial adopted identities because no tests will reveal this identity. Biologically even race does not make a different identity. A research paper by Dr. Alan R. Templeton, Ph.D., professor of biology in Arts and Sciences, “Human Races: A Genetic and Evolutionary Perspective,” published in the fall 1998 issue of the American Anthropologist, shows that biologically there is no such thing as race. Dr Templeton and other anthropologists believe that race is a social concept and not a biological one. Biologically there is only one identity for humans typified by a common DNA template and each Man represents an individual genetic variation of this common DNA template with no other match in another Man. We of course do not have to go into biology because it is apparent if you open your eyes that each Man is different. There was for example one Abraham Lincoln and even though several centuries are over and the world population is now several billions, there is no exact copy of Abraham Lincoln. Have you seen an exact copy of Nehru, Gandhi, Lal Bahadur Shastri, Sanjiv Kumar or anyone else? Each individual has his own identity. The same exact copy of the DNA template working in an identical manner to produce an exact copy of the same person has never happened and will never happen. However minor variations in the template have resulted in some traits like skin color however these differences should be ignored in the face of the scientific fact that these difference are akin to individual variations. When the truth is that there are no biological groups defined by race then Man should not give reality to an untruth by making race a social concept. This applies to all artificial divisions between Man.

    Let us follow up on the strategy — keep it simple and confined to what is the truth and determine our future path of actions. The wrong path is that which does not adopt the path of truth and is the so called practical path where one says that history has made these identities form into societies in the world and we must hold a world view based on the present existence of these identities even though they are unreal or Man made and not made by God or Nature. Following such adoption of identities we must have democracy and freedom to allow these identities to fight for each of their perceived wrongs. The second path is not to give significance to identities based on untruth and move towards unifyiong the people and the world. The choice of the second path automatically leads to corrections of wrongs amonst ourselves. What one needs to promote is Justice by acting on good instincts. Thus we should correct our world view based on truth and change our minds about identities. The highest religion is to be truthful and honest. Our woes begin because we are not truthful and honest. Being truthful and honest with yourself is the point at which morality springs and thus the words tolerant and diversity are repugnant. Each Man identifies himself and holds dearly to one or more artificial identities without knowledge that “Identity” itself is a lie it is untruth. His vision is thus clouded by this lie about his specific identity. He sees himself through his specific identity rather than as himself. To be more specific a person XYZ does not see himself as a person XYZ having his independent thoughts, freedoms and beliefs developed through his own study and self-conviction but instead he views himself in the form of the identity that he has been branded with. He is a Muslim, Hindu or Christian because he is born into that religion as if his genes carry a code for religion, his thoughts and beleifs. He is an Indian or a Pakistani etc as if his genes carry a code for geographical residence. He strongly thinks of himself and others as belonging to “his” group or to “other” groups”. He believes that there is nothing wrong in believing so but ignores that this is not the truth and that this creates artificial walls separating Man from Man and thus is a dark thought rather than good. He ignores the fact that because this is dissociated from truth it is the source of many problems that the world faces. He believes he must defend his group, must have loyalty for his group and invests energy in false passion a far cry from what he must do and what he could do if he was guided by his better instincts leading him to help those who suffer and attend to the real problems in the world. As Vinay says it is OK to have regionalism where one fights for his rights. In my view Man should fight for “good” of Man and the good will come also to oneself. The whole universe will conspire to bring the good to Man. If we keep fighting as one wolf pack fights with another for rights nobody is going to get anywhere. If Man fights for the good of Man then he would create happiness and a world where if he himself was to fall in grief there would be others to help him. Instead starting from a traditional branded view of himself and those of others in the world with whome he has to relate to, he carries a divided World View which is totally dissociated from Truth. If truth and honesty are virtues, if God is there and he favors truth and honesty then this world view is far distant from God. In a world with all Men holding such World views it is perhaps wrong to only designate some as fundamentalists. In my view we all have become rigid fundamentalists unwilling to see the Truth and change the world for the better. It amazes me that we call those who have extreme passions for rituals as fundamentalist followers of faith but ignore the fundamental origins of this tendency that lies in our own rigidity in terms of ignoring truth when forming our world view. Just as the leader of the wolf pack has his own motivations we as individuals have motivations to identify into packs and without renouncing this unreal world view I doubt if we have a right to castigate the political leader alone. In this I agree with Pradeep.

