Ranabir Bhattacharyya/ Decoding fundamentals of fundamentalism in Indian subcontinent

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Imagine a big house which has only one big room. The house has no many inmates and they live amidst all quarrels, ups and downs and yet they exist with their own identities. Someday an intruder comes in and with a bayonet he orders innumerable walls to be built within a few days. And certainly he leaves the house soon, but the house has now got so many rooms inside. This is what happened to the vast Indian subcontinent when the British left in the last century. Although the Portuguese, French, Spanish and other invaders tried their best in creating walls, the British succeeded in making inner walls in the name of religion and hate and thus the present subcontinent clumsily claws in that gigantic set up of mass hatred where humanity is losing day by day to all aspects of individual and sociological existence.
Global media montage has time and again categorized Islamic fundamentalism to be the biggest threat to the core existence of Indian sub continental existence, rather global existence too. The vulnerability of Indian sub-continent to Islamic fundamentalism has been a debatable issue no doubt. Nevertheless, be it India or Pakistan or Bangladesh or other countries in the sub-continent, have been consistent victims of religious fundamentalism and magnified hatred. Looking deeply, all the countries in the Indian sub-continent have been victims of patriarchal fundamentalism, which any-day overshadows the claws of religious fundamentalism. The victims of domestic violence have been on the rise and all the sub-continental countries are culpable for their inability to give security to women. Even in the age of science and technology, India is struggling hard to abolish the obsolete triple talaq custom or giving permission to women in certain temples and during their menstruation periods. Similarly whether to abort or not to abort, the Roman Catholic Churches never fail to interfere in the lives of Christians. In other way, religious fundamentalism aggravates the plight of womenfolk in this whole region. From accepting same sex relationships to eradicating social evils- the Indian sub-continent has been lagging behind and most unfortunately, the fundamentalist groups are backing those old decayed traditions.
Another significant aspect which needs to be closely looked at is the socio-economic strata in Indian sub-continent. The ever widening gap between the upper class and the lower class hasn’t helped the situation either. The growing number of unemployed youth, shrinking job sectors, lesser social welfare schemes and corporate approach from the elected authoritarian (pseudo democratic) government- has given rise to a sloppy economy. The reactionary aspects of the religious fundamentalist groups simply give a thematic relief to the angry generation who are devoid of the basic amenities of life. Be it the terrorists in Jammu & Kashmir or those in TTP in Pakistan or the youth wing members of the banned groups in Bangladesh, uneven growth in developing economies in all the countries of the Indian sub-continent have played pivotal role in mass unrest and support to suicidal religious fundamentalism. Even decades of bloody military operations in Sri Lanka took to end the era of civil war and ultimately they had to pay a heavy price- witnessing genocide in the name of obliterating the military and fan-base of LTTE. Even a Maoist government couldn’t bring much needed peace and stability in Nepal where the political fraternity of the country is still divided in framing the constitution. The ‘irresponsible’ silence of Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung Suu Kyi even after being well aware of the mass killings of the Rohingya Muslims has been the biggest shame in the island nation. The dominating negative impact of fundamentalism has its roots in the perennial vote bank politics of the Indian sub-continent. When the bloggers are hacked in Bangladesh or writers of the caliber of Kalburgi are killed in daylight, justice seems to be a farfetched dream in all the developing nations. And in countries like Pakistan, where fatwas are looming large for a devastating throwback, schools kids are killed like in cities like Peshawar just for the sake of revenge, fundamentalism shapes up intolerance of the highest level. In other words, fundamentalism has become the ultimate reactionary aspect to all discontent and first world countries are not missing any opportunity to sell arms and ammunitions to the government as well as the opposing forces. The only way all sorts of fundamentalism can be tackled in Indian sub-continent, is by suitable allocation of resources, ensuring the basic amenities of life and creating an infrastructure and ambience for even societal growth with more job opportunities.

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