Amchi Mumbai ~ My Mumbai
February 13, 2008 12:16 PM   Subscribe

Politics of Hate: What's happening to the city of Mumbai
posted by hadjiboy (14 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Ahh, lovely news, and just in time. I land in Mumbai on Saturday afternoon, as an ABCD of North Indian origin. Should be big fun. (sigh)
posted by CommonSense at 12:53 PM on February 13, 2008

Is there an article you can add that clarifies what Shiv Sena is? And what the other groups stand for?
posted by parmanparman at 12:57 PM on February 13, 2008

Very informative (if depressing) articles—thanks, hadjiboy.

Is there an article you can add that clarifies what Shiv Sena is?

From the first article:
the Shiv Sena started off as an “anti-South Indian” movement, then took on the communists, before settling on the Muslim as the “enemy”. If the initial years were designed to nurture the Shiv Sena as a “sons of the soil” movement with a staunch Maharashtrian identity, the last 20 years have seen the Sena “graduate” into the party of Hindutva politics, aimed at widening its political base beyond the local Marathi-speaking population. While evolving through its various avatars, one thing has remained unchanged: the Shiv Sena’s search for an enemy and a commitment to the politics of violence as a means to an end.
If you want more, Google is your friend.
posted by languagehat at 1:32 PM on February 13, 2008 [1 favorite]

.....and parmanparman, our mefite ABCD colleague is an American Born Confused Desi. Think Nitin Ganatra’s Mr. Kholi in Bride and Predjudice. Although with more Mefite CommonSense!
posted by Wilder at 1:51 PM on February 13, 2008

Wilder: Thanks . . . maybe I should've clarified ABCD while I was at it. :-)
posted by CommonSense at 1:52 PM on February 13, 2008

A Govinda, for example, would not have won a Lok Sabha seat from Mumbai without the staunch support of the north Indian community.

What's the meaning of Govinda, here? I know the meaning as a name for Krishna. Does it literally mean 'cowherd' in this usage?

An interesting fictional account of Mumbai politics is given in Rushdie's The Moor's Last Sigh (with Bal Thackeray represented by the character Fielding).
posted by Infinite Jest at 2:10 PM on February 13, 2008

From the article:

"Blaming Mumbai’s problems on the economic migrant is to simply escape responsibility for failing to address the core issue: a serious crisis of governance."

God... why does this sound familiar?
posted by Bathtub Bobsled at 2:13 PM on February 13, 2008

Infinite Jest: I was wondering how the term Govinda would translate to a foreigner:)
It's actually the name of a previously famous actor, who was up until a couple of weeks ago a politician, and now is trying to get back into film. He wasn't very popular as a Member of Parliament during his tenure, and was recently in the middle of a row.

languagehat, I was thinking the same thing, but then decided to do a bit of googling myself and put up a few more links, hope you don't mind...

parmanparman: Here's something on the Shiv Sena if you're interested. It's a lengthy read, so you might want to buckle down. And here is a list of Hindu Nationalist Parties that you might want to look into. Also, this is a good document that's worth a read as well. It's a pdf file though.
posted by hadjiboy at 3:28 PM on February 13, 2008

CommonSense, you get extra Brownie Points for using the term ABCD, and Wilder for recognizing what it means (man, did you actually watch Bride and Prejudice--ick!).
Don't worry though, the situation in Mumbai isn't as bad as you might think it is, or at least that's what I'm being told (have got family over there). Of course, if you'd seen the news today morning, it felt like an exodus was leaving Nasik, and there probably was, since a lot of Biharis had been threatened to flee or else.
posted by hadjiboy at 3:43 PM on February 13, 2008

Sooo sorry hadjiboy, but I must admit I have, (and liked it! but I'm just a desi!! )
posted by Wilder at 4:07 PM on February 13, 2008

but I'm just a desi!!

Good for you!
posted by hadjiboy at 4:24 PM on February 13, 2008

More than 10,000 Biharis have already fled the area.

Ambadas Haribhau Dharrao: the first casualty of this war.
posted by hadjiboy at 5:38 PM on February 13, 2008

Damn. I knew about Shiv Sena before, but never MNS. I don't quite get what the deal is between the two. I looked at wikipedia. So, SS started as an anti-South fundie group? And MNS is anti-North?

I thought they were nationalists in support of a unified Hindu unity. So what's the deal? Why do they hate some areas over others? I mean, they're really just haters looking for an excuse to hate, I get that, but what's the excuse?
posted by symbioid at 6:44 PM on February 13, 2008

Unfortunately Indian Politics has a long history of hate, inflamed hate and rent-a-mob politics and the daily press / TV seems rather spineless.
Tehelka throws a bit more light on the particular Mumbai problem.
Thackeray senior, the Shiv Sena founder, called for Hindu suicide squads in 2002. Check Frontline re Shiv Sena's maniplulation leading up to the Ayodhya outrage.
posted by adamvasco at 1:09 AM on February 14, 2008

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