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Can You Take It Ramachandra Guha?

Ramachandra Guha speaks to Madhu Trehan on his new book, Congress being a “family firm”, Hindutva hate mailers, “spineless” Manmohan Singh, the future of the Gandhis if Shastri hadn’t died, Rahul Gandhi being unfit to lead the Congress and more…

Ramachandra Guha speaks to Madhu Trehan on his new book, Congress being a “family firm”, Hindutva hate mailers, “spineless” Manmohan Singh, the future of the Gandhis if Shastri hadn’t died, Rahul Gandhi being unfit to lead the Congress and more…

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  • http://www.facebook.com/master.pan.5 Master Pan

    If he is the foremost public intellectual of India, even God can’t save us. So superficial takes on everything that plagues India!

  • Shivom Oza

    Had Lal Bahadur Shastri lived on for another 5 years, Indira Gandhi would have never become the prime minister of India. Sanjay Gandhi would have been a failed entrepreneur and Rajiv Gandhi a retired airline pilot. Rahul Gandhi would have been a middle-level manager in a private sector company and India would have been a much better place. Had Lal Bahadur Shastri lived on for another 5 years… – Ramachandra Guha. :)

  • gaurav86

    people talking such nonsense are called historians in this country!. some people gets the name of institutions like stephens and doon printed on them once in life and then keeps on banking upon it all their life. This fellow is same case. There are large number of people who understand and can narrate indian history far better than this fellow who is so much a headache to listen about.to make academics attractive to people, you don’t make it a downgrade exhibition of subjectivity. He is Chetan Bhagat of indian historians group. god save us from his malarkey.

    • Ramesh Shastri

      If you are right just point out what his mistakes. Of course it is easier to just fling mud since it doesn’t require much intelligence or real knowledge.

      • gaurav86

        you are no one to question me and i have no duty to answer you. Your right ends at the expression of disagreement with other’s opinion and i am not taking that right away from you. But to answer your argument or not to answer it, is my right. So please mind your own business. Stay happy with what you think of guha. And i have no interest in getting answer from you for your affinity toward guha and his writings unlike you who is doing this absurd thing of asking someone why he doesn’t like someone whom you like.

        • Sachin

          Blah blah blah … i am right ….. blah blah blah … you have no right ….. blah blah blah …. I know my rights blah blah blah …. historian have a duty … blah blah blah … i have no duty …….blah blah blah … One peice of advice Intelligence and rationality are not the same things

          • gaurav86

            of course, intelligence and rationality are not the same things, and you have neither… having said that, i would call very few irrational persons as “intelligent”… wouldn’t you?

  • shashank

    Lots of people are angry with him… so he must be doing something right. I haven’t read the book but from the interview he appears to have balanced views and is quite straight forward. I actually agree with him on almost everything.. guess i did not have my glass of cow milk today :)

    • harb daroool

      Donkey milk really did the trick today, didn’t it? :))))))

    • shashank is porkistani

      Stupid people like you are the reason a dumb guy called Rahul gandhi aspires to be the supreme leaders of 1,200,000,000 Indians. I salute your parents who have produced a zero IQ human being who can write English on the forums. “Lots of people are angry with him…so he must be doing something right”, yeah?

      • shashank

        chill out dude and get some sense of humour while you are at it.

        • ram yadav

          We don’t need one more marxist teenager jhola walas like you who legitimize Aryan invasion theory and say hindus should bite the bullet everytime. Go to Pakistan, we don’t give a damn but don’t instruct hindus. Hindus have evolved over the time without the help of self serving crypto christians like you.

          • shashank

            meh…

    • Indian

      ‘Internet Hindus’ are angry with Guha. So they must be doing something right.

