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Modi represents a small group eying to gain from short-sighted industrialists
Writes renowned tinker Mike Ghouse, advises Indian Americans to become Peace Ambassadors instead of funding bigotry
Thursday February 27, 2014 11:53 AM, Mike Ghouse

Narendra Modi's Nakshatras (stars) are not in his favor, and the Grahan (eclipse) is hovering over him like a dark shadow casting its Rahu Kala (inauspicious times). His run for the Prime Ministership is ashubh (unlucky) for the 2014 elections. We recommend him to withdraw from the race, finish the current term as the Chief Minister of the state and lay a solid foundation for the next run.

Narendra Modi

If he has ambitions to become the Prime Minister of India, then he and his supporters need to go back to the drawing board and begin planning for the next election cycle.

Even though huge crowds are showing up at his rallies for his oratorical skills, it will not likely to translate into votes. Modi represents a small percentage of Indians who have everything to gain from the business deals including the short-sighted industrialists, but ultimately all the gains will be lost if the cohesive structure of the society remains busted.

What good is the prosperity when fellow Gujaratis live in apprehension and fear of the other? What good was the prosperity of Germany when everything collapsed anyway? Like Modi; they focused on growth rather than the social structre.

A handful of Hindus may rejoice killing Muslims, and similarly a few Muslims may cherish killing Hindus, shame on them. Unchecked, these act will do more harm to the fabric of society in the long haul than the economy. Do Indians have to live in fear of the other; is that the India we want? There is a dire need for truth and reconciliation in India. Modi has not done what it takes for the head of a state to do; to give hope and a sense of justice to the people of Gujarat.

Modi's followers in the US have poured in millions of dollars to buy favors from the men and women on Capitol Hill and the Senate -- it's all down the drain now. Being ethical is critical to these representatives and the influential Republicans like Pete Sessions, Cathy McMorris Rodgers and others have quickly distanced themselves from the Indians who abused their name and their seal. They gave a false impression that the Republican conference was a sponsor of the event where Modi was going to speak via Satellite. It is wrong to believe that they can fool these representatives; instead, they will make a fool out of these Indians and collect all the needed funds for their campaign, but will not fall into the trap of questionable ethics, and that is what keeps American going.

If these guys spend money on building a better India than tearing it up, they will do some good. What does "building a better India" mean? It's building a cohesive India, where no Indian has to live in apprehension or fear of the other. The great idea of Vasudhaiva Kutumbukum has been torn into pieces by the BJP to treat Non-Hindu Indians as lesser Indians than themselves, this not only goes against the constitution but the very essence of Hinduism that they purportedly claim to represent exclusively. Swami Vivekananda appreciated the idea of equality taught in Islam, and I wish he had propagated the wisdom of Vasudhaiva Kutumbukum; i.e., that the whole humanity is one family and therefore all must be treated equally with dignity.

The US Congress has introduced a bipartisan resolution (H.R 417 ) calling on the US government to continue to deny the visa to BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate on the grounds of religious freedom. Even if Modi were elected, which is seriously doubted with the looming Nakshatras of mistakes, it would be an embarrassment to India. The United States Government will continue to deny the visa; his moral wrongs outweigh his business success. He cannot count on the Jewish or Israeli support either, when the time comes, they will remember Modi as an admirer of Hitler, the killer of 6 Million Jews.

Modi's speeches have become a fodder for the nightly comedy shows. He has made gross mistakes on Indian history, geography and even got mixed up about the key personalities of his own party. Modi banned a movie called Fanaa from being shown in his state because the Bollywood actor had disagreed with him on a political issue. How safe would freedom be under his governance?

With or without Modi, India will march forward as it has been for thousands of years, and will continue till eternity. Narendra Modi needs to demonstrate leadership and sincerely subscribe to the value of Vasudhaiva Kutumbukum and treat every Gujarati as a part of the whole family, if one is hurt, everyone is hurt and must be cared for.

The BJP on the other hand needs to honor the freedom of every Indian, the freedom to drink, eat, wear and believe whatever one wants to believe. Whether you are a Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian, Jain or Buddhist, you should have the right to eat beef, goat, camel, pig, lamb, fish or vegetables, and that should be entirely your choice and not government's imposition.

If my kids are hungry, I would rather convert to a religious group that offers food to my kids, and I should have the freedom to convert to any religion that offers me the money to take care of my needs. What's wrong with that? Politicians change their loyalties for power in India every day. If I go out for lunch or dinner with female friends on Valentine's Day, what is your problem, what difference does that make in your life? My Indianness does not change a bit with my belief, and what I eat or wear. Modi needs to believe and speak up when one's freedom is violated.

He has five more years to change and practice goodness. He needs to finish his term serving Gujarat and earn the respect from every Indian. I suggest he withdraw his candidacy and save himself and his supporters from an avalanche of embarrassment.

A few Indian Americans need to understand freedom and become the peace Ambassadors to India. Instead of funding bigotry; they need to promote religious freedom that they cherish here in America but want to deny it to others in India.

Here is a proposal for Modi

1. Restore the lives of refugees uprooted in the riots, find them minimum housing and a path to earn a livelihood. Let them be accommodated amidst all others with caring attitudes, in the long run we have to build de-segregated societies for the good of all.

2. Inclusive governance, to include Muslims on the internal advisory of the Chief Minister to make security decisions on a voluntary basis with nothing to gain.

3. Justice to the families of the ones who have lost their lives, both Hindu and Muslim without discrimination.

4. Find the truth about burning of 59 passengers in the train in the most transparent way - to bring closure to doubts on both sides or acknowledge the findings and live with it.

5. Punishment for anti-Muslim and anti-Christian attitudes in the state machinery, just like the strong anti-corruption rules instituted by the Chief Minister.

6. Meet with local Muslim, Dalit, Sikh, and Christian leadership on a regular basis, not to appease them, but to hear them out and prevent injustice to them.

7. Earn the goodwill of the people affected by restoring their lives and seeking forgiveness from them.

Remember, Muslims and other minorities are not looking for favors or handouts, but just fair treatment, and an opportunity to be productive citizens. If Mr. Modi can demonstrate that he is a good human being, and put in to practice the above seven points for the next five years, he would earn the goodwill of the people and could hope to be the Prime Minister of India for several terms.

Jai Hind

Mike Ghouse is the President of the Foundation for Pluralism in Dallas, Texas, an organization whose mission is 'to encourage individuals to develop an open mind and an open heart toward their follow beings' and who is an accomplished speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralism and politics, among other honors. The artilce was recently published by

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