Cicero (106-43 BC), the Roman statesman and thinker, is attributed a quote: “A nation can survive folly but not treason.” If the attribution is correct, then we have to say that the great Roman author was wrong, for folly is much more dangerous than any other vice—at least in our context.
The stupidity of the deep pink state is hurting not just the economy but also the national defence of India. We feel the brunt in our recent brush with China. We need to describe India’s deep state, the pink deep state. It’s much different from the conventional deep state—the one ruling Pakistan, comprising Army generals and ISI psychopaths. Ours is much less organized but exceedingly effective and pervasive deep state; its functionaries are entrenched in different organs of government and at various levels.
They are bureaucrats, diplomats, experts, analysts, etc., in government and parastatal bodies who formulate policy and often implement it. Steeped in the doctrines of Leftist thinkers, which they imbibed as students, they are the main bulwark of socialism in India. Their goal is simple: to keep India wedded to the socialism and foreign policy chalked out by Jawaharlal Nehru. Their modus operandi is also simple: keep precluding or checking any move that undermines the statist policy framework, and torpedoing any measure hurts non-alignment and brings India close to the US.
Statist policies—tough compliances despite Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s emphasis on ease of doing business, meddlesome regulations, price controls, complicated taxation, public sector banks and undertakings, et al—continue to have a stranglehold over the economy. The Make in India programme continues to languish. The dividends of the US-China trade war are yet to reach the Indian shores. Much smaller countries like Bangladesh and Vietnam have emerged as beneficiaries instead.
Even before the corona-induced lockdown, the Indian economy was tottering, primarily because of the pink deep state’s persistence with socialism; now, we are in such a bad shape that we are not even able to meet the needs of our military. This is having a baneful effect on our defence preparedness. The Times Of India reported on April 24, “No major deal for new weapon systems for the armed forces will be inked in at least the first quarter of the ongoing fiscal in the backdrop of the government grappling with the huge financial impact of Covid-19 pandemic in the country.” On top of that, the pink deep state wants keep India away from the US, our natural ally. The dinosaurs of the Nehruvian era are capable of even influencing Modi. He said in 2016 in an interview to Wall Street Journal, “There is no reason to change India’s non-alignment policy that is a legacy and has been in place.” He was responding to a query about China’s increasing assertiveness.
The interviewer had asked, “The US is very keen on India, the rising power that India is, to be part of, if not an alliance, then at least a grouping that can stand up to some extent to China. Where do you see India taking a position on the global stage?” Modi went on downplaying the multifarious threats emanating from China. “We don’t have any fighting with China today. We have a boundary dispute, but there is no tension or clashes. People-to-people contacts have increased. Trade has increased. Chinese investment in India has gone up.
India’s investment in China has grown. Despite the border dispute, there haven’t been any clashes. Not one bullet has been fired in 30 years. So the general impression that exists, that’s not the reality.” A few months after that interview, however, India signed the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA) with the US. This was a breakthrough in Indo-US strategic ties, but the pink deep state doesn’t give up. Even last month, it convinced the Prime Minister to address a virtual non-aligned summit. In short, the pink deep state keeps India weak economically and checks it joining hands with the world’s most powerful nation. Could any treasonous act match the magnitude of such folly?.