Friday, 17 August, 2018
Update
   Following trains of 16/08/2018 canceled due to Kerala Floods :Tr. No. 12202 KCVL-LTT Garibrath Exp; Tr. No. 16346 TVC- LTT Netravathi Exp; Tr. No. 12617 ERS-LTT Mangala Exp; Tr. No. 19423 TEN-GIM Humsafar Exp; Tr. No. 22114 KCVL-LTT Exp   Traffic Ordeal Again: Hundreds of vehicles stuck in Traffic Jam on the Vasco-Panaji route at Cortalim.   Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee dies at 93.   PSI Anand Narvekar's bail plea rejected in Bribery Case Panaji Special court, 14 days Judicial Custody.   High Court rejects both Anticipatory Bail pleas of Mangueshi priest Dhananjay Bhave in both molestation cases   The annually awaited 24-hour long 'Damodar Bhajani Saptah' begins in the town of Vasco-da-Gama with the traditional ritual of placing Shreefal (coconut) at the feet of Lord Damodar.   Traffic Jam at Cortalim; Goa Police arrests Congress workers agitating against bad road condition that's causing inconvenience to public; criticise BJP. Heavy police force at spot   A big setback for Goa; Mhadei Tribunal allows Karnataka to divert water   CM should resign for giving false hopes to Goans: Khalap   In a first, Sarvajanik Annadaan for 7,000 devotees   AAP: FDA’s formalin checks at borders is a farce   Traffic jams: Govt issues advisory   I-Day bonanza: Hotels full, but at lower tariffs

Being a Goan at a time of Hindutva

By identifying itself with Hinduism, Hindutva attacks the shareable space of Goan-ness and insulates communities on the basis of religion

Story: Fr. | Victor | 07th August 2018, 02:26 Hrs

There is something unique about Goa and Goan-ness. Maybe Pandit Nehru saw a bit of it when he said ‘Ajeeb hai Goa ke log’. Hence, his view can be interpreted pejoratively. But it can also be viewed positively meaning different. 

Therefore, without taking offence to this remark, we can also look at it as our strength. Long years of socio-political isolation from the mainland might have contributed to the generation of a unique culture that we all proudly know makes our Goan-ness. 

There is also the denationalization rhetoric of Dr Tristao Braganza. This charge is based on the notion of nationalism that itself is developed in the West after the treaty of Westphalia when nations were born in the West. Though the notion of nationalism is borrowed for the West, it is paradoxically used to condemn everything western even in our days and celebrate everything that is deemed as indigenous. We know that nothing grows and evolves in isolation. There is nothing that we can find in our society that is purely indigenous. Even our ecology is colonial. Cashew for instance, came from Brazil. Some chillies are also called tarvotti even today. This means, everything is in a process of becoming. This is why we become Goans along with Goa, India and the world. It is through the dynamic process of becoming that we become Goans and Goanize ourselves and Goa.

Goanizing is a transformative way of being in the world. It brings about the joy of being Goans. It gives us a sense of fulfillment and contentment to belong to Goa and Goans. Our dynamic goanizing is co-goanizing. As co-goanizing, it has a ‘sharing of Goan-ness and Goa’ as its major constituent. We can trace this sense of shared space in the belonging Goans exhibit. The regime of sharing can be noticed in the manner in which we configure space and distribute vital spheres of experience. Unfortunately, communalism and fundamentalism backed by politics of vote banks often reconfigure our common space and build walls of division that redistributes the vital spheres of our experience. This redistribution often minimalizes inter-communion among Goans across religious boundaries. Thus, we can find different degrees of shareable spaces among Goans. Goan-ness by itself is open and all embracive. This is why Goa rapidly developed as a tourist destination with great ease. 

The socio-political archive of Goan culture is the reservoir of Goan-ness that is distributed by the regimes of sharing/distribution across time in different degrees. At a time of Hindutva, we might see a constriction of the scale of distribution and a new regime of redistribution being forced upon Goans that is basically aimed at dividing Goans for notes and votes. The shareable space is reconfigured and new walls of division are sort to be built. Even the past is raked up to disrupt the present. While we might trace these seeds of our own downfall and destruction in Marxist terms as lying within the Goan history and culture that is marked by the trauma and pain of Portuguese colonialism, we can also find means of recovery within the same Goan-ness. 

The trauma and pain of colonization is being milked by hindutva forces to redistribute the shareable space among Goans. It blurs the boundary between Hinduism and hindutva. It militarises and injects hate into Hinduism. Hinduism cannot be allowed to dissolve into hindutva. By indentifying itself with Hinduism, hindutva attacks the shareable space of Goan-ness. This redistribution insulates communities on the basis of religion. Without commoditizing as well as politicizing Goa, Goans and Goan-ness as tourism industry and some political regimes do, we have to allow Goan-ness to assists us move into a process of recovery and restoration that will enable us to widen our embrace that is sought to be constricted by the Hindutva forces.

The challenge is to embrace the ethical rather than the representative regime of redistribution. Representative regimes are largely identity-based. They divide rather than unite all Goans. Hence, the ethical regime that promises justice for all is the way ahead. It is not enough to keenly watch or police the distribution of Goan culture. We do need to police the mechanism of distribution because often the national and the global high cultures can suffocate and kill the local or Goan culture. This is exactly what Hindutva is doing to Goan-ness. The right wing all over the world is mainly concerned with the cultural redistribution. Thus, the hindutva champions fight to restore the lost golden past. They deem it as a project of recovering of a glorious national culture of the past. We cannot simply follow them blindly and think about restoring the lost Goan-ness as akin to their project. Goaness is not just a matter of the lost past, it is very central to the present and the coming future. Besides, Goa-ness cannot be delinked from the Goan. Hence, it is not simply cultural or religious as the right wing might deem it to be. We have to carefully view the anthropological, the sociological, the historic, the linguistic, the political and the economic etc., along with the religious and the cultural. The left wing all over the world is mainly concerned with the redistribution of socio-political and the economic resources. We need to learn from it and find ways of addressing the monocultural and reductive hindutva that tames our Goan Spirit and hands over our economic and cultural resources to elites to generate capital and monopoly and de-territorialise Goans from Goa and Goan-ness. It is time to stand up for Goa and the Goan.    

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