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RE: secession

Postings not related to the writing of the Manifesto or policy chapters
are likely to be summarily rejected. Thanks for your understanding. IPI

It is with great interest that I have read all the reactions to your
question on secession, clearly it is a subject that gets everyone's
attention. Which is such a pity because many other subjects go by
half as much debate.

While we need to strengthen the free exchange of ideas and should not
therefore exclude any topic from coming up for discussion sometimes I
that we need to be a bit more circumspect about where we take our
discussions.Just as having freedom of speech does not give us the right
abuse anyone we please, having a forum to discuss relevant ideas for the

improvement of India should not become a place for esoteric
debate for the sake of debate. We have as yet limited resources, both of

time and of participants and this debate on secession is in my opinion a
out of place right now.

The biggest challenge for India today, whichever way you look at it, is
restoration (or perhaps even creation )of a sense of national pride.
Most of
our issues have their root in this.
Corruption, electoral malpractice's, low govt. productivity, law and
religious bigotry and civic infrastructure collapse are all symptoms of
low national esteem and if we could tackle this one issue we could make
lot of progress on many fronts.

Indians as individuals are very clever and hardworking people but we
have no
talent at all to work in cross cultural teams. Most Indians are very
oriented and will make great sacrifices  not only for their immediate
but often for their community ( The community support of the marwaris,
tamilian Brahmins, the Malayalees, the sikhs etc etc. is pretty well
). But put them to work together in a multi cultural group and they just

can't progress.We as countrymen have not quiet learnt to behave as
countrymen.We have a lot of work to do to become a nation first, where
the question of Secession?

If one travels through India it is not difficult to see that we are many

nations some how stuck together. In fact if you see historically the
Indian nation ( at least in geographical terms) is a creation of the
British. Never has the entire nation of India as it exists today ever
under one rule - even during the peak of the moghul empire. It was the
British just a few hundred years ago that united the nation in its
state. One can only wonder why is it that we continue to survive as a
and do not disintegrate like Yugoslavia or the USSR? Frankly we have all
ingredients and more for this to happen.

The other thing to remember is that once the secessionist ambition is
aroused, it feeds on itself, once a group of people are allowed to
this idea who is to umpire them. Who is to enforce the rule you proposed

that if any armed struggle is involved all bets are off. Show me one
in the world where any secessionist movement has agreed to this. This
is unenforceable. Look at Africa, Latin America,Ireland, the Balkans and

closer home in Sri Lanka & even Kashmir the evidence is overwhelming
once a secessionist movement is allowed to start it is practically
impossible to stop it forget about trying to regulate it through
and such. And invariably the cost that the nation and its people pay for

such movements is catastrophic.

The tinder for the disintegration of the Indian State is present in
quantities, we therefore, need to be  extremely careful how much fire we

want to play with. It is not difficult to imagine a handful of
Marwaris,or tamilians or sikhs, or Biharis or how about the Muslims in
and the katihayars in the tribal districts of M.P or just about anybody
taking the cover of a constitutional provision to wage war with the
state and consuming huge amounts of scarce resources to control.How many

people in Assam want to secede? Has it stopped ULFA from killing? And
do you stop - where do you draw a line? At the state boundaries, within
ethnic communities, at the same language, same food. How do you decide
is allowed? We can't even agree to share water between states without a
hundred people being killed first!

 It could get even worse - criminal elements could completely rig a
referendum and actually secede. Please read N.P.Singhs observations on
elections in Bihar. We can't even ensure free and fair elections in
districts of our country for the appointment to the state assemblies
about the stakes at play when nationhood is the reward. Just try to
the likes of Laloo Prasad and Sou.Jailalitha having the advantage of a
constitutional provision to secede?!

In the end we might just turn out to be a far stronger nation then my
fears suggest and maybe no one would actually secede but it is
that there will be mavericks who will try and we will as a nation not
waste a lot of blood and energy trying to deal with this but more
importantly go further and further away from creating the strong
pride that is the crying need of today .

I would, therefore strongly recommend that we get off this subject (for
time being at least) and focus our attention on the many more urgent
that might enrich the manifesto.



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