Down has published a long, vapidly tedious critique by Arundhati Roy of capitalism, business houses, middle class and western democracies. An abridged version has been published by the Guardian as well. She flies off seamlessly on expected multiple tangents from the foci of her pulsating anger on India and Indians. As expected she has corrosive views on everything even remotely connected with money, mining, market, commerce and deeply hated forces of demonic globalization. She finds dark shades of intrigue and willful criminality in every one from the house of Tata’s, wealth of businessmen, middle class supported anti corruption agitation in India. Even the Jaipur literary festival is thoroughly ridiculed due to corporate sponsors, their intimidating logos, willy associates and for the controversy about the demonized writer Salman Rushdie, whose freedom to cause hurt is perpetually questioned.
Her vapid caldron of caustic opinions can only hold interests of her own tribe of misty eyed dreamers, champagne socialists, social outcasts and those who love to point fingers on others to aggravate conflicts, instead of any attempts at resolving the complex issues and telescoping competing interests.
Like her tribe, Ms. Roy quotes Marx extensively, as the crystal gazer cardinal and ultimate ideologue who could foresee that the capitalism would eventually collapse due to its own contradictions and inhuman greed of the robber capitalists.
Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, the separatist Kashmiri leader and Hurriyat chairman has been refuting the charges that the separatist struggle in Kashmir was sponsored by Pakistan, and that the recent Kashmir upsurges had shown to the world that Islamabad had little role to play in it.
But, on 30th March, 2012, ahead of sentencing of Ghulam Nabi Fai, who has pleaded guilty to charges of receiving money from ISI after his arrest last year, US Attorney Neil H MacBride said "Mirwaiz Umar Farooq was supported and controlled by the ISI and Indian civil rights activist, Gautam Navlakha was introduced to an ISI general for recruitment by Fai at the ISIs direction,"
Gautam Navlakha, a friend and collaborator of Ms. Roy, is known for his pro separatist views. It is yet to be seen how far he was really in cahoots with Pakistani spy agency and what were his briefs and payoffs from his alleged masters.
Ms. Roy has deep sympathies are with Maoists, who want to establish a "communist society" by overthrowing India's "semi-colonial, semi-feudal" form of rule through armed struggle. Few days ago Maoists blasted a land mine which killed 15 para military personnel. But such ghastly acts would never be mentioned in her emotive take on what ails the world and India, as her dexterous word smithy and wild imagination rules over reasons and reality to paint a blood splashed horrific collage of black and white images.
Shobha Mandi, alias Uma, alias Shikha, was raped repeatedly by fallow Maoist comrades.She had joined the Maoists at age of seventeen; and surrendered nine years later, to save herself and let the world know, how the women comrades have been treated in the vast jungles under brutal control of the red ultras. If someone like Uma, having a leadership role over dozens of Maoists was not spared, and repeatedly raped, the plight of other women can easily be imagined with clarity.
The summary of her experience painted a gruesome scenario of Maoist leaders raping just any women they fancy, along with inflicting injustices against same helpless poor for whom they claimed to be doggedly fighting for.
But her sad story will never be accepted or told by Ms. Roy. Rather, she would deny and denounce such real stories as mere capitalist, neoliberal, corporate and state staged conspiracies to defame the armed struggles. She has history of justifying and legitimizing violence by non state actors in the name of self defense, resisting an oppressive demonic state forces and their violence.
Francis Indwar, the lone wage earner of his family and a police officer of Jharkhand was unarmed. when he was abducted by Maoists and later beheaded. But his beheading along scores of policemen, innocent travelers and villagers dying in various Maoist attacks, bomb blasts, train derailments will never be told and criticized by Ms. Roy.
What these Market hating Maoists trade for their guns? Ms. Roy has always ignored many important questions, as to how they assure unending supply of arms and weapons, bombs and explosive? They are supposed to be poor people dying of hunger, starvation and entrenched in extreme poverty and multiple suppression! From where do they get the resources for their professionally executed brutal armed rebellion and where is the money coming from?
The poor tribal do not turned Kalashnikov toting killers on their own. Their anger and plight is being shamelessly exploited by few viciously infantile ideologues, misty eyed traders of a failed ideology and its romanticized blood letting. On hand education, infrastructure and job are needed to provide employment opportunities, on the other hand the destructive Maoists have been blowing up schools, medical centers, communication towers and violently oppose road building, mining and refining of minerals.
Indian police and paramilitary forces can hardly be called “the army of Rich”, as Ms. Roy would like her readers and audience to believe. They are poorly trained, ill equipped, afflicted with poor command and control structure, are demotivated and the recruited come from poor and disadvantaged backgrounds.
Dr. Binayak Sen, the Maoist supporter has been freed on bail, and now, is a member of Planning Commission of India. The vice-president of People's Union of Civil Liberties, was sentenced to life imprisonment along with Naxal ideologue Narayan Sanyal and Kolkata businessman Piyush Guha for colluding with the Maoists to establish a network to fight the state.
Only few days ago, Kobad Ghandy, the well known Maoists leader has been absolved of charges by a court in New Delhi. He comes from a very rich Mumbai Parsi family and got entangled with far left wing activism during his stay in London. Kodad took up the responsibility of spreading the violent Maoists ideology to the urban centers in India and turn cities into bloody conflict zone. Thankfully he failed in his mission. But his, and full story of Dr. Sen will not find place in what Ms. Roy loves to write about the draconian Nazi like Indian state and its criminal minions.
Ms. Roy had joined the protests against Sardar Sarovar Dam project, taking water to irrigate about 18000 square Km area in drought prone Gujarat. Eventually the government had proposed a compromise to reduce the height of the Dam, but a defiant Ms. Roy wanted the damned Dam to be made a museum of failed technologies, without realizing that about 22% of homes, offices and factories in India ran on power generated by hydroelectric power plants. She even amazingly, further equated Dams with nuclear bombs.
She was given a three month jail sentence for obstructing the construction of Sardar Sarovar Dam. Ms. Roy went to jail in grand style but only after 24 hours, opted to pay a 75-rupee ($1.50) fine rather than showing solidarity with the humble prisoners. Perhaps, she found an Indian prison much less spiritual than what was imagined and moreover, it was enough to be photographed behind bars, looking fierce and defiant. After freezing few dramatic photographs for posterity , it was pointless to stay in such an unsanitary and criminal infested place. But later, she spent a lot more time with gun totting Maoists in jungle, which must have an uplifting and blissful experience for her, listening to couple of dramatic jungle tales bristling with nourishing nuances of the romanticized violent struggle.
Did Arundhati Roy and her ilk of jet hopping rich and powerful intellectuals ever think about from where the various metals used in pen, computers, laptops, ipods, cameras, cars, fridges and airplanes come from and how?
The Capitalism may be in crisis as any living being can be but the ideals and tools of totalitarian communism have been thrown away by most of those who have had gone through the nightmares of living within high walls of country wide prisons, across the world.
The exploding Commerce of High Pitched Hoopla around Ideals and Goals of Anti Globalization Business is very lucrative for likes of Arundhati Roy. Many Americans and westerners have turned very fond of rabid criticism, as it is an exotic self loathing entertainment and maybe even useful in some extreme cases.
But the point is only one, Arundhuti Roy is all about rhetoric with no relation with reason, logic and solutions. Nowhere in the world, the eternally wise-angry leftists and likes of Ms. Roy have come up with any pragmatic solutions based on systematic analysis of serious problems.
They have expertise to weave a deceptive maze- multilayer, colorful stew of myths, myopia and megalomania, which means nothings and suggests nothings of value apart from twisted entertainment of few armchair intellectuals, misty eyed self serving fat cats, stylishly disheveled leftist bimbo's and unwashed hunks, jetting around the world.
But the question is, if the eternally demonized Reliance Industries Limited and other big businesses have not come up in India, how their absence would have helped the millions of Indian poor, tribal, helpless and homeless?
If Anil Ambani had not built an imposing house or whatever, with intimidating helipads and other undesirable elements etc, which is supposed to employ about 600 people, how the poor and homeless of India would have benefited?
But there are many in India and across the world, who have an age old problem with businessmen having any power and influence in society and policy making. They further assume that only Mr. Anil Ambani, Tata and few corporate houses have total control over politics, policies, decisions and assets of India.
If that was the case, than the legitimate demand to go for Foreign Direct Investment in Retail and Aviation Sector would have happened years ago! But that is still not happening, as the political class, their advisers, associates, bureaucrats and hanger ons have other ideals, compulsions and motives.
If one asks, who is the looser? Ms. Roy would respond with nuggets of terse polemic and catch next flight to speak in New York or Timbuktu.
It is an amazingly wrong premise that a country should not have private enterprise and businesses, as they can only be exploitative and predatory in nature, as openly being suggested by Ms. Roy. Mr Ambani may be one of the most powerful and important businessmen, but there many other like him who employ hundreds of thousands of Indians and foreigners as well. Their industrial empire and associated wealth doesn't come from mere inheritance but also by personal efforts, taking high risk bearing initiatives as well. In fact many of the present captains of business and industry are first generation entrepreneurs. It is due to effects of economic liberalization and efforts of people like Mr. Ambai that India has one of the cheapest mobile phone rates, which benefit the poor, tribal and others.
It is not being suggested that they are angels and have done nothing wrong ever. They only represent the prevailing most dominant ethos, ideal and practices of the society they spring from. Politicians, bureaucrats, businessmen, professionals, academics and others can be good, bad and ugly.
Ms. Roy and her aristocratic family must have had numbers of telephones since ages. But the middle class and poor could afford to have phones, only after advent of economic liberalization leading to privatization of telecommunication services in India. The socialist India, she so dearly would love to bring back overnight, boasted an eight year long waiting time to get a telephone, which was considered a luxury, people of a developing country could not afford to indulge in.
But, she in her intellectual hubris would retort, “why bother about telephones and communication when hungry people are dying, while police, army kills and corporate robbers are busy picking up blood diamonds all over?”
There are many who follow Marx's dictum that working for another person is the most stupid and shameless things to do. Though he had never worked for a day, never set a foot in any factory, Marx concluded that a working man was selling his soul to his boss. So we still have likes of Arundhati Roy, who are busy telling us, the same things, that the businesses and private enterprises must be closed down and destroyed so that the people do not work for others.
If the capitalists have done business with fascists, socialists, despots and military dictators, so have the communists and Marxists done the same, as well. Rhetoric spewing Marxist dictator of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez starts his day by vowing to destroy capitalism and west but keeps exporting oil to his arch enemies
Interestingly, in India the negligible growth rate during socialist era was termed as “Hindu Rate of Growth” by an army of economists, who earnestly believed that the blissfully contended nature of Hindus was the real reason of their lack of economic initiative and enterprise.
But the real fact was, that the dormant entrepreneurial energies of Indians were chained down and suppressed by insular economic policies which demonized private enterprises and saw personal wealth creation as merely criminal pursuit of the greedy few.
Her obsessive love affair with era of stagnant socialism and sense of deep anger with India opening up to the world market tells own story of unjustified fixations with small economy of class conflicts, low incomes, much larger unemployment and multitude of shortages.
If that was not enough, a convenient conjecture was further added to the twisted tales by assuming an unholy collaborative venture between rise of Hindu Right wing forces and first phase of economic liberation initiated by Rajiv Gandhi. It is conveniently forgotten that there were separate events and actions also initiated by Rajiv Gandhi which gave impetus and motive to Right Wing Politics, an eventuality which was bound to happen sooner or later to balance the far left leaning policies pursued since the independence in 1947.
