In the name of regaining the values of Renaissance and for allowing entry of women into Sabarimala temple, the “Women’s wall” program being organized by joining hands with the caste organizations and spending money from the state exchequer will only discredit the Renaissance movement in Kerala and it is a farce aimed at only electoral gains, said Dr V Venugopal, State Secretary, SUCI (Communist) in a statement issued to the press.
The Renaissance that the Kerala Chief Minister and the CPI(M) is talking about has nothing to do with the real Renaissance. The essence of the Renaissance movement in Kerala was based on democratic values and humanist culture. The Women’s wall is led by a government that has no tolerance for opposing views. What credibility does the government have that is trying to smother opposing views by imposing media ban, while talking aloud about Renaissance ? The organizations that were once formed with the aim of fighting not only the caste discriminations between upper and lower castes but also the discriminations and evil practices within various divisions within castes have later degraded into political pressure groups and vote banks in the interest of a privileged section within the respective caste group. Not only have they turned away from the values upheld by the leaders of the Renaissance movement, the present day caste organizations are engaged in just the opposite. What kind of regain of Renaissance values can be achieved by joining hands with these caste forces with no democratic values or ideal and whose sole aim is to garner some benefits for the caste leaders by hobnobbing with the people in power?
The concept ‘What is right for god is right and what is not is wrong’ was the ideological basis of feudalism. Contrary to that the scientific method of examining everything on the basis of logical analysis and thus arriving at the truth is the life outlook that the Renaissance put forth. Beginning with the famous declaration of Narayana Guru “we have no religion or caste”, the Renaissance movement in Kerala went ahead further to the extent of stating “man needs no religion, no caste and no god”. The neo-renaissance in the name of entry of women in Sabarimala will only help to strengthen what the Renaissance movement once rejected. From this angle if we view, the ‘Women’s wall’ does not promote scientific outlook, but blindness.
Similar to the gimmicks of the Sangh Parivar like Ram temple, cow protection etc, the ‘Women’s wall’ is also aimed at vote politics. The BJP in the state is trying to play vote politics by opposing the women entry into Sabarimala. The unwise steps taken by the state government on the basis of cunning calculations has given an opportunity for the BJP to play its communal tactics. There is no doubt that people in Kerala will have to pay a heavy price for this.
Looking from a legal angle the verdict may be correct. But a political movement, particularly a revolutionary one should take steps considering the necessity of the time. To complete the unfinished tasks of renaissance is the need of the present day. To educate the people to view natural phenomena and life with a scientific approach, to equip the people to adopt secular democratic values in their day to day life etc are the important tasks to be accomplished. In the name of Renaissance what the CPI(M) is propagating will not help in accomplishing these tasks, rather it will help to promote blindness. It will only help the reactionary caste and communal organizations to take roots with accelerated pace. Which of the unaccomplished tasks of the Renaissance movement will be accomplished by the entry of women in Sabarimala?
Democratic mass movement is the only way to build up people’s unity and defeat communalism. It is also the training ground to equip the people to view life problems in a realistic way. There are no other short cuts. The common people being ground under the yoke of capitalism have to be brought to the streets as a united single force on the basis of real issues affecting their life and upholding higher ethics and democratic values. This is the real continuity of the Renaissance movement. The ‘Women’s wall’ does not propose such a path of movement