The attack against Rajiv Malhotra is being portrayed as a kind of revenge for the court case against Wendy Doniger’s book “The Hindus” that led to its withdrawal from the Indian market. The implicit assumption behind this view is the hypothesis that had Doniger’s book not been withdrawn, Rajiv Malhotra’s enemies in the US & India would have rolled out the red carpet for his books. No proposition could be further from the truth.
The coordinated attack against Malhotra, initiated by followers of Sheldon Pollock & led by Richard Fox Young, an internet troll consumed by an anti-Malhotra obsession, has come at this time solely to prevent the launch of his forthcoming book “The Battle for Sanskrit” which has the explosive potential to seriously hurt future funding & thus endangering the work of those who Malhotra refers to as “American Orientalists” and who he has exposed as seeking to dominate global discourse about the ancient traditions of the Hindus.
Nobody behind the petition to silence Malhotra has claimed or has even hinted that the campaign is in any way motivated or justified by the withdrawal of Doniger’s “The Hindus”. This is no surprise since an open claim to suppress another persons freedom of speech as revenge would be tantamount to an admission of the same crime oneself. It would also be a stark admission of insincerity on their part, exposing the charge of plagiarism to be nothing more than a convenient ploy to satisfy their thirst for vendetta.
In fact by seeking to stop Malhotra’s books from being published, the votaries of free speech have validated the core argument behind the drive to get Donigers book withdrawn. Hindus like Malhotra who are fighting for a seat at the table have always maintained that free speech in the view of these so-called academics is an exclusive privilege that is not extended to others, particularly not to ignorant, backward Hindus who take their tradition seriously enough to stand up for it & speak out against the mainstreaming of its vilification & distortion.
Young, Pollockists & other American Orientalists have no other motive save to enforce this double-standard of one-sided free-speech for an exclusive clique of appropriately Westernized elite few who will dominate & ultimately drown out the voices of native heathens. The long-term political motive behind the academic cover is to soften up these native heathens via a battery of sophisticated calumny & intricately crafted ridicule, gradually loosening & ultimately severing the bonds that tie them to their native traditions so that they become ripe for colonization by invasive universalist Western ideologies such as Young’s Christianity or the Leftism/Liberalism that dominates Western & even higher Indian English academia.
The lesson here for Hindus then is not to yield up plaintive confessions of collective guilt in taking away the free speech of the poor Wendy Donigers of the West but to recognize the sheer hypocrisy of these very same academics & their attack dogs like the Christian supremacist Young. There is no point in extending to your enemies the advantages they demand as their exclusive preserve and which they then deploy as weapons of mass deception & devastation against you. These same opponents have no qualms fighting dirty on the basis of mud-slinging, defamation, stigmatization & censorship. Indeed these votaries of free speech are devoted to the suppression of the free speech of their targets. Plagiarism, court cases, book withdrawals etc are mere fig leaves, casus belli for an unprincipled & ruthless war already well underway against a largely unresisting herd of passive, meek & submissive Hindus.
Govind Nishar on July 21, 2015