Perhaps, unknown to her, during last December, granddaughter of Bal Thackeray, the boss of right wing Hindu Shiv Sena( The Army of Lord Shiva), quietly got married to a Muslim boy. But Mumbai and India did not go up in flames, as no one took notice or offense. Such marriages have been happening in India. The darling of all Indians, the King of Bollywood, Shahrukh Khan is married to a Hindu girl, so is Amir khan and so many others across India. Promising and articulate, young politician and minister, Sachin pilot is married to daughter of Farukh Abdullah. But disregarding inherent multi-hued meanings of such mixed marriages, Ms. Roy will continue to paint India and Hindus as unruly gang of bloodthirsty fanatics, busy harassing and suppressing Muslims and Christians by gleefully quoting, decade old riots, violence and death tolls. Irrespective of what is being assumed by Ms. Roy, one of the most respected and richest Indian Businessman, Azim Premji is a Muslim too, who has donated billions of dollars to establish school for underprivileged kids in India. On the other end, the biggest income tax defaulter and money launderer, Hasan Ali has been able to stash billions of dollars abroad. Ali is is rumored to enjoy high level political patronage and protection. But such stories will never be part of cast iron, antagonist narrative woven around suitable conflict ridden conjectures of Ms. Roy.
Another moot point is, that her pulsating hate for market, commerce and multinational corporations did not stop Ms. Roy from going ahead to get her book published by an international publishing house, which is as per her own views; must be a part and parcel of ever expanding predatory body of greedy-heartless corporate robbers.
She has long back, termed India “a fake democracy” but suddenly now beginning to see great danger to the so called fake democracy by likes of Anna Hazare!
If Arwind Kejariwal of India Against Corruption, gets donations from the Ford Foundation, the whole anti corruption agitation become a suspect for Ms. Roy.
It is an another naive attempt to construct a "revolutionary" narrative of post-colonial rage variety with tedious and familiar litany of capitalist wrongdoing, but no actual suggestions for an alternative.
Good writing skills, mixed with wild imagination can not hide the blatant hypocrisy of Leftist writers like Ms. Roy, who are ever ready to hammer the last rusted nail in the decaying coffin of capitalism without the much awaited corpse.
The most articulate critics of Globalization are the so called ‘progressive’ novelists of India. Pankaj Mishra and Arundhati Roy are regularly and almost exclusively invited to write about the anything under the sun, be it politics, society and economy.
One can ask how many western fiction writers are bestowed such honors to write about political- economic issues and taken seriously?
Her twisted take is only an example of the inherent dichotomy and blatant hypocrisy of Indian fiction writers who masquerade as political/economic commentators.
What they write is really fiction masquerading as non-fiction aimed to please their exotica seeking publishers and media houses, who crave well written, pop social-economic-political witchcraft.
If, there are few rich Indians and many poor, there are also rich star writers and their poor cousins, who eke out a living working for small and medium newspapers and publishing houses in lanes and by-lanes of Indian cities.
Can Arundhati Roy tell us how many Indian writers are asked to write for well-paying western publications and called for media appearances, lecture tours? May be maximum number of about 100 with few likes of her at the top. Further, their writings are not published and paid for by any socialist/communist/Marxist country, if at all such entities do exist in reality today!
If there were no multinational publishing houses looking for new talents and newer markets, there would have been, no Booker prize, no “God of Small Things” and no Arundhati Roy as well. The celebrity status has been bestowed on her by the same demonic capitalist forces and entities, she, so deeply despises and wants to end their criminal hegemony. Ms. Roy uses that status to air her caustic views and the same entities fight with each others to give her continued attention and space.
What could she had done and achieved in absence of multinational publishing houses, capitalist funded lecture tours and media appearances?
She must also tell us how far she has been exploited by these heartless corporate robbers? Perhaps it has been a cozy, interdependent and collaborative venture for common greed and goal-the joint exploitations of misty eyed armchair intellectuals, champagne socialists and naive of the world!
That is the enabling power and needs of these capitalist entities, who love to give space to plethora of dissenting voices, no matter how radical and dysfunctional these may be.
Had there been no economic liberalization in India, there would have been no self centered and greedy middle class with disposable income, who bought and devoured her lucid prose, detailing forbidden pleasures of underwater farting.
There many writers in India who are poor or barely paid as well, most of them are not working for any big newspapers and corporate houses but are holed up with small and medium ones, due to various compulsions and reasons.
What happened to other hundreds of thousands of writers of India? Do they get opportunities, top dollar fee, speaking invitation to west, she and other likes of her get every week and why?