    Man is bestowed with good and bad instincts. The bad instincts are aroused because of our needs and greediness. We covet more than the other person has. Combined with this we divide Man into many “others” This is a path to a bad future for our children —— grand children and great great granchildren —— etc etc etc. Keeping it simple again we must be responsible and secure a good future for our children —— grand children and great great granchildren ——. It is a responsibilty that has to be taken with all seriousness and yes without understanding the truth and instead of saying the Government should be secular we should individually correct ourselves about our our understanding of “me” and “mine” and “others”. We are all one and our childrens future is all tied together to that of the whole world. Our future will be bad if Chinas future is bad or if USAs future will be bad or if Pakistan’s future will be bad or if the future of anu of the “other” will be bad. You see the world is tied together and there is no escape from making the choice whether we want to act on good instincts ie choosing the truth and a correct world view vs continuing on the historical violent past and acting on bad instincts.

    Keeping it simple again once we have the right world view we will be able to recognise the wolf pack leaders who motivate our bad instincts and seek to make political capital out of it. Perhaps this is the most difficult part. All will need to be educated on the right world view to be in a position to make the right choice. Infact the right choice will be easy. Lat us take an example. We see that a mother guided by her instincts will do anything to protect her child from the dangers posed to the child. A mother who is otherwise in her instincts is a rarity and would be characterised at a level lower than the lowest. The mother instincts are there in all of us and are expressed as our instincts to our sphere which is limited by our identity group. We defend the group we identify with. The problem is that we do not identify with our true identity and if we did we would protect and defend the rights of all Man and ensure justice in a manner that a Mother defends her child. We would spend our efforts on the true problems of those who suffer.

    To summarise the simple path of truth.
    1. We should treat with insignificance our identities and recognise that we are all one.
    2. We should expand our sphere of our mother instincts to all of Mankind and if we do so we will recognise the evil politician who misleads us and we would not vote for one. Automatically we will treat all with respect.
    3. We should follow the directions of our good instincts in us rather than politically controlled and organised modern day religion.
    The simple path is a simple path of being good moral persons and is not complicated.

  32. Hello Ratnesh,

    Thanks for the response. Here are my views regarding your comment.

    You rightly said that every man has a common template of DNA, but because of mutations and genetic variations each human being is distinct and as you again rightly pointed out there can’t be another Nehru or Gandhi (genetically identical twins possess same genes, but because of the influence of environment they tend to differ slightly).

    Using the above fact I can say that each man has unique instincts and thought process that defines his identity. It is idealistic to say that we are all one, but because of the very fact that we ‘think’ all men can never be ‘one’. The world surrounding us is full of opportunities and temptations, and every man wants a better life – so he strives but not alone, because he is a social animal by birth and needs to live in a group that guarantees his safety. Grouping is inevitable for humans.

    Your views warrant anarchy albeit an ideal one. There would not have been racism, castism, regionalism or communalism if men knew how to use their goodness for the betterment of mankind. Though we are not born with vices, the struggle for existence brings them out because we need resources and there are many vying for them.

    There has never been a better world. If we go by history we are living in a far better world now.

    I really admire your views, but do you really think they can be achieved?

    To be honest being good, honest and morally correct is very difficult friend.

    Regards

    Vinay

  33. Ratnesh Shrivastava

    Thanks for the response Vinay.

