Skip to main content


This is the last post in the A-to-Z series that I have been writing in April. Most of the posts in the series touched explicitly or implicitly the post-truth politics of present India. Post-truth is the zeitgeist of India now. Facts don’t matter here. Emotions do. Slogans do. We have a Prime Minister who loves to play with words. He keeps on giving us new slogans every year, if not more frequently. Remember slogans or jingles like Achhe din aane waale hain? Make in India (which has now become Break in India), Beti Bachao Beti Padhao, Minimum Government Maximum Governance, Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas… Hollow slogans. That has been the zeitgeist of India from 2014. Hollow. Resounding hollowness.

What is the reality behind those slogans and rhetoric? I found the following illustration from a Malayalam weekly the most apt depiction of our present reality. 

You know what it means. A thickly populated area in the national capital is bulldozed after Mr Modi’s supporters orchestrated a riot-like situation there. Some 200-odd people carrying tridents and rods march into the area playing high decibel music on a DJ system under the pretext of celebrating Hanuman Jayanti. Why choose a place like Jahangirpuri for such a celebration? You know the answer. It was a tailor-made communal clash. Tailor-made communal clashes are integral parts of present India’s zeitgeist. I bet we can expect many more of them soon.

If you think Modi and his supporters are the only people who are possessed by this zeitgeist you are mistaken. Kejriwal is going out of the way to own that spirit. He has suddenly become a Hanuman bhakt. He visits Hanuman temples, sings Hanuman chalisa there, and arranges Sundara Kanda of Ramayana to be recited in the temples of his constituency.  

Rahul Gandhi also flirted with gods for a while. Since he doesn’t know the game, it didn’t work. Nothing works in his case. Poor man in a wrong place. He doesn’t understand the zeitgeist at all.

While the hollow zeitgeist marches on holding tridents and rods, the country is reeling under price rise, ever-increasing taxes, unemployment, poverty, and overall misery. Nobody in the ruling party seems concerned. They are concerned about Rama and Hanuman. Zeitgeist of GST Raj. 

Last month the Gujarat High Court remarked that it was easier to reach the moon than understand the intricacies of the GST tax system. The truth is that the entire politics of Narendra Modi is beyond any human understanding. May the 33 million gods of our pantheon save us!

PS. This is the last part of #BlogchatterA2Z


  1. Perfect conclusion to the series...

  2. Zeitgeist a new word for me almost sounds like "Poltergeist" if u know what I mean. I was wondering what u would write as an end post. This is like a perfect epilogue to all ur remaining posts. It was good knowing u and ur blog...

    Congrats on completing a to z. From "The Pensive"

    1. Poltergeist 😅 The similarity is not only in sound!

      Hope you will return to this space occasionally though A2Z is over.

  3. Hari OM
    Yes, a good roundup to conclude this month's offerings... and I wish it only pertained to India (no disprespect), but we have a completely scary situation here in the UK (I haven't dared look to see how OZ is shaping up). Ours is not comparable in the misuse of religious application, but there is so much going on under the table and folk appear to be totally blind to the encroachment on freedoms. Fascism is alive and swelling...

    Thanks for an entertaining, engaging and enthralling April - now keep it going!!! YAM xx

    1. April became richer with your presnce here, Yam. You made this space international. Your comments added to my interest in the world beyond Delhi.

  4. Can't agree more. And in the absence of a strong opposition this will continue. Hope our 33 million God's help our country with a strong opposition and get us out of this circus!!

    1. Lack of opposition is detrimental even to gods, as our scriptures show. Modi is scaling heights that he doesn't even understand. A big fall is imminent.

  5. Oh well, how nicely your post captures the spirit of India of the present. But that spirit embodied in the facades of those muppathimukkodi gods of India were constructed India, not originated there!

    1. A constructed India, you said it. Orchestrated, as I put it in the post. Fabrications.

  6. Lovely! I love reading your posts. One of the few people who speak the real truth in a world filled with deception.

  7. The situation is grim and the economic crisis is really to worry about. I could not stop laughing after reading the last line ! Amazing write , as always.

  8. It's almost as if several in our populace are waiting with bated breath, more of a wait and watch game to see how the country shapes up in the coming decades. So much of 'Zeitgeist' (a new word for me!) becomes game changes, or rather a fork in the road. The whole world seems to be going crazy.

