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Posts Tagged ‘the mirage of progress’

Why does South have so many divorcees?

April 9, 2012 3 comments

Divorce, litigation, single status! Are these signs of education, development?

Divorce, more people with single-status, litigation, seem to go hand-in-hand. Is this development, progress?  |  Image by Ahmed Raza Khan; source & courtesy - livemint.com  |  Click for image.

Divorce, more people with single-status, litigation, seem to go hand-in-hand. Is this development, progress? | Image by Ahmed Raza Khan; source & courtesy - livemint.com | Click for image.

Tamil Nadu was home to the highest percentage of widowed/divorced or separated (WDS) individuals in India in 2010 (8.8%) while Delhi had the lowest (4.1%).

Maharashtra figured in both the top five lists of highest percentage of WDS overall and females. The percentage of WDS females was almost three times that of men (2.9% against 10%).

Altogether, 7% of the population aged 10 and above were either widowed, divorced or separated in 2010 in India, according to the Registrar General of India’s Sample Registration System 2010 data finalized and submitted to the Union health ministry on Saturday.

Some big states like Andhra Pradesh, Kerala and Karnataka recorded WDS population as high as 8.2%, followed by Odisha (7.2), Himachal Pradesh (7.1%) and Maharashtra (7%).

UP’s WDS men count stood at 3.7%, followed by Punjab (3.4), Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh (3.3). As far as women WDS were concerned, TN again topped the list with 14.5% of its population above the age of 10 belonging to this category, followed by Karnataka (14.2), Kerala (14), Andhra Pradesh (13.6) and Maharashtra (11.7).

In West Bengal, the number of WDS women was almost six times higher than their male counterparts, according to the data. (via Tamil Nadu has highest percentage of widowed/divorcees in India – Times Of India).

'Progress', 'modern' 'development' seem to be having such narrow meanings. | cartoonist: Michael Leunig. Click for image.

'Progress', 'modern' 'development' seem to be having such narrow meanings. | cartoonist: Michael Leunig. Click for image.

Reality vs Perception

In the Rest of India, Southern states are perceived to be more traditional, conservative – and educated.

In fact Odisha and Maharashtra, the two states that neighbour South India, also have a higher WDS percentage. Himachal Pradesh is more developed and has more WDS people. Gujarat, Delhi and Odisha are the exceptions. Odisha is not ‘developed’ but has a high WDS percentage. Gujarat, Delhi are more ‘developed’ – but not in the high WDS list.

Is this high rate of WDS, because South is more ‘educated’ and ‘developed’?

More modern?


Secular politics and violence

January 10, 2010 2 comments

Guilt-based secularism is a short-term patch, which creates its own backlash – like it is in the West. Secularism has no place in India.

Gotta have 'progress' and become 'modern'!  |  Cartoon by Michael Leunig  |  Source & courtesy - theage.com.au  |  Click for larger image

Gotta have 'progress' and become 'modern'! | Cartoon by Michael Leunig | Source & courtesy - theage.com.au | Click for larger image

An essential precondition for combating the culture of intolerance is to recognise that monotheistic religions — which believe in the inherent superiority of an exclusivist, hierarchical, jealous god, who alone is the True God while all others are false and evil — have to make respectful space for other ways of relating to the divine. There are strong connections between authoritarian ways of thinking and tendencies to see god as an intolerant, jealous and tyrannical authority figure that punishes those who do not do his bidding. The continuing efforts to convert so-called heathens and believers in false gods are resulting in endless strife and conflicts. (via Violence has many faces – Edit Page – Opinion – Home – The Times of India).

Defining agenda in India

Madhu Kishwar, (at least) in my mind, belonged to that category of NGO-activist variety, who was busy in promoting and pushing various ‘progressive’ ideas down the reluctant throats with exhortations, of “Swallow! Dammit! Swallow! This is good for you! Can’t you understand, how good this is for you.”

Obama becomes President - Illusory signs of progress?  |  Cartoonist - Alan Moir; source and courtesy - smh.com.au.  Click for source image.

Obama becomes President - Illusory signs of progress? | Cartoonist - Alan Moir; source and courtesy - smh.com.au. Click for source image.

This interpretation  (Madhu Kishwar’s) of ‘secularism’ is a not a progressive specialty. The ‘progressive’ establishment has replaced religion – and their behaviour remains the same.

Instead of religion, they now slaughter people in the name of democracy (Iraq), Communism (The Vietnam War), millions are killed in the name of Progress (USSR), Cultural Revolution (China).

In the name of religion, race, nation …

Of course, parts of the Desert Bloc, also continue to slaughter people in the name of religion – in Afghanistan, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, et al. Singapore imposes ‘progress’ on its citizen – and China plus some other ASEAN members aim to copy Singapore to a small extent on this axis.

In all this, India has not been entirely unaffected. Of all these examples, it is India which has been least affected – due to ’embedded value systems’. And it is good to see that some voices are raised against this ‘progressive’ theology.

The problem with 'progress'  |  Cartoonist - Barry Deutsch; source and courtesy - leftycartoons.com  |  Click for larger image

The problem with 'progress' | Cartoonist - Barry Deutsch; source and courtesy - leftycartoons.com | Click for larger image

Madhu Kishwar carries on wonderfully well, laying out the entire case, so well, till she comes to last paragraph.

Then, BAM!  You get socked in your teeth! You cannot kill in the name of ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai!’ says Madhu Kishwar. As though Indians have been doing that for centuries (or decades). Thinking back, I can see Madhu Kishwar, as another victim of the Big Issue.

What’s the Big Issue

The Big Issue – starting from 8th century onwards, (with huge temples), to the 15th century (Bhakti Movement), was when India(ns) started defining itself in religious terms. First, it was Buddhism, which became a religion. Then it was Jainism – and last, was Hinduism. Very soon, Dharma became religion – and India started aping the Desert Bloc.

Without basis in fact, reality or history, Madhu Kishwar demolishes her own structure by equating India with the Desert Bloc (believers in monotheism). This is one thing, that we in India must understand, discover, find out, investigate – and then, after that, believe, that we are different. At least our culture, history, belief systems and actions are different. Hence, we don’t use ‘Bharat Mata’ as an excuse to kill and slaughter. But, if push comes to shove, we will shove back and more!

In the name of ‘Bharat Mata!’

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