    I will clarify that my use of the language “Man is One” does not restrict “individuals” to any particular thoughts, rather it advocates individual freedom of thought and spiritual quest. Man is “one” means that there all groups made by Man are artificial. I agree with you when you say that there would not have been racism, castism, regionalism or communalism if men knew how to use their goodness for the betterment of mankind. I am going a little further and saying Man better overcome his weaknesses and learn to use his goodness for betterment of Mankind so that one does not have to say in future that there would not have been total misery, suffering and destruction had Man learnt to use his goodness for betterment of Mankind.

    Why does groupism take place? By nature Man is but another animal and is Ordinary. No amount of education releives him from being ordinary because by nature Man is susceptiple to falling prey to his animal instincts. Animal instincts are governed by certain principles that we can observe in nature. They lead to groups or packs or herds. You say that this is necessary because he is a “social animal” by birth and needs to live in a group that guarantees his safety. However, this does not guarantee safety because besides living in groups needs to follow his good instincts to guarenatee his safety. Let us take a look at this in more detail.

    In a struggle for survival one animal when hungry may hunt and kill another animal to quench his basic need for food, for self protection or protection of their young, for a mate or for territory. Wolves group into packs because of the need to hunt together in a group to ensure success in catching the prey which is several times its own size. Apart from Man, however there are two factors that reduce the chances of survival of the wolf. It is Tigers. If the wolf-packs did not fight with other wolf-packs but adopted a herd tendency uniting into a larger pack then the wolf could dominate the Jungle. To dominate over Man the wolf needs much more than unity in the form of a Herd tendency. He needs an ability to understand the basics of survival atleast to a very small fraction of the way in which Man can, then with a herd forming tendency and even his limited understanding, he would be more than a match for atleast the stone age Man who used crude weapons. Wolf could then have protected his habitat from Man. Unfortunately for the wolf, he does not also have the intelligence to understand that he needs to protect his habitat from Man. God has not been so kind to the wolf as Man. The wolf does not realize the cause of his misery. What about some animals also more endowed then other animals? How about the King of all Land animals – The Tiger. It is seen that once the all powerful Tiger has his kill he feeds on the same but thereafter badly struggles to hide and protect the remainder from scavengers. The Tiger is powerless against the hunter in Man. The Tiger is powerful but is not endowed with intelligence enough to form herds and protect his kill from scavengers and his habitat from man. As Forests dwindle the greatly endowed Tiger is fighting for survival. The Tiger does not have the endowments and intelligence of Killer whales. Note I deliberately mention Killer whales rather than the Stone Age Man. This is because the Stone Age Man had predators and it is only the Modern Man that has attained the status of Killer whales. Killer whales and Modern Man are similar in the sense that they are both regarded as Apex predators. Apex predators are predators that reside at the top of their food chain because they are too difficult to kill and have practically no predators of their own. Killer whales are highly social with an evolved culture. They are capable of military-disciplined organised sophisticated hunting in groups. They are known to hunt the largest animal on earth i.e. the Blue Whale. If the Tiger was endowed with this ability, the Stone Age Man would have been no match for it. If the Blue Whale did not live in isolation then it would not be susceptible to attack from Killer Whales in the same way as Man who lives socially and united in groups is able to save himself from the Tiger.

    In contrast to wolves who form packs, the reason deer or other animals form herds is protection against predators. A predator may hesitate attacking a larger group but if it does there is a risk dilution – the risk to one individual that it will be a victim is reduced. The deer and other herding animals are not carnivorous and can get the food they need from plants. To a large extent the risk dilution strategy of the herd is largely more successful than the Wolf pack’s incomplete unity.

    Man is endowed with somewhat better qualities for survival. He groups together both with the motivations of wolves and herds and is endowed with the largest brain. However, when he forms packs or herds and acts as a herd his instincts stoop to the same low levels as the wolf. Like a wolf pack fights another wolf pack, Man has formed herds in the form of identities and something in his nature from his animal in him goads him into fights. It is mere fiction that Man is any different from other animals, that he is of higher order, or that he is Civilised. Man does it only better than other animals because of his endowment of intelligence. Like animals do not realise their weakness Man does not recognise his weakness is his falling under the control of his dark instincts rather than his good instincts.

