|Vol. VI, No. 18 Pousha Krishna 9, 2013, January 7, 1957 Four Annas. Air-/4/-
The country enters upon the year Nineteen Hundred and Fifty Seven with an air of expectancy. This year, two centuries ago, the British laid the foundation of their power in this country at Plassey. This same year a century ago the people shook that power to its very foundations. The year 1957 therefore at once rouses an admixture of fears and hopes. The scheduled general elections three months hence only lend an edge to this feeling. One can only trust the essential soundness of the national mind, and look forward to a year of achievement-of deliverance from mounting totalitarianism, and initiation into an era of national fulfillment.
Tempering with 1857 centenary
The self-appointed “Central National Committee” for the celebration of the Centenary of India’s first struggle for freedom, at its first meeting held in New Delhi on December 30, decided that the celebrations should be held on August 15 and 16 1957 throughout the country.
During its terms of office the Congress has waged a veritable war on the people. Today the price level is the highest in living memory. Taxation reminds one of the extortionate days—and ways –of Henry VIII. There seems to be an attempt afoot to hammer out Great Hindu Society out of shape. And so we have had a series of “reforms”. The sanctity of marriage has been breached by the concession of divorce. The joint family institution is breached by giving even the married daughter a share in paternal property. Temple properties are threatened with non-dharmic use; text books are proposed to be written to Government order. The cow-whose sanctity roused Shivaji to action—is more slaughtered under our neo-Buddhism than under Aurangzeb. The very calendar of the Hindus is proposed to be counterfeited. The time-tried systems of coinage, weights and measures are to go, and be replaced by the cent, the metre, the gram and litre! Everything seems secondary to greater glory of “The Leader”. Moscow’s personality cult is over; Delhi’s personality cult casts a lengthening shadow across the country. Typical of this whole system of stunts is the slogan of “Socialism”. At the Avadi Session in 1954 the Congress resolved to establish a “Socialistic Pattern of Society”.
At the Amritsar session the Congress changed “Socialistic Pattern” to “Socialist Pattern”. Pt. Nehru discovered that there was no difference between the two expressions! And now in Indore the Congress has changed this further to a “full socialist order of society.” Obviously it is playing with words to hoodwink the unwary. Already the rot within the Congress organisation is reminiscent of the last days of the Kuomintang–with this difference that the challenge to the Congress comes not from the Communists but from the Bharatiya Jana Sangha.
Last week’s plenary session of Jana Sangha revealed the great progress the party has made during the five brief years of its career. Three thousand delegates came from all but two States. For three days and nights they discussed matters and reported progress with a freedom and a confidence that bespoke strength. Their manifesto read as the voice of the people. With the PSP reduced to a non-descript condition, and the C.P.I. in subsidiary alliance with the Congress at Moscow bidding, the Jana Sangha bids fair to emerge as the chief opposition and the second party in the country. The year 1957 seems destined to hasten the consummation of national aspirations as expressed by the Bharatiya Jana Sangha.