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You are mistaken, Mr. Bajaj

Here’s the thing: no one in India is living in fear. The only people feeling fear are the ones who need to feel fear: the anti-nationals

December 07, 2019 03:42 pm | Updated 09:01 pm IST

Image: Getty Images/ iStock

Image: Getty Images/ iStock

There has been a lot of brouhaha over Mr. Rahul Bajaj’s comment that businessman in India are too afraid to speak. Now, I won’t go so far as to say that Mr. Bajaj was wrong, though it’s clear that he wasn’t right. If it is indeed true, as he is claiming, that businessmen in India are afraid to speak out, then how, pray, did he himself speak out?

Means business

He is a businessman, he spoke out. Ergo, businessmen in India can speak out. As they say in England, Mr. Bajaj got hoisted by his own Chetak.

In fact, Mr. Bajaj is not some chota-mota sabziwala -type businessman. He is a scooterwala billionaire. As a billionaire, he had a billion more reasons to keep quiet compared to any of his 99.99% fellow Indians. And yet he didn’t keep quiet.

The proof of the pudding is in the eating, and Mr. Bajaj, you are nicely enjoying the pudding of free speech while screaming from rooftop that the pudding is tasting bad because it’s filled with the atmosphere of fear.

In fact, any impartial observer will tell you that there is nothing to fear in this glorious rashtra of ours, not even in Kashmir. Unfortunately, the tragedy is that India is running out of impartial observers. There are so few of them left in this country that we recently had to import 29 of them from Europe — all MPs, mind you — to go and observe Kashmir impartially. When they landed in Srinagar, looking for fear, all they found was normalcy, more normalcy, and even more normalcy.

It’s plain common sense: what does every Indian fear the most? Terrorists. Who can protect you from terrorists? Security forces. What would make you feel safer: more security forces or less? Obviously, more security forces. And where has our government deployed the highest quantity of security forces? Kashmir.

Too secure

Now you know why people in Kashmir have no reason to feel fear: it’s because they enjoy the highest protection. It’s like the entire state has got for free what the Gandhis used to enjoy until recently: Z-plus category security with 15 armed guards per capita. And still some people crib, just like Mr. Bajaj.

Here’s the thing: no one in India is living in fear. The only people feeling fear are the ones who need to feel fear: the anti-nationals.

Check the box

If you’re not an anti-national — that is, if you’re not a student, either of JNU or any other university; if you’re not a termite residing illegally in India; if you’re not a minority; if you’re not a member of any Opposition party; if you’re not a human rights activist or a lawyer representing a human rights activist; if you’re not an independent journalist or blogger; if you’re not a citizen who thinks for himself or herself; if you’re not someone pretending to defend the Constitution; if you don’t believe in anti-national legislations such as RTI; if you prefer an efficient, benevolent dictatorship to the chaos and anarchy of democracy; if you think Aadhaar is a boon; if you think higher education should be privatised; if you think government should sell all PSUs, especially the profitable ones, to capitalists, preferably crony capitalists; if you understand that everything the government does, it does only in the national interest; and lastly, if you know that if ever you feel like criticising the government, then the fault lies in you and you alone, then, my friend, rest assured — you have absolutely nothing to fear.

And in case you still harbour a nagging doubt that maybe, Mr. Bajaj has a point, though a very minor one, or if you yourself happen to feel a small, niggling, inexplicable fear, kindly do some introspection. Ask yourself if you fit into any of the anti-national categories enumerated above. If you do, then all you have to do to stop feeling fearful is to stop being an anti-national.

Today, every Indian is already living happily, prosperously, and without any fear whatsoever.

Just two things

However, since the only source of fear are anti-nationals — we have no one else to be afraid of — the government needs to do two more things to completely annihilate even the possibility of fear.

One, it has to implement nationwide NRC. Once that is done, all Indians who are anti-nationals will automatically be stripped of their citizenship and evicted from this holy land.

Two, the government must undertake 360-degree, continuous, real-time surveillance of every single Indian, irrespective of age, gender, religion, caste, class, ethnicity, profession, hobbies, physical fitness, and ideological or sexual orientation, so that it can track, monitor, and instantly weed out any citizenship-holder who betrays even the slightest anti-national tendencies.

Once these two structural reforms are in place, India would finally, and truly, become the great civilisation-cum-nation that Rabindranath Tagore dreamed of — a paradise “where the mind is without fear.”

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