Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Another Open Letter to Modi

In response to this

Dear PM-elect Modiji,

Many congratulations to you for your historic victory in the 2014 General Elections. Many million young Indians like myself were distressed at how India was marching backwards in the last five years and at the way so-called secular parties were dividing people through hate and fear in the name of secularism. We were distressed by the fact that every PM of India to date was born before Independence and was largely stuck in the time-warp of Partition, unable to look at the future of Hindus, Muslims and other communities as one great nation. With your election, which by all measure was a vote directly for you, we have rejected that old thought.

Modiji, the country faces many challenges. The rhetoric of the election campaign aside, these challenges are serious and solving them is going to take sustained, decisive action on your part. Poverty, unemployment and economic collapse are not going to be solved by using Photoshop. The Indian people have given you a powerful mandate, which you will certainly need. Do not wait for the elusive consensus that puts a stop to all works - try for a consensus certainly, but do not hesitate to use your majority to push decisions through if you believe they are right. That is the precise reason you have that majority in the first place.

There are many who will continue to pick old cliches out to discredit you in the name of secularism. These are the so-called intellectuals who cannot understand that India has moved beyond the empty rhetoric of caste and secularism and is now looking for development for individuals and not communities. The young want their government to recognize them as individuals and not as nameless members of a community. No community has a first right to India's resources - every individual has a right to those resources in proportion to their ability. Religion, caste and creed are personal matters that should have no place in your administration although you yourself are perfectly free to practice your faith in your personal capacity, as is every citizen of the Republic.

Modiji, there are some who say you strike fear in their hearts and would prefer it that you allow the Opposition to govern by accepting all their demands. This would in effect be a return to the remote-controlled PM that we have had. In my humble opinion, following their advice would not just be a continuing disaster but an abdication of your mandate. If the leftist intellectuals' paymaster, the Congress party, is divined to rule India whether in Government or in Opposition, then keeping up the charade of democracy is pointless. The Congress party has left no stone unturned in packing institutions with their loyalists and making them subservient to the Dynasty. From the CBI to the Sahitya Akademi, all appointments have been based on loyalty over capability. It is your duty, as Prime Minister, to purge them and rebuild those institutions as places of merit.

Your party's historic win has been on the back of a huge vote share that you command. Some would point out that you did not win a majority of votes and thus try to show your government as illegitimate, conveniently forgetting that this is a consequence of the First Past The Post system and that no government for most of India's history has won a majority of votes. Yet, your party's votes are pan-Indian in nature, coming from all corners of the country, from Ladakh to Nicobar and from Gujarat to Arunachal Pradesh, and so should your government. For those who look upon you with fear, you must disprove by keeping the promise you made in Vadodara of being a PM for all. Fear will not be erased by tokenism but by fulfilling your promise of development for all with undue favor to none.

India is not an idea that is the copyright of intellectuals and the Congress party. India is a living being composed of its people - each individual is different. And yet, there is one thing in common - the desire to see a strong, prosperous India where every individual counts. It is this desire, this hope, that we have placed on your shoulders. Should you succeed, even by a partial measure, you will go down in history as the greatest child of India; should you waste your mandate and fall into the old traps, you and your party will be erased from existence. The campaign has ended - the challenge starts now.

Your fellow citizen.
Jai Hind! 

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