Hindu Liberals: Legacy of the Raj
by B V Rudhraya on 27 Jun 2018 3 Comments

India’s Hindu liberals are a little recognised scar on the national psyche, an enduring legacy of the British Raj that left after violently splintering the country in 1947. The Portuguese lingered in tiny Goa until finally evicted in 1961. 


A palimpsest on our ancient civilisation, the British colonialists worked assiduously to efface the rich traditions and culture of India, making effective use of outright lies and blatant manipulations to distort jati-varna in the “oppressive” caste hierarchy and vilify ‘wily Brahmins,’ essentially the teachers who tried to prevent the total emasculation of native society. The now totally discredited Aryan Invasion theory was invented to justify foreign rule, the concept of “races” introduced to mentally divide society, with ‘martial races’ being simply those groups that the British employed for their army in India.  This grand edifice was constructed to reaffirm the imperial and church position that India should be grateful that its savages were being graciously uplifted from their wretched condition, towards a new dawn.  


Controlling the narrative


Our concern today is with the question: who controls the India narrative now? The Indian media is even today dominated by the most westernised group, the “Hindu Liberals”. Dr. N.S. Rajaram, who has scrutinised the education of the westernised Indians from the mid-nineteenth century, observes, “The government services, the educational establishment, the industry, the arts, and the media – all are now in the hands of a small elite that is the product of such an educational system. Since the British rulers whom it was created to serve are no longer here, this elite serves itself.”  What we have now is a new “super-caste that has shut off opportunities for a very large segment of the nation’s population…” They keep alive the spirit of the old masters by proxy.


While the new caste has made inroads into virtually every party, its stronghold is the Congress and its “Marxist historians” who have controlled the media narrative since 1947 and more particularly since the 1970s. They dominated the field of education from India’s first education minister onwards, to whitewash the cruellest aspects of Islamic and Western Christian decimation of India, to deny citizens access to their own past.


The Hindu liberals can even take lessons from Hollywood. In the 2014 film, The Arrival, the protagonist starts to decipher the language of the aliens and begins to think, dream and have visions from the past, present and the future. The Sapir–Whorf hypothesis states that “the structure of a language determines a native speaker’s perception and categorization of experience”. Hindu liberals have been alienated from their roots for generations, and have been continually discouraged from reclaiming their roots. 


The new super-caste has seized the commanding heights of virtually each and every profession and occupation in the land (meaning the well paying positions) and have conveniently invented a form of ‘Hinduism for the Brown Folk’ which conforms to western comfort levels and contains a little yoga and classical dance (to appear Hindu). And, they have mastered the art of perpetuating their tribe by nurturing aspirants from the wider middle and working classes, who become the next generation rabid anti-India elements. 


Seeking Western Approval


Many aim for degrees from elite US academia, followed by plum foreign and domestic assignments. Some publish books on India and Hinduism, full of condescending imperial trope in new packaging.  Devdutt Pattanaik is one such. A casual look at his tweets suggests he has no idea what he is talking about, but he confidently peddles his views on India and its “myths”, and is widely invited as a speaker and expert. Being caught out has made little impact; “gurus” dismiss those who correct or challenge them as “trolls”. They survive endless exposure thanks to the still impregnable media and publishing ecosphere.


Like their British mentors, Hindu liberals still strive to mould a new India divorced from its past. If they cannot succeed, they try to splinter it again and move on. Note the sudden spate in “Dravida nadu” articles by such writers, a clear attempt at balkanization of the country.


Western academia and mainstream media deliberately nurture the Hindu baiters. They produce new apologetics and sanitised versions of India’s Islamic and European rulers; when debunked they respond with silence. Indian history departments and media houses have yet to find the gumption to build a new ecosphere across multiple languages to produce an indigenous narrative, though a new generation of Indians has risen that is willing to pushback.


Foreigners visiting India or living in India prefer to interact with the Hindu liberals to reaffirm their preconceived notions of India. All media and academic funding is duly aligned in this direction. Literary Festivals and socialite gatherings are a new stomping ground, where mainstream Indian newspapers and television channels cluster for sermons and sound-bytes.  


The Feeder Network


Even nationalist Indians often serve as accidental feeders of this ecosphere. Too many families willingly send their youngsters to western universities and plum assignments in western-run MNCs and NGOs, to be indoctrinated and steadily deracinated. While no one grudges the paycheques, often Indians are nudged to direct their labour and intellect towards subverting the nation with the next round of western liberal thought.


Previously, the slogans were secularism, communism, libertarianism; today it is colour revolution, feminism, LGBT-ism, Doggism (my new word). We are asked to shun studies that prove that a cow, loved and taken care of till its natural passing, is beneficial in a way that far outweighs slaughter and shows respect to an animal that was historically revered and deserves its place in the family. 


Surprisingly, countries like Japan were strictly non-meat eaters until the mid-nineteenth century, the European conquest being the key factor for the switch. The rash behaviour of some cow vigilantes who have taken the law in their own hands and have been rightly punished should not blind us to our ancient and rational traditions of reverence to the cow. 


How does one identify the Hindu liberals?


It’s easy. Note their accents and mannerisms; their perfect sophistication for the cocktail circuits of any western city cannot be learned overnight. They dominate all publishing, from history to fiction. Some are social justice warriors, “helping” India to catch up with the rest of the world. They are familiar with western writing but would recoil at patriotic writers, gurus and other natives. They have no connection with the civilizational continuum of India, but will have travelled extensively across the world. But travel has not broadened their minds; it has only made them more palatable to their colonial sponsors.


Could they be asked to question church activities like conversions? Their funding would dry up quickly, their travel opportunities and career derailed. Belittling Hinduism is easy as they became non-Hindus long ago. Some Hindu liberals are adept in classical Indian art and dance forms, an accident of childhood, and used to cherry pick and parade ‘kosher’ cultural aspects before foreign audiences.  


On no account can one question their Muslim constituency. Love Jihad is a non-issue. Their energies are better spent on promoting a feminism that has already proved to be a disaster in the west.


So much is needed to be done to decolonise the Indian mind, especially the Hindu mind. For decades, we have been disarmed by our educational institutions, our teachers, and our media. In fact, the combative social media is far more effective in disseminating bite-sized nuggets of information, and prodding citizens to pick up a good old fashioned book now and again. It may yet redeem us. 

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