  • Hariharan

    Fantastic interview. i loved it

  • Raghav

    Guha is a very intelligent,articulate,excellent writer. He has the potential to be a Scholar,Social Historian Chronicler& Analyst and a Thinker, but he chooses not to. He is happy being a shallow,superficial, pseudo scholar and belong to the “defined” mores of “intellectual” of India which means; you must be leftist,anti-establishment,anti-Hindu,anti-Sangh Parivar, Psuedo secular, in brief, an “apologist”. I didn’t like his India after Gandhi, it was too shallow & selective. I am eagerly waiting to read this new book. His columns and articles are nice to read. There are a few things to be said about what he said in this interview;

    1. If Muslims have done poorly in all aspects despite 65 years of “pampering” by the “secularists”, who is responsible?

    2. Hindu rage & Internet Hindu phenomenon needs to be studied,understood, and analysed more deeply. It is not irrational and illogical,there is a reason and rationale behind it.It cannot, and should not be dismissed as fanaticism.

    3. Bitchy remarks about team Anna are unfair and unbecoming of a “scholar” like Guha.

    Superb job by Madhu, who did incisive questioning. Guha should debate with Arun Shourie and Subramaniam Swamy, or even Govindacharya to become better and more enlightened.

    • Intel

      1.Extremists including the Hindutvawadi/Mullahs are responsible

      2. They are fanatic(half read/irrational people)

      If one version of intellectuals are Govindaacharya and Shourie …..then this person is trapped into self re-inforcing vicious circle of chanting the same mantra till it starts to have meaning by sheer chanting and no substance.

      • si91

        Islam is responsible for Muslim degeneracy. Just look at how once great pre-Islamic civilizations in Persia, India, Indonesia, and even the Arab world have now degenerated into jihadist savagery. All of the Congress pandering in the world cannot change a community that insists on remaining mired in 7th century barbarity. Hindus are generally a peaceful and tolerant people, and if there are Hindutva extremists, then that means that they are experiencing some kind of serious problems that people like Guha refuse to acknowledge.

        Govindacharya is a great Vedanta teacher and Shourie is one of the BJP’s few intellectual voices. Hardly people who can be dismissed in so cavalier a manner.

        • Intel

          companions, or near relations, should send for a surgeon; but that man should say: “I will not have this arrow pulled out, until I know who the man is that has wounded me: whether he is a noble, a priest, a
          citizen, or a servant”; or: “what his name is, and to what family he belongs”;
          or: “whether he is tall, or short, or of medium height.” Verily, such a man would die”

  • http://twitter.com/KrishnHelpIndia Shekhar

    A spray of paint on the wall where paint consists of stray thoughts without any direction = Ramchandra Guha. P.S. he is not into psychology. I recommend him to venture into psychology for his own benefit.

  • http://www.facebook.com/madhukar.nikam Madhukar Nikam

    Guha like his Kannada fellow traveller Girish Karnad, farts his mind out at the drop of a hat! calling himself a Historian is the biggest joke! Perhaps the few letters he got from fellow Indians is fuelling his kitchen ! understand has priced his book fairly high ! Madhu must have felt frustrated interviewing someone who has an opinion on anything and everything on earth! sometimes I wonder if Mani Shankar Iyer and Guha were to fight for the top honours for HMV award…who would win!

  • Vineet Nair

    “Islam is frozen in the 7th century, Hindutva people want to freeze us in the Vedic Age, which is even older then the 7th century”. What crap? How can he compare the Vedic age to the Islam of the 7th century? His understanding of Hinduism is so shallow. Most of us have not studied the Vedas in the traditional rigorous way (which is good 20-30 years in the Gurukula tradition). But we do have lives and works of spiritual giants like Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, Sri Sarada Devi, Sri Ramana Maharishi, Sri Aurobindo, and Mata Amritanandamayi before us. They are the very embodiments of Sanatana Dharma, which is now known as Hinduism. A rigorous study of their lives (e.g. Swami Vivekananda with Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa) itself will help us realize what Sanatana Dharma is, which is the gift of the Vedic period to the world. And he calls himself a scholar? I am sorry. Atleast, in matters related to Hinduism, he just isn’t one.

  • AnIndian

    Till date, I thought all liberals worship Nehru, hate Patel & Shastry, and are anti India. Though a liberal Guha does not appears to be prisoner of that rotten ideological class. I have not read the book but now may give a thought about it.

    • Rainbow

      This seem to reflect on your own mind that seem to be deceiving you more than the world itself. Cause liberals or not complete rainbow of thoughts exist in real world.

