You are on page 1of 24

1

‘Honour Killings’:
The Case of Garnauthi And Kabulpur

What they symbolise
There is a slogan for the slogan-mongering crowd: “Down with Barbaric Khap, Long Live
Women Liberation Movement” from a progressive. It has a menacing tone as usual, while propagating freedom of sex, sexuality and marriage, if at all, for women with-no-holds-barred. Male in the family is targeted generally in such cases to fight ‘patriarchy’, while street walkers are adorned in celebration of modernity. Presently, the slogan has been raised under the shadow of two murders when an enraged father killed her daughter and a boy involved persistently in wayward behaviour, on 18 September, 2013 in a village, named Garnauthi. In concert, for example, The Tribune, Chandigarh was quick to fish out khaps in the story immediately to carry on its virulent tirade as ever, among national papers. It promptly tagged headings like ‘Unconstitutional Khap” on 24th September, 2013 as if everything else on Indian soil is constitutional while “Indoctrinated people and Silence of a land” on 25th September, 2013 to its editorial pieces, followed by a full page kaleidoscope on 29th September, 2013 of highly biased reportage and carried an edit-page article by a known habitually khap-baiter on 30th September, 2013 followed by another piece of 11.10.2013 by a serving IPS officer from Haryana as part of its full-throated campaign which it is carrying religiously for a couple of years now. As if to give it an academic flavour, it carried on 03.10.2013 a piece on the concept of honour in honour killings by another historian carrying the baggage of feminism on her sleeve (though, epithet honour is given to such murders by the media who proves more creative in such matters for a purpose, not by any academic). Another Hindi paper from New Delhi followed it on oppression of patriarchy from a retired police officer of Haryana cadre having strong leftist views of radical variety on women slavery. The corporate media, while carrying this tirade against khap practice of rural Haryana as being illegal, conveniently forgets the well known dictum in the same jurisprudence that ‘everything legitimate may not be legal and everything legal is not always legitimate’ at the heavy cost of social honesty. It apparently seized upon this case of murders as another opportunity in carrying its known policy of indoctrinated hostility to Khap in particular and rural way of life with its mores in general. It repeated the demand for a legal frame to force community elders not to meddle in matters of sex, sexuality and marriage of their kin and forbid them to resolve disputes, except through courts that are presided over by paid employees, betraying the democratic pretensions. Both were in fact keeping the war cry ringing for a change to occur against the will of rural folks like crusaders. The Garnauthi case was a plain episode involving two murders of wayward youths by the outraged parents, with no other party to it either in planning or execution as per details out so far. Such cases by now are not a peculiarity of Haryana either. These are daily occurrences in India, Pakistan and many other countries. The ingenuity of these crusaders lies in the fact that

2

the role of Khap has been invented here in this case also to curse the ‘conservative’ attitude of village folks in such matters as per their description, though the torn shoe lies on their own wounded toes. Prejudice is so heavy and thick with them against rural Haryana that they were unable to apply mind for a rational analysis of events. The strategy seems to be: invent Khap where there is none to hit the perceived enemy like George Bush did for his Iraq adventure in the service of corporate capital on weapons of mass destruction. This is the first prescription of Chanakayaniti for the crafty rulers and their minions. In fact, these jihadists are a frustrated lot over their unfulfilled agenda so far to get Khaps legally banned which they are carrying on zealously for over three years with a PIL lying in the Supreme Court with the grace of a powerful section in the central government, while keeping one NGO in front. In their crash hostility to Khaps they are not bothered to what extent the draft legislation from Law Commission on their bidding will curb the fundamental rights of citizens written down in the same Constitution. Apparently, these people are adopting aggressive posture as the best way of defending the indefensible! They were, however, caught in the tracks using unfair tactics to get what was conspired to get. The nefarious propaganda blitz now mounted against khaps, taking advantage mischievously of these murders in Garnauthi, after a pause when they got few raps on their knuckles in the court, is eloquent testimony of their retrograde intent in the service of corporate capital to overturn India on its cultural front and implant the life style of immigrants seeking sex pleasure in a world of displeasure, ensuring zero threat to the system of expropriation. If one does not choose to remain blind, such pen-pushers, who wear the task on chest for modernising India in matters of sex free from all social regulations, are the real abettors of such killings, now taking place in villages to advance the cause of rabid expropriators with select phraseology at command. One thing is striking: by inventing involvement of Khap in these murders and make it a case for women liberation by one, while explaining it with indoctrination by the other, it was quite ingenious for these men to advance a decadent culture of immigrants on behalf of those who have the hidden agenda of taking over this country and turn it over as their vassal in perpetuity, with no chance for another freedom movement to grow against these new masters, if one does not ignore the fact that it was native culture that had provided base strength for the earlier freedom movement to sustain so long against a barbaric colonial rule here. Yes, indoctrination is there but on both sides: people do have their cultural milieu which is the result of a long process of indoctrination born out of necessity to survive, while these crusaders are acting only on the strength of a counter-indoctrination from those who have the facility to expropriate the labour of others. It cannot be denied. It is absurd to blame indoctrination on the opposite side alone, who is powerless and stands expropriated to reply them effectively and appropriately? They are taking advantage of one fact that the first freedom movement stands totally expropriated by the expropriators at the cost of toilers in this land of peace and truth. Ironically, the same Tribune on the same day i.e. on 24th September, 2013 had propounded a philosophy by quoting a line as ‘Thought for the Day’ from Robert Louis Stevenson below the

3

editorial column with a message: “Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.” The media house must have selected the quote with care to advance its train of thoughts. Still, it leaves a trail impelling one to probe the nature of the seed in this case too and who planted it why and for what purpose. The role of the abettors can thus be decided only by a rational probe in the matter without blinkers or hidden agendas. The present outburst against these murders is not an isolated phenomenon; neither Garnauthi nor Kabulpur are exceptional places to occur; what Garnauthi and Kabulpur represent is just the harvest of a seed that had consciously been sown through a concerted campaign by demonising the ‘old’ for the dubious ‘modernity’ to take over. One must, however, admit at the outset that there is nothing wrong for the old to make way for the new, if it serves the social good. It is a different matter when ‘modern’ virtually wants to take over a people for the advantage of a marauding beast. One must then pause to think over afresh and decide. Garnauthi and Kabulpur are two villages so named by ancestors, falling in the vicinity of Rohtak city in Haryana, but, presently both signify a differently scripted stark story emerging for rural India that is enmeshed in ugly civil war like situation within the walls of every family living there. This war is not by their choice or default but thrust upon rural India without many victims realising the stinking reality behind, its genesis and the motives of those powerful forces that have scripted it. Till about two decades ago, rural Haryana, as most of rural India, used to live by itself with social peace of a family-labour based agricultural economy. None could have thought of what ‘modern’ Garnauthi and Kabulpur would represent so grievously today. When so said, it is not meant to declare that old time rural India was all bliss and now everything is evil there. But, the social fabric in villages that had kept India live with rhythm, has been torn asunder by design of evil intent, there can be hardly any doubt about it. Garnauthi signifies it with these murders, while Kabulpur had shown something from a bit different perspective, but both carry their respective symbolism in stink. Still, all is not lost there; social life breathes. The amount of comfort in community life and mutual relationship, do provide them support for survival, despite deep inroads of alien features in their hearths and homes during these past six decades of capitalist development and consolidation. To recount briefly, the two murders in Garnauthi at the hands of enraged parents of a girl who had eloped a day earlier to get married with a boy of the same village were benumbing for reasons more than one. Both the victims had the facility/privilege provided by the caring parents to go for higher education in nearby Rohtak city with the hope of a good professional career. As per published reports, the whole village knew about the wayward activities of these delinquents for some years, but none knew that they have now eloped for marriage, except perhaps the parents. After getting their location, parents of the girl brought them home and murdered both of them, quite in rage on the fateful day. The father of the girl, on query after arrest, bluntly admitted the crime at his hand to ‘cleanse the society of such muck’. His realisation of the muck certainly was not confined to his personal tragedy alone. He was living perhaps in the midst of an unfolding tragedy of all around his environment of rural Haryana.

