I am not at all surprised that Hindus in particular are unable to unite as a community in Trinidad and Tobago. Is it that they have a fissiparous tendency? I doubt very much. I think that they have not realized fully that they have a central nervous system and are the highest existence on the planet.
In the evolutionary ladder the amoeba is the lowest. It is a single cell that multi task, not inclined to cooperation and outsourcing. Nevertheless, it is the development of a central nervous system with a developed brain that placed mankind above all creatures. Despite this, many human beings are unaware that they have a brain and hence their penchant for devolution, a kind of longing to reconnect with their amoeba ancestors.
I have worked with Hindu organizations that have split for no reason. One such organization was founded in the 1980s and a few years after its birth, it began dividing. Several youths participated in its youth development camps, satsangh, sankirtan, Indian Arrival Day commemoration activities until the first division occurred naturally. Then and now more than 30 year later, no one can say exactly what caused the split. It was certainly not ideological or personal differences. It was clearly that our natural instinct took charge of us. We simply forget that we were mammals with a central nervous system that includes the most developed brain in the animal kingdom. Despite this, we surrendered to the pull of nature that took us back to our amoeba past- basic instinct … fighting latent fears, threats and other premonitions to our existence.
Are we to expect much from a community that has been marginalized, surviving in the margins of society? Who are the people qualified to lead? Are losers in any position to lead any organization? Or, should leadership be confined to people who are qualified to do so?
Today the free world is banking on the leadership of Narendra Modi to destroy the growing threat of terrorism. What is the origin of Modi leadership? Why are the Indian people backing his government?
Modi is a product of a discipline movement called the RSS-Rastriya Swayansevak Sangh- a voluntary organization dedicated to the uplift of India. Never mind what negatives the enemies of India spew about India and Hindu society in particular, the people know that the RSS cares about their wellbeing.
Narendra Modi was invited to serve as Chief Minister of Gujarat and he demonstrated to the world how to govern a people. He was unlike others who clamour and bribe to get political office. His focus and dedication to serve the people is foremost in his mind.
The people of India would only follow such leaders and not any Samlal, Ramlal and Koorhilal. Indian people have been cultured to distinguished between a fake and a genuine. The Ramayan taught us that Ravana came dressed in the garb of a holy man but carried evil intent in his heart. More than that, Hindu culture has been fighting demons and imposters from time immemorial so that when a few fundamentalists and bigots appear at their doorsteps, they know how to handle them.
Unfortunately, that leadership in the diaspora is absent and even those who are fighting the demons are not supported but undermined. Too many self-style community leaders sit on the fence during the day but fraternize with the enemies in the dark for personal gains. They have repeatedly failed to stand up with the people against orchestrated transgression by the government. Which community leader has appeal to the government for the opening of the Debe Campus or the naming of the airport after former Prime Minister Basdeo Panday, under whose watch the airport was built? Anyone has bother to ask the government why only Leroy Clarke’s paintings are purchased with taxpayer dollars while artistes like Hayden Geawan and the Maheeksingh brothers are ignored?
Thankfully, the majority of the educated Hindus do not fall trap to these charlatans. They have opted to educate their kids to provide them with the knowledge and skills not only to earn a living but to make critical decisions.
We must salute organization like the Maha Sabha and the Chinmaya Mission that runs schools where thousand of our children are taught. We must salute our pandits who do our pujas, weddings and last rites. Kudos to Sandra Sookdeo and the Kala Sangam and the other artistes that promote Bharateeya culture.
Regrettably, many aspiring for leadership have not identified a need of the community and provide it. Instead, they have chosen to attack the leaders who are engaged in so many noble projects. It is clear as day light that those individuals are bent on personal aggrandizement, a kind of a jacket and tie, look smart leadership but nothing of substance to offer. It the wild west is was described a ‘big hats but no cows.’
It is time that a critical balance sheet be done on these individuals and organizations. Most have outlived their usefulness and what they have failed to achieve in their 50s would never be achieved in their 70s and 80s. It is like banking on a Joe Biden to reinstate the United States of America to it glorious days as a global power.