  • Mahendra

    Hope Madhu got a good crop dusting.Always hilarious to watch this funny fellow drivel about everything under sun. Truth is now HISTORY in India,thanks to guha ilk. How can there be liberal or left historians when it is not possible to have liberal or extremist scientists? He suggests Hindus to become more like Xians, good if Hindus build institutions as a cover to spread Hindu missionaries all over and practice religion as a part of countries foreign policy. These dimwits scrutinize Anna,fair enough, but never saw even a single liberal intellectual(gosh no) question the kind of work theresa did in Kolkata and handling of her finances and the religious fundamentalism she spread. No more slave mentality, I think that is what disturbing these intellectuals being questioned on the hoax they try to preach. He says that he has to be extreme to stay relevant but wants hindus to be subversive while facing threats from missionaries and mullahs. He also appeals us to become more like one organized religion(love of Stephen) not like another organized religion(Muslims), so guha subconsciously don’t like Muslim ways. Again he doesn’t want Hindus to be organized. This is polemic of no consequence and 0 value. why not these liberal intellectuals and their aggrieved xian,muslim brothers go screw themselves and leave us poor hindus alone?

  • Shyam

    Good interview for the most part.

    Guha does try to appear fair but I’m appalled at his lack of understanding why Hindus though 85% of the population would feel besieged. The reason for the rage is exactly the so called secular folks like him (who’d like to believe they are somehow fair to all communities and liberal minded as in ‘live and let live’). Let me explain it to him as Mr. Guha says he doesn’t get it – Its simply because they are not represented in the mainstream adequately IN SPITE of being 85%.

    Day in and day out historians like Romila Thapar (who is still feted despite the thrashing she got from Dr. Swamy on AIT, still peddles the same old wares under ‘Aryan migration theory’ even as historians worldwide have dropped the racist AIT as it doesn’t hold up to DNA studies) and most English news media, which is so blatantly anti Hindu (due to their Church funding perhaps) hold the view of history that the best thing that happened in our history is the muslim invasion and ‘thank God’ for the British who ‘liberated’ the unwashed masses of India. They cannot see anything good in our civilization before the islamic invasion (insinuating that the invasion was a good thing!). They are rooted in a thinking that anything ancient is by definition outdated and superstitious (evident when he quips ‘islam wants to take us to 7th century, Hindutva wants to take us to the much older vedic age’).

    Most Hindus just put up with the glib talk of such ‘intellectuals’, their pretentious vocabulary, and ‘steeple hand gestures’ because they never had a voice to express it. Now they use the internet Why is it that the media houses which always want to hold candle sticks for the oppressed ever talk of historical injustices of Hindus and pretend as if it never happened? Of course, I would never hold the current gen of muslims responsible (they were mostly forcibly converted by the invaders, so they are victims too) for it but to forget history and whitewash it and peddle distorted histories ‘to keep communal harmony’ and not to ‘offend muslim sentiments’ is not any different from vote bank and appeasement politics of Congress (no wonder these historians are perceived to be cong stooges).

    The real challenge today is that even the muslim youth are misled by this fear mongering (propagated by Congress and ably supported by ‘elite’ historians like Guha and Thapar) that Hindutva is somehow equivalent to Islamic fundamentalism in a different color and Hindutva is aimed at making the equivalent of Pakistan but of Hindu flavor. On the face of it he might appear correct but the here is the key difference which is never debated – How is Hinduism different from Islam? To his credit Guha did say ‘Hinduism is decentralized and constantly renews itself’ but what he failed to mention is that in Hinduism text is subservient and belief is voluntary, not imposed, so even a Hindu country which retains and cherishes its historical richness will still be more free than a islamic or even a Western secular country, as India has been all along (here is the complete definition – an essentially decentralized faith where experience is central, skepticism integral, belief voluntary and text subservient)

    Wasn’t India a Hindu country before the arrival of the muslim invaders and the British? Why did they come? These historians make it sound like the Muslim Invaders came to teach us how to make chicken tikka and the British came to build our railways. Having credulously swallowed the British version of Indian history, these historians no wonder are clueless why so many Hindus don’t agree with them. In fact historians (if they really are historians and not propagandists) such as Guha would do well to learn from such feedback instead of painting them all as irrational, rabid and bigoted just so that he could appear as the victim of uncalled-for hatred and criticism. Of course, he would like to think they are not the ‘real hindus’ but I’m.