4

The mother of the girl is said to be as indoctrinated as the father, if not more. In this murder ‘patriarchy’ and ‘matriarchy’ both are partners, as reports go and both loved their daughter no less than the son in the family. The only act that went fatally wrong was, perhaps, to send the girl and the boy to a new world of wild dreams in the city, spending their hard earned money for their own undoing. What the girl and the boy learnt in the by-lanes of this wild dreams in the name of education was beyond the expectations of the unsuspecting parents. One report suggests that it was mother side which felt more humiliated and enraged by the conduct of the wayward girl with new lessons in free choice. It is also mentioned that both the victims had given too many moments of anxiety to both families for long. Both of them continuously flouted parental persuasion and virtually killed the life of relationships for the family and neighbourhood community, giving rise to these murders in unprecedented rage to defend the future of others. This seems to be his rationale behind the intent to cleanse the ‘muck’, in the background of ground reality in rural community life. One may allege, as media has done, that the father stood indoctrinated to a particular mode of thought about the mores in rural life. Yes, the whole of rural India stands indoctrinated of their choice in mode of living, much like those who profess a set of different cultural aspirations in urban India. Both sides stand equally indoctrinated to their respective way of life and both have co-existed side by side till recently without interference in each other’s life. What has impelled the elites now to mount pressure on rural folks for stream-rolling uniformity and why? What are those factors that have given rise to this level of impatience in one to curb diversity by force of law now after almost six decades of independence? What is the motive of those who want them to change by force of state power to an alien mode instead? Who has indoctrinated these gentlemen for their mode and why? For a while, let the question of paid modernisers be set aside to pin down motive behind the crusade and questions be investigated thoroughly for a reasonable understanding of the issue behind this present crusade against rural India, if one is serious enough to stand by justice and truth. The other village in this narration is Kabulpur, nearby Rohtak city. Here the script was a bit different and reflects another aspect of the harvest. It came into focus all of a sudden when a girl, in cooperation with a young boy of the same village, conspired to remove both the concerned families from their chosen path for sexual freedom. On 19th September, 2009 in an occurrence first of its kind, two caring families were conspired to be killed under a joint operation by the sex-hungry neighbours. On her part, the frail girl strangulated all the seven available members of her family while they laid unconscious by poison in the meal, including the kids; the boy in question tricked instead and saved his own family out of the pact. Soon after the murders in the dead of night, dead bodies lying around, both of them celebrated their ‘love’ and freedom of choice to their hearts’ content. The boy had arranged the poison to make both families sleep deep before they were to be killed one by one. Village gained immediate notoriety at international level for it. And, Kabulpur has not remained an isolated example. Elites can take pride over their kill with such success stories day in and day out by now of their labours. In village Kabulpur these murders were as brute as any could be, committed for sex right with no corresponding obligation. The killer girl had no remorse; rather she was carelessly

5

enjoying bites in police custody! Yes, it was freedom of choice with hurdles removed, as per prescription of the modernisers and she was perhaps a model for female liberation from patriarchy, going even to the extent of murders for the sake of her freedom to choose and mastery over her body- the present ideals of womenlib of American vintage based on crash individualism! Much unfortunately for the bold and bared girl, the protagonists of womenlib proved clever and timid to leave her unattended; none came forward to eulogise the warrior of much cherished freedom, while she was left to fend for self in a criminal litigation. It may be mentioned that there was no occasion for family members or any khap to issue any Talibani fatwa against the two depraved!! Simple fact was that both mothers of the boy and the girl were aware of what they were indulging in and silently working to avert the disaster by their own wisdom. The girl led the affair which had nothing to do with ‘love’- an exalting quality of a person with compassion at heart rather than momentary passion for anything carnal. One cannot be in compassionate love, while at the same time a crafty murderer for selfish purpose. The girl belonged to a father who was polishing the shoes and belts of his officers and did his best to earn money sufficient to finance her study in the university nearby, only to translate his obligation towards a sibling learning lessons these years in free carnal indulgence for gratification, calling it love and getting training to be a crass individual instead, duly caressed by the whole system of formal and informal education prevalent in the country of late. This happened in an area where hardly ever one could find any such incident two decades earlier. These two adults sponsored to a life of artificial ‘sex-hunger’, at the back of their caring parents, are in jail, as under-trials without however, enjoying the cherished freedom; the result of an indoctrination of a reverse kind. One can imagine the intensity of indoctrination of these immature urchins for such an act of murders in pursuit of their carnal urge by a system. There is another news, with a heading: Girl elopes, father kills self’ that The Hindu on 11.10.2013 carried from south India. The dejected father consumed poison on his failure to keep the engineering student daughter in line with the family culture when he was himself serving as a chaukidar to finance her study. The media and the so-called progressive busy-bodies have again selected Garnauthi, as once they had selected Manoj-Babli case of Haryana earlier without going seriously into the urges working behind and merely relying on the same charged media reports, to beat their targets harsh in khap and rural way of life. Garnauthi, however, turned significant in the sense that the incident was very explicit in rage and there was instant provocation in the background of a concerted campaign. There could be no Khap anywhere nearby in the picture and the rage was on exhibition. Kabulpur, on the other hand, had turned significant where an educated girl and the boy were bitten by sex-bug to the extent that whole family members, even kids fell victims to the killer girl and were eliminated to clear the path for enjoying sex as a way to be free from dependence syndrome of feminist description, taking the example higher than of ‘Kajoli’ from Bhabani Bhattacharya. No busy-body ever cared to analyse the affair and sorted issues involved in the tragedy of sorts. They, perhaps, took it as another manifestation of assertion by an enlightened female to be free!

6

There were no dharnas either, no candle marches, no demand charters, no editorial messages to the rulers, no sage advice, no chest beating, no celebrations either, though occurrence was no less ghastly; rather more jolting and heart rending a crime. None came out to utilise the freedom of expression on the issue. All progressives remained mute on it. How come such a pass in a rural family having a tranquil past? Let there be no doubt: both the girl and boy were inspired by modern views on sex in the city nearby while parents were crushed by times and labouring to earn for their studies in discharge of their due obligations, even toward these adults. In normal course, both of them had no reasons to rebel against the family web of relationships, except on provocation. What hands put them then to the path of crime and ruin even as individuals and for what? Let us examine who is who in this game of provocation and for what by sowing the seed for poisonous weed or sweet fruits to the need of society. The question definitely needs clarification on varoius counts. The gentleman in question raising the above said slogan on his blog and The Tribune, Chandigarh, both are taken here as symbolic progressives who are out to make rural India modern! Both are crusaders or jihadists, if you like, preaching the lessons in the freedom of choice for delivery with no-holds-barred. And, the timing? It is also important aspect to know. India is free for over six decades. Villages were allowed to live by their traditions and customs unchallenged and Khap practice with rural Haryana was never proclaimed from rooftops as anti-national, anti-development ever during the early four decades of independence. No crusaders ever came out to teach our young generation of freedom of choice in matters of sex and sexuality, except when female-sex based industries (numbering no less than 20 at present) had started contributing heavily to the GDP as the unchallenged yardstick of notional progress, copying the wild West and forgetting the golden East even at the cost of national ego of super nationalists at convenience, for money! It is really a riddle wrapped into an enigma that why the agenda of women liberation (WomenLib) of American genre, as distinct from old left variant, having existential slogans, had never been the forte of such liberal media and heavily financed NGO sector earlier when females were at disadvantage as is the evergreen faith now. Have these forces become more vibrant now? Seriously doubtful. Such type of free-hold freedom was never preached earlier ever, except for the last two decades of liberal economy. It is not because these gentlemen have grown more democratic, rather the situation is in reverse gear. The democratic rights of the people are under tight leash of late; they have grown vary of the earlier version of democratic dispensation of their own make and feel very uneasy with democratic rights of the working people. Clearly, these forces have an agenda now against the rural folks for their alleged backward and conservative outlook towards their own life simply because the ruling establishment has set a target to urbanise a big chunk of rural India rapidly for easy take over by corporate world and this media is acting on its behalf to clear the path by implanting a corresponding culture of crash individualism to take roots. Who needs urbanisation of rural India and in whose interest? The answer will ead to the the evil design of black forces.

