Stereo typing of a particular community in India has always been rampant and common. The stereo typing has been often conveyed in the form of popular jokes or through serious rejoinders. There have been countless jokes on Sikhs, Sindhis, Tamils, Goans, etc. Likewise, there have been serious comments about the intellect of Bengalis, business sense of Sindhis, enterprising spirit of the Gujaratis, scientific and engineering prowess of the South Indians, Valor of the Sikhs etc.
It was in 1991 during my final year in Engineering that, PV Narasimha Rao became the PM of the country. So began the immediate stereo typing of the ‘Rao’ name at my college in Pune. It affected me, since, I too was a ‘Rao’. To make matters worse, the then PM’s granddaughter joined the Medical College run by the same institution and in the same campus.
That was it. My Maratha friends who were severely upset about the fact that their Maratha Chieftain Sharad Pawar had lost to PVNR in the race for PM ship started sniping me by saying ‘Ata deshat Raoancha hawa chaalu aahe’! Translated: ‘Nowadays it is the Rao name which has sway in the country’.
We find the same stereo typing going on since May 2014. Every Gujarati Businessman, good or bad is made to look like a friend of our ‘Gujju’ PM Narendra Modi’s.
At least, as per his opponents:
- Each and every Gujarati Businessman or Industrialist is corrupt.
- Each and every Gujarati Businessman or Industrialist has some relationship with Modi.
The other day, I was hosting a Business Unit head from Delhi and his son at my office, who were slowly expanding their Operations in the Middle East. The son had become close to me over the years, and had specifically brought his father this time around to introduce him to me. The father was an old timer and an out and out AAP Supporter, along with his son of course. His son knew about my political inclinations, and always avoided talking about politics so as to not offend me. During the end of the meeting, over some coffee, the son mentioned to his dad about my political leanings. The old man, a hard core Punjabi Hindu, stiffened immediately, and started to discuss about Modi. One of the statements made me laugh my gut out. He said, ‘Mudi toh Gujjuon ko bohat support karta hain’!!!
Such examples of stereo typing are rampant in the society. Modi’s tough actions, and laws & bills introduced invariably have hit the Gujarati community hard more than any community anywhere else in the country. And here’s why I say so:
- The Government introduced the Real Estate Regulator Bill, which has turned into an agony for all Builders. A large number of Builders across India are Gujaratis. Now the Builders cannot charge the buyer based on the Super Built-up area. The builder can charge only on the Carpet Area.
- The GST structure rolled out has sought to uniform the entire tax structure of Business goods being transported from one state to another. The Business Community which has been deeply affected was was the Trader community, while the Manufacturing Business Community got benefited through this act. The Trading Community used to make monthly windfalls on their sales and movement of goods from state to state or within the state, by adjusting their invoice values to subvert tax by utilizing the maze of taxes being levied to their benefit. Gujaratis, Marwaris and Sidhi community forms the bulk of the trading class.
- The Modi government went ahead and did the unthinkable. They slapped a $1.60 Billion fine on Reliance Industriesfor illegal tapping of Oil from another Block belonging to ONGC to theirs. You know which community does the Ambani family belong to?
- Demonetization hit the Gujarati Business Community very hard in the country. The amount of Black Money stashed with them could easily be the most in the country. Specifically with the community dominating the Real Estate, Gold, Jewellery, textile, Share Market and Commodity Trading Businesses.
- The Hawala trade in India which has been hit hard by Demonetization is singularly dominated by the Gujaratis.
- Prior to the Muslims hegemony over illegal businesses, it was the Gujaratis who ruled the roost during the ‘smuggling’ days. In fact it was the Hindu Gujarati ‘Do Numbari’ who brought in Muslim lieutenants from the ports of Gujarat to assist them in their trade and collection works. Both within Gujarat and Mumbai. In those days 90% of smuggling was done from Diu, Daman, and the coast line of Gujarat much before the Ratnagiri Coast line of Maharashtra gained notoriety due to a certain Ratnagiri Don Dawood Ibrahim. These lieutenants then becoming powerful and ambitious and over threw their bosses to rule their fiefdom. Dawood Ibrahim’s success story cannot be complete without a mention of the Dholakia brothers Arvind and Mahesh Dholakia, whom he had to wipe out to become the undisputed king of the Underworld.
- The title ‘Bhai’ acquired by the Muslim Dons was in fact acquired from their previous Gujarati bosses. In Gujarat it is very common to hear the name ‘Arvind Bhai’, ‘Narendra Bhai’, etc. And ‘Ben’ for the women. ‘Ben’ being manifestation of the word ‘Behen’. It was the famous Congress Gujarati Politician Chimanbhai Patel who encouraged and used the Gujarati and Mumbai Mafia to meet his political ends.
The Gujarat of today is a far cry of the crime ridden society of yesteryears. The pain staking effort undertaken by the Sangh in developing cadre who sacrificed their family lives for the sake of society has transformed Gujarat into a rich and resourceful State of the Country and a role model for all the States of the Union.
I also somewhere sense a purpose in Modi’s madness. I sense that he is still not satisfied with the development of his State. I sense that he still wants to cleanse the Gujarati Society as a whole. His underlying feeling being that, if he could bring the ‘infamous’ Gujarati Businessman into the legal structure of the country, he would have won a major portion of his war. Since, it is the Gujarati Businessman of today who has got his tentacles spread in each and every corner of this country.
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