    The laws of nature will make him behave in an aggressive violent manner but Man has the faculties of moral judgement to control his behaviour for the good of the world and himself. Despite this, the fact remains that Man has been and is the most ferocious and dangerous animal on earth and his activities have lead to near extinction of many animals. The Homo Sapien is perhaps responsible for the extinction of his close brother the Neanderthals. How can we expect that Man will have Civil behaviour. In an autimmune disease the body immune cells go wrong and instead of attacking foreign cells start attacking the body’s own cells. Man killed a close relative, the neanderthal and now he is on a path to destroy himself. Once this is apparent it is obvious that the threat to Man is Man. The Negative Human Aggression and violence unchecked will lead to not just Man’s destruction but that of the whole earth. In the same way as the Wolf and Tiger do not realize their weakness, Man also does not realize that the unreal and badly divided socio-political complex world that he has created will bring him to the verge of extinction. Also Man is too busy in inter-pack conflicts and is ignoring the dangers to his and the world’s survival. Even though Man is able to see some of the problems his vision is clouded by a wrong world view based on untruth and he is too busy to focus on the basic causes and the basic problems facing him and causing him unhappiness. Therefore he fails to find the right solution to problem and the path to happiness.

    Man staying together without raising a too much of a hang-up about his identity does not mean anarchy. There are means to instil sense into Man.

    Contrary to the animal behaviour in Man, there are historical attempts of thinkers and scholars in Man to form concepts of ethics and morality by which Man should live and ways by which he should escape from being an animal. True Religion is a part of Man’s attempt to escape from the Negative in him and become civilised. Unfortunately, Negative aggression wins over true religion because Man ties himself into identities based on religion, race, region, caste etc converting the groups into packs similar to the pack of wolves. True religion has become extinct –in its place has emerged ritualistic wolf-packs that are driven by our wolf-pack tendency. Examples of Man’s Negative behaviour such as Terrorism, racial violence, hatred speeches etc find their way in the front page newspaper headlines throughout the world. Man again and again is unknowingly fighting against his own survival because violence leads to decreased chances of survival of one or another. True Religion is about nullifying these evil characters of Man for his own good. It is necessary to revive true religion and prevent the uninformed and the unenlightened from practicing commerce and politics in true religion. True religion is akin to the devotion of Prahlad whereas the religions of today have turned into Hiranyakashyaps.

    All aggressive behaviours described above are the negative kinks of creation. They represent what in religion is identified as evil. Western religions refer to devil and God. Islam refers to the Devil as Iblis. In Hinduism Good and Evil can be found within an individual depending on his gunas. Any difference between the Christianity/Islamic view and the Hinduism view are immaterial in view of the fact that these are hypothesised with the purpose of guiding Man towards Good deeds. If a similarity in Hinduism is to be drawn with the concept of Devil in Christianity and Islam then one could consider the view that the people in whom tamas (bad motivations and intentions) outweigh the Saatvic gunas (good intentions) can be considered as controlled by the Devil. Materially then the principles enshrined attempt to drive Man towards civilised behaviour which will lead to his survival. It is indeed an element in the struggle of Man for his survival. I consider the aggressive behaviour as one that harms another. I like to refer to it as Parasitism. This aggressive behaviour or parasitism is the Tamas or the Devil in us. On the other hands we see examples of symbiosis in the world. Symbiosis is the invention of God. It is a Saatvic Guna. Now if you review the struggle for survival concepts it emerges that Tamasic gunas are natural in most living beings. It is only Man who besides intelligence has ability to intentionally choose sides between actions guided by Devil or Tamasic gunas or those guided by God or by Saatvic gunas. An attempt to enhance the saatvic gunas over the destructive Taamsic gunas is therefore an element in the struggle for survival. I want to clarify that I do not advocate discarding the concept of true religion but only that religion is not a social concept that leads to an identity. I advocate that Man should endeavour to inspire his good soul to do good works and in doing so he should not fall into the trap of his bad soul and make religion a wolf pack.

