Secularism is getting curiouser and curiouser. In the midst of the communal controversy about reservation for Muslims, the Congress has clarified for the kind information of all and sundry, including Satiricus, that it was opposed to reservation based on religion. At least that is what the party spokesman spoke the other day. So the matter is settled to the satisfaction of all, no?
Unfortunately, no. For this dimwit recalls a wit saying language is the art of concealing thought. Then was the Congress spokesman being artful? Satiricus does not know. Maybe it takes all sorts of Congressmen to make the Congress, some of them artful, some others honest?like life-long Congress leader Antulay. That would explain, at least to this retarded wretch, why Abdul Rehman Antulay (sorry, ?A.R.? Antulay), Minister for Muslim Affairs (sorry again, ?minority? Affairs) has publicly favoured the inclusion of Dalit Muslims and Dalit Christians in the reserved category of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.
But what did the Congress party spokesman speak about what Antulay advocated? He said what Antulay said ?is not new?. Now here Satiricus feels flummoxed. For the Congress has always been a secular party, and it has proved its sterling secular credentials by cutting up the country on purely party lines, one part going to the Muslim League, the other remaining in its pocket. As for Shri/Janab (as the case may be) Antulay, he has been modestly hiding his secular light under a bushed by hiding his Muslim name under English initials all his political life. Satiricus even recalls that some years ago Antulay had reportedly told somebody the surname of the Maharashtrian Hindu family to which he originally belonged. But that is history, as the Americans would put it and as both Antulay and Arjun Singh would agree.
Now this Congress leader with a communal origin has not only become a shining light of secularism but has even become an exponent of its improved and enlarged edition, ?Dalit Secularism?.
Now Satiricus, the hopeless Hindu ignoramus that he is, has all along laboured under the impression that being born a Dalit is an exlusively Hindu problem. But Satiricus lives and learns. He now learns that once a Dalit Hindu became a Muslim he did not become just a Muslim of the garden variety, he became a Dalit Muslim. And of course if being a Muslim is being a secularist, being a Dalit Muslim is being a special secularist. So he is entitled not only to the concessions reserved for a Hindu becoming a Muslim but also to the special concessions reserved for a Dalit of the communal class converting himself to a Dalit of the secular species. Does all this mean the Congress favours religion-based reservation? Well, it all depends on which ?ism? you are talking of?Hinduism or Secularism.