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Left, Hindutva and Indian nationalism: Pritam Singh

Guest Post by PRITAM SINGH

Triggered by the recent events at JNU, it is inspiring that the Left and genuine liberal voices in India are standing up to the Hindutva fascist onslaught. However, I find it very disappointing that the current Left leadership and some left intellectuals and sympathisers (especially belonging to the CPI and CPM) are succumbing to the pressure of chauvinist Indian nationalism. One would be shirking one’s responsibility if one were not to criticise that misguided and seemingly scared Left for its pitiable practice of for ever chanting mantra of ‘unity and integrity of the country’ in a self-defeating game of competitive Indian nationalism. The Left is beating its breast and going to the town chanting that we are ‘desh bhagats’ in a foolish retaliation against Sanghi’s charges of left being desh dirohi. Tomorrow, the Sanghis will say that you are ‘Ram dirohi’ when you oppose the building of the Ram Mandir. Would you then start saying: we are Ram Bhatkas? Let us not succumb to Sanghi’s brow beating tactics. Let us openly proclaim that India is not one nation but a historically determined territorial space of many nations, nationalities and emerging/potential nations and nationalities. As capitalism expands in India and the regional diversity of India flowers further, new voices of national self-determination would start becoming more articulated.

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