Noted lyricist and famed propagandist Javed Akhtar recently campaigned for self-avowed Communist and candidate for the CPI from Begusarai, Kanhaiya Kumar. During an election meeting at the constituency, Akhtar also took a dig at Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu for his communal speech.
Akhtar claimed that Kanhaiya was facing charges of sedition for standing up for truth. He remarked that if voters weren’t planning on voting for Kanhaiya, then they should say Assalum Aleikum (the Islamic form of greeting) to Giriraj Singh, the BJP candidate, and vote for him as that way, the BJP candidate will be grateful to them at least.
Akhtar campaigning for a Communist is a bit confusing as in the past, he has vociferously opposed the ideology. In the past, Akhtar has made comments along the lines of, “If Communism is your faith, then you are as bad as a religious person.” Considering the particularly harsh remarks he has made against Communists, his support for Kanhaiya appears even more incredulous.
Okay, now I’m confused what he is and what he supports pic.twitter.com/PY8HUfggRH
— Rahul Roushan (@rahulroushan) April 26, 2019
For Kanhaiya, Communism certainly is his faith. According to the professional JNU protester, Communism is the “highest form of humanism”. In the two minute interviews linked below, Kanhaiya speaks of the ideology in very religious terms. He speaks a lot without really saying anything. In the end, he comes across as a phoney messiah who is selling his own favoured brand of God’s will.
Therefore, if Javed Akhtar was even remotely principled, he would have refrained from campaigning for Kanhaiya. While his earlier comments about communists and religious people being equally bad by virtue of their beliefs were too extreme and reek of the usual arrogance and intellectual bankruptcy of liberals, his campaigning for Kanhaiya only reveals the thorough lack of integrity and the utterly hypocritical standards of the celebrity class.
Javed Akhtar’s hypocrisy is quite well known. For all his secularism, Akhtar has maintained a tactical silence over the intolerance of Islamic radicals. On another occasion, while he had defended M.F. Hussain’s offensive portrayals of Hindu Gods as mere different expressions of existing traditions, he had condemned Salman Rushdie for allegedly writing derogatory content regarding Islam. Despite his apparent love for secularism, his attacks on religion always revolve around Hinduism. And now, it appears, despite his critique of Communism, perhaps he has never been averse towards the ideology after all.