Ms. Roy has problems with 100 billionaires of India occupying the top positions of power and influence. But what about the high octane power of highly paid star opinion makers like her, who jet around the world, airing their take for top dollar fee along with seven star hospitality, executive class travel and expense accounts?
Likes of her must know that the big, bad world is not flat and it’s a pyramid and Some people have to be at top in all spheres of public life, professions and occupations, including Ms. Roy as well.
It is indeed further amazing that Arundhati Roy declares that human rights and supremacy of law is American conspiracy designed to protect Israel? But no one can be surprised at such most blatant subterfuge, which is the launch pad of these extreme leftist writers who find sinister designs, even in the most noble ideals and goals.
Likes of her have never written anything against the conflict pedaling Islamist and Communist ethos and ideals, as for likes of her, these are the ultimate harbingers of heavens of equality and balance in the wretched world.
She has never accepted, questioned or criticized role of Pakistan in fomenting terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism in Kashmir and elsewhere in India. Ms. Roy only harps on presence and suppression by security forces in Kashmir without accepting role of Pakistani Rulers in fomenting various troubles and eviction of about 3,50,000 Pandits from the valley.
She is the same lady who announced that India deserved 26/11 Mumbai attack and even while it was happening, she said it was done by Indian Muslims and not by Pakistani origin Jihadi terrorists.
A gifted writer who wants to destroy ideals of freedom, democracy and liberty by assigning most amazing motives and assumptions.
There are multitude of serious problems in India, corruption and the related mismanagement. But still it is a democratic country along with strong emphasis on ethos of secularism. But important point is these, rich dollar earning Leftist thinkers and writers have no clue about how to solve or reduce these problems.
Her twisted take about Indian Army and its influence on government is mere fiction and not backed by facts. Indian army is very reluctant to take up issues of discontent due to decades of maladministration by civilian governments.
The stark facts remains that, likes of Ms. Roy are the products of the same hated market, the entity which has created and still feeds them.
They must devote their time and energies writing fictions and literary criticism, rather paddling half truths and misty eyed conjectures as social-political-economic witchcraft.
The well known ethos, ideals and writings of Ms. Roy can be compared and equitably mapped with what the wise Pakistani Rulers have done with their school curriculum. They only teach tons of half truth to the kids and describe how during the horrific days of partition, millions of Muslims were butchered by Hindus goons. It is however never told that most of the Muslims were butchered by Sikhs in Punjab. There are compelling reasons and designs, as the Pakistani Rulers have been busy funding and motivating violent Khalistani agitation in India. Further the kids are never told that millions of Hindus were also massacred by Muslims goons and fanatics.
It will perhaps be very nice experience for her to go and live in still Communist China, North Korea, Venezuela and even opening to global market, Cuba or Islamic heavens of Saudi Arabia or Pakistan.
The near complete absence of western values of human rights, liberty and messy democracies like India will not tie her down and blossom her creative juices to write, much awaited another novel, perhaps titled, " The Gods of Big Things". or “The Gods of Utopian Dreams”.
Let us be sure, being a market savvy lady, she would be wise enough to get out, before the teeming Mad Mullahs or crafty communists throw her in prison or mental asylum.
It is only the mindset of the hypocrite writer who called the brutal Maoists as Gandhians with Guns, and justified 26/11 Mumbai massacre of innocent people by saying that India deserved such an attacks for the fault lines within.
Her fake pulsating hate for the word “corporate” manifests the inbuilt strategy to reject modern business models, even while enjoying the accrued benefits,she makes sure will continues to pour in. Or perhaps more likely, the eternal wish to swim along with rabid anti market, self-loathing angst of leftist intellectuals like Noam Chomsky, her ideal.
It would be interesting to see if she has guts to withstand the scrutiny of her rabid ideals and beliefs by likes of Shashi Tharoor and Gurucharan Das in a televised discussion.
So far she has been treated with kid gloves by the interviewers who never put counter questions.
The Diva of Factoids loves to demonize and lambast everyone except Islamist fundamentalists and infantile Marxists who love to call themselves, Maoists.