An analysis of a new book on the Indian state and society reveals a country that is growing rapidly and where social change is increasingly difficult.
The book, The State in India: How the Politics of Power Shape and Shape a Country, was published in New Delhi on Thursday by Penguin Random House India.
The author, Prof. Ravi Sinha, was born in Punjab, India, in 1948.
He is the founding director of the Centre for the Study of India and the author of several other books.
“The book is a critical contribution to our understanding of India, as well as to our analysis of India in general,” Sinha told The Hindu.
“I am happy that it has received international attention.
I hope it will stimulate debate and debate will continue to shape our understanding.”
The book follows a team of international researchers who have spent decades examining India’s political landscape.
“A good book in India is the best one,” said Prof. Nagesh Singh, an Indian historian and author of a book about Indian history.
“It can help us to understand our past and its present.”
The study has received widespread attention in India.
On Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi signed a bill into law to provide compensation to families of victims of the 1984 Gujarat riots.
“When people were killed, they were not killed by the police.
They were killed by their own government,” Singh told Al Jazeera.
“This book is an important contribution to the understanding of what happened, because it brings a new perspective to the history of India.”
The author argues that India’s rapid rise over the last two centuries has resulted in a new social order, in which power and wealth have increasingly been concentrated in the hands of the state.
“India is a state of vast inequality.
It is a society of vast wealth,” Sinhas said.
“Its political and economic systems are extremely unequal, with a huge gap between the rich and the poor, between the political elite and the ordinary people.”‘
The rise of the new Indian elite’ ‘The rise is happening in the middle of the day, in the evening, and that’s when people are in the streets’ “The rise in the social order is a big issue,” said Professor Prakash Kumar, a political scientist at Jawaharlal Nehru University.
“You have the state’s power and you have the wealth of the people.
This is a very difficult place to be.
In India, the people are very poor.
In the next 10 years, there is a danger of a lot of corruption.”
“I have not been able to understand why so many people are taking to the streets, especially after the Gujarat riots,” Kumar said.
He noted that the political class in India “has become more arrogant and corrupt”.
“It’s not the police who are doing the crime.
The rise in inequality is not being taken seriously by the people, and I think this is partly due to the new elite that is rising in India.”
“They are doing what they like, and if they want to live in this privileged position they have to accept it.”
In India’s vast plains, where vast swathes of land have been given over to the state for development, it is easy to find an example of a caste system, with an upper caste, upper middle class and lower middle class straddling the divide.
In Delhi, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is in power, with its Hindu nationalist leader Narendra Modi at the helm.
The BJP, Sinha writes, has “become the dominant force in India”.
“The state is dominated by the Hindu right, the Dalit right, and the Sikh right,” he writes.
“In some places, the majority is Hindu.
In other places, Dalits are the majority.”
The ruling Hindu nationalist Bharatiyah Janata party has a strong base in the urban north, with the ruling Congress Party (CPI-M) party dominating the centre and in the south.
In many parts of India – particularly in the northern states – Dalits, who make up about a quarter of the population, have been marginalized and discriminated against.
“Dalits are not as rich as other groups in India,” Sinhas writes.
The Indian state, Sinhases argument, is based on a “collective” belief in a Hindu “divinity”, and therefore “the state should be run by Hindus and non-Hindus.”
This is why the state has “freed the rich from the responsibilities of running their own affairs, and has granted to them vast amounts of state-owned wealth and privilege,” he wrote.
“For these reasons, the state is increasingly being seen as the most dangerous institution for the emergence of a more equal society.”
“The rising power of the Hindu elite, in its various forms, has made the country increasingly unequal,” Sinharas argument continues.
“They have been able now to use their power and influence to build a state