    Mr. Guha may want to find some equivalency between Babar and Rama by some warped thinking but why should he expect anyone to agree with him?

    Sadly its another opportunity lost for him to learn since to learn you have to question your long held beliefs but its tough to introspect and drop them when its also the source of his social standing and livelihood.

    “History is to a civilization as memory is to a man” . Think if you lost your memory (like in Ghajini), no idea who your friends or family are or what you did in your life until today, how disoriented will you be? Think now if someone plants a false memory that you caused a lot of harm to others but you cannot remember it but you were saved by X. That’s how I see Hindus today – confused by years of distorted histories, diffident to assert their identity, unfounded self-flagellation, value shifts which makes them glorify anything white and European/American/foreign and see them as ‘cool’ (even today Max Mueller is well known and respected than someone like Dharampal despite there being no correlation to their respective scholarships). But slowly today some Hindus are starting to see through the inconsistencies in the stories they are told about their past. They are now trying to unravel the truth from inaccurate popular narratives, wanton propaganda and ignorant prejudicial writings of Risley, Mueller, Caldwell, et al. Why should Indian historians still peddle British justifications for colonizing India as ‘history’?

    My only request to Mr. Guha, other historians and social scientists is this – Don’t try to create false equivalences when none exists just to appear ‘fair’.

    • Ghajini
      • si91

        You’re advocating an article on the Aryan migration theory by a guy who proudly proclaims that he’s a “White Man’s Burden racist”? Who calls his critics “Hindu dogs”? A very objective source, I’m sure. As Stefan Arvidsson points out in his book “Aryan Idols” scholars on Indo-European history have long been prone to racist bias, and the blogger quoted seems to be a quintessential example of that. Plus, some of his “evidence” doesn’t make sense. For instance, he says that the pastoral Aryans supposedly supplanted the more urban Dravidian people the same way that the Arabs supplanted the Copts, Romans, etc. But this happened through Arab invasion, not through migration. Further, he claims that there were never any horses in India prior to the Aryan migration. How does he explain the Bhimbetka rock shelters that show people riding horses long before the Aryans supposedly migrated? He ridicules the claim that Max Mueller was not a British imperialist propagandist. But that the British used Indology for their own purposes is abundantly clear. In fact, Mueller himself was a moderate among British extremists in his field. He was actually denied the Boden Chair of Indology at Oxford in favor of Monier-Monier Williams, who openly wanted to use Indology to spread Christianity in India. Even if Mueller did not personally concoct the Aryan migration theory, it was in fact used by the British to justify their colonization of India as being a continuation of a history of foreign rule. Further, he dismisses the idea that the Vedas must predate the drying up of the Sarasvati River, because they mention it as a great river. However, even if Sarasvati settlements were only along the northern part of the river, that still means that the Vedas predate the river’s completely drying up, which still occurred prior to the supposed Aryan Migration. At any rate, here is a different take on the Aryan Migration Theory: http://www.omilosmeleton.gr/pdf/en/indology/Migration_Theory.pdf

    • Troll

      do you work for Caravan magazine?

    • rahulArmy

      Very well said man…You took words from my mouth “Its simply because they are not represented in the mainstream adequately IN SPITE of being 85%.”

    • Indian

      Even more brilliant than the interview itself ! Great write Shyam – surely hope Guha reads this, better still, hope he understands it.

    • indianajones

      Guha says RSS tried to create “only one God” (presumably Rama) in Hinduism through Ayodhya movement. What a non- sense statement – meant only to portray RSS in a bad light and create a “false equivalence” with Islam jehadists. Pathetic.

    • guest

      Brilliant.

  • Tejas Rao

    “Internet hindus” are a ridiculous bunch of hypocrites. Not only do they waste everyone’s time by not discussing important things like governance and development, when they do get elected they end up following more or less the same policies of congress. BJP’s contribution to India is proving that governing while carrying around the baggage of the past on their heads doesn’t work. And this is most evident in the strange case of Mr.Modi who despite performing better than most CM’s is unable to get out of Gujarat.

