A brilliant analysis of the mental sickness at the heart of the fascist ideology of Bengali Nationalism.
Perhaps this searing commentary was written by some anti- Bengali Pakistani or Arab ? Er no…it’s from the Calcutta Telegraph!
Home > INDIA > Editorial: Bengali mind is more obsessed with trivialities of past than with travails of present
Editorial: Bengali mind is more obsessed with trivialities of past than with travails of present
By: The Telegraph Calcutta | Last Updated: Sunday, 24 January 2016 9:59 AM
The past has cast a bizarre spell on the Bengali mind and consciousness. Bengalis are more drawn, for example, to the subject of the disappearance of Subhas Chandra Bose than to the present plight of the state of West Bengal.
It does not occur to them that the present history of the state will not be altered a jot by whether Bose died in the air crash at Taipei in 1945 or whether he was alive after that date, somewhere. They are fascinated by the speculation of a certain holy man being Bose in disguise. Such questions take up more of the Bengalis’ intellectual and emotional energies than how much investment has occurred in West Bengal. It can be predicted without too much unfairness or exaggeration that more people in Bengal will be interested in what the declassified files on Bose contain than in the news item in The Telegraph (January 23) that reveals how no investor in real estate considers Calcutta to be an attractive destination. This is the gloomy prospect in real estate, which is supposed to be relatively flourishing in Calcutta. It provides an indication of what is actually happening in the world of investment in West Bengal.
But are the people of West Bengal seriously bothered about such findings, which are not new? Business and industry have been witnessing a sharp declining curve in Bengal for a number of years. But not too much concern has been expressed on this issue by successive governments, public servants, commentators and intellectuals. Parties and political leaders known for their anti-industry stance, both in terms of ideology and tactics, get voted to power election after election. There is no concerted attempt to build up public opinion in favour of industry and investment, to force governments and political leaders to change their attitudes and the directions of public policy. Industry and investment do not stir the Bengali, but what might have happened to an iconic public figure more than 70 years ago does.
It would be simplistic to assume that the subject of industrial development does not make Bengalis sit up and take notice because they are averse to economic ideas and issues. Countless bright, young Bengalis take to the study of economics, thus demonstrating the attractiveness of the subject.
The answer should then be sought in the unique ability of Bengalis to live in denial. Bengalis prefer to turn their backs on the present. They would much rather dwell on past glories and past mysteries. This state of mind does not bode well for West Bengal’s future, since the latter cannot be built without a recognition of present conditions. The more Bengalis immerse themselves in trivial pursuits, the less conscious they will be of the present and its problems. It is time to wake up from a collective and self-imposed slumber.