October 25, 2020

The Concept of Ram Rajya

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In The original document of the Constitution of India, in the chapter related to Fundamental Rights there is this sketch of Lord Rama, Mata Sita and Laxmana returning to Ayodhya after defeating Ravana

Ram Rajya is the righteous ideal for an aspirational India, an India that moves forward and reasserts herself as a Vishwaguru, a leader of humanity.

Keywords: Indian Culture | Politics | Left-Ideology | Aspirations | Sri Rama | Dharma | Indian Values

Justice for all, exclusion of none is fundamental to the concept of Ram Rajya. Justice for all naturally implies that there should be appeasement of none. Appeasement suggests inequality and is a form of injustice, and those to whom it is dispensed, it hinders and stunts, while politically turning them into dependent vote banks. Appeasement based on religion is an injustice as grave as any other as it violates the promise of equality and equal opportunity for all citizens in a just and secular polity. 

Appeasement based on religion is an injustice as grave as any other as it violates the promise of equality and equal opportunity for all citizens in a just and secular polity. 

The turn in Indian politics in the past few decades has proved that the communal angle of the religion-based policy of appeasement has not been missed by the masses. And yet it is amusing to see the finger-pointing that goes on in the public discourse of this country these days. It is abundantly clear now who these pseudo secularists are and what their motive is. Much of their support base has deserted them, leaving them gasping for relevance. From the Political Left, they have made themselves the left-outs in politics and completely out of place as far as aspirational India is concerned. It is also interesting to find the other so-called secular parties and their leaders now joining meekly in the mainstream chorus of “Jai Siya Ram”. This is, however, due to their survival instinct rather than a late but ultimate realisation of the truth.

There is an anecdote, someone from Kolkata once told me. It was on Valentine’s Day, that a young couple was sitting in an overcrowded park. The exasperated girl asked her boyfriend, “can’t we go to a lonely place, with no one around to disturb us? The boy thought for quite some time and replied,  “ Do you mean the CPI(M) state office on Alimuddin Street? That is the only place that fits your description in this busy city.” This is just a pointer to the reality of how the so-called left has made itself irrelevant in one of its only extant bastions. They have alienated themselves from the young citizens who, with greater access to facts and realities, are questioning at every step the propaganda fed to them earlier. The new generation is assertive and not willing to digest anything at face value any more. More significantly it is confident of its roots and identity, and can discern the value of its cultural heritage which the leftist politics, has derided for long.

To try and plant values from elsewhere, be it the Chinese, Russian, French, Cuban Revolutions or any other on the Indian soil only indicates ideological bankruptcy. 

It is only justified that the Indian aspiration for a New India be rooted in the Indian value system. To try and plant values from elsewhere, be it the Chinese, Russian, French, Cuban Revolutions or any other on the Indian soil only indicates ideological bankruptcy. Being the oldest living civilisation and yet unwilling to find an indigenous aspirational model sprouting from the historical and cultural wisdom of the nation says a lot about those who pretend to be a part of an international movement. They perhaps know but deliberately fail to accept that the concept of a global family first emerged from India. India loudly proclaimed millennia ago the idea of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam. ‘The entire world is one family.’  

Being the oldest living civilisation and yet unwilling to find an indigenous aspirational model sprouting from the historical and cultural wisdom of the nation says a lot about those who pretend to be a part of an international movement.

In comparison, the west has merely treated the world as a market place. The best example is the East India Company, that came to this region to trade but stayed on, simply on account of its brute power to kill the indigenous industry of this country and drain it of its immense wealth. There is no doubt that the industrial revolution filling their European nation’s exchequer was at the cost of many colonies that they mercilessly enslaved. 

The idea of Ram Rajya is the culmination of these timeless cultural values of India. 

In comparison, India has always been known for sending out monks and traders who never conquered but only assimilated. India has sent abroad people like Swami Vivekananda, and Tagore, not to conquer or enslave, but only to promote brotherhood and the search for truth.  Indian culture has always taught that what affects the world will also affect us, that the pain of the other cannot be distinguished from the pain of the self. In these difficult times of a global pandemic, this wisdom has become the ultimate truth. The same coronavirus travels swiftly from one nation to the other affecting all in one way or another. No country, no matter how powerful or rich can manage to stay quarantined or insulated. There are many such challenges that will require humanity to act as one. This is the Indian worldview that has been bequeathed to us by the wise men and women of India down the ages. 

This golden Lanka does not fascinate me as my motherland is more glorious than heaven.’ Janani Janmabhoomi swargadapi  gariyoshi.

The idea of Ram Rajya is the culmination of these timeless cultural values of India. Sri Ram is an embodiment of these values since time immemorial and is thus worshipped not only in India but even across boundaries. Ram Rajya is the collective wisdom put to practise by the unerring ruler Sri Ram. In the holy text Ramayana, it is said Laxmana after the iconic battle had innocently asked ‘why don’t we shift our capital here to Swarna Lanka, it is a land covered with gold?’  Sri Ram had replied, ‘This golden Lanka does not fascinate me as my motherland is more glorious than heaven.’ Janani Janmabhoomi swargadapi  gariyoshi. This is nationalism, in its quintessential form. Sri Ram then anoints Vibhishana, Ravana’s younger brother as the ruler of Lanka and returns to his Ayodhya.

The Ram Mandir at Ayodhya will stand as a monumental reassertion and reaffirmation of our national aspiration.

 The war of Ramayana was then to establish Dharma, an Indian word that even today has no close synonym or an equivalent in any language elsewhere. Dharma is all these attributes that can lead humanity forward with equality and in harmony. Sri Ram is and will always remain the embodiment of Dharma. Ram Rajya is the righteous ideal of an aspirational  India, India that moves forward and reasserts herself in the parliament of nations, as a Vishwaguru, a leader of humanity. The Ram Mandir at Ayodhya will stand as a monumental reassertion and reaffirmation of our national aspiration.

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Jishnu Dev Varma

Jishnu Dev Varma

Jishnu Dev Varma is the Deputy Chief Minister of Tripura.

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