    “Internet Hindus” are the reason more temples get built in India than hospitals or schools. They should put their money where their mouth is and start speaking only in Sanskrit and send their kids to vedic schools if they are so proud of this so called Hindu heritage they claim to be experts in.

    • Counter Viewpoint

      Totally agree. They take pride in being well read and intelligent whereas most of their knowledge is superficial and is acquired specifically to reinforce Hindutvawadi version of India. They do not give any thoughts to counter view-point. Thus whenever, however sparsely though, you come across an IH who is better read you still cant have a rational talk with them cause they seem to confuse the knowledge with intelligence and intelligence with rationality.

      • Mahendra

        what’s your point? any specifics? or just a blabber .

    • si91

      In case you haven’t noticed, some of Modi’s biggest fans are the so-called Internet Hindus, who are impressed with him precisely because they care a lot about governance and development. As far as more temples being bult than hospitals or schools, recall that the various organizations within the Sangh Parivar, which the Internet Hindus are generally more favorable towards, actually do a lot of work providing education and healthcare to India’s poor and disadvantaged through charity schools and hospitals. They also have a Samskrita Bharati initiative to revive the Sanskrit language as a medium of communication like other Indian languages. They have also set up gurukula schools along the Vedic model to revive the indigenous system of education dismantled by the British in favor of their own babu factory universities. Naturally, they are accused of using these facilities to propagate their supposed “fascist” ideology. Of course, if they did not do these things, they would no doubt be accused of being “upper caste chauvinists” who want to “re-assert” their “hegemony” over India. These accusations are made regardless, of course, but they would retain at least a bit of credibility were the Sangh Parivar not doing these things.

      • Gopinath Iyer

        In case you haven’t noticed, the question raised was why Modi hasn’t been able to spread his wings beyond Gujarat despite his record? For that matter why hasn’t the RSS despite its social activities, for almost a 100 years now, NOT translated into serious pan-Indian political force? Internet Hindus can keep blaming Congress but sooner or later must face the fact, building political capital based on Hindu identity is an idea doomed to fail. With 4000 different castes just within the Hindu caste system how can it ever work? Most of these groups to this day have some historical grude or the other against each other. To believe it is possible to keep them united based on Hindu identity has been failed throughout India’s history. The Mugals exploited these differences, then the British did and now Congress, BSP, DMK etc do it. BJP needs new idea’s and definitely new leadership. In fact I cant see how long it can survive when people are more interested in looking towards the future than the staring back at the past.

        • si91

          If caste is the problem, then it can be solved. The Koreans and Japanese also had caste, yet they fixed it through economic growth and equal opportunity. The Congress perpetuates it through caste based votebanks and a culture of dependency and entitlement via Nehruvian socialism. The Congress is the very epitome of everything that is wrong with modern India, yet it was and still is a pan-Indian political force.It has no principles whatsoever. All of its supposed values, like secularism, pluralism, concern for the poor and other leftist buzzwords have all proven to be lies and false promises. If this loathsome excuse for a political party can survive and indeed thrive in India, why can’t a pan-Hindu political party? The reason pan-Hindu politics does not work is because Hindus have been used to submission after centuries of kowtowing before foreign occupiers, and the Brown Sahib Hindu haters of the Congress simply took the reigns from their British masters, who they secretly adored. That is why just about anything that is staunchly Hindu in India is considered communal and to be ashamed of. Hindu identity is literally the only thing keeping India together; there is nothing else uniting the Kashmiris, the Keralaites, the Assamese and the Gujaratis and everyone else in between. Without it, India becomes a soulless shell like Pakistan.

          • Gopinath Iyer

            Completely out of touch with reality. Korea and Japan aren’t united over religion or caste but due to language. Let’s not get into the fact that you have conveniently forgotten about North Korea. So much for great examples. They are such bad examples I don’t even know where to begin and end.

            India has 1,2 billion people. Korea and Japan have less than the population of 2 average states of India. You cant unite groups across language, caste, religion at the size and scale of India(4000 castes, 700 languages, 20-30 different scripts) just talking about Hindu identity. It is an old fashioned concept that has never worked anywhere in the world and at at any time in history. See USSR and Yugoslavia. Not to mention current problems in the EU.

