I have visited America often, and I am presently in America too. I often interact with NRIs here. Some are US citizens, some green card holders, and some H1B visa holders.
These NRIs are very competent in their technical jobs, and in fact they would not have got a US visa if they were not so. Probably they are better than local Americans, and work harder. Many are successful entrepreneurs.
However, very few of them have any political sense, and most of them are stupid oafs from that point of view. Most are hard core supporters of BJP and Modi, despite the fact that the Indian economy is sinking, manufacturing, real estate and power sectors are in steep decline, and unemployment has reached record heights. 300,000 workers have already been laid off in the auto sector, and some predictions are that soon this figure will reach a million. 200,000 jobs are said to have been lost in the IT sector.
Farmers suicides, which has crossed 300,000, is continuing unabated. Every second child in India is malnourished (as per Global Hunger Index and UNICEF reports). 50% Indian women are anaemic. Proper healthcare and good education are almost non existent for the masses.
BJP stands for Hindutva, but one can't eat Hindutva. One has to eat food, and to get food one must have a job. But jobs are getting less in India (since there is a manufacturing decline ), though 12 million youth are entering the job market every year. Many of these will end up as hawkers, criminals, beggars or suicides.
Then why are NRIs still supporting BJP when the country is going downhill. Let me explain.
Secularism is a feature of industrial society, it is not a feature of feudal or semi-feudal society. India is still semi-feudal, as is evident from the rampant casteism and communalism still prevalent. Merely writing in the Constitution of India that India is a secular country does not make it secular. The Constitution is just a piece of paper, the ground realities are very different.
When Modi spoke of abolition of Article 370 the harebrained NRIs in Houston gave him a standing ovation for a great victory over the devil Pakistan.
In fact India is a highly communal country. Most Hindus are communal, as are most Muslims. This I know from personal knowledge. When I am with my Hindu relatives and friends, and they are sure no Muslim is present, they often spout venom on Muslims. If a Muslim is lynched by cow vigilantes, most Hindus are either indifferent, or some even happy that a 'terrorist' has been eliminated.
Now most NRIs in America are Hindus. Though they are settled in America, they have brought their baggage, their communal and casteist mindsets, from India to this country ( someone humorously remarked "Even if they go to Mars they will carry this shit with them "). A Brahmin
remains a Brahmin
, and a Dalit
, a Kamma
of Andhra/Telengana remains a Kamma
, and a Reddy
, even while living in USA (the Kammas
have their organisation called TANA or Telugu Association of North America, and the Reddys
have NATA or North America Telugu Association ). So even though the Indian economy is in a tailspin, our NRIs, most of whom are Hindus, will support the BJP, which claims to represent the Hindus. After all, building Ram Mandir and protecting cows is more important than providing food or employment to the masses.
One may be very good in computer science, and yet one may be a buffoon or blockhead politically. And that is what most NRIs in America are, as was proved by the Howdy Modi event in Houston recently, where the NRIs behaved like the German zombies and dummkopfs during Hitler's time. When Modi stated (in several languages) that everything is fine in India, though the contrary was true, not one of the 50,000 numskulls and dolts gathered there had the courage to stand up and say "Prime Minister, that is not true. You are talking like Goebbels saying that Germany was winning the war, when everyone knew it was losing".
The test of every political system and every political activity is one, and only one: does it raise the standard of living of the masses? Does it give them better lives? From that point of view, construction of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, protection of cows, and abolition of Article 370 were only gimmicks. But when Modi spoke of abolition of Article 370 the harebrained NRIs in Houston gave him a standing ovation for a great victory over the devil Pakistan.
Long live the American NRIs!
Justice Markandey Katju is former Judge, Supreme Court of India and former Chairman, Press Council of India
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