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Friday, June 2, 2023

Is Congress behind quota stirs in Karnataka?

Congress is known for its divisive politics especially when it comes to dividing Hindus on a casteist basis. The recent remark by Congress leader of opposition (LoP) in the Karnataka Assembly Siddaramaiah indicates that Congress has been driving caste-based reservation demands.

Congress hand is often seen either directly or indirectly in caste-based quota stirs like the one by Lingayats in Karnataka, Jat reservation stir in Haryana or the Maratha agitation in Maharashtra where Congress ally NCP’s involvement has been suspected. The game plan seems to be to divide Hindu society into various castes vying and fighting against each other for quotas so that Congress and like-minded parties can milk the situation to their advantage while setting the country on fire.

Congress leader Siddaramaiah on quota stirs

The Congress leader opined that it was the duty of the state government to resolve quota struggles within the constitutional framework. IANS report states:

“Any community can demand reservations. That is not wrong. But, I feel that only those communities should get reservations who deserve it the most in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution,” he said.

Asked if there was any constitutional crisis in the state due to several communities demanding quotas, he said that there can be no constitutional crisis per se by just a community or several communities making such demands.

“The law of the land has constituted a permanent Backward Class Commission and this authority has the authority over who should be included or excluded in the OBC list. That should ensure that constitutional provisions must be upheld in such scenarios without succumbing to any pressure or favor,” he said

Replying to a specific question about the ongoing Panchamasali quota stir, Siddaramaiah cryptically maintained that the state government must decide well within stipulated norms of the Constitution. “It (the state government) will have to take a call on such matters. But one thing is clear, any community can seek reservation or better reservation for its community… that is not wrong in any way,” he said.”

Such comments coming from LoP does raise doubts about the role of Congress in the entire episode. The Congress attempts to make up for its electoral defeats by dividing society either along caste lines or exploiting the rich-poor fault line.

Role of religious leaders

While we saw several Lingayat-Veerashaiva seers uniting to demand for quota reservations for the Lingayat community, it would be beneficial for the Hindu society if religious leaders showed such unity for other serious existential issues Hindus are faced with. These include rise in assault on and murders of Hindus by Abrahamics, grooming in the name of love, and vandalization of Hindu temples among others.

We have a Hindumisic secular establishment and the odds are stacked against Hindus. At such times it is but natural for the Hindu society for guidance. As Hindupost had pointed out earlier:

It is futile to keep banging our heads against the government and a handful of quasi-political organisations to demand why they don’t do more. We must ask ourselves – how did we reach the pitiable situation where 100 crore Hindus are so dependent on so few to fight their battles?

When analysed unemotionally, one will find that the problem is rooted in the lack of religious and socio-cultural awareness the modern Hindu has. Yes, governments can play a supplementary role in either strengthening or weakening a community’s sense of identity, but one just has to look at how other communities organise to understand that politicians can never be thought leaders when it comes to matters of religion and culture. That is the job of religious leaders.

Yes, Dharma does not translate to religion, and we are not like the hierarchical Abrahamic religions. But Dharma does include what is popularly understood as religion, and every Hindu sampradaya (sect, tradition) has always had gurus who involved themselves in both spiritual and mundane matters. If not for Sri Vidyaranya, would the iconic Vijaynagara empire ever have taken birth? Would Chattrapati Shivaji have reached the towering heights he did without the guidance and support of Sant Ramdas?

The caste faultline is exploited by Congress and other pseudo-secular parties and unless the situation is reformed by the Hindu society itself, caste groups would be kept hostage to political exploiters just like the poor are kept poor and uneducated for vote bank considerations.

Political leaders of various caste-based parties, who are in turn supported by the likes of Congress, are vying with each other for SC or OBC status for quota benefits. These demands are made no matter how well-to-do they might be. The only exception to this trend was the Devendra Kula Vellalar community of Tamil Nadu which ran a campaign to get their community out of the Schedule Caste list.

If political parties are playing the divisive card, it is the duty as well as responsibility of religious leaders to create awareness among the masses so that Hindus aren’t unduly exploited to exact political benefits.

(Featured Image Source: IANS)

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