            Even though you are highly misguided, you skirt close to the solution when you talk about unity through economic and social development. Development has nothing to do with Hindu unity. Development in Bangalore or Gujarat or Tamil Nadu did not happen because everyone was feeding of some great Hindu magical power. Instead they happened because local politicians, local entrepreneurs, local educated skilled work force enabled it. India is more likely to stay united to keep its national cricket team intact than it is thanks to Hindu identity. So stop living in a dreamland.

          • si91

            South Korea and Japan were once divided by caste, but now due to economic development, caste is no longer important. If having many castes the problem, then it is a fixable problem and does not necessarily make uniting India through an appeal to Hindu culture impossible. And it is not just language, but also culture and shared history that unite the people of those, and many other nations. In India’s case, Hinduism is an extraordinary part of that culture and shared history. This isn’t old fashioned at all, but something that forms the basis for nationhood all over the world. As far as North Korea is concerned, it is separate because of Communism. The North Koreans still see themselves as Koreans and both halves officially claim the entire peninsula as their own. If it is impossible to unite groups across language, caste, religion, etc then how is India one nation at all? Why is it that it has not broken apart like the USSR and Yugoslavia, which were artificially united through dictators? Because there is an essential unity among Hindus that has always transcended linguistic and caste lines.

            Without it, there is no basis at all for Indian identity. Indians across India don’t wear the same clothes, eat the same food, speak the same language, or worship the same gods as each other. Yet, India is one nation because the diversity and flexibility of Hindu culture is such that it is able to fit to mold various regional lifestyles, and provide unity in diversity. This isn’t a new concept either; the concept that the people of the Indian subcontinent are one amazingly diverse civilization separate from, say Burma, Tibet, or Iran, is something easily apparent when we look at Hindu texts like the Vedas, Mahabharata, Ramayana, etc. Their veracity notwithstanding they clearly describe a multifaceted, vast, and diverse Hindu civilization across the Indian subcontinent.

          • Gopinath Iyer

            Please go to a library and read some history. Don’t get your facts from politicians whose speeches are targeted at uneducated villagers, specifically designed to exploit their ignorance.

            A good starting point would be the Cultural Heritage of India at Ramakrishna mission. Then develop an understanding of post independence history of India.

            “there is an essential unity among Hindus that has always transcended linguistic and caste lines.” – This is a highly ignorant statement

            I dont want to even talk about history where Hindu kingdoms have fought each other for thousands of years. Mordern India has already had many secession movements some still ongoing and extremely unresolved like in Nagaland and Kashmir. If somebody had sent you to Punjab with your Hindu identity rhetoric at the height of the khalisthan movenment Punjab would have left by now.

            People like you have to understand preserving Hindu culture (which has endured the British and the Mughals) is a different issue. Don’t confuse it with Indian identity.

            Parties that use Hindu identity now or in the future will always face opposition tactics that exploit the historical difference among Hindus to their benefit. This and the point in the previous para are the main reasons for future political parties in India speak about development rather than identity. It justs ends in a lot of time wasted debating the past rather than planning for the future.

            India if it is going to survive, will do so, only if inequality continually reduces in the years to come and development reaches everyone. Otherwise it wont.

          • Mahendra

            yes yes we are a divided bunch, hopeless, come screw us….blah blah blahhhh

          • CSRK

            Good Insight.. There is one thing i absolutely don’t understand. What is the whole idea behind identifying the ONE common thread ( Hindu) that unites us ALL.. Why is it SO necessary that we have a common background and call ourselves HINDU and constantly look for Reasons and Facts in History that we all hope will lead us to that Eureka Moment – “We are all related ” – As a society we all need to just grow up and look beyond. The Idea of INDIA is new and its only right that for Human Development that we embrace whatever has happened in History Leave it behind and get on with life. What the Mugals Did or who looted whom is not going to put money into your account nor is it going to stop the poverty in this country. We need to get Real and embrace this idea of the New Idea and move on.. Its surprising even after so many years of independence we get caught in such small talk …

    • Tejas Rao is from Porkistan

      Let me state the obvious which you would not like to mention. In last 30 years, at least 3 times Mosques and at least 10 times Churches are being built in India, than temples. Just go out of your house and roam around the 5 kms area to appreciate this truth. And if you dare question who is funding these Churches and Mosques.