    Deepa from FictionPies


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

An Aberration of Kali Yuga

Are we Indians now living in an aberrant period of history? A period that is far worse than the puranic Kali Yuga? A period in which gods decide to run away in fear of men? That’s a very provocative question, isn’t it, especially in a time when people are being arrested for raising much more innocuous questions than that? But I raise my hands in surrender because I’m not raising this question; the Malayalam movie that Maggie and I watched is. Before I go to the provocations of the movie, I am compelled to clarify a spelling problem with the title of the movie. The title is Bhramayugam [ ഭ്രമയുഗം] in Malayalam. But the movie’s records and ads write it as Bramayugam [ ബ്രമയുഗം ] which would mean the yuga of Brama. Since Brama doesn’t mean anything in Malayalam, people like me will be tempted to understand it as the yuga of Brahma . In fact, that is how I understood it until Maggie corrected me before we set off to watch the movie by drawing my attention to the Malayalam spelling

Karma in Gita

I bought a copy of annotated Bhagavad Gita a few months back with the intention of understanding the scripture better since I’m living in a country that has become a Hindu theocracy in all but the Constitution. After reading the first part [chapters 1 to 6] which is about Karma, I gave up. Shelving a book [literally and metaphorically] is not entirely strange to me. If a book fails to appeal to me after a reasonable number of pages, I abandon it. The Gita failed to make sense to me just like any other scripture. That’s not surprising since I’m not a religious kind of a person. I go by reason. I accept poetry which is not quite rational. Art is meaningful for me though I can’t detect any logic in it. Even mysticism is acceptable. But the kind of stuff that Krishna was telling Arjuna didn’t make any sense at all. To me. Just a sample. When Arjuna says he doesn’t want to fight the war because he can’t kill his own kith and kin, Krishna’s answer is: Fight. If you are killed, you win he

Kabir the Guru - 1

Kabirvad Kabirvad is a banyan tree in Gujarat. It is named after Kabir, the mystic poet and saint of the 15 th century. There is a legend behind the tree. Two brothers are in search of a guru. They have an intuitive feeling that the guru will appear when they are ready for it. They plant a dry banyan root at a central spot in their courtyard. Whenever a sadhu passes by, they wash his feet at this particular spot. Their conviction is that the root will sprout into a sapling when their guru appears. Years pass and there’s no sign of any sapling. No less than four decades later, the sapling rises. The man who had come the previous day was a beggarly figure whom the brothers didn’t treat particularly well though they gave him some water to drink out of courtesy. But the sapling rose, after 40 years! So the brothers went in search of that beggarly figure. Kabir, the great 15 th century mystic poet, had been their guest. The legend says that the brothers became Kabir’s disciples. The b

Raising Stars

Bringing up children is both an art and a science. The parents must have certain skills as well as qualities and value systems if the children are to grow up into good human beings. How do the Bollywood stars bring up their children? That is an interesting subject which probably no one studied seriously until Rashmi Uchil did. The result of her study is the book titled Raising Stars: The challenges and joys of being a Bollywood parent . The book brings us the examples of no less than 26 Bollywood personalities on how they brought up their children in spite of their hectic schedules and other demands of the profession. In each chapter, the author highlights one particular virtue or skill or quality from each of these stars to teach us about the importance of that aspect in bringing up children. Managing anger, for example, is the topic of the first chapter where Mahima Chowdhary is our example. We move on to gender equality, confidence, discipline, etc, and end with spirituality whi

Kabir the Guru – 2

Read Part 1 of thi s here . K abir lived in the 15 th century. But his poems and songs are still valued. Being illiterate, he didn’t write them. They were passed on orally until they were collected by certain enthusiasts into books. Vipul Rikhi’s book, Drunk on Love: The Life, Vision and Songs of Kabir , not only brings the songs and poems together in one volume but also seeks to impart the very spirit of Kabir to the reader. Kabir is not just a name, the book informs us somewhere in the beginning. Kabir is a tradition. He is a legend, a philosophy, poetry and music. I would add that Kabir was a mystic. Most of his songs have something to do with spirituality. They strive to convey the deep meaning of reality. They also question the ordinary person’s practice of religion. They criticise the religious leaders such as pandits and mullahs. Though a Muslim, Kabir was immensely taken up by Ram, the Hindu god, for reasons known only to him perhaps. Most of the songs are about the gr