BHABANI NAYAK | 1 MARCH, 2018
Fascist forces are more dynamic today than they were in 19th and 20th century Europe.
Indian society and politics is passing through one of the most difficult times after independence. The hegemonic political and cultural project of Hindutva forces put strain on the dynamic cultural diversity, individual freedom and community relations in India.
Fascists are trying to destroy the Indian Constitution, rule of law and the idea of secular India. It is important to understand and fight back such forces before it is too late.
Fascism is not science and it will not replicate its historical trajectory but some tendencies are central to determine early symptoms of its rise.
Fascist forces are more dynamic today than they were in 19th and 20th century Europe. If history teaches us anything then it teaches us to be conscious about the dangers of rising fascism and the ways to fight it in 21st century India. The neoliberal economic framework for economic development combined with ethno nationalism of anti-national Hindutva forces is a perfect recipe for long winter of fascism in India.
Indians are living in the Weimar democracy in Germany in the 1920s. Narendra Modi is the Prime Minister. RSS not only celebrates Hitler and Mussolini but also uses a venomous framework to destroy multicultural society in India by creating a majoritarian Hindu narrative even at the costs of syncretic Hindu religious cultures and traditions.
It is important to understand that India is not in the brink of fascism; it is under fascist rule. The cult tradition of an individual backed by the idea of
-celebration of the supremacy of military and formation of security state in the name of national security,
-centralisation of power,
-militarisation of mind,
-manipulation of mass media and minds of the marginalised with the poison of religious state,
-disdain for dissent, contempt for workers’ rights and human rights in the name of nationalism, -protection of corporate power in the name of economic growth and development,
-disregard for intellectuals, electoral manipulation and majoritarian mobilisation,
-misinformation campaign, rewriting of history, identification of minorities as enemies are some of the features of fascism in India.
The government promotes and ensures practice of such ideals which are threat to the idea of India and its society. It is important to highlight that the flag waving Hindutva so called nationalists of today were the bed partners of British colonialism and did not participate in the anti-colonial struggles. These anti national forces are sweethearts of national and international corporations in India. Therefore, it is important to protect people, their lives and livelihoods from such a fascist-corporate alliance in India today.
The forward march of Hindutva fascism in India can only be halted by forging a united anti-fascist front with greater coordination of people and organisations with a common purpose of fighting fascism till its end. It is the moral and political responsibility of left, democratic and progressive forces to unite without relinquishing or compromising their ideals or political programs and address the needs of the present; United Anti-Fascist Alliance in India (UAFAI).
Struggle against fascism is not an isolated struggle; it is rather central to the class struggle in India. It is the communists and socialists who have played a leading role in creating conditions and fighting fascism by forming anti-fascist alliance. It is time for communists and socialists to discharge their historical role without making another ‘historical blunder.
(Dr Bhabani Shankar Nayak is Senior Lecturer in Business Strategy,Coventry University, UK)