[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he open letter sent by 83 retired bureaucrats of the country demanding the resignation of the Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath for his role in dealing with the killing of the police officer in Bulandshahr violence on December 3, is a reflection of the agony and anguish of the former ruling elite of India who are stunned by the criminalisation of the society and polity by the ruling politicians and the instigation by the state government itself for the anti-minority bias of the officials in charge of law and order.
The former civil servants must be thanked for bringing into such sharp focus the grave issues involved in dealing with the Bulandshahr violence since never in the history of independent India, not even under the earlier BJP regimes, such open incitement against the minorities was given by the ruling establishment. Seventeen days have passed since the violence in riot-prone Uttar Pradesh, but even no political party, including the Congress and the Samajwadi Party, have so far been able to put the role of the Chief Minister in proper radar as the former bureaucrats have done in this letter.
Yogi Raj a curtain-raiser for Hindu Rashtra?
The letter has really roused the conscience of the nation since what is happening in Uttar Pradesh under Yogi Raj these days, is the curtain raiser of what is going to be the nature of Hindu Rashtra or New India by 2022 what the Prime Minister Narendra Modi is talking. The bureaucrats have the guts to state that “Our Prime Minister who is voluble in his election campaigns and who never tires of telling us how the Constitution of India is the only holy book he worships, maintains stony silence even as he sees a chief minister handpicked by him treat that same Constitution with sheer contempt.”
The letter, that way, has called a spade a spade. There is no need for beating in the bush. Yogi’s actions are the continuation of what Narendra Modi did during riots in Gujarat in 2002 and the stance he has been taking all along after the killing of the innocent minority people at the hands of the cow vigilantes close to the Sangh Parivar. Yogi is a bit crude manifestation of the policies which are dear to the heart of our Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The mishandling of Bulandshahr violence
In the handling of Bulandshahr violence, the UP Chief Minister has given a clear signal that his administration is anti-minority and the police officials and the others of the law and order machinery have to take into account this aspect while deciding on their actions. This is a dangerous move and if this is allowed to continue, the UP administration will be turned into a active vehicle for turning this largest populated state of the country into a land of bigotry trampling over all the values our great constitution stands for.
The senior officials of UP have no other option but to abide by the diktat of the CM and in the process, all administrative discipline and norms are being violated. Initially, there were stray voices of opposition from the UP police bosses, but with the strong position against the minorities and allowing the accused in the killing to roam free, the UP administration has clearly shown where the sympathy lies.
The former civil servants have taken note of this ominous development and have come out taking on the top government officers of the UP government by reminding that they have forgotten their primary allegiance to the Constitution and the rule of law.” They allowed the hooligans to grow in strength and helped them gain impunity in their lawless action”. The fact is that at the instance of the chief minister, even the top police officials who earlier made some moves to nab the culprits, have given up and all attention has been focused on the so-called cow lifters and cow killers, most of whom have been found later to be innocents, even according to police reports.
No murmurs from the senior BJP leadership
The main accused in Bulandshahr violence is a leader of the Bajrang Dal, a close associate of Sangh Parivar and he is releasing videos defending his position. The police have not yet been able to catch hold of him while the CM is saying that his government’s actions following the violence should be praised and those who are speaking against him personally and against his government are political conspirators. Such shameless show of high bigotry has never been seen among the state administrations in recent days and Yogi is going unscathed without any murmurs from the highest leadership of BJP including the prime minister.
The open letter calls for citizens’ crusade
￼The open letter has called upon the citizens to unite in a crusade against the politics of hate and division a politics which is aimed to destroy the fundamental principles on which Indian republic is founded.
The retired civil servants are very important members of the civil society and their call for united action against the Uttar Pradesh chief minister must get immediate response from the secular political parties. The senior people like Shiv Shankar Menon, Shyam Saran, Najeeb Jung, through this letter, have stirred the conscience of every person in the country who values the principles enshrined in the Constitution of India.
Opposition should bolster this civil society group
The Opposition parties, who are making efforts to unite against the ruling BJP and its allies, for the coming Lok Sabha polls, must take this civil society group with them because they have really articulated the battle cry for protecting the constitutional values which will also form the core of the Opposition programmes for removing Modi from power in 2019.
(The author is a senior journalist)