  34. Ratnesh Shrivastava

    My response was incomplete due to paucity of time. Please find the remaining response below.

    I have found our exchange of views very productive. I understand your questioning of the workability of idealistic positions I have proposed. Workability is indeed an important factor and may need thought. Just as in science so also in social science you must first have a theory/hypothesis which is then followed by implementation. To achieve ideal goals the theory necessarily must be idealistic.Neither the goals should be diluted nor the theory. Second the persons who implement the theory must accept the principles or similar principles, understand the importance of working with those principles without transgression and have the skills to implement them. Here the persons are all of Mankind or atleast a majority. Therefore, the question is whether my proposal is achievable is indeed tough if you are seeking an immediate solution. However the changes of society are not only workable they are a natural consequence of what we choose to beleive and accept. There is no refutation of the fact that Mankind needs and desires a good future. That desire will grow stronger and stronger as we keep working on existing faulty principles making our life more and more miserable. When Man will desire a change for the better and understand what specific chage is strongly desirable then all of Universe will conspire to bring that change. Infact nobody will be able to stop that wave of change.

    Coming back to our core discussion I realise that my lengthy discourse needs to be connected with your comments.

    We both agree with many basic positions.

    We both agree with the basic concept of identity being unique to an individual and you rightly said “I can say that each man has unique instincts and thought process that defines his identity.”

    You said ” It is idealistic to say that we are all one, but because of the very fact that we ‘think’ all men can never be ‘one’. I explained that I agree with individuality and in fact my discourse requires freedom of individual thought and demands individual spiritual quest, because each Man is his own individual both scientifically and in terms of having independent thinking he can not be branded into a subgroup of Mankind because of his birth. Placing an individual in subgroups of Mankind is contrary to his individual freedoms (equivalent to slavery of his identity to the group’s identity and thinking). Because you can not place him in a subgroup (particularly to groups of caste, religion and region which have acquired the face of Hiranyakashyap and have become vilent and repugnant) – he only belongs to Mankind. Therefore it leads to the conclusion that Man is One i.e. there is only one group i.e. Mankind.

    You fear anarchy. I do not think anarchy is a matter of concern here. The organised system, that you beleive is ordered, I beleive it to be akin to a Jail in the form of outdated social groups such as caste that have no relevance to present day society. An escape from the jail of a low caste identity will be dear to a person branded with a low caste status and treated with disrespect and discriminated against. This organization that you will preserve for fear of anarchy is an evil system. We can not have anarchy in a democracy that has rules of law executed with sincerity by people who work with their good instincts and act effectively against violation of law. Anarchy is there now because the executive branches themselves consist of people who may act not by rules of law but exercise their bias. One can spend a day in a police station in a small village and the working of the police will be laid bare.

