BANGALORE: Noted Kannada writer and critic Baragur Ramachandrappa on Sunday expressed his dissent over ‘hijacking’ of historical icons such as Bhagat Singh and Swami Vivekananda by saffron forces. He also took a dig at ‘regressive’ teaching methods that were reflective of the 1970s, stating that the youth needed to be taught fresh ideas.
Speaking at a function organised here by the Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) for the reception committee of the 9th All India Youth Conference to be held for the first time in Bangalore in September, he said, “In the name of Dharma, the real value of our epics and history is lost. The youth has to be taught the nuances of secularism and casteism, without allowing them to be misled. Lord Rama has been hijacked. We cannot learn the real value of Ramayana with such aberrations.”
The writer called for rescuing other icons such as Bhagat Singh (who was portrayed sporting the holy thread of Brahmins) and Swami Vivekananda.
“We have almost managed to release Bhagat Singh from the clutches of such forces. We must now rescue Swami Vivekananda, a rare secular monk of India,” he observed. Calling ‘regressive’ teaching a problem for the youth, he elaborated, “It is as though we are still thinking in the 1070s. We have not changed our thoughts. What are we giving to the youth with such teaching? All ideologies should go through the test of time without compromising the core ideas,” he said.
‘Shame on Democracy’
Making a direct reference to Karnataka politics, Ramachandrappa called the present power-centred politics a ‘shame’ on the democratic system of governance. “How can we have a just debate in a situation where the opposition party is always opposing and the ruling party is always justifying? We cannot expect progress in such circumstances,” he lamented.