7

For the media, these were ‘honour’ killings in Garnauthi. For parents at Garnauthi it was a case of loosening of family chesion forever while simultaneously betraying community mores by the concerned family, giving a fatal blow to the system of relationships that provides life sustaining conditions for them. For the family the happening was like death for loosing its rightful place in the comity of common interests in relationship where it felt threatened for its existence, cutting at the roots of social behaviour that had invited this exceptional punishment in despair to their own daughter and son against deliberate defiance so that others in line may not suffer for generations. In consequence, they courted for themselves the prescribed sentence for a criminal act of murders happily, since they knew well that such mores provide sustenance for the family every moment as important as free air living in a web of relationships with neighbourhood community. For the westernised intellectuals, these murders were gross violation of a right to life of two adult individuals, while for both the parents the violators of community mores were under obligations with no right to block future of others. Rights go with obligations, according to their rustic wisdom. The differences in perception of both sides are wide and have distinct meanings respectively. But crusaders are bent upon to shut the other view and want their own prescription to prevail, if any one desires to live in India of their dreams. That is the first tragedy of sorts in the propaganda campaign of wits in this case. What dream, by the way? India is suffering badly due to the fruits of this dream of over six decades after independence; nearly 80 per cent of its population is made to survive on starvation level and rural India gasping for breath. Let crusaders, including those adherents of left ideology who pathologically hate rural India, leave hypocrisy, renounce their riches and survive on rupees 20 per day like these 80 per cent and then talk about dreams of their make.

2

This is a war between two cultures, as said earlier.

The culture of immigrants and culture

of settled communities are are at war in every family presently in rural India for domination. These two sets of culture are incompatibles; the mode of existence is quite opposite to the other. Foe one the repository is individual while for the other it is the family and its neighbourhood community where family sustains in common. Before the issue of culture is taken up for this study, firstly, let one point be clear that family is not a collection of few individuals living together to fell apart; neither it is a fiefdom of any patriarchal figure to rule over. It is not uncommon where there is a mother figure that leads the family and its cohesion. The relationship is the mode of existence of the family as an institution of organic growth with interests in common. It is a collectivity of relationships that shapes it to a living organism with a common way of life with common object and harbouring no individual interest, with its own specific history within the ambit of a neighbourhood community.

8

Likewise, the web of relationships is the mode of existence of a given community; it is a not a collection of persons or families with a common habitat; it is a collectivity of relationships, having a common habitat and common way of life born out of and centring around common activities in general for sustenance i.e agriculture and animal husbandry with other supporting avocations. Presently, rural India is grappling with a peculiar situation that has been thrust upon it. It is facing a war like situation in every rural family between two sets of cultures for dominance since the day globalisation of its national economy was made the central agenda and hectic efforts were made to overturn its social as well as juridical texture, tagging its future with American dream of imperial aspirations having a corresponding culture that flowers only within the ambit of market forces in command, laced with acidic propensities of periodic convulsions. The native culture based on mores of a neighbourhood community weaving around a web of relationships is under serious threat of take over for extinction. What is being touted by the offensive crusaders of modernity in culture for rural India to adopt in fact is a way of life that has emerged with rootless immigrants/ dislocated population harbouring a different milieu of aspiration, in contrast to the settled communities worldwide have been living with their own cultural mores corresponding to their settled ways of subsistence, gaining ground through a long process of assimilationand generalisation. It is a known fact that culture of settled communities with family-labour based agriculture as their main occupation that provided peace and stability to social life, while culture of immigrants with industrial-commercial activities as their hub of productive-distributive system is crafted to support an exploitative regime that creates constant conflict and war of interests. Both these sets of cultures are two distinct categories, especially after trading and manufacturing activities turned independent jobs from agriculture. These are incompatibles to each other. To make cocktail of the two is to invite heady disaster of an unbearable burst for nearly 68 per cent of the population here – a tragedy of colossal magnitude, laying the path for takeover of family-labour based agriculture by rapacious corporate capital through this collateral cost in human sufferings. Garnauthi and Kabulpur represent this emerging tragedy of colossal magnitude in human suffering with no redeeming feature in sight. These two villages are in focus for two sets of occurrences, but signifying singleness of purpose in the background of murders by kinsmen / kinswomen within the four walls of rural families with all travails and turbulence of this forced change to make the system irretrievable for rural-urban divide. The is a question: what is wrong or right with the cultural mode of immigrants which our elites are hell bent to thrust upon unwilling rural folks in India, with and without the help of state power, whereas earlier it had remained busy to instil a sense of pride in its own ancient culture and propagate it world over with much zeal. Conversely then, what is so cherishing about the culture that had grown with the settled communities in its past with cultivation as an occupation for subsistence living in a common habitat in India, called villages. The question assumes significance since Indian elites, including the ruling upper class have come to see everything American as panacea to fulfil its own global aspirations of an emerging

9

imperialist country today while around 68 per cent of its population is facing a future of ruin, if agriculture with all natural resources like land, forest, mines water shift to corporate sector and this population is turned to serve the new masters sitting at their feet in wage-slavery for survival, which it now feverishly seeks to its advantage with the help of state power. Indian corporate capital finds itself in a dominating position to achieve what it aspires. It has the strength for a leap; six decades of unchallenged pursuit to come up in age with the requisite agility coupled with gathered mass has given it that confidence after managing state establishment to serve it. In a changed situation after the collapse of its strong ally, the Soviet camp, in pursuit of the base to takeoff and cherishing an imperialist object after gaining sufficient maturity in the earlier phase of so-called socialistic pattern, Indian corporate capital immediately took a turn and decided in 1991 to tag itself to American imperialists for further consolidation, like China did at the close of Mao period and take a leap. It is doing now. In this connection, there should remain no illusion by now about the neutral position of the Indian state between contending interests of masters and servants; it has assumed the role of an armed wing of Indian corporate capital in pursuit of global aspirations with the grace of and in the photo style of American ruling corporate giants. By now none has the illusion, except the tonsured ones, about the character and role of political parties too as faithful instruments of such a state establishment, including the so-called leftists, in relation to their alignment with the interests of corporate capital and reasons are both ideological and practical. There is hardly any difference of opinion that the scheme of economic structure needs a corresponding cultural change to succeed, apart from a corresponding shift in political, social and legal frame to sustain. This is what is being attempted feverishly now to make the scheme ‘irretrievable’, as was declared so by the then Finance Minister while embarking on this charted course in 1991 on the floor of Lok Sabha. It is worth remembering that American economy has reached a plateau; it seeks fresh avenues to maintain its level of profitability and consumption with the level of production capacity. It cannot add further real wealth to its nation. Sex has been added to the list of business to provide much needed oxygen to a gasping economy. It was easy there in a country of immigrants. To follow American type of economy will need an American type of culture, which is the culture of immigrants in the nation of immigrants and where sex is turned as a commodity freely available at the call of market with no inhibitions attached, turning it into an object of entertainment on a price. Women Liberation Movement there has made the shift easy for females to convert with existential concepts in vogue. This is recent history and well rehearsed. It is currently being touted for India too and feverishly its settled character changed to suit the requirements of commercial-industrial enterprises on American model. The NGO sector in India is vigorously engaged to do the same in India now. Immigrants are a rootless lot always, having no ground of their own to stand firmly upon and no neighbourhood community to care about. Survival of the individual becomes the law that governs relations with adjustments here and there to iron out patently divisive edges. Cooperation between them is like those of marketeers, governed by the rule of convenience of merchants to the command of money power. Man and woman are slaves to the rule of money-

