A Modivation For Hate

The question I am trying to answer today is: Why do they, especially the “opinion-maker” type media people, hate Modi so much?

The said hate is taken so for-granted by all of us that, despite the strong element of the personal in it, we forget to ask the obvious, puzzling question: Why do Modi-haters hate him so much?

I believe that, broadly, there are three categories of people who hate Modi viscerally. The first is Abdul from Azampur. I think I understand why he hates, or might want to hate, Modi. He was told that Islam is facing an existential threat world-wide, and he was also told that Modi is the kingpin of an anti-Muslim conspiracy. Faith and faith-based identity issues do trigger strong emotions, especially among the less educated, especially among Muslims.

The second category of ardent Modi-haters are some educated, middle- to upper-middle-class, secularism-spouting, liberalism-chanting non-Hindus. They hate Modi because assertive middle-class Hindus are rooting for him. This might seem complicated, but it all boils down to one’s .. err, forgive me for the cliche .. “idea of India”. Was India born in 1947, where citizenship essentially is the contractual obligation of affirming the Constitution, whose civilization and ethos are best described in terms of the new creed of “secularism”? Or is India a classical yet living  Hindu/Indic civilization, owes its character and uniqueness to Hinduism and other native traditions, where people of non-native faiths and traditions also live — as they always lived — with equal rights and dignity? No prizes for guesssing which “idea of India” is the favorite of the Modi-haters of the second category. Many of these folks, pursuing a politics that legitimizes their prejudice, claim allegiance to leftwing ideology, but some strut about as “secular right”. I think I understand their hate too.

The third category are “opinion-makers”/journalists. It is their hate for Modi that is most puzzling. Of course, every paid hack has to say strong stuff about him. At the end of the day there are mouths to feed. But it is only a job, right? So why do some of them go the extra mile, so to speak, and are so into Modi-bashing of the morbid kind that manifestly has genuine passion piled into it? Take this celebrity TV anchor for example. Though not exactly sober most of the time, on the subject of Narendra Modi he becomes particularly cantankerous, and does not fear appearing off-balance or even insane to his viewers. What about Modi makes him go so bonkers?

Looking for a convincing, satisfying answer to this question, not the official or polemical kind, and pondering deeply over the matter in the caves of Himalayas, here is what I came up with.

“Intellectuals” and “opinion-makers” believe that their station in life is to be advisers to rulers. “Rulers” in their view are the Nehru clan. Happily, the Nehru clan “appreciates” the grand ideas of the intellectuals: secularism, liberalism, socialism and all other good stuffism. (It’s just a coincidence the clan’s divisive, self-serving politics could do exactly with this sort of sugar-coating). The dynasty humors intellectuals, and intellectuals in turn “advise” the dynasty: that is how life is expected to go on. India would be governed correctly, and everybody would know his/her place in society.  But … rightwingers are a nuisance. The “Hindu nationalist” kind more so. Some of these village people don’t even speak proper English, yet have the gall to challenge intellectuals on the matter of … ideas and ideology! High-flying opinion-makers  regard rightwingers as inferior beings. Because they sit at the high table of the powers that “need” their advise, they believe it is beneath their dignity to engage rightwingers in debate as their equals. The argumentative rightwinger is their bugbear. He must be shown his place at any cost.

That was to be Modi’s lot even before 2002. Vocal and combative with an unapologetic RSS background from the boondocks of Gujarat, he may have been a rising star in the BJP but he represented everything that the elite Delhi intellectual resented about the hinterland rightwinger. News stories of the time were already describing him as a “hardliner”, a “hawk”, an “extremist” and as a “controversial” politician. I recall a pre-2002 TV chat show where he gave it back good to the loud-mouthed anchor. He talked back! Modi, even without following the trajectory that brought him to where he is today, would have been anathema to chatteratti, for he offended their sensibilities by simply being what he is.

Yet, when journos lunged gleefully at his throat in March 2002, he was not their immediate target. The (then NDA) government in Delhi was. It must have been assumed — even taken for granted — that a cornered BJP would get rid of Modi to extricate itself from the tsunami of propaganda engulfing it. The crusading journos’  strategy was geared towards taking advantage of such an outcome. The shrill claims of state complicity in the riots were made with the expectation that such claims would ipso facto be affirmed by the forced exit of Modi. Indeed, Vajpayee wanted him to go. But his party colleauges, after listening to Modi in rapt attention at a meet in Goa (where he offered to resign), realized that such a course of action would have meant that the BJP walked into a trap laid for it.

So Modi stays put. Crusaders begin to understand that the man they expected to crush like an insect is proving an infuriating spoilsport. They now take a good look at the guy and recognize him: it’s Modi, the small-town knickerwalla they always had deserving contempt for.  Bad enough that their combined might couldn’t unseat a BJP CM even when the situation seemed most opportune, even when it ought to have been a cakewalk, but worse that the CM is Modi! What a double whammy!  It must be the sort of humiliating experience that strike bowlers feel when their furious toil cannot take the tail-enders out.

