Farmers Protest: Propaganda

   Posted by: aman   in Other

Day 71

Toll 197



When I saw the hashtag used by no one less than Home Minister of the nation I said to myself ‘chor ki daddi mein tinka’ – guilty conscience. That is because ask yourself, except propaganda, what exactly has the government done for the nation in the last seven years? In fact, the state has become a huge propaganda machinery that, as we saw yesterday, enrols celebrities, sports people, anyone who we held as icons in the past. Such fear! Such subservience! I am fast losing respect in the whole cohort.

The other thing the government has perfected is jumla – lies. Jumlas are a huge saga of what was promised to people, what was later denied, including in this case, the implementation of Terms of Reference of the Swaminathan Report in BJP’s 2014 Manifesto.

I love it that celebrities endorsed the protests but the first big tweet was perfectly neutral, it merely asked: can we talk about the farmers protest? Just that much led to this macho, uber-masculine government losing its calm (shit)? Imagine how terrified is the bully who has barricaded himself and the people of Delhi from farmers whose produce they still consume daily.

Celebrity endorsement are double-edged swords. They are good when they project a movement but sometimes they also unwittingly, or wittingly because powers know this, can skew the discourse, hijack the movement, become about themselves. That risk remains. We must note the rooted, grounded farmer movement does not need endorsements. The last many months show us the protests will also not be easily appropriated by celebrities or sundry politicians. Though we must remain cautious and vigilant. However, since the struggle is for justice, it is good if celebrities show which side they stand. Indian ones, of course, have discredited themselves.

Sometimes I wonder if everything about the country we live in is false? Elected representatives who betray, governments who do not deliver, celebrities who might have some skill but no talent, no gumption. What is a person without a big heart? What is a nation without a big heart?

After the earlier Mahapanchayats, yesterday there was one in Jind. The crowd was so big, the stage broke thrice. The farmers have pledged to take their fight ahead. Meanwhile, on protest sites, Internet, electricity, water, sanitation lines being cut by government. Yet, in a show of solidarity, urban neighbours have shared their WiFI passwords, tractors and solar panels are providing electricity, remember these are farmers, they are resourceful, they are digging their own borewells for water, food lines to Haryana and Uttar Pradesh remain open, local villagers prevented police from barricading NH 44 in Haryana (why did Delhi folks allow barricading of Ghazipur? So scared?) sanitation has been and will again become an issue. Ask Modi what happened to his Swachh Bharat – the jumla on toilets.

The protests are going strong. The government still has no clue what to do. Suggest: just repeal the Laws; Parliament is in session, instead of a fake discussion on Farm Laws which should anyway have happened before Laws were passed, pass a law legalising Minimum Support Price. The farmers will go home.

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