|About the Book|
FUNDAMENTALISM: Threat to Secular DemocracyBy Ram PuniyanieBook published by IDEAINDIA.COMCopyright Ram Puniyani 2007India has completed six decades of its independence. Today where do we stand in our resolve to have a secular democratic India? It isMoreFUNDAMENTALISM: Threat to Secular DemocracyBy Ram PuniyanieBook published by IDEAINDIA.COMCopyright Ram Puniyani 2007India has completed six decades of its independence. Today where do we stand in our resolve to have a secular democratic India? It is a tragedy that conditions have so shaped during last couple of decades that one is forced to think about the very future of the democratic foundation of the country. The fundamentalist politics has drawn its trishuls to attack the democracy and its accompanying liberal space.Right from the 1960s, communal violence began and was on at the low and medium pitch till the decade of 1980s Communal violence is a superficial manifestation of the deeper process of communal politics, the very anathema of democracy. Starting with the decade of 80s, Meenakshipuram conversions of dalits to Islam and the Shah Bano case fiasco, were used as pretexts by the Hindutva politics to go on the high offensive and shift the social debate to non issues like the Ramjanmbhoomi, Baba Budan giri and the Kamal Maula Masjid (Bhoj Shala). Using the double level of communal propaganda, through the section of media, and through the word of mouth, fear was instilled amongst the Hindus that despite being in majority, they are in danger due to the minorities, Muslim and Christians. Winning over of the social space and common sense by the Sangh combine went on getting strengthened after every episode of communal violence, it peaked with post demolition riots and the Gujarat carnage. With the Mumbai blasts of 11thJuly, the picture is close to complete and now the demonization of Muslims has become excruciatingly painful. It has gone to target the very precepts of Koran, the one’s related to Jihad and Kafir. Christians, have been targeted for their work in the Adivasi areas, and the bogey of conversions has been so firmly planted by now that truth and census statistics don’t matter any longer with the average understanding in the social arena.Professor Ram Puniyani was Professor of Biomedical Engineering until 2004 when he retired. He now works full time for communal harmony. He is involved with human rights activities and has held a number of posts: Secretary – All India Secular Forum- Secretary – Center for Study of Society and Secularism- Secretary – EKTA, Committee for Communal Amity. He is the recipient of a number of awards. He conducts numerous workshops and writes widely on communalism and related topics.