China’s reluctance to do a rethink on Mao’s legacy is on account of its being rooted in its single-party structure that leans on the personality cult (Dec.30). As the CPC derives its legitimacy from the “revolution” that Mao pioneered, any frank discussion of that legacy will lead to tough questions on its hegemonic methods, which will then result in louder calls for plural democracy. One must draw lessons on how Mao’s legacy has affected the evolution of people’s rights in China. This is important because in India, one sees a similar script being played out. When the misdeeds of a leader get short-shrift in public space, the voices of the marginalised people are lost. Dr. Ambedkar once warned us against indulging in hero-worship without having our eyes open.

N. Vinayak,

Alappuzha

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