10

wage with little or no emotional relationship in between. Freedom for each is to be free for sale and/or purchase of their capabilities as per rule of market or dictate of the powerful master. The code to exist or adjustment in such a domineering milieu is the culture of immigrants. Other fringe apps are decoration pieces to make living a bit easy in the midst of frenzy. Immigrants, unless they are given chance to settle for taking roots for a community to emerge, are a difficult lot to assimilate and are generally not permitted universally to mix with regular settlements. But in America, economy took over rapidly giving no chance for them to emerge as settled communities with a web of relationships, grow into defined neighbourhood communities and consequently the culture also took a different course which now defines an altogether different category. The culture, likewise, in a settled neighbourhood community corresponds to its way of subsistence that is characteristic of agriculture, duly supported by a well groomed web of relationships. India is still largely a nation of villages with such settled communities having family-labour based subsistence agriculture and allied occupations that gave it a culture of its own and as distinct to immigrants’ culture. It is distinctly different from American culture on this account. The concepts of brotherhood (bhaichara), cooperation, inter-dependence and mutual trust are traits that keep agriculture operations running smoothly in a community setting here. To denounce these traits, in the name of fighting ‘old (feudal) traditions and customs in favour of industrial-commercial customs, virtually is a war cry against agriculture based economy of rural India that caters nearly 68 per cent of population with no capacity of the present state to provide better occupation for a stable society to build upon. To convert this population to a life of immigrants is virtually a criminal act. Unfortunately when people reposed faith in the leftist movement, more so from those who sweared by a scientific thought, for deliverance from the rapacious capitalist dominance they fell victim to clichés and taking mechanically that agriculture denotes backwardness and industrial life is the sure path of bliss which it was detined to fail man, leaving the all important question of impact on social life to go to dogs. They are doing everything to serve capitalist growth instead with all its consequences for the society to bear. To present customs and traditions, ipso fact, good or bad is mischievously flogging a wrong horse. Each category of era, be it agriculture or commercial-industrial avocation has its own distinct set of customs and traditions for smooth delivery. Traditions and customs do not come down from the blue; these are the tools of respective mode of life based on method of subsistence in each era. When traditions and customs based on agricultural life in rural India are flogged as despicable, feudal, anti-national and anti-development, the message is clearly for the commercial-industrial one to take over, even if the object remains under cover for deception. The important point to consider is as to how it affects the social growth for the majority. The tussle between these two sets of culture is thus being forced to take final shape without first analysing which one goes in favour of society, taking for granted that industrialcommercial mode is a sure path for peace and prosperity while world wide it is in cyclic crisis to the detriment of majority and breeding constantly deleterious strife in trail. What is there so progressive about it? It is non sequitur.

11

If one is not conditioned to repeat clichés, ad nauseam, industrial-commercial mode under corporate capital or under the so-called socialist dispensation, so experimented during twentieth century, does not provide confidence in its favour. The underlying reason is its floating labour-unit in the individual who is free for hire, necessarily having no attachment to any other institution other than his master in the enterprise and the wage that is the firm ground for giving rise to individualism as a philosophy of life at the cost of social relations and its culture. In larger part, like Haryana, western UP, Rajasthan, Punjab, MP villages are mostly settlements of kinsmen forming a neighbourhood community of relationships. Large number of them developed as habitat of blood or fostered relations. This relationship never dies with age. One cannot renounce it at will. It is sustained through mutual dependence. Take an example: If one member goes out to become a sanyasi with no connection for years thereafter and opts to return, say fifty years, the doors of the family are not closed on him. He resumes his relationship. Similarly, the force in relationship that is adopted between two sets is not a momentary fancy to be changed with the fall of a hat. The foster mother or sister remains so and does not change at sweet will, if it is not fake or deceptive in intent. Such relationship remains as good as between biologically valid relationships, provided it is not set in mischief. The culture so developed is ingrained with customs and traditions that act like code of conduct for smooth functioning between families having distinct traits of their ancestors. Villages are thus clusters of kinsmen with a web of relationships that cannot be wished away at will. If disturbed forcefully by any means it will invite uncalled for disaster in trail. Agriculture being their mainstay, villages in India in general and northern zone in particular have been free from Brahmanical order to the annoyance of protagonists from sanatanist mythology. This area has been nurturing a way of life which is more secular and mundane with its own customs and traditions to regulate the social life. For some period, a sort of truce worked that made this area fiercely independent in self governance; interference in community, family affairs was never accepted from outside forces and remained free from theological oppression, inviting a scornful attention from the powerful and resourceful brahmanical orthodoxy. This is the background of a running prejudice against farming communities, like Jats and its way of life since long in such circles that clouds judgement on issues like khap, since media was able to project it deliberately in its recent campaign as a practice with the Jats alone, which is far away from ground reality. Caste divisions apart, in cultural mode there is striking commonality of traditions and customs here among all non-brahmanical sections of population. Take an example: Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 has many provisions that cross customary laws of many regions and invite scorn from unwilling communities in a country of much diversity. It seems many things were sought to be stream-rolled by back door politics in the early period of independence through legislations of this kind. One such provision in the said Act ordains that no one will be allowed to marry a widow of his brother. The provision is there in this piece since 1955 but who cares? A few legislators/parliamentarians of that time feared this type of dichotomy to work against harmony and invite trouble later. See a case in point:

