Tuesday, December 6th, 2011
SDPI National President’s Speech (transcript) delivered in the Popular Front of India Social Justice Conference in Ramleela Midan in New Delhi on 27 November 2011.
In the name of Allah, the most Merciful, the most Benevolent …
About two years ago, in February 2009, I had an opportunity to address a great conference of the Popular Front. That day what I could see before me was a great ocean of mankind! Today, I am delivering this speech addressing an avalanche of humanity or a great deluge of humanity streamed into this ground.
You’ve come here treading across many a mount and hill, rowing across many a ferry. Many of you’ve come from the south; and many of you’ve come from the north. You’ve brought along with you the east and the west. I know where you’ve come from. You’ve all rushed in here streaming forth from the despair that you experienced over the years in the past. You’re the ones who’ve successfully broken the shell of your burdensome despair and hopelessness.
I mark you as the new awakening of a people that spoiled and wasted 63 years desperately asking one another “where is refuge, where is refuge?” I am addressing you in this great conference of the Popular Front representing the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI).
The Popular Front, the SDPI, and some Dalit organizations are “Third Generation” organizations- 3G organizations. All other organizations in the country are either “the first generation” or “the second generation” organizations.
The second generation people were the descendants of those who didn’t get any opportunity to play their role in the rebuilding and formation of modern India. Yet apologetically they nodded their heads with approval to spare power exclusively to be handled by others! The Third Generation people, in contrast, are those who have realized that “We too have the charisma required for the building up of the nation.” The realization of any kind of social justice and the liberation of the people, they’ve recognized by now, could be achieved only through the involvement in the political activities and sharing of the power by the concerned people.
They recall sorrowfully the dependence that had characterized them and the negligence they had suffered over the years in the past. But they, however, now aspire to take a foothold on history and soar high into the future. They are determined, not to be the handiwork of the past, but to be the architects or the designers of the future! They are the Third Generation people.
Our darling nation has deviated far from its secular ideals and principles. From the lofty and all-inclusive ideal of “this as well as that,” our secularism has fallen into the narrowness of “this only.” Thus Muslims have come to be represented as “that.” They are alienated, marginalized, and kicked out from the mainstream. They are driven into the fringes by force. There are many an evidence to prove this! The martyrdom of the Babri mosque is one of them. For rebuilding the Babri mosque, the country has to first recapture its basic secular ideals and principles. That’s our first responsibility. We are determined to carry out this at any cost.
Our democracy is on sickbed now. The political parties in the country have made democracy condescend to a most pathetic predicament. Positions like membership in the parliament houses and legislative assemblies (MPs and MLAs) are being purchased with money. Public opinion and people’s support are being obtained with money. And once having achieved these positions, the power these positions guarantee is also being exercised making tough bargain in terms of money or in other terms, it is literally auctioned. Besides, the upper caste or sawarna hegemony, precisely speaking, the sawarna family hegemony, is being showcased as democracy.
We’ve strayed quite far from the ideal of a welfare state. Our country has become a playground for indigenous as well as foreign monopolies today. The country is, from head to toe, in corruption. It is being governed by corruption; it is being let to survive in corruption. The governments or regimes in power in the centre as well as the various states are those that have no respect for humanity or nature. No wonder, the menace of nuclear projects like the Koodamkulam gets commissioned and comes into existence.
The regimes make you and me believe that the nuclear projects are our breathing air, that the alarmingly growing class of aristocracy or plutocrats is our drinking water, and that America and Israel are the sole bread for our consumption! We continue living in this scenario. Or, in other words, we’re dying in this manner.
You might perhaps have noticed certain other recent developments too. RSS has been playing certain vile tricks fielding Anna Hazare and certain other diminutive swami figures or the so-called little god men exactly the way they played certain abominable tricks in the 1970s fielding the great Gandhian Jayaprakash Narain and misusing his public image. At the far end of the struggle against corruption spearheaded by Advani and RSS is lined up Narendra Modi with sword in hand, flanked by sanyasis or saints with the uniquely rare capability of blessing and blasting! We shall not forget this fact!
The significance of the 3rd Generation organization is to be gauged in this backdrop.
My dear brothers and sisters, I am winding up.
We’ve certain responsibilities. In the past, we were concerned only about our rights and we kept complaining about their never getting materialized. And we didn’t think about our responsibilities. We’ve to take upon ourselves our proportionate share in the responsibility of building up India, our beloved nation. We got to achieve the charisma required for that.
Our backbone had been stolen from us sometime in the past. However, we’ve retrieved it now. We were crestfallen all these years. Our heads were drooped down. But now we’re in the process of gearing ourselves up to make them upright and look confident. Also we’ve discovered that our feet are not very feeble and infirm. This immensely huge gathering of yours before me is clear proof to it.
Oh you from Moradabad who inscribe verses on brass plates… Oh you from Aligarh who make padlocks… Oh you from Agra who make leather sandals… Oh you from Rampur who are involved in making kitchen knives… It’s time for you to bring to light your craftsmanship, your creativity, your artistry. Oh you the weavers from Bhadohi and Beewandi, come along, you too! Let’s together weave our nation with the thread of social justice!
The end goals of this mission are the gearing up of the will power and self confidence of a people, the prevailing of the warmth of affection among people, the realization of sincere patriotic affection of all Indians to their country, and the emergence of an entirely new India. Our mission will not end without achieving these goals.
I understand that our country is not a conglomeration of the Hindus, the Muslims, the Sikhs, the Christians, and the Dalits. We are but one nation. Or we got to be a single nation. Our mission stretches to the extent of realizing this ideal. As a citizen of India, I am ashamed of presenting ourselves as a pluralistic society. Ours is not a pluralistic society. It shouldn’t be a pluralistic society. We’ve to be a single nation!
We’ve no great promises to make in the cause of this mission. All we’ve got to do is to take up the challenges collectively in unity. Let’s work together and fight together for this cause. Or let’s die together for this great and noble cause! It’s the great and challenging task of declaring support and solidarity to those inarticulate lips lying scattered all over India. We’ll make the responsible authorities hear the loud cries embedded in their silence. We’ll surely make them take notice of the implications of their silence and the meaning of their unarticulated utterances.
It is believed that once a Mughal emperor said: “Dilli door ast!” (Delhi is quite far!). Today, the Popular Front is declaring on your behalf: “Dilli qareeb ast” (Delhi is indeed very near!). Thank you so much. Jai Hind!