“Our democracy will not be weakened by one tweet.”
“Government shouldn’t have reacted to some private individuals.”
The political opposition and some usual suspects are putting up similar arguments to the fore. This seemingly ‘simple’ advice supposedly rides on the “virtues of democracy”; however, it needs a reality check in the complex reshaping world, where every nation is asserting itself and realigning strategically after the Covid-19 pandemic.
It Is Not About Individuals, But National Interests
The tweet that Greta Thunberg made with documents attached, which was deleted later, gave away the picture of a concerted effort designed to use farmers’ protest against India. So, the faces we see – Rihanna, Greta, Mia Khalifa – are not the story. The real story is that there is an obvious foreign design to disrupt India and fuel anarchy, using celebrities who may have an appeal with Indian millennials and the activists who bargain with the political system.
It is in this background, that the statement from the Ministry of External Affairs gains significance, as it demanded celebrities to ascertain facts before sensationalising an issue that is being addressed within a democratic set up.
Propaganda from Foreign Interests – Always Been a Tool of Global Business and Politics
History is full of examples where nations and certain interest groups used propaganda as their tool to fulfil the business or their political interests.
An example of how a foreign power pushes its propaganda using the ‘liberal’ tools of democratic world can be explained from this headline.
Forget about nations. It is also proven that certain interest groups and rich persons of the world do have their interests in funding anarchy in countries like India.
Gorge Soros, the billionaire American investor, is an example in this regard. In UK, he was accused of funding activities aimed at bringing Boris Johnson down; Hungary government accused Soros of funding for settling illegal immigrants, and the list is long. Point to be noted that all such funding done citing “social cause”, “philanthropy” etc., You may read the detailed account in our article Five Instances Where Modi-Hating George Soros Was Accused of Funding Disruptive Activities.
Sometimes, a nation itself uses celebrities to put forward a propaganda against a foreign political ideology. See an excerpt from an article in The New York Time.
“This picture of the C.I.A.’s secret war of ideas has cameo appearances by scores of intellectual celebrities like the critics Dwight Macdonald and Lionel Trilling, the poets Ted Hughes and Derek Walcott and the novelists James Michener and Mary McCarthy, all of whom directly or indirectly benefited from the C.I.A.’s largesse. There are also bundles of cash that were funneled through C.I.A. fronts and several hilarious schemes that resemble a ”Spy vs. Spy” cartoon more than a serious defense against Communism. Traveling first class all the way, the C.I.A. and its counterparts in other Western European nations sponsored art exhibitions, intellectual conferences, concerts and magazines to press their larger anti-Soviet agenda. Ms. Stonor Saunders provides ample evidence, for example, that the editors at Encounter and other agency-sponsored magazines were ordered not to publish articles directly critical of Washington’s foreign policy. She also shows how the C.I.A. bankrolled some of the earliest exhibitions of Abstract Expressionist painting outside of the United States to counter the Socialist Realism being advanced by Moscow.”
Finally, let’s recall India’s former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. He too acknowledged and criticised certain lobby groups from foreign nations trying to interfere in India’s internal matters back in the day.
By citing all these examples, the author is not at all pointing towards any particular nation. Nor is it an attempt to argue that the agitations in India are solely driven and planned by foreign powers. It is just to point out that there is a precedent of using propaganda as a tool to destabilise a nation in order to score a political or a business goal.
In such a background, India has rightly rebutted the attempts from foreign soil to take advantage of the farmers’ agitation. Those who say, “few tweets will not undermine democracy” are either unaware of the larger picture or they have their interests in hiding the complete picture.
The Possible Design
So, the question is – who benefits from peddling propaganda against India over farm reforms?
First, farm reforms are just an alibi for whoever fuelling the farmers’ sentiment. For example, Greta positions herself as an environmentalist. But the protesting groups, among other things, demand that there should be no restriction to burn stubble that chokes the national capital. In the earlier instance, we had seen that Canadian Prime Minister who opposed India’s MSP at WTO stated that he stands with India’s farmers!
So, it is evident that certain foreign powers want India to face anarchy. Farm reforms, CAA etc are apparently not their concern – they are mere ruses to destabilise India at any cost.
What is the significance of such possible designs at this juncture?
Well, after the pandemic, India is set to play a major role in global supply chain. Many businesses are shifting from China to India, and India’s continuous push for reforms has created a conducive atmosphere for them. Be it farm reforms or the labour reforms underway, such measures are expected to make India a much bigger economic power in the coming years.
It is natural that there are lobbies that want to prevent India from emerging as a giant economy, and they are evidently spending resources to paint India as a place of anarchy. It is also evident that they are trying to block all the reforms that India is undertaking.
In this bigger scheme of things, Rihanna, Mia, Greta are, in all probability, mere pawns. India is responding in its own way to the moves of such pawns in order to derail the bigger design. The joke is on those who are ridiculing this assertion of India.
You may also like to read: The Family and Foreign Powers – Curious Episodes of Indian Politics