While speaking at the Passing Out Parade of the National Police Academy at Hyderabad, National Security Adviser (NSA) Ajit Doval remarked, “It is the civil society that can be subverted… that can be divided, that can be manipulated to hurt the interest of a nation. You are there to see that they stand fully protected.” He explained the meaning and contours of the fourth generation war while arguing that conventional war has become ‘too expensive and unaffordable’. A week before, the Supreme Court made a strong statement while hearing a petition on amendments in the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA). The Apex Court said, “NGOs should not be allowed to receive foreign funds if the donor did not declare the purpose for which the money is to be spent”. The usual Andolan-Jeevis are up in arms against the NSA while keeping a tactical mum over the Court’s observations. In reality, these two remarks are the two sides of the same coin – the uncivil methods adopted by the so-called civil society.
Take the recent case of Tripura violence, which was sold by many civil society activists-cum-politicians-cum-journalists as atrocities against ‘minorities’. The fact of the matter is that the Tripura protest was organised in support of the Hindus who faced indiscriminate violence during the Navratri festival over mischief by one Iqbal Hossain who was seen taking the Quran from a local mosque and moving out of the pooja pandal with Bhagwan Hanuman’s mace (Gada). People of Tripura protested against this routine affair in Bangladesh. During the protest, there were some incidents of violence, which is not justifiable on any count. The sad part is journalists and activists used this unfortunate events to spread another set of fake news of either burning a religious text or places of worship. The usual suspects like Raza Academy used the same content through social media to mobilise the fanatic mobs in many parts of Maharashtra to generate another series of violence. Instead of condemning this unjustifiable behaviour, the so-called civil society chose to demean Bharat by attacking the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) used by Tripura Government against the fake news peddlers.
Some sections of civil society defending the uncivilised forces is not new. The Maoists who vouch to overthrow the Bharatiya State and Constitution while enjoying all democratic rights provided by the same get regular cover from the so-called civil society. On development projects, the agenda is much more evident. In the June 2014 report itself, Intelligence Bureau (IB) report had claimed that NGOs funded by donors based in the Western countries are using “people-centric issues to create an environment which lends itself to stalling development projects”. When asked about the source of their finances, these votaries of transparency and accountability cry of the Government curbing their activism.
Globally, democratic space is being used and subverted to create unrest against democracy. Discrediting or undermining Constitutional arrangements is the favourite part of this ‘mind game’. Cyberspace has added new instruments to this old ploy. Festivals, societal norms of civilisational states like Bharat are targeted and contemporary achievements are ridiculed. A large section of so-called civil society stands by the uncivilised forces to wage a civilisational war against Bharat. Civil society, a concept propagated by Left Liberals in the wake of collapse of Communism and part of the global liberal left ecosystem, has always chosen to ride piggyback on anti-democratic forces such as jihadists and evangelistists and secessionists to further its agenda of overthrowing democratic societies and institutions. Instead of questioning the NSA over his assessment of the new security threats, true stakeholders of civil society must ponder over some of its sections’ uncivilised, undemocratic and unconstitutional behaviour.