(This is a reprint from NewsBred)
Indian Express is breathless in rubbishing the recent speech
of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the Parliament that "democracy in
We know too well the design of such anti-India forces to
blacken our glorious heritage. You call them stooges of Western powers (for
whom democracy originated from
Varshney defines democracy as one of elected governments and
universal adult suffrage, a typical Western notion. Who are we to tell him that
Pt. Nehru's own mentor, Mahatma Gandhi, took a dim view of such a democracy!
Gandhi saw better merit in "Republics of Village" -- a direct democracy rather
than a representative democracy--in which
Varshney's second line of propaganda is that ancient
Greek writer Diodorus Siculus mentions that he mostly came
across cities in
Varshney probably hasn't heard of Kautilya or his Arthashastra in the 4th century BCE, which mentions "janapadas" (republic) where craftsmen, traders and agriculturalists had their guilds and wealth earned from trade ran the political process.
Panini, in his Sanskrit Classic "Ashtadhyayi", mentions the process of decision-making in politics. He provides various terms for voting and decision making through voting. He also mentions that in these republics "there was no consideration of high and low." The Buddhist literature in Pali and Brahmnical literature in Sanskrit portray a complex scenario of different groups managing their own affairs.
Indeed, the non-monarchical governments in
As for Pt. Nehru and his democratic credentials, his very appointment as Prime Minister was as undemocratic method as you could come across in any world annals. Nobody voted for him, yet he was made Prime Minister after majority's favourite Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel bowed to the tyranny of Mahatma Gandhi.
And before touting for "democratic" Pt. Nehru, Varshney also ought to have informed the readers that the first Prime Minister of India had indeed jailed Majrooh Sultanpuri for his poem, which didn't paint him in golden colours. No wonder, his daughter Indira Gandhi went a step further and imposed emergency.
So much for "freedom of speech" and "freedom of expression", which Varshney calls essentials in democracy.