Last week one of my billionaire friend met me in a marriage function and he initiated a talk inquiring of my visit to Kerala and he was mesmerized when I apprised him about its literacy and pristine environment. He has travelled and conducted commerce in pan world. When the topic qua the domination of the political parties was discussed, I apprised him that the population out there has faith and leanings towards Congress and the Left parties. He reacted by asking whether it’s because of the Muslim majority there and he was aghast when I promptly reminded him that one does not gain intellect by raking money. I gave him the statistics of Government which makes Hindus a majority of 54.73% while Muslims 26.56%, not even half of them.
Christians are only 18.38% and their contribution is immense in improving the education and health sector, while Muslims and Hindus contribute equally. Its population is literate and intelligent hence they have not fallen in the trap of hatred and conspiracies of communal politics and they live harmoniously in natural environment. Definitely some communal politicians from North India are engaged in breaching peace but till now they have not succeeded in breaching communal harmony. The first Chief Minister of Kerala Elamkulam Mannakkal Shankaran Nambudiripad despite being a Brahmin had targeted the caste system by stating that castiesm has demonized the elated Nambudiri Brahmins and he gave a slogan “Make Nambudiri Humans” initiated the drive to democratize Brahmins Kerala is the first State to be organized on linguistic basis and not on caste or religion. He was also the first non-Congressal Chief Minister of a State in the country.
Brahmins have played a pivotal role in politics, both pre and post independent India having Pandit Jawahar lal Nehru as the First Prime Minister of the country and more than a dozen First Chief Ministers. Many large States like Tamilnadu, Kerala, Telengana, Odisha, Gujrat, Maharastra, Punjab, Haryana, Uttrakhand, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh Brahmin Chief Ministers were found. RSS and its branches were staffed with Pracharaks who were mainly and primarily Brahmins, while today the majority is of the fund raising Baniyas. It can be understood after the organization of Madhya Pradesh till 1990 out of 34 years there were 5 Brahmin Chief Ministers for 20 years.
Similarly in Rajasthan between 1949 to 1990 the State got 5 Brahmin Chief Minister. Uttar Pradesh, holding the maximum population of Brahmins has not seen a Brahmin Chief Minister in the last 3 decades whereas post-independence till 1990 there were 8 Brahmin Chief Ministers. Today whether it is at national or state level of politics there is no visible presence of Brahmins anywhere. Mamta Banerjee is the sole Brahmin Chief Minister in the country. This is the situation of Brahmins when their population in more than half of States in the country is either at the second or third pedestal.
Statistics reveal that during independence struggle majority were from middle or upper middle class and the majority in the same was of Brahmins. In those time this community was the most literate and intelligent and that’s why they dominated politics and administration post-independence and they surged ahead with spread of education and for the rights of Dalits and backwards. Implementation of recommendations of Mandal Commission gave a boost to the backwards and Dalits to grab more and more posts and they surged ahead. We know that there has been a domination of Brahmins in Congress’s politics and RSS and its branches were also dominated by Brahmins and post the political tide of 1977 all this started changing.
Since the era of Janta Party sidelining of Brahmins started. Brahmins were rendered second class in the era of VP Singh government where BJP was a coalition partner. Non-Congress governments have worked to sideline Brahmins. With the initiation of Mandal-Kamandal politics Brahmins started straggling and was reduced to the status of an acolyte. In half a dozen states including Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Himachal Brahmins are the second largest vote bank and it is the largest vote bank after Dalits in Uttar Pradesh. Statists reveal that till 1990 the core voters for Congress were the Brahmins, Dalits and Muslims and many castes followed Brahmins, which made them indispensible foundation in politics. Pandit Naryan Dutt Tiwari, popularly known as Vikas Purush, was the last Brahmin Chief Minister and after him no Brahmin could become the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. Even in Bihar after Congress none else made any Brahmin a Chief Minister so was the situation in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan.
If we view it from the perspective of Uttar Pradesh 12% Brahmins, 18% Muslims and 21% Dalits used to spring Congress to power. Apart from these communities votes from other backward communities and general castes were also procured. In such a scenario there were no atrocities on Dalits nor any attacks on Muslim community as Brahmin used to govern by taking everyone along without discrimination, which was picture perfect of communal harmony where all round development was pushed by the Hand Palm Infrastructure of social harmony was dismantled by the collusive mandal-kamandal politics. Actually the dismantling of this model started in 1967 with the proponents of Jan Sangh, Leftism and Socialism and which was seen flourishing in 1989 when the coalition of the leaders of all these ideologies formed governments at Centre and States of the country and Brahmins lost their domination with Congress edged out of power to the extent that owing to the politics of mandal-kamandal space in government jobs for Brahmins started shrinking. In politics also they were reduced to ashes and their use on ‘use and throw’ basis started.
Once again in the elections scheduled in five states all political parties have started wooing Brahmins to procure their decisive vote. Majority of Brahmins lean towards BJP being proponents of Hinduism whereas the political calculation speak that whenever there is a reversal tide of Brahmin votes results have been shocking. BJP leaders believe that Brahmins have nowhere else to go from them and they would stick with them even if jibed. Whereas Samajwadi Party and Bhujan Samaj Party has witnessed the strength of Brahmin votes hence they are wooing them. The core party of Brahmins, Congress has a Brahmin Cell but Brahmins have shied away from it since long and one of the reasons for this that the generation of Brahmins which has not witnessed the struggle for independence nor the pains of creation of the Nation and the present comfort loving Brahmin youth appears to have lost the sheen to make others follow them resultantly they are also forming a part of the groups roaming on social media crying cow, dung and urine and hence Brahmins are found wanting in all states and places and its they themselves who are to be blamed and none else.
In case Brahmins have to regain their place in power, both at Centre and State level, they have to widen their intellectual horizons and make people follow them. Their lost honour and pride would be restored once when they would lead the columns otherwise they shall continue to rot when their daughters like Khushi Dubey would languish in jail for no offence and there would be no one to strive for them crying justice.
(Writer is renowned Indian Journalist and the Group Editor of Daily World)