    You raise an important point that each individual has certain concerns “The world surrounding us is full of opportunities and temptations, and every man wants a better life – so he strives but not alone, because he is a social animal by birth and needs to live in a group that guarantees his safety. Grouping is inevitable for humans.” My whole discourse revolves around this. It is about life’s struggle. It is about biology and the in built instincts in us. To the best of my understanding I have penned down my view of how life’s struggles join with our instincts to create groupings versus how they would work with better realization by Man about grouping and his better instincts. We all know and are in touch with our instincts. We do not know from where our good instincts originate but each individual has good instincts and therefore even though the existence of God and Devil can be researched to find the mystery, the existence of good and dark instincts can not be denied. I have faith in the fact that each individual therefore has good instincts embedded in him. As you point out that each individual also has survival instincts embedded in him. Now we need to poise and think. The survival instinct alone is not enough as is clear from the discourse. Survival instincts working alone along with passions of identity turn color and come in the control of our dark instincts . You can see the result in the violence around the whole world today and in newspaper report of each and every city across the world. The survival instincts working alone are leading into a world that will deprive future generations of living in a happy peaceful world in which Man across the globe is one family bonded through his good instincts. In my theory there is a slow dissolution of the unreal identities if Man starts rejecting the unreal identities. Removal of bias and biased wrongdoers follows as a natural consequence. Still protest against those who wrong others is necessary but in a democracy it is necessary that if “Y” is truly wronged then “Z” also joins in protest. The wrong will only then be removed. Under such conditions an oppressor would not exist or not allowed a position of control or lordship. Z does not join because of the lack of passion to arouse his good instincts – which I call mother instincts. Why do honor killings continue in India? Why are our objections to the same weak and quickly die away? Why does not the whole of India dissociate itself from the wrongs caste system that treats Man unequally? Why is Gandhi the last person I know belonging to the higher castes but who had the courage to uplift the low castes albeit in his own way of still vouching for the caste system? He was bold but he could not have been very bold for he would then alienate the upper castes at that time. But now we are in a time more than half a century after his death. Why the last few reformers of Indian society such as Raja Ram Mohan Roy and others belong to the 19th century and there are none in the 20th century and in the modern 21st century. Why we, who wear the cloak of being educated and modern don’t talk about reformation of religion and society anymore but we only talk about reforming the economic system.Why we always talk about the wrongs commited on “us or our group” but do not protest for the lack of proper medical care for those afflicted by diseases. Even small countries such as Singapore have advanced far ahead of India and we fill our newspapers with false inpressions of our position in the world. The answer is simple. We are irresponsible to our duty to ensure a good future of our children or we have forgotten to look at what is the truth, what is good and what is bad. We have come to be in the control of our evil instincts and do not care what happens in the future. We need to become aware of what we are doing and change that.

    There is another situation that is negative, Sometimes “Y” guided by his dark instincts and conjures wrongs on him to support his claim for a greater share of the pie or a vote from the innocent population who is misguided by “Y”. If “Y’s” personality is built in an environment that places “good instincts” at a pedestal and deplores dark instincts we would not have such “Y”s.

    In order to make anything workable each individual must be allowed to rise from slavery to his identity to individual freedom and a new culture where all are equal, all are one and all are respected. In order for that to happen we must understand the wrong world view that we work with and the correct world view that must be adopted.

  35. We have become slaves of our own freedom. The system we live in guarantees the death of individual identity and bonds him to the never ending subjugation. This might seem worst pessimism, but look at the problems we have and almost nil solutions we have found to resolve these problems.

    ‘We’ have stopped protesting because we don’t have a issue that affects everyone in real sense. Before we got independence we had a common evil to fight against – earning freedom. But with billion aspirations and innumerable ‘subgroups’, we have lost the zeal to talk and fight for ‘mankind’.

    The system will not hesitate to punish anyone in the guise of sedition and other charges. Democracy is just a deceitful cloak we have rediscovered to cling to power and subject the subjects to eternal misery.

    We, the lesser mortals do not protest because what we are experiencing today is far better than it had ever been. Our genes must shed down the ‘slave mentality’ we have within us if we have to rise and realize our individuality and personal identity.

  36. GOPI

    this info will b too useful for me………
    i think India is bettering………
    ULFA,and many other org.s gave up arms at least partially………
    marathis speaking against shiva sena and MNS
    national parties lyk congress and bjp improving itself in tamil nadu…….

  37. Ratnesh Shrivastava

    All this comes to not if Indians do not act on the basis of a correct world view of oneness of Man. Action that represents change is very difficult because it requires consensus from a majority even if it is a consensus on what seems to be plain and simply obvious. It seems obvious to me that people can listen to teachings of different religions and gurus at different times but they do not have to belong to any religion or be identified by a religion. You can listent to Lata or Asha or Sonu Nigam etc and enjoy each. You are not identified by one of Lata or Asha or Sonu and then clasified ot branded into categories. So it is for religion. Religion is for spiritual quest and guidance – it is not something that should be used as a matter of identity. So also for other forms of sub-identities. So broaden your vision of yourself and become not identified by others branding of yourself but become identified by your true self alone.

