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The shallowness and inanity of Indian ‘intellectuals’

By Justice Markandey Katju, former Judge, Supreme Court of India

That India is passing through a profound crisis in the history of the Republic few can deny. Poverty is widespread, the economy is tanking, unemployment has reached record heights, child malnourishment has reached appalling levels, proper healthcare and good education are almost nonexistent for the masses, farmers suicides are continuing unabated, and after the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, society has been largely polarised on religious lines. 

It was the duty of our intellectuals to have scientifically analyzed the situation and shown the Indian people the way out of their distress. Intellectuals are the eyes of society, and without them society is blind.

But unfortunately what we have in India today are so-called ‘intellectuals’ who are no doubt striding the national stage like great thinkers, posing as a Voltaire or Rousseau, but who are really vacuous, inane and totally superficial.

Foremost among them are Ramchandra Guha, Subramaniam Swamy, Arundhati Roy, Yogendra Yadav, Pratap Bhanu Mehta, Shashi Tharoor, and a host of others ( see my articles ‘Indian liberals and their illiberal ignorance’ published in dailyo.in and ‘The wailing, howling of India’s liberals and intellectuals’ published in theweek.in ).

Today I read a fatuous article by Ram Chandra Guha titled ‘The fourth crisis of the Republic’ published in a leading Indian English daily. Ramchandra Guha has been an ardent admirer of Gandhi and has written several books on him praising him.

I regard Gandhi as objectively a British agent and have written several articles on my blog Satyam Bruyat giving my reasons. I asked Guha to respond to these, and tell me how my reasoning is wrong, but he always refused to do so ( see my article ‘Pseudo intellectuals shouldn’t complain’ published in newsgram.com )

Now in his latest article Guha says that after Independence India passed through three crises ( in the early 1960s, in the mid-1970s, and in 1989-1992 ) and is now passing through its fourth crisis.

He refers to unemployment, the agrarian crisis, the decline of public institutions, environment degradation, and divisive policy of the BJP government.

All this everyone knows, so Guha has not spoken anything new. What he does not, however, understand, is the cause of all this, and the solution, and that is of course due to his shallow thinking and insanity.

 I do not blame Guha alone. Almost all Indian ‘intellectuals’ ( some of whom I have named ) are like him, completely out of their depth when considering a serious political, economic or social issue.

What is the solution to India’s problems? I have mentioned in a series of articles that this world really consists of two worlds, the world of developed, highly industrialized countries ( North America, Europe, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, and China ) and the world of the underdeveloped countries, which include India.

Our national aim must be to transform and uplift India from the ranks of the underdeveloped countries and bring it into the ranks of the developed ones, for unless we do that we remain condemned to poverty, massive unemployment, malnourishment, lack of healthcare and good education, etc.

Read Also: To the Patriotic Indian Youth

On the other hand, the secret, unwritten rule among the developed countries is that INDIA MUST NEVER BE ALLOWED TO BECOME A DEVELOPED COUNTRY ( for the reason given in my articles mentioned below ), and they will oppose the transformation of India tooth and nail. Thus there is a direct contradiction between our national interest and the interest of the developed countries, and this contradiction can only be resolved by a revolution in India, which can only be achieved by a mighty united people’s struggle led by selfless, patriotic modern-minded leaders ( like Mustafa Kemal in Turkey or the Japanese leaders after the Meiji Restoration ) who are determined to rapidly industrialize and modernize the country.

I have also explained that parliamentary democracy, which we have adopted, runs in India largely on the basis of caste and communal vote banks. Casteism and communalism are feudal forces which must be destroyed if India is to progress, but parliamentary democracy further entrenches them. So it has to be replaced by an alternative system which enables India to rapidly industrialize and modernize, but that is possible only by a revolution.


Some of the articles in which I have presented my views are as follows:

1. ‘Was Jinnah right ?’ published in indicanews.com

2. ‘India needs a modern-minded revolution to become a first-world nation’ published in theweek.in

3. ‘Reforms will not do India any good—only a revolution will’ published in huffingtonpost.

4.’Eight steps to a revolution that can clean up the mess India is in’ published in dailyo.in

5. ‘The storm ahead’ published in indicanews.com

6. ‘India must bathe in blood before it is transformed’ published in nayadaur.tv

7. ‘India’s moment of turbulent revolution is here, and it is going to be long and bloody’ published in firstpost.com

8. ‘Gimmicks to divert attention won’t satiate India’s economic needs’ published in punjabtoday.in

9. ‘India’s National Aim’ published in Our Leader

10. ‘Situation worse than Mahabharat’s end ahead of India’ published in outlookindia.com

11. ‘Ideological struggle like Voltaire, Rousseau’s needed in India’ published in Financial Express

12. ‘Here’s why social media activism matters’ published in nayadaur.tv

13. ‘Why celebrate Republic Day when the Constitution has become a scarecrow’ published in theweek.in

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