12

While speaking on Hindu Code Bill in the Provisional Parliament on 22 September, 1951 one member representing Punjab (from Haryana region) cautioned against such disasters. He ‘objected to efforts imposing Manu or Yajnavalkya law when none from his region, whether Hindu, Sikh or Muslim has not asked to over ride their customary law. I cannot help saying that this attempt is nothing but an act of abuse of power because we should have applied this Hindu Code Bill to those only who wanted to be governed by it....our race did not yield to the Brahmanic rules...and I am opposed to the back-door method through which it has developed. I disagree with regard to the rules and regulations which you are enacting in respect of marriage and divorce without caring for the prevailing customs. You can differentiate between the mode of life in a town and that of a village and see how much difference is there between them but still you want to enact a common law for both. Having such a vast difference between their social customs at hand, to enact a law which will be against their customs and usages, would be a great injustice to them, he had cautioned (emphasis added). The rulers did not care. In the present controversy developing around ‘honour’ killings, if someone or some group of people happens to ask for change in such Hindu Marriage laws cannot be a sin, unless one is prejudiced that the demand has come from some people from Jat community, though such killings are not confined to any one caste or community. How it is retrograde, unless one intends to play with words? Do such enthusiasts intend to take society to sexual relations between brothers and sister? Say it openly then and face the society in revolt. Moreover, one cannot force the definition of brother and sister upon all others; it lies with communities to define it for themselves. Peasantry has its own reasons to define this relationship (bhaichara) for it. It is sad left activists are inimical to their definition. This shows their inherent dictatorial propensities i.e. forcing others to their will. This lunatic fringe among marxist faith is out to utilise state power of the bourgeoisie, including its legislative power, to force change in traditions and custom of agricultural communities, more so of Jat community in Haryana, as is evident from its tirade against khap practice, with the hope that through this they will usher in indusrial revolution of capitalist variety. It has its own ideological predilections for it, steeped into a totally wrong reading of history, but based on formulations by the leadership it swears by. They take agriculture as synonymous to bankruptcy in potentiality, despite the shattering experiences in the Soviet experiment in building socialism based on industrial spree at the cost of agriculture and dispersal of family and its neighbourhood communities. There are few pockets of immigrants here or forcefully displaced persons who are also taking cultural shift akin to immigrants. The rapid urbanisation is giving rise to a class of people who feel easy more with culture of immigrants, though Indian towns and cities in general, barring few metropolitan urban centres, had enjoyed community settlements which now are threatened to an alien atmosphere more akin to immigrants. The question then arises: what are the reasons this change in the mode of subsistence and culture of a settled way of life is being sought to that of a vagabond life for these rural folks? Why freedom of sex, sexuality and marriage are touted so forcefully these days and who stands

13

to gain from such nefarious change? Why this time is selected for such issues by this campaign and who stands to loose by this choice i.e. what are the motives behind this tirade

3

Liberating Elements –Dignity of Woman or Her Sexuality
There is a raging debate on matters sex, sexuality and marriage of late in public domain and the effort seems to keep the subject boiling by the all the leading media centres. NGO sector and the feminists groups particularly, wittingly or unwittingly are putting hard labour on these questions seizing upon any opportunity to do it. The case is being made as if sex, sexuality (they talk less about love though) are the only defining contours of women liberation. It has brought such aspects of human life to streets which normally had been the subject of privacy between husband and wife till now, inflaming an artificial urge for sexual orgy between immature and raw urchins as subject of entertainment. They are being made to feel as if doors of bliss have opened, not available to them before in a closed society on this aspect of life –a subtle way to win over immature minds before they could get real feel of life. All this nonsene is being talked about in a society which normally on more essential things survives on closed. For it trade secrets of traders and manufacturers, event secrets that rob society and consumers are sacrosanct and more important to guard than the good of society. But it is more keen to open bed rooms for invasion to commercial interests leading to even wide spread depravity in sexual matters. Hell to society for it in the interests of commercial gains, this is its law! Otherwise, what is the logic to help alchohal industry thrive to make society drunk and victim to drugs!! Sex is another drug it is ecouraging. A full-fledged campaign is on to draw urchins, adolescents and youths to wild fantasies woven around female sexuality. It cannot go on without the support of state establishment and the money bags. Depiction of woman in despicable nudity and eulogising such streetwalkers, society girls or boys as heroes is like turning sexual depravity socially acceptable and honourable, though legally a crime. No one from feminist faith ever takes notice of how woman is being degraded in public mind by such depiction and her dignity gets a beating. Who is providing this laxity and why, question begs a reasonable answer. The questions of sex, sexuality and marriage are important for all those only who need to know intricacies involved and beat ignorance at particular stage in life. Proper counselling may solves their problems. The present unruly debate has not benefitted any one, neither the woman nor the man or the child. It also needs to be underlined that these aspects of social life are not questions relating only to women, unless the approach is sectarian for some underhand purpose. In relation to the liberation of woman from any perceived or real oppression of any kind it is the question of her dignity more important than sex, sexuality and marriage, if her

14

position in larger context has to be studied and deviation contested. This is the first point of difference with these protagonists of sexual anarchy. One noted historian academic from Haryana, who knows her region from urban settings, has in a recent piece surmises marriage of women as control of female sexuality and bestowal of this sexuality in marriage, meaning that a female has no control over her own self. This is the crux of feminist approach to women problems these days and an academic view of looking at things divorced from real touch. Here, sexual relation between husband and wife is surmised as control, but it is mutual control in a married life. Otherwise, saying this amount to debunking monogamy. The marriage affair is taken as a subject of sole male (patriarch) decision, which in a family cannot and does not happen. It normally takes months/years together of wide consultations before a relationship is decided in this web of relationship. She has not answered whether this control/ regulation of sexuality in marriage is a one sided affair. The whole edifice of feminism (as a distinct philosophy based on individualism) seems to rest upon this premise of looking at things partially and in a coloured fashion creating artificial fission between two compatible categories of human life. This is the reason why the heavy majority of female population does not care about such rants and raves from a sponsored campaign of the upper crust of society, except youngsters of raw and impressionable age where the danger to society lies. In simple terms, the attack is on the institution of marriage, leading to a plea for unregulated sex instead. ‘Hell with society and social fabric, if the right of love between two individuals is not appreciated, such is the logic in desperation from these quarters in debate, knowing well that Heer-Ranjha phenomenon is not the rule in normal human life and bereft of society, man can reduce to animal world of dwarfs. The very existence of social fabric is thus made subject to the supremacy of ‘love’ between two individuals, where love itself generally takes a few weeks to wear off. Such is the logic of these anarchic narcissists and their pleaders! While the said historian notes that customary rules that regulate marriages in most parts of India, especially northern India, are based upon caste endogamy, on the one hand, and Gotra, village or territorial exogamy on the other. Any breach of the customary practices leads to direct violence since the law on marriages go directly against the customary practice. If one can recollect the fact that, having state power in hand just after independence, Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 was enacted in haste on a different premise to usher in a uniform code for an unwilling heterogeneous Hindu society. This is the reason it could not work on certain aspects till now. For example, this Act prohibits marriage with the widow of a brother. You try your hand in enforcing this provision in law and reap unrest of unprecedent scale, if one likes. At least in northern part of the country among peasantry such a marriage is a normal practice, despite what this Manuwadi law prescribes. So, if this legislation of 1955 allows marriage between two adult individuals within Gotra and within a village two hoots for it. Gotra prohibitions do not loose its force and disappear only because it is enough old practice. It makes no sense that an old practice to hold mother sacrosanct and in reverence does not hold relevance today, unless one is bent upon to go out in the camp of lunatics.

15

The academic historian does not explain what motive had impelled in enacting such archaic law to force things by back door on a whole peasant community without their consent and with what consequences. Then, now after six decades to make an issue of this deceiptful law to force inter-gotra and inter-village marriages giving death blow to the concept of brotherhood that sustain village life and sustenance agriculture is nothing short of brigandry and make such a legislative piece so sacrosanct as to sacrifice the social fabric at it command. Such reverance to laws is unknown the concept of law even with the law makers. But the servility of so-called Marxists to this law to beat the peasantry white is astoundingly revealing to their open faith in capitalist order of the day. They cannot claim clemency for betrayal to Marxist concept of revolutionary thought and practice in the best interest of society, if sexual anarchism is not their new faith. As an academic she must know that no law should cross arbitrarily the limits of customary practices of a large section of society in pursuit of individual right at the cost of social/political peace. But, perhaps social peace is not the agenda with the powers that be in order to keep the pot boiling for another agenda to gain ground instead. She admits that honour is a highly elusive and indefinable notion, still she goes on to banter the concept in usual usage. Perhaps her personal opinion is coloured by the feminist perceptions as normally such educated women carry this big baggage without much critical study these days- an education system that colours vision on a sponsored project as a legacy of colonial past with Macaulay in command still. To look at sex, sexuality and marriage from feminist perspective seems to be the problem when matters are twisted to propagate individualism with its narcissist implications to social movement. Marriage and sex are not ladders for carreer improvement which the newly educated class of carreerists is out to turn it one of late. This is a general trend among them which goes in conflict with the previous concept prevalent in rural society that is breeding a conflict situation of high mmagnitude. For this class both marriage and sex are commodities that turns the woman as an object of indignity in market economy, more degrading than any difficulty in the previous dispensation. Let us remember: woman is not an object of sex, neither a means for entertainment. If agreed, think again. The money bags in entertainment and tourism industry will invent the slogans of women liberation that very moment and make life hell for the rulers as Jean-walas and mobile-walas are doing of late, reaching even to the corridors of higher courts, making it a right to wear or tear one, despite the constitutional prescription of public decency. It is true that woman is continuously being crafted to be an object of entertainment at the cost of dignity as a human being, duly helped by state institutions, including the heavily paid NGOs sector, sponsored by certain foreign interests like IMF, World Bank etc who are out to control the whole economy of this country afresh through other means. Unfortunately, a sizable section of educated upper class women is already victim to allurement of these degrading pursuits in entertainment avocations for livelihood in the age of contrived unemployment where captains of industry are trying hard to sell the idea to young rural girls who reach centres of education. This is not freedom, but a contrived trap by vested

16

interests in search of super profits. Such academicians must study this aspect too while dealing with questions of sex, sexuality and marriage for females. It must be emphasised that men, women are born for dignified pursuits and not to serve private interests of money bags on their dirty left over crumbs. Sex urge may be natural at a particular age and for a definite age-span among humans, so to animal world too. But in humans it is subject to control and regulation at will. Celibacy is as good a phenomenon among them as promiscuity is with loose ends. Man is not and cannot be slave to sexuality unless it is taken as a tool for enjoyment. When someone propounds that sex is the pivot to human behaviour it goes beyond the realm of reality to plead for a fantasy that has catered to the cause of commercial interests, when organs of procreation so developed in nature are converted to be tools of joy by crafty minds. It is for nothing that corporate world has taken this premise to heart since then as an effective tool for its unaccounted riches. Let us go back a little and ask: what was the reason that this very society in general once had remained largely not infected by the sexual depravity of rulers in bygone period of lords; rather they remained objects of despise on this account from their subjects? Sex urge is a product of biological growth at a particular age of maturity to handle sensibly, unless someone ignites it artificially in his/her brain as is being done for some time past with definite agenda to fulfil. The current outburst of this urge among all sections of Indian society is a result of a relentless effort in conditioning society to this new found ‘faith’ through a purposely designed campaign to involve human material in sex orgies like they do on drugs. It is a recent phenomenon. Pornography is a super-profit venture these days that also is serving to condition society in unregulated and perverted sex to drug the society dull. It is part of a big game. Watch out the events of last four or five decades and the criminal hands at the plot will tumble down from these stinking cupboards. By now, the immediate targets of this design are clear to the bare eye: (1) breaking the family, including its neighbourhood community relationships, (2) demolishing the social institution of marriage through a counter cultural revolution of sorts and (3) making subsistence agriculture, including animal husbandry, handicraft etc bust, duly helped by legislations and the law courts for easy take over by capitalists. The concepts of gay-marriage and live-in relationships are few fresh inventions found in this direction through re-interpretation of the same old laws in India recently, perhaps to provide congenial atmosphere here to the visiting bigwigs with lot of money to invest as also to the hordes of tourists in search of eastern tourist girls for sweet company. At a time when the ‘robust’ economy has been led to a zero employment phase in its onward march to progress through liberalisation, privatisation and globalisation process, the doors are being opened for our young to engage in such pursuits for mere survival. Secondly, hitting the very concept of Bhaichara (brotherhood), otherwise an exalted human quality, came under so severe an attack as something remnant of conservative past when corporate media suddenly found that it sustains community practices like Khaps that work as umbrella to tide over difficult moments in rural hinterland, ignoring the fact totally that subsistence agriculture will collapse the day this concept vanishes, more so in areas where

17

female labour is a contributory part of this task as in Haryana. It may be underlined that customs and practices with the working people are not for fancy sake, unlike with those who live by the labour of others, but have taken roots as part of their life struggle, How to relate these developments of these two decades and plus of upper class prosperity through this LPG and such sexual depravity of our youngsters as the rising graph in rape cases show, other than the premise that sexual depravity is a purposefully sponsored game like the British did once for opium trade to make China dull. The feminist approach to problems of female sex, sexuality and marriage is surely leading us to this uncharted course of nonrelationships by breaking the family and community relationships in a contrived fashion. Man and woman are compatibles to each other in nature, despite man made incompatibility between both. Those who are powerful enough to make them incompatibles have axe to grind in a divided world of private interests. And private interests have not been ordained by nature, these are man-made. This is history. These can be then over turned, if both decide and divisive elements are isolated. Woman and man in natural growth have attained compatibility for perpetuating their race as one of their important task, if both will. Sexuality of both is a related feature to that end and marriage is a social sanction to that compatibility while certifying dignity of both in the web of social relations to keep order in a settled community. This is how harmonious relations have emerged to sustain social peace. However, incompatible interests between man and man between woman and woman have brought elements of high-tension discord in between them especially at the advent of industrial-commercial mode of production and distribution keeping right of private property for individual at its core, giving a serious blow to the concept of collective way of life. This has brought a wide chasm between man and woman too, including their sexual relationship. At a stage later, female sexuality stood invested with an alien characteristic to turn it as an instrument of entertainment with a price, crushing the sense of dignity to ruin where a male in most cases but female too in increasing number with wads of money, would command her to kneel at will, while a rich woman to behave like vagabond to satisfy whims kicking blows to norms of a settled community life. This element of entertainment in sex is the worst intervention one could do to woman and man relationship, more so to woman; she has virtually been turned into a commodity that is now feeding nearly 20 industries in India, including cinema, TV, modelling, cat walks (forgetting human walks), cosmetics, fashion business, advertisement, tourism, prostitution etc. and where female is the raw material for high profit ventures of the capitalists but without adding anything worth to the wealth of nations, except the fictional GDP for easy illusions to work with. Rulers know it. Marriage is a socially regulated aspect of sex life between two compatibles, whereas forced sex is unproductive and criminal act to the detriment of social order. This sensibility underlines rural life in general. One aspect is ignored in this debate on sex, sexuality and marriage: who needs uninhibited sex free from social taboos or sex at demand? Why a woman in dignity

18

would like to be as a chattel at all for sex on demand? Clearly, reference here is about women, not overt or covert, lowly or high-heeled prostitutes of any gender by will. Sex, sexuality and marriage are questions of social interaction between human beings. If market forces start conducting this interaction, rather than on the basis of social mores the problem is bound to burst in the face, sooner or later. There is no escape from the tragedy. Garnauthi and Kabulpur, jointly and severely, exhibit this one unfolding.