  • Thou shalt not pander

    I enjoyed the interview only in part. His comments on angry online Hindus irked me, for instance, as they exposed his blanket statement logic on such matters.

    – Angry online Hindus are as much of a problem/concern/menace as Angry online muslims/christians/sikhs/whatever. There is no reason to see the situation as problematic only in one case. Are only minorities allowed to air grievances and be ANGRY?

    – You can be an online angry Hindu without subscribing to the ideology of right-wing Hindutva. These two categories are NOT one and the same.

    – The logic that Hindus should bite the bullet no matter what is completely ridiculous. What Guha is essentially saying is that You’re the majority. You have it better than anybody else. So quit whining and shut up. The truth is that people ARE feeling threatened and feel hostile towards perceived outgroups. We need to find out what should be done to rectify the situation and strengthen morale instead giving “advice” that amounts to: “ZIP IT!” or “SHAME ON YOU!”.

    – When a minority group complains, saviours (of all religions) swoop down to espouse their cause and the call is labelled progressive. When a majority group complains, the supporters (of that one religion) are called fundamentalist or sectarian and the movement is labelled to be regressive or right-wing. Maybe the problem is that of image. The “Angry Hindus” need the support of like-minded Non-Hindus. Only then can one truly talk of representative nationalism.

    – Its also worth exploring whether the “angry Hindus” are hostile towards all minorities or about only one minority group (Muslims). Guha suggests that the former is the case but I wouldn’t be so sure. Anger towards a select minority would suggest that the “anger” is not some knee jerk reaction against anyone who who believes differently, which is what would be expected of general intolerance.

    – I can tell you, as a Christian living in the Middle East, that t is incredibly obtuse of Guha to even suggest that India (Hindus dominating all other religious groups) is in any danger of even being mildly comparable to Islamic countries in the Middle East.

  • Ashish Khushu

    Gud Q : What went right?:). he is overrated. full stop.

  • http://twitter.com/ChoteBhai1 Bhrata

    Actually I found Comment section more Informative then Mr. Guha….Mr. Guha has to understand that the outrage among Internet people whom he calls “Internet Hindus” is actually spread in society ..My Family is from UP..there 9 Riots has happenened in 7 months…all of them started by Muslims..No one NO Media politicians is came their to rescue them ..If you want to understand this outrage Go to Mallyapuram/Kerela ,Kashmir,Ferrozabad/UP,Mewat/Haryana…there Hindus are living as opperesed under Hindus ..in many places open Sharia Court Operate…No Politician coming for there help…The Right Wing HIndu is a hoax ..itself …The Anti Hindu voice which media has taken as to be fought..Hindus too have Human Rights….So Mr. Guha it is a joke when you says you are Historan…you don’t even understand present situation…and your knowledge about HInduism is itself void…India is United by this identity otherwise there is nothing common in between Karnatka and Haryana..or else….The visible thing ..where you will find less Hindus sepratist forces only operate there..whether it is Kashmir,Kerela, NE

  • http://twitter.com/ChoteBhai1 Bhrata

    Now I don’t think there are more takers of Pseudo Secularism..the Bunchs of Guhas, Karnards ,Amritya Sen…are struggling to keep their hold…sorry sir the days of Political correctness are over..now face the truth you may don’t like it ..but Satyamev Jayate

  • Parveen Yadav

    Really intelligent concept! And wonderfully thought provoking expression from Mr. Ghua. Also, Ms Madhu, Keep asking the big question, why don’t the leaders come out and communicate with media.

