Saturday, 8 January 2011

India will break up- Justice Katju

A Supreme Court Judge explains why India will break up here.
Justice Katju is an expert on Mimamsa hermeneutics- at least, he's written a book about it- and has hit the headlines for some controversial remarks delivered from the bench.

According to the article, the Judge said 'India will break up if questions on language, religion and caste are given importance and divisive tendencies allowed to grow.'
Since questions of language were and are given importance- viz. linguistic reorganization of the States, rejection of Hindi, or anything else, as a National link language- questions of religion were and are given importance- viz. reservation on the basis of religion not economic standing for Muslims, different Civil Code etc- questions of caste were and are given importance- reservations for S.C and S.T are written into the Constitution and O.B.C's too receive reservations- it is difficult to see how India, according to the Judge's logic, has survived at all. 
Another question has to do with this business of 'allowing' divisive tendencies to grow. To whom, specifically, do these 'divisive tendencies' currently apply for permission to grow? Who is actually doing the 'allowing' here?
Is the Judge saying that someone or something shouldn't have 'allowed' the D.M.K in Tamil Nadu to focus on Language and adopt a separatist policy on that basis? But who was it who shouldn't have done that allowing?
The Judge made these remarks while addressing the students of Ambedkar University. Are we to take it that Ambedkar shouldn't have been 'allowed' to focus on Caste or that divisive caste based politics like that of Kanshi Ram and Mayawati  shouldn't have been 'allowed' to grow? Is this the purport of the Judge's comment?
"Jawaharlal Nehru and his colleagues rose above the madness of communalism that had engulfed the country immediately before and after the Partition and declared India a secular, democratic republic," the Judge said.
But, Nehru and his colleagues did not prevent Partition.  Proclaiming India a secular, democratic Republic changed nothing on the ground. Recall that Jinnah made a similar declaration to the effect that a person's creed would not be held against him; indeed differences of caste and creed would melt away, in Pakistan.



What Mimamsa can we apply to make sense of Katju's speech?

Essentially he says X will happen if Y happens. But Y has already happened. True, there is a hysteresis effect, we may term this 'apurva'- such that the result is not already fully visible. But it is bound to occur, and in many important senses, it has already been accomplished.

Ergo, India's breakup is inevitable, indeed, has already occurred but has not yet crossed the threshold of perception.

The learned Judge also informs us that 'India is basically a country of immigrants since barring some eight per cent tribals, who alone could be called the original inhabitants, the rest were immigrants'.
The Judge has a reputation for citing Wikipedia as an authority. In this instance, however, the internet is not at fault. The notion that 8% of the Indian population evolved wholly on Indian soil- and that these people are the tribals- is so preposterous that no nutjob on the internet has ever asserted it. If the Judge is correct, then the 'out of Africa' hypothesis is wrong. Ancient India had a species of ape from which a human species (one moreover able to interbreed with our own) evolved spontaneously. This is sheer lunacy.
What is the correct Mimamsa interpretation of the Judge's claim in this instance?
I don't know. 
'Science and Technology can alone win the war against Poverty', the Judge has said,  adding that Youth should develop a scientific and rational outlook that gives precedence to logic and reason.
Was India cut off from Science and Technology? Is that why it lost 'the war against Poverty'? Do Indians lack a 'scientific and rational outlook that gives precedence to logic and reason'?

It seems, the learned Judge is Exhibit A in proving his own case.

No comments: