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Revisiting India’s constitution and the history of partition

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As we know, the Ex-Prime Minister of United Kingdom, Winston Churchill had a “colonial mindset” toward all his colonial subjects, including Indians. He sometimes labelled them as “Fakir”, “coolie” and other less respectable inhuman adjectives. He can be called a “Bigot” in today’s world. After World war II, British Empire thoroughly exhausted itself fighting AXIS power and was heading for a financial default, even after extracting all necessary resources from all colonies to sustain the Empire. If It was not for United States, the empire known as “sun never sets in the land” could have been slipped into the abyss of darkness.

British and some Indians never gave a real credit to true freedom fighters, who suffered exiles, torture at Andaman Island or outright murders. Similar experiences were cited in other countries seeking independence like Ireland, Kenya, and other colonies. All these countries were thrown into unsustainable poverty and famines. Tired of this atrocities, the Indians of all faiths were seeking independence after several centuries of British and invader’s rules.
The British Prime Minister Attlee who had defeated Churchill in the election held after World War II, had appointed Lord Louis Mountbatten as India’s last viceroy. He was the Royal cousin of present Queen of England. Louis’s assigned task was to oversee British India’s independence by no later than June 1948, with the clear instruction to avoid partition and preserve an United India. British knew India’s Religious and communal divides and other fault lines and did not want the resurrection of Aurangzeb’s religious prosecution. British also knew the suffering of Hindu population of India under various invader’s rule. However, to expedite the process Mountbatten was granted some limited flexibility.

Keeping the long story short, Lois Mountbatten failed in accomplishing above stated objective and mission, when he should have refused Mohammed Ali Jinnah’s demand for a separate Muslim country and blessed a strong leader like Vallabhbhai Patel, who represented the majority voice for United India and had a secular credentials for being pupil of M.K. Gandhi. Of course, he was nationalist, untainted by British education, culture, and influence but he was well respected by masses. M. K. Gandhi would have blessed him too.

Mountbatten did not do the right thing and to his credit he regretted in his biography. When Lois retired and visited Ireland, Irish Republican Army’s operative assassinated him for partitioning Ireland on religious line, although he did not play any role in Ireland’s partition. Prior to his death, Mountbatten admitted in his biography that had he known that Jinnah was suffering from Tuberculosis, he would not have agreed to the partition of India. There, he was bestowing his confidence in Jinnah and not others who followed Jinnah.

Somehow, two people with hybrid religious origin and Oxford education degrees emerged as a leading contenders to lead divided India, with necessary prerequisite of maintaining secular constitution. God knows, if Lois was misled by Edwina, both were alleged to have promiscuous lifestyle, unheard in those days. These juicy information is published in WIKI with similar suggestions appearing in British tabloids who are seldom wrong with their stealth capabilities.

Anyway, India and Pakistan became two separate countries with secular provisions with Nehru heading partitioned India while Jinnah heading two wings of Pakistan, west and east separated by over 1,000 kilometers. An impossible scenarios and botched up job by Lois. The expedience to complete a task has its own cost but in case of India, India is still paying for it. After the death of Jinnah, Pakistan discarded its secularity and proclaimed itself Islamic Republic, while India never took similar step in proclaiming Hindu Republic. These are facts of the history or can be considered historical mistakes and cannot be refuted or debated upon. This was violation of agreements with British, as they were leaving, so they did not care. In the meantime, India collected lots of water under the dam that can collapse due to erroneous policies.

Thomas Jefferson, one of the brilliant American architect of the American constitution remarked that the constitution must be reviewed and revised every seven (7) years to keep it current to reflect the realities of the society and the world. I would say that many countries have ignored his advice.

There are currently various forms of democratic Models that are employed in the word from country to country such as Japan, South Korea, western countries like British, Ireland, Iceland, Denmark, France and United States and India. Italy still has the problem of governance as the longevity of their government is unpredictable and having too many parties divides the electoral votes and coalition politics and policies are imposed on people that leads to stagnancy due to persistent disagreements.

India has adopted British style of democracy with some deviation. British for centuries has uniform nationalities, religion, culture, and social norms, while India has varied degrees of diversities in the languages, ethnicities, and religions. More than 50 percent of British population have registered memberships with either of three known political parties, while India has more than 1,000 political parties nationally, but the majority citizens don’t hold any membership and have no voice in selecting party chief. Then this becomes a smoke-filled affair of a small gathering of chosen people. The successful parliamentary style of the democracy is rooted on complete public participation and free election of party chief who aspire to be Prime Minister and chief executive of the country. In india, the party chief is either imposed dynast on the people, unelected through secret ballots. This has some dire consequences for the governance, economic development, and national security.

Indian National Congress need to make a course correction but cannot do it after making the first mistake to install a person as a party chief who is not born in India. Most of the countries requires birth domicile as a necessary requirement for such executive position. Currently, these political party chiefs either at national or state level handpicks their successor from the family, regardless of their competence level of the leadership or public acceptance. It is a known fact that blood line does not make any one a good or bad ruler.

The reality of this day is Prime Minister Modi does not carry this albatross on his neck and he is going to be around for decades and that is what India needs. It will be long haul because of these numerous and rancorous political hooligans who ignored the public interest and national security. However, to expedite the course correction to bring our dreams to the realities for 1.3 billon Indian citizens, we must review and bring the constitution to today’s realities that assures majoritarian rules, economic development for all, adequate protection for minorities. After three generations of addressing quota system, we need to review, how we got to this point and restore meritocracy and decide with popular mandate if it should be discarded or revised. The corruption should be declared as a “high crime”.

Any interference in carrying out law enforcement should be automatically taken away from the states and moved back to center. These are just few issues mentioned but center-state relationship need another microscopic review because this contributes to disunity and chaos.

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