    Ratnesh Shrivastava

  38. Govinda Mittal

    Thankks for d gud article

  39. thanx………for the great information

  40. Ashok K. Rathod

    It is very good article which shows that in India though there is different type of people but still there is maintained ‘UNITY’

  41. hey dude its nice
    it was very useful for my proj.

  42. I am curious to find out what blog system you are
    using? I’m experiencing some minor security problems with my latest blog and I would like to find something more risk-free. Do you have any recommendations?

  43. Great Job Vinay……. Thanks for giving great Article.

  44. Manab kashyap

    Thnxxxxx

  45. Manab kashyap

    Nice article. Thnx 4 ur post.

  46. Tanya

    Thank u . I have an exam tomorrow regionalism being there syllabus ….thanks I was about to leave that topic. But I think now I will attempt that question

  47. Pradeep

    Was there an India before 1947? Cross ur hearts and tell me. Of course there was the British India. A ‘common cause’ (?) brought people together under great leaders…(But one Indian shot Gandhiji dead!!!)

    I feel that the Sri Lankans look more like many south indians than the Punjabis…so ethnicity cannot be the uniting factor…religion can also not be the uniting factor- multiple religions in our country….language…O MY GOD!! NO WAY…caste …no….

    I think that the history of India starts from 1947 and whatever happened before that was either an effort towards nation building or the history of various kingdoms and empires that thrived within the boundaries of the ‘present’ India.

    So what is this big talk about ‘Indian culture’????…

    Why can’t all Indians accept and respect the diversity in a modern nation and learn to love the ‘different’ and get out of the incestuous mentality of ‘love only those who are like us’.

    Such diversity…over 1.2 billion people. What is minority in this nation? Who can call even 5% of this population a minority? Well even a fraction of this huge population is more that population of many countries in the world. So in the name of democracy is there not a chance that huge numbers of people get marginalized,…well because they are some kind of minority. (I am not at all restricting myself to religious minority…Hindu-Muslim may be the most popularized social rift in this country, but remember that the the marauders from Khyber Pass did not loot and rape the whole of the ‘modern’ India (I am using the qualifier ‘modern’ here for those who still live in the illusion that there was an India before 1947). And therefore not the whole of India lives with the inherited vengeance…but ya! the majority. I even doubt if Pakistan has any interest in south or north east India, …but the income tax of all the citizens goes towards this Indo-Pak problem. Did Nehru not say “not a blade of grass grows there” about the part of Kashmir taken by Pakistan?

    Why did the separatist movement come up in Nagaland so close to the Independence? And what is happening in that part of the country now…? Either pumping money or pumping bullets…what about naxalism…it has been around since a long time in India….and these are just the violent exhibition of protest against the nation…how many such voices lay buried in how many indian hearts???

    What was the book ‘the white tiger’ about? In German there is a type of literature know as ‘anti-heimat’ literature. heimat is ‘the place to which a person belongs’ and anti- …you all know what that means.

    I thing ‘the white tiger’ falls into this category…and it is extremely well-written.
    ,

    • Rahul

      Off the topic…but you should read the history of mauryans, Guptas, Palas, Mugals. Infact you should read the complete history of India before making a conclusion. It is you, my friend, who is under illusion..

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  50. In my opinion, regionalism is more of a mindset that one develops over a time. Even nationalism is no different.
    These kind of ‘isms’ just restrict ones horizon. It gives one a limited armoury to choose from.
    We all belong to one universe. We should rejoice of being one…:-)

    • Regionalism is more about identity than mindset. People of same taste and aspiration come together and form a unique group. There exists various tastes and aspirations. I like to call it as Big Boss syndrome – you put people in a confined space for 100 days yet there they form groups despite many opportunities to live like a family; they fight each other and like to see someone get eliminated who do not conform to their tastes. On a macro-scale, various factors contribute in group formations. India with its huge diversity and high population is no exception to this rule. If regionalism is for a just cause, it should be appreciated.

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