Over the years, India has seen the dominance of communal politics and the division of the country into various identity-based vote banks. Our politics has effectively been reduced into a petty war for communal supremacy between various religious, linguistic and caste groups. Each community has been pitted against the other in a zero-sum battle for cultural, economic and political domination. The result has been the unjustifiable manipulation of voters on the basis of their religious, cultural, linguistic and other identities.
The divisiveness of identity politics is not natural to India. India became free through the concerted effort of millions of men, women and children, worshipping nearly every major religion in the world and speaking a multitude of languages. India’s founding fathers had envisioned a nation where every citizen would be given rights and opportunities by merit of their own individual efforts, rather than by way of their communal identity.
India was not founded as a nation for the majority or the minority, but as a nation for everybody. It is precisely this inclusive nature of the Indian freedom struggle that made it a beacon of hope for several other nations around the world. And it is this idea of India that inspired the transformative movements of leaders such as Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King.
Freedom Gazette takes its inspiration from these noble ideals of our freedom struggle. We are not a ‘media outlet’ – we are an advocacy initiative, seeking to bring together progressive voices from across Indian society to develop a sound political, economic and social campaign. The objective is to pursue true individual freedom, equal and fair economic opportunity, and the eventual end of identity politics.
We wish to expose the ill-effects of divisive and regressive narratives and policies, and popularise and disseminate alternative ideas for the development of a modern India – in keeping with the aspirations of a new globalised generation. We welcome your participation in this revolutionary movement to build the nation of our dreams and we look forward to working together towards a new era in our political and social life.
In pursuit of this vision, we endeavour to do the following:
- To develop and popularise a progressive political, economic and social vision that would provide a productive and uniting alternative to identity politics of all kinds – religious, linguistic, caste-based
- To develop policy frameworks and ideas for an India where every citizen achieves equal social, economic and political rights and equal access to opportunity/development
- To advocate the principles of free individual choice, eliminate the divisive effects of identity politics and vote-bank politics, and remove the discriminatory effects of identity-based biases from public and political spheres
- To use practices of global benchmarking in discussing solutions to India’s challenges and encourage the adoption of suitable lessons from around the world
- To develop a progressive foreign policy narrative for India that would maximise its own interests as an emerging nation, as well as fulfill its responsibilities as a global power