4
Source of Trouble

Yes, there is flood of sexual depravity in relations at present. Hardly any doubt about it.
Rural areas used to have a shield against such onslaught in their cultural mores, which are under severe attack by those inimical forces who care less about social cohesion and more about individual rights, whatever be the cost, since the days American government started dictating focus here on individual rights through a chain of paid NGOs. It is also true that sexual depravation started spreading like a contagious disease during the period of LPG. Everybody seems to be worried about the emerging situation and suggesting ways to meet it according to his/her perceptions. However, there seems to be less effort to study its genesis for a way out. Depravity is not an outcome of any natural process that has gone wrong somewhere. The truth is that someone is benefitting out of this depravity and benefitting hugely. This is one aspect of the problem which is not in discourse at present. Is human evil by nature or has gone amuck suddenly? Is one prone to depravity? May be, one is soft to infection due to decrease in resistance capacity inside and for poor understanding of the problem. But, it is difficult for anyone to claim that some super-natural force was happy previously and sent Bhagat Singh and the like on this soil but now on punishment all ill souls like Asaram are scattered on Indian soil! It is absurd. So far, however, it is held on authority that by nature human is humane. But, if infection is injected to a healthy body on purpose and then medicine, fake or half fake, is sold for money simultaneously telling the patient to be careful about the infection by his/her evil disposition without telling the source of depravity, one can understand the bill to the social deficit. Let the wise-men tell also the source of this depravity that lies somewhere and someone is reaping huge money out of it. This is the result of market forces that have been let off the hook purposely to make capitalist mare run amuck. Who has done it? Unfortunately for the commoners, all the organised political forces working in the country are party to it. There is reason: The modern political dispensation is the product of a resounding slogan that had once awakened the people against autocracy in West. ‘Equality, liberty, fraternity’ was the war cry of the rising bourgeoisie when it came out free from agriculture as an independent class of trade and manufacture. With the released mass energy out of this concept, the newly emerging bourgeois class in power felt deeply threatened and devised a strategy to put the jinn into the

19

bottle back: it devised the concept of representative democracy and a fresh instrument known as political parties was born to checkmate this unwanted mass energy that may have told the death-knell of this new rapacious monster in course of time. It is this instrument in political parties, which has reduced the initiative and decision making power of the people to a handful of manageable leaders to control and regulate this energy on dotted lines, killing creativity of the masses to ensure stability of this exploitative system. This is what has happened. Let us see a few quotes from such a leader: 1. To prevent capitalist growth and go for social revolution ...is altogether reactionary. 2. Except through the growth of capitalism there is no guarantee of victory over it. 3. Do not retard the development of capitalism but accelerate it, forcing it to resort to more civilised, technically higher methods of capitalism... it suits the proletariat.

What political parties did in history
Deliberately, the source of these quotes are not mentioned against each, which normally is the norm, lest one is baffled and put on shock out of his faith, where faith is the staple food for this new little tribe of leaders to thrive. Though a bit diversion, here it may be mentioned that the contraption of a political party and the concept of authority (apart from the invention of money) have been two most effective drugs invented by the bourgeois thought that ultimately proved to be the undoing of healthy growth in society and have sapped out the energy of people’s power, which had been the source of social change in history, arrogance of elites apart. One fact may be mentioned without any fear of contradiction that all political parties are today wedded to the above precepts by faith on one pretext or the other, including the leftists, in advancing the cause of capitalist growth that thrive on expropriation of the majority to the advantage of minority and which is the root cause of inequality, misery and oppression of every kind in all countries without exception. Once it was done on the slogan of New Democracy, now National Democracy, while some others did it on pretext of People’s Democracy and few more on the plank of Social or Socialist Democracy. Such deceptions are galore, to hide behind the facade of ideology while serving this charming progenitor! It is an incontrovertible fact that Marxists or other variant of left here in India have been following the above quotes to the letter and spirit with disastrous consequences for the agenda of social change that has gone bust so far, while they continue mouthing resounding slogans of Inquilab Zindabad to befool the people at large. Those who are critical of Bardhans, Karats, Surjits and the like for helping the rapacious capitalist state here running smoothly with one pretext or the other at the centre and few states for long in order to provide their support for capitalist system work without much challenge since day one may not understand the dialectics of this dilemma. The above quotes may help clear the deep mist of this treachery if told that these gems of wisdom are from none else than the great Lenin who had shaped the strategy and tactics of socialism in large part of twentieth century that has gone waste lastly. And, faith in Lenin or Mao is sacrosanct with them still, despite what happened to the experiment in Soviet camp and

20

China! One thing is sure, Indian leftists have failed to study Marxism and India in spirit; may be, they are masters in text. The Indian Marxists of all hues and nomenclature are practically victims of the dynamics lying underneath these quotes from Lenin and have been virtually acting diligently and faithfully for the growth and consolidation of capitalism since day one better than the outright bourgeoisie parties. This was also the tragedy that scripted the epitaph of the experiment in Soviet camp and China. It makes clear why adherents of the above quotes are so zealously virulent in denouncing Khap by declaring this practice as a remnant of feudal moss. They are so ready to strike at the roots of family and the marriage as institutions of social relevance. How family, community and regulated sex through institution of marriage are detrimental to the capitalist growth? We will see it a bit later in the article. Indian communists too are pathetic apologist of capitalism Since, the object of this article is not to evaluate Marxists but to deal with the question of two distinct cultural modes in operation today, these quotes are provided to make it clear as to why leftists of all hues in India are, wittingly or unwittingly, mouthing slogans as above to demolish community way of life in rural India branding it as feudal past, taking it as hurdle in capitalist growth in the country, while simultaneously championing for a corresponding cultural mode that breed crash individualism to the detriment of social cohesion, breaking the families into atomised units instead with self interest dominating the scene, including instigating a dark urge for sex gratification, which even animals do not indulge in and facilitate conditions when it is available on demand without any familial inhibitions. So the slogan ‘down with khaps, and long live women liberation movement’ from such elements do make sense for the corporate capital to rejoice, while it is a foolish hope on their part to think that it will one day pave way for the dictatorship of the proletariat to take possession of the scene and set right the wrong they are now helping to flourish. People need not be fooled around like this with double talk. A patently wrong understanding of historical materialism held mechanically with a flourish of ideological sweep from Lenin is the real reason behind a virulent hatred for rural way of life, including attachment to family relationship and practices like Khap from all such progressives of double faith in the name of fighting feudal moss to clean the path while searching a necessary progressive stage in capitalism, when at another place these parties have been debunking it as moribund. This is the ideological tragedy of Indian left in following old clichés without understanding the present. In fact, following such precepts like above from Lenin, Indian Marxists of all hues have proved not better than minesweepers for the marauders of capitalist faith without caring a fig about the mounting miseries of the masses under this dispensation and practically delaying the dawn of liberating era. Moreover, consolidating crash individualism under this present stage of capitalist development, even in the hope of developing productive forces for socialist take over in future, may be a bigger deluge than one meets the eye. It will be a hard journey to reverse. If one can

21

say, such a path is suicidal plunge in blind alley in the hope of bright dawn. Soviet experience corroborates it, if one cares to understand.

