By Ridhi Murari:
When we talk about Politics in India one societal norm that stands out is the use of religion to gain votes. Whether we talk about Shiv Sena or the concept of Hindutva and the use of religious symbols, deities, so on and so forth in the name of politics has become a prominent feature of our society. I have seen many divisions on the basis of religion, caste and just a group identity in the political scenario ever since I was born.
While I understand politics is based on group identities and power dynamics, I sincerely believe the British have left behind a legacy of ‘divide and rule’ which our government has taken to heart. Theism and atheism aside, political parties need to focus more on a value system to gather votes rather than Gods to create further chaos.
From all the observations of the Indian ethos I have come to realize that there are very few people who understand the concept of God, religion and the practice of rites, rituals and festivals. While it is relevant, the idea of religion has been evolving with the cycle of time which the minds of the masses haven’t accommodated with. No one pauses to realize the horrors, tribulations and riots created in the name of God. Do you really think the Gods would be happy to watch strife predominate our world? Religion was meant to create harmony and a sense of collective peace or tranquillity rather than division of beings and hostility.
True faith lies in action and intention rather than blindly following something you don’t understand. Political parties take advantage of the naÃ¯ve populace and create further discord by further distorting or playing with the emotional sentiments that people uphold which works in their favour and later go back on their word and yet this ritual is repeated year after year without a thought till the next elections.
The day politics adopts the motto of practicing what they preach; our government will be one of the strongest ones in the world. However, an awakening is necessary at every stage to keep in check the excesses of vices that have been accumulating since decades now. With remarkable levels of progress we have attained in the rural, social and development sectors keeping in mind the connection between the rural and urban, we are now dominated by a rising educated population from all over, who can now collectively make decisions for their betterment. It is time we eradicate maladaptive beliefs and rationally gather symbols and policies which speak volumes for our history as a nation.
Thus, it is my sincere plea to keep a check on the ritualistic behaviour of religious politics with thorough understanding and a restatement of values in accordance with our evolving society at a steadfast pace of progress for rekindling the potential that stems from our land, our India.