The book Urban Naxals: The Making of Buddha In A Traffic Jam reveals the nexus between the nation-wide Maoist terror movement and its supporters in urban centres
(From left) Director & COO Garuda Prakashan, Ankur Pathak, Prof Makarand Paranjape, Union Minister Smriti Irani,
Vivek Agnihotri, Sudhir Chaudhary and Kanchan Gupta at the launch of Urban Naxals
The ‘Naxals’ have penetrated in our institutions and are challenging our democracy from within. Unless they are exposed and parallel ecosystem in favour of our nationhood is created, we cannot fight with this enemy. This was the overall tone of the discussion in the jam-packed hall of Bharatiya Vidya Bhawan on May 27. The occasion was of the launch of Vivek Agnihotri’s book Urban Naxals: The Making of Buddha In A Traffic Jam.
In the book, film-maker Vivek Agnihotri writes about the making of the film Buddha In A Traffic Jam which exposed the nexus between the nation-wide Maoist terror movement and its supporters in urban centres in the fields of academia, media, and NGOs.
Union Minister Smriti Irani was the chief guest of the function. After releasing the book she said, “First of all I want to congratulate Vivek Agnihotri for writing this book and especially the Garuda Prakashan to show guts to publish this book. The ecosystem of Naxals has grown rapidly over the years and their people sitting here at different levels still control the ecosystem. They isolate the person who believes in ideology other than theirs. They attack you professionally; if they fail in that then they attack you personally. Now they are catching the youth and this should be a cause of grave concern for us. They have crushed many but don’t let them crush you. This is the only way the Urban Naxals will lose. It’s time to hit where their cadre is functioning. You can only defeat these elements by succeeding commercially, academically & otherwise. It requires people of real mettle because not everyone can deal with the threat of losing one’s job all the time”.
“It’s time to hit where their cadre is functioning. You can only defeat these elements by succeeding commercially, academically & otherwise — Smriti Irani, Union Minister
“Vivek faced troubles in screening his movie Buddha In A Traffic Jam in JNU and in Jadhavpur University but there is a movie called Blazing Trail about a hero fighting the enemy and the enemy is Indian democracy which they don’t find any problem in watching. Surprisingly they don’t even allow their cadres to watch unapproved movies. That is the depth of their perversion and vindictiveness”, Irani emphasised.
“It doesn’t matter which government is in power, even if they stay out of the system, they control the narrative and that is their intent”, she added.
Prof Makarand Paranjape, renowned TV Journalist Sudhir Chaudhary, and senior Journalist Kanchan Gupta were other eminent speakers who addressed the gathering and talked about the phenomenon of urban Naxalism that is consistently attacking the system.
Prof Makarand Paranjape of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), who also wrote the forward for this book said on the occasion, “The book by Vivek Agnihotri focuses on the Naxals living amongst us in cities in the capitalist world they so passionately deride. This book is about unmasking and uncovering the nexus between the foot soldiers of Naxals living in remote parts and in deep jungles of India supported by a proper ecosystem to eminent academicians and thinkers in the university campuses whose job is to influence young minds into joining the Naxal”.
“One of the big achievements of the Modi Government is that it has silently crushed the Maoists’ menace which has led to a crucial fall in the Left-Wing Extremism affected areas — Kanchan Gupta, Senior Journalist
“This book is a story of surviving against all odds and I must say that this is the time we have to wean away our youth from this pseudo-revolution ‘Naxal Ideology’ and take them to the idea of India”, he added.
Renowned TV Journalist Sudhir Chaudhary said “This book can be a big tool in unmasking the enemy. Perhaps it has unmasked the double standards of those who talk against the narrative of India”.
Defining the Intellectualism in the present context, he said, “The only mantra to be an intellectual nowadays is, start speaking against your country, speak in favour of terrorists like Afzal and in favour of people who talk about separating ‘Kashmir’ from India. To become a successful and respectable journalist in the present era is start supporting stone-pelters, show sympathy with the terrorists and manufacture few death threats. To question and attack the state has become a fashion.”
Senior Journalist Kanchan Gupta while throwing the light on the degeneration of the Naxal movement which once started as an idealistic revolution said,“The Naxal movement was an idealistic movement when it was started but by passing time it has degenerated, then it became a class war and later lost its purpose. What they are now practicing is the worst possible interpretation of Mao’s worst possible idea”.
He also targeted the BJP Government and said, “In this four years of its governance, the Government has done nothing towards creating a parallel ecosystem to challenge the Urban Naxals. There is a class which sympathises with this ideology which needs to be broken and that is why a parallel ecosystem is necessary where you can dampen caste and class to bring together the people who are willing to stand up”.
Later he praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Rajnath Singh. He said, “One of the big achievements of the Modi Government is that it has silently crushed the Maoists’ menace which has led to a crucial fall in the Left-Wing Extremism affected areas.”
On the occasion, the author of the book, Agnihotri recalled his own grooming in college to be an Urban Naxal. He also narrated the problems he faced while making the film Buddha In A Traffic Jam.
The speakers at the book launch focused on explaining the depth of the Urban Naxal problem in India and pointed out that many scholars from top educational institutions like JNU, Delhi University, writers, and journalists have been accused of being active overground workers so that they can manipulate public opinion in the favour of their comrade masters. These Naxal sympathisers holding the elite positions give them the liberty of influencing and engaging people towards anti-India activities.