Saturday, June 11, 2011

MF Hussein; a victim of Sangh Parivar's cultural Policing

Yesterday a great  Indian Artiste, Painter M.F Husain died in exile in London. While the news channels and newspapers sang praises of him eloquently, I could hear an eerie silence in those eloquence.There was no direct criticism of the Indian 'Taliban' who hounded Hussein in the last 2 decades of his life. Everybody was criticising the Government and some name-less culture-less goons for the attacks on Hussein. But no one was brave enough to call the spade a spade.No one could name RSS as the prime instigator of violence against MF Husain.

This post is not about MF Husain but about the attack he faced from Sangh Parivar.

Why did the Sangh Parivar target Husain and some of his paintings?
1. Because he was a Muslim and painted scenes from Indian mythology.
 Aim of the Sangh Parivar is attaining political power in India and establishing a Hindutva State.For this they need to spread the fear of 'Hinduism in danger' to get votes. Since Hindus are in big majority and are firmly in power in India,they have to create a' threat' for Hinduism from some where and it has to come from other religions.
M.F Husain was an ideal candidate to create fear and hate hysteria in naive Indian upper class Hindus.Thus they circulated countless pamphlets with propaganda against Husain and created a large number of websites and circulated hate e mails.

2.Why did Sangh Parivar found some of the Paintings objectionable?

Sangh Parivar originated in early 20th century inspired from ultra nationalist movements of Europe.It is not a secret that founding leaders of the RSS were great admirers of Hitler and Mussolini.

In 1939 in 'We, Our Nationhood Defined", Golwalkar, wrote like this in praise of Hitler:

"To keep up the purity of the Race and its culture, Germany shocked the world by her purging the country of the semitic Races — the Jews. Race pride at its highest has been manifested here. Germany has also shown how well nigh impossible it is for Races and cultures, having differences going to the root, to be assimilated into one united whole, a good lesson for us in Hindusthan to learn and profit by........
Ever since that evil day, when Moslems first landed in Hindustan, right up to the present moment, the Hindu Nation has been gallantly fighting on to take on these despoilers. The Race Spirit has been awakening."
 Ultra-nationalist/fascist movements wants to create history and culture as per their philosophy.Anything against their view of culture will not be accepted. Thus the RSS wanted to become the sole custodian and curator of Indian culture, cut to shape to fit the concrete box of their own creation.
Husain's paintings became a suitable target as a painting drawn by a member of Race they wanted to hate in a way  not fitting their concrete box.
Attack on Hussein was an attempt to show to the Artistic Community who is the boss in regard to Arts and culture. It was an attack on thousands of years of syncretic Indian culture.It was an attempt to Talibanise Indian Society so that Sangh Parivar can easily attain power.
While Husain strengthened Indian Culture by giving such unique forms to mythological characters, the Sangh Parivar want to reduce it to a puritan intolerant one.
The eerie silence in the civil society when Husain was hounded out of India and the fear in naming Sangh Parivar as the main villain even at the time of his death make us resemble the society of our infamous neighbour,Pakistan.
It is a shame that Husein and others like Taslima Nasreen were not allowed to live and work in peace in 'secular' democratic India.


  1. While I agree with you regarding the hue and cry raised by a certain section of the Indian society against Hussain, I do wonder if Hussain would have been allowed in India if he was to paint the Prophet Mohammed himself.

    I think it is the general intolerance that we see here in India for everything religious which was not there before. Playing with religious sentiments seems to be getting more attention (or votes?) these days.

  2. Happy Kitten,
    If you change the word Sangh Parivar/RSS to Islamist in my post it will still be the same saying the same message.
    Religion is an easy vehicle to reach power and power hungry people go to any extent to add extra fuel to their vehicle so that they can reach power faster.
    I have felt that for many it was not the fact that Husain painted Hindu mythological figures in an unconventional way that made them angry, but him not painting Islamic figures. Such a feeling was/is systematically cultivated by Sangh Parivar.Sangh Parivar always wanted to reduce Hinduism to a semetic religion because they had realised that semetic religion with a Holy Book, a strict code of conduct and strong administration can be easily hijacked to get political power. So every now and then they will compare Hinduism to modern puritan semetic religions and India to countries like Saudi Arabia and Israel and try to make them equal.

    M.F Hussein was deeply inspired by Indian Art and culture. He was deeply affected by Indian mythologies. A Painter or any artiste for that matter use forms and ideas that inspires or affects them

  3. Yes...sadly Hinduism is hoping to follow the semitic religions for the reasons you mentioned.. but then this awakening happened since our politicians chose the "vote bank" politics. The majority feels threatened and is finding means to unite. These feelings of minority and majority was not present earlier.

    May God help our nation.


Comments are welcome especially if you do not think like me. But anonymous comments behind masks and those not relevant to the post are not encouraged.