I believe celeb journos developed a thirst for revenge at this point. Their egos were badly bruised. The decision must have been: alright, he may have weathered the power of my propaganda this particular instant, but I am going to get him.

The journo’s hate of Modi, in my view, is the hate of the loser who had his nose rubbed in dirt; of one who was outwitted by the lowly upstart. I recall another TV interview that Modi gave right after winning 2002 elections. The expression on the face of the interviewer was a spectacle. The face was long, drawn, and it was manifestly the face of a loser pretending to have not been humiliated by a crushing defeat. His hair has greyed since then and he has learned not to betray his emotions so blatantly. But I am sure he, and many others like him, would still give their right arms to stomp all over the body of Narendra Modi.  And go live on air doing it too. Vengefulness is an awful emotion.


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9 Responses to A Modivation For Hate

  1. Pleasure in reading it sir……Cut, sliced and nicely chopped words at right places…..Superb….!!

  2. Brilliant analysis Sir. Yes, Modi Hating has been more out of a lingering frustration than out of any sensible reason. If 2002 was to be pinned against his reputation, I wonder where Congress would have gone and hid themselves for almost most of the inter community riots that has taken place during their regime, most significantly the Sikh Riots of 1984. 1984 was a departure from any norms of communal violence, nay , it was not a communal violence at all. It was a planned, organized and Congress sponsored ethnic cleansing of the Sikhs. Unlike the 2002 riots where both Hindus and Muslims suffered equally, yes equally, there was no two ways to it other than but Sikhs get butchered throughout the country during the 1984 riots. It was pure hatred, vengeance and sort of a retaliation for the assassination of Indira Gandhi. Coming down 27 years later, has it in any way dented the nation’s integrity, reduced the bipartisan vote bank politics of Congress, hurt the inter-personal relationships between the two communities (though it was political) or held the nation to ransom as it does now with Modi?

    The present times offer more technological exposure and a competitive field where sensationalism overrides ethics. The Modi umbrage is nothing more than a ploy by those segments who stand to gain by whipping it up for political reasons, those segments who wants their TRPs raised, those segments who want their circulation doubled and to those segments of the community who do not want to be called themselves Indians first.

    F&F them and Hail Modi is all I have to say.

    Thank you sirji.

  3. Loneranger says:

    No one hates modi. It is simply a matter of why people feel he is not deserving to be CM. Whether one likes or not, whosoever was present on the ground in gujarat will tell you tales of how bajrangis ran riot. Modi may or may not be directly involved but he did sit idle for 2 days while the state was burning. His action was similar to what Rajiv did in 1984. People forgave rajiv while he should have been punished but that doesnt meant modi should also go scot free. I had many working in Jan vikas and know how much they were harassed when they wanted to rehabilitate the victims in the aftermatch of riots.

  4. Ketan says:

    I want to present here a thought experiment.

    Say, Modi becomes the PM, and stays in the post for whole 10 years. And in the process, amasses so much wealth that he can actually afford to bribe the media much more handsomely than even The Family ever could! Would the current crop of mediapersons who rant against him continue to rant the same way? Or would they become part of the government propaganda machinery just how they’re presently part of The Family propaganda machinery?

    I think latter would mostly be the case. Do you think it would be the former? If you do, that’s where I think your and my views diverge a lot. :)

  5. sudarshan says:

    My 2 paisa on why the presstitutes of the Dilli media hate Modi so.

    In Gujarat, itis said of Modi – “Na Khaave, na khaane de”. Doesn’t eat (corruption) & doesn;t allow others to eat either.

    Both these traits are a major problem for the presstitute ilk. The second reason “na khaane de” is obvious enough – Modi has closed avenues locally in Guj for cushy backroom deals, influence peddling and the like that the Radia media routinely indulged in wantonly in Dilli.

    The first reason “na khaave” is problematic too. It means the taints of ordinary corruption whereby one ‘understands’ politicians is absent. It also means ‘hooks’ to trap, bargain, bribe, browbeat or blackmail the aam neta do not exist in Modi’s case. And therefore the desperation to clean him out before his influence changes the status quo in Dilli even to a cleaner, leaner, meaner form of efficient and effective governance rooted in values and traditions native to the land.

    Again, like I said, my 2 cents.


  6. Pingback: The Business of Riot « afewmorewordsofsourav

  7. destinationsrikSrik says:

    Wow! Astonishingly straight to the point. Unveils our celebrity Journos! Keep writing, sire :)


  8. bhupnder says:

    modi is new rising star, he did wonderful when nation growth is 5% ,modi roaring with 11% why it is unimaginible,,without media help,congresi help,, it is nice see state emerging new icon of development and peace law order and administration control is superb,,, hat off to modi ,next primeminister should be modi bhai,,he should be given chance to serve nation with his strong acumenship

  9. Sudhir says:

    Infact, a journalist from the “main stream media” revealed the existense of the CD even before the HC passed an order. That’s how some of us got to know about it.


    ” So who is the latest on casting couch? Bald, erudite, snobby spokesperson? Take your guess! “

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