Is India turning into a vigilant Hindu society?
There has always been this apprehension as to whether India would see Hindu consolidation sooner. This fear or doubt - as the case may be - stems from the fact that the world over, right wing is getting consolidated.
It is largely due to the wrong policies followed by the governments or due to extraneous factors like terrorism that began affecting the world in one form or the other or joblessness and lack of opportunities and livelihoods. India has been no different.
No doubt, there is development, but this development only gave room for a greater gap between the rich and the poor. Rising middle classes and the aspirational youngsters have only added to the woes of the poor who too are jostling for their own space.
The result of the election is immaterial as far as this situation is concerned. The BJP-led NDA might rule the country for the next five or ten years.
Fragmented Opposition will only help it in doing so. But what is of greater importance is the factor of consolidation among the Hindus.
This has already happened under the Modi government rule of the past five years and it will increase in every which way in the coming times.
It is like identity politics of fringe groups or smaller sections of the society which have not been given their due and hence are keen to assert themselves at the right time - elections time usually - to secure what is justifiably due to them.
If there is Hindu consolidation, then who is to be blamed? Is it the global factors and the growing religious bent of mind among the people? Or is it the internal factors of misgovernance?
Mamata Benerjee might dismiss off any suggestion that she is pro-minorities for the sake of power, yet, the rise of the BJP is largely due to her policies.
Secondly, if the people of this country rise above caste and community equations and seek a larger identity despite the inherent and innate differences in the society and the shortcomings, it is also due largely to the nationalistic sentiments that are swaying the countries across the world. India could be no different.
To top it, we have political parties in our country which have assiduously cultivated a section of the society for their own petty gains forgetting the long-term impact of the same.
Hence, Hindu society is getting radicalised in its own way. This by no means could lead to a situation where it could be called Hindu terror, but only remain as a vigilante Hindu society.
But even that vigilantism could spark trouble in a peaceful society as it slowly veers around asserting itself against minority practices and habits.
We have already seen how one could dictate, with a little help from the powers that be, the eating, dressing and the speaking habits of people.
It slowly steps on to the domain of free speech and controls it. It controls the free thought too. But the world is changing and so does a Hindu.
That precisely is what has happened to the society under the BJP rule of five years. Will it be any better now?