5
Where Hope Rests

This is how the system grinds its enemies and grinds them well to dust. The following
illustration will do well: Sometimes back, in response to a RTI query, MD University officially pronounced that consultation with the parents of students is not necessary before putting them on free assignments for days together to far away places, including the girls, beyond the ambit of a syllabus parents had consented to send their wards for studies there, since they are all adults and free to decide for themselves. In this case, students were sent outside by a concerned teacher who has the authority to spoil their academic career on disobedience, so the logic of free decision by choice was spurious. Important aspect of this declaration is the type of training by practice, these institutions of learning are providing to students to go over the heads of parents since legally they are free to exercise their will at or beyond 18 years of age. The other case in point is the direct teaching in support of a culture trying hard to find place in India with state help based on the philosophy of individualism of existential variety. An academic in one of the oldest Universities of repute in the capital city teaching to postgraduate classes held that ‘feminism is a mode of existence in which the woman is free from dependence syndrome (emphasis added). There is a dependence syndrome: whether it is husband or the father of the community or whether it is a religious group, ethnic group. When free themselves of the dependence syndrome and lead a normal life, my idea of feminism materialises.’ Here the learned academic presents a model by narration: ‘The only man writer I can think of in addition to myself who talked of women’s role, is Bhabani Bhattacharya and commends his novel as ‘good feminist piece’ wherein its character, ‘Kajoli shows great courage...and is really not dependent on anyone neither on her grandfather, nor on her husband....she goes to Calcutta (presently called Kolkata) where she is sold into prostitution and she saves herself by selling newspapers’, she is the model of a free woman from dependence on a dotting grandfather and husband, no matter if one has to enter brothels in search of liberation; dependence of outside is taken acceptable to dependence on brothel keepers or the master of a newspaper. This raises a question on the very fidelity of educational centres when they are relentlessly shaping the mind of the young generation without their understanding the forces behind this sinister game. Does any such academic tell that this philosophy of life is in support of a rapacious mode of production and distribution in the interest of multiplying profit at the cost of social cohesion delivering a death blow to our native culture with social mores at core? Hardly,

22

any chance. Where from the urge for inquiry will come in this game of conditioning society in a pre-determined task then? This is another aspect of tragedy. But, Jai to the type of freedom offered! It is for nothing that now legions of Bhabani Bhattacharyas and Shashi Deshpandes are on the scene sharpening their skills in championing the cause of women in literature by depicting perceived oppression and second rate status of women to mould the thinking faculty of the society, more so the literate women, cultivating a sense of victimhood in the them. The whole NGOs sector is out to create such an environment of women oppression. Almost everyone of consequence is now the champion of women’s cause leaving a strong message that these people are the real wellwishers of women instead of family members, so that women with injured psyche start believing on their advice more on matters sex, sexuality and marriage and come out of the families to be available in the sex market for easy availability to money bags, the rogues and the depraved out for the kill. Woman for them is the cherished resource for their enterprises to flourish and youths if won over the battle is half over. All those who, wittingly or unwittingly, are making this happen easily stand to the side of virtual butchers. Women face a difficult future, in certain respects worst than the past. They had suffered the position of chattels, keeps and nagarvadhoos at the hands of autocrat rulers and their hangers on in the past. The rising bourgeoisie had offered a ray of hope for dignity to them in a democratic dispensation. But the worst fate awaited them instead in the rule of money. The present is worst for them in history when they are being conditioned to accept money and forget about dignity in search of bread where money is the key to every gate so erected around. All this is happening under a specific condition: during these past six decades, it is rural India that has stood the onslaught of unbridled expropriation and is under serious threat now for extermination under globalisation and privatisation agenda since 1991 to convert agriculture into a capitalist venture as envisioned under ‘New Agriculture Policy, 2000’ finalised by BJP led dispensation. Rural economy stands deliberately shattered since then more vigorously. Its way of life is despised and under severe attack currently. In self-defence, if these people happen to assemble and discuss their fate with their umbrellas in hand for use in need, suddenly some people start jumping immediately to cry foul about the Talibani Khaps. First they worked on a chanakaya policy: give a bad name to a dog and then kill to keep opposition at bay. Now the prejudice is so deep against Khap that they find it where it does not exist with least hesitation, while ignorance about this practice of Khap is boundless and based with majority of its bashers upon heavily biased media reports. One example is sufficient for want of space to narrate this. In a concerted campaign against Khap two front ranking publications, one fortnightly from Chennai and another regional daily from Chandigarh always use every time only those 3-4 people known Khap-baiters belonging to CPM and their organisations that are frontal organisation of this party, ignoring say to others. And the campaign goes on that relies upon misinformed conjectures. See an example: One magazine called a meeting at Kurukshetra on April 13, 2010 to to celebrate its day. The crafty organisers had spread the message to attract attendance that the proposal for amendment in Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 will be discussed in a seminar on the occasion. Since, the meeting

23

came in the background of judgment in Manoj-Babli case the pronouncing death sentence, people converged, even beyond the capacity of organisers to handle and the capacity of the small hall. The banners of the magazine were quite visible in photos published in the media covering the event. Despite, how this assembly became Khap conclave only the journalists who covered the story with their little knowledge about khaps affairs and the khap baiters know to cite it repeatedly since then as involvement of khap in honour killings. The present tirade is aimed to advance a project against rural India in general and northern rural belt in particular. They attack Khap because if they are successful to demolish this selfdefence mechanism, the dispersal of family and its neighbourhood community is certain to facilitate easy take over of Indian agriculture along with its natural resources to the advantage of corporate capital. It is a war for possession. Those who know village life by practice can testify that relationships is the condition of existence of a man/woman in a family of blood lineage and its neighbourhood community in rural India; any one opting out of the condition, the family and its bhaichara suffers a dead blow to its organism. Khap involves a definite connotation. Media reporters in ignorance tend to claim any gathering of people as khap to hit. For example, read notes from a noted figure on khap affairs of his times, Chaudhry Piru Singh who was reacting to a claim from a known khap Chaudhry about a particular assembly of people as khap and depicted as such in a reportage that had appeared earlier in Jat Gazette (noted weekly started by Sir Chhotu Ram) in its Panchayati Number on 21 March, 1923. Ch. Piru Singh had also castigated such claims like calling a meeting of few khaps as ‘Haryana Khap’ or ‘Sarv Khap’. These people never compromised on basics of Khap. A khap is not a khap simply because someone claims it so, unless it fulfils the basic ingredients. In the above reference, the comments from Chaudhry Piru Singh, is a good example to dispel distortions in ignorance or in mischief. Before summing up, let the matter be cleared. Khap is a method, a practice since ages of conducting its own public affairs in the open. It is a most democratic conception that rural folks could devise in history to maintain its cohesion and peace where none can bar others participation, except on punishment. This practice is universal with agricultural communities throughout the world as in India, though it is termed differently. In north India, it is called Khap. Khap is distinctly different from a caste/community/Gotra Khap. Neither Gotra Khap is the first place for dispute resolution in case of family or marital issues. The matter is handled generally by the kutumb. In case of failure it goes to caste/community/Gotra khap where brotherhood rules. When a community desires to go with appeal, village assembly is the first place. Khap involves a group of villages more than one and is generally convened following a definite procedure to assemble on demand to deliberate on a definite agenda. With inroads of electoral politics khaps/gorta khaps are also falling victims to alien features some like political parties suffer. It has brought bad name to the usage in its pristine best.

24

There is no need to be a blind apologist for the present, urban or rural, India. Both have heaps of filth that was generated during the last six decades of independent capitalist growth on the debris of what colonialists had done previously to make these miserable. When these leeches left the body politic here, it was a mass of listless left-over, though having a hope in its own destiny. By that period, India lived in villages having strong streaks of its past of autonomous existence and a robust way of community life that gave the ray of hope for facing the future; its urban centres were mostly dominated by interests of a subservient bourgeoisie that had different plans for unbridled expropriation in place of the colonialists. Despite this forced listlessness, rural India does have the potentiality of regeneration. In spite of the fact that rural life is highly infected of alien features by now, it can be the ground for a solid take off with its community life to the extent it is alive, if family-labour based sustenance agriculture can be saved from the onslaught of the rapacious corporate capital. The danger however is imminent. The enemy is powerful and crafty with much more powerful allies ready to strike. The inroad already made by the culture within the rural families, based on crash individualism through our own children is truly menacing and is trying to gain supremacy. It is more like a war within the families. The enemy has struck inside. Garnauthi and Kabulpur symbolise this dangerous situation the war has reached. The collective wisdom and the collective way of working through democratic functioning like Khaps may provide the answer in this dark hour, provided these are made free from alien features. There is the ray of hope. (End article)