  • sps kalra

    pl do a programe with Arvind Kejriwal…

  • Surya

    Hinduism is a decentralized religion, every jathi took care of itself and progress was made in all spheres of life in the past. But lets remember that India was a decentralized country in the past too. With India’s Independence, Nehru was guilty of making India a more centralized country. The constitution of India has been applied to all Indians in a totalitarian manner. Moreover once a party gets power the leader gets the sole rights to lead the country the way he wants for the next five years. Coupled with the fact that Nehru and Indira Gandhi, where almost equivalent to Hindu haters, the needs of the time demanded Hinduism to become more centralized – so that Anti-Hindu secularists do not play a divide and conquer game. So if Guha wants a decentralized Hinduism, and wants to live like how Hindus perceived Hinduism a century ago, my reply would be first make India to be a decentralized country, and make villages powerful instead of the cities. Then Hinduism would automatically get decentralized. Thankfully Hindus adapt themselves to time, and do not live in 19th century era. I still have a question – wasnt it the liberals who want Indians to forget the past and live in a “new” India ? How is it that the very same people now want Hindus to live in “old” Hinduism ?

  • RN

    Wow Shyam. I am glad I came to this site just to hear you. Beautifully said.

  • Kalyan Rman

    I just noticed that Guha misquotes a widely known passage from Yeats’ The Second Coming: The best lack all intensity / and the worst of full of passionate conviction. Ha ha. Habits die hard.

    • http://www.facebook.com/vishal.dhingra.186 Vishal Dhingra

      yes he does,right quote is :The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity. Guha not only needs to correct his warped subjective view on Indian Philosophy but he also needs to spend more time to get his grip on Western Literature.

  • Neelkanth

    @Madhu Tehran : You had pointed out that two main parties Congress and BJP point at each other over the corruption charges and never speak t the people. You let me remind you, when the corruption charges were alleged at BJP president Mr.Gadkari, he himself came out in open in Media studios to defend himself, he may/may not be corrupt, but he atleast spoke to the public by directly appearing in the media. While neither Gandhi’s or any other political leader came out to defend themself neither in herald case nor in any of the many corruption charges

    • NeelKanth

      Yes there was Mr.Khurshid, which infact exposed his own character in public may be that is the reasons why Gandhis never come out in media.

  • Arpita Seth

    Kindly post the entire interview. It stops after 14:03 minutes. Thank you

  • LoveYou

    I woke up one morning and heard the news that the milk man will never deliver milk to our house as he was beheaded by a mob with a sword as some where something called Babri was demolished.

    I was 5 years old when Babri masjid was demolish. We used to live in Kanpur back then, in a Muslim majority colony. The area was severely hit by riots and each passing day seemed to be longer than several years. In day time ashes from burning houses used to come to our veranda flying with the wind. I didn’t know about religion back then but I used to think that the people were mad as what so ever be the question blood can never be the right answer.

    Today I see people talking at length about Hindu-Muslim love or animosity and communal harmony or disharmony, I have no reason to question anyone for their beliefs and dis-beliefs but I know that having seeing houses burnt and boys running with knifes and pistols in front of that house in childhood, I have seen that side of problem which most see or hear on news channels. The five old, who never dies or grows up, in me had seen blood on streets and could not know whether it was of a Hindu or a Muslim. I just knew someone’s mother was crying or someone’s son lost his father.

    Hindutva will do no good to anyone. Hinduism is not under threat. What is under threat is Indianism. People are growing outrageous and rude to each other. They read less and study less they know less and talk too much. We are a young nation and can make India a beacon of democracy and secularism if only we come out of any kind of fundamentalism and orthodoxy.

    A Muslim has never hurt me and I have given love and received love in return (always). What can you get in return of love? Why can’t we experiment with this truth in our age?

    • Bangalore

      I agree

  • naik

    Thrilled by reading most informative feedback,and also relieved to know the there are fabulous defenders of hindu culture,Can any one name a country which has hindu culture in the world!!!!

  • Playfiar

    this man is creepy!!

  • Omkar

    Could someone please explain why the video fails to load? Apparently it has been removed/blocked from YouTube. The same is the case with the video of the interview with Ravish Kumar of NDTV. Is this some kind of censorship of views critical of the Congress/present government? It would be great if Newslaundry would upload the videos again.

  • Phanindra

    I think Guha did not understand any thing of Hinduism….he is a very confused person…..but the sorry thing is….such a confused man writing history of India!!!

  • Why_So_Serious_GK

    Best Interview. Guha Sir you are the best!!! I am going buy India after Gandhi today only.

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