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Fascism and The Rise of ‘Bhakt’ Culture: A Towering Concern In The 21st Century.

The two words are being increasingly used by the people and politicians. Are they just a distraction or an urgent diagnosis?

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Fascism (/ˈfæʃɪzəm/) is a form of far-right, authoritarian ultra-nationalism characterized by dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition, as well as strong regimentation of society and of the economy which came to prominence in early 20th-century Europe.

American painter, printmaker, and educator Harry Sternberg’s 1947 visualization of fascism as a “three-headed monster in armor trampling on religion, literature, and culture amid death and devastation.” Courtesy of Harry Sternberg/Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division. (via zocalopublicsquare.com)

Characteristics of a Fascist Government:

 Fascism can be described as a form of far-right, authoritarian, ultra-nationalism uncharacteristic by dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition, and strong regimentation of the society and the economy. It grew in early twentieth-century Europe under leaders like Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler and led to the deadliest wars in human history which were, and still are, a source of great destruction and sorrow. While some might dismiss the idea of a reality check for India on the grounds of paranoia (and probably anti-nationalism), the truth remains that if democracy in our nation is indeed in safe hands, there should be no objection to a healthy analysis of the same.

  1. Extreme Nationalism
  2. Disdain for Human Rights
  3. Power of Police and Military is Increased
  4. Creating Scapegoats and Virtual Enemies
  5. Corporate Power is Protected
  6. Control Over Media
  7. Fraudulent Elections
  8. Religious Influences on Governance
  9. National Security Issues Hyped

    Picture Credit: iliketowastemytime.com

If we recall, the Nazi Rule in Germany was the worst fascist regime of all time. Hitler basically first divided the people and incited hate for the Jews and in the process, he did everything and anything even to his ‘own people’ if need be.

Several leaders in the US have raised concerns about the Trump-led government’s fascist rule. India too has seen a number of similar instances in the recent past.

Picture Credit: pressenza.com

But the thing that was common in both these cases was that the dissenters had to face serious consequences for the same. The easy road that is taken by the leaders, to suppress these voices is to name anyone who raises voice against the government or questions them as antinational, imprisonment, and even sedition charges; which have become a common scenario now. And not only India and the US but most of the big nations world over are observing similar trends recently.

Statement by BJP MP Nityanand rai (via-inuth.com)

Call it Fascism, Nazism or Bhakt Culture, whatever you name it, all of these pose/have posed the same risks to a country and it’s people. The destruction of the fabric of society, unity of people, and inciting hatred all of these are the initial steps to fascism. The policy of Divide and Rule lies central to them, in one form or the other.

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Picture Credit: startribune.com

The meaning of fascism may have deferred its roots from how fascism was perceived earlier but the impact on society is still the same. Extremism, and Blind Faith in anything and everything is detrimental. Be it any possible thing or person. We should be able to distinguish right and wrong and also, support and appreciate the right and similarly opposing the wrong.

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Picture Credit: kristanmarsh.com

Today people tend to forget that opposing the ruling government is NOT the same as opposing the country. The right to dissent is central to any democracy and should be perceived as it. Political Activism should not be seen as a threat to a country. Holding the government accountable is NOT anti-national, contrary to popular beliefs, it actually strengthens the democracy and compels the government to work democratically. Incidentally, a true Indian and patriot would obviously give much more importance to the good of their country rather than the benefits and will of the government or any leader in particular.

Picture Credit: wikipedia.com

India might not be a fascist regime at the moment if we objectively judge the level of some of these characteristics that can be seen in our country. Hence, the label of anti-national can easily be awarded to anyone who dares put our esteemed nation to this irrelevant test. However, one must remember that no country fell prey to fascism overnight. There has always been a gradual shift in ideology that ultimately becomes something completely different from the original values of the nation. And once this poison has spread, removing it without sorrowful fatalities is almost an impossibility. Therefore, it becomes imperative to refuse to accept any form of tyranny that threatens to develop into a full-blown fascist regime and to consider speaking up against any wrong.

‘’You can love your country without having to love your government

-Paulo Coelho

Read: Sewed Vaginas: A practice called Female Genital Mutilation

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