Whatsapp forwards, sometimes are worth a forward. Like the one yesterday -‘When a rape accused is not arrested we burn candles, when the rape accused is arrested, we burn the city’… Panchkula burnt when the court pronounced Dera Sacha Sauda sect, chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim guilty of a sadhvi’s rape in 2002. Gurmit Ram Rahim, is like no other of his ilk. He trends on twitter, flashes mega morphed oversized automobiles, hosts jam packed satsangs that break into concerts, cuts music albums and has acts in movies! No surprises then that his twitter bio doesn’t leave you with any doubt. Sample this- Spiritual Saint/Philanthropist/Versatile Singer/All rounder Sportsperson/Film Director/Actor/Art/Director/Music Director/ Writer/Lyricist/Autobiographer/DOP!

‘When a rape accused is not arrested we burn candles, when the rape accused is arrested, we burn the city’

In the world of self proclaimed ‘influencers’ isn’t he the best at his job! Lakhs of followers vandalized indulged in arson held two states to ransom and ran amok while innocent citizens crouched indoors, at best taking videos of the mayhem outside or worse still, instagramming the images with filters to pass time.

The rest of us outside of the states, expressed our emoji angst on the failure of the state machinery to act on intel and also on visible doom as lakhs of Dera chief’s followers flocked the city! Amongst his most vociferous supporters is no surprises there, another maharaj and an MP – the plot thickens!

innocent citizens crouched indoors, at best taking videos of the mayhem outside or worse still, instagramming the images with filters to pass time

The sentence is yet to be announced, and as Ram Rahim cools his heels in the Rohatk jail, the country wonders when again will they have to stock up on doodh chini in the wake of another flare-up.

DSS – has a branding that is meant to appeal to all across religions and of course the icing on the cake is insan! So then I ask myself, apart from the many philanthropic exercises of the sect, is the supposedly 6 crores following, a fallout of the deepening and ever widening caste and class gap in India? Is it the failure of the main stream integration in the ‘New India’? Are hunger, anger against the privileged, the discrimination and the yes the rampant nepotism, unemployment not enough reasons to believe in the ideal of such a savior? Isn’t it time to introspect a little ourselves. India has a unique contribution to this self styled Godmen landscape as well! It is an industry now- a lucrative one at that!

Blind faith and hero worship are not alien to us

I am not surprised that this psychedelic mish-mash of tempo, technique and nirvana in a nano-second have caught the fancy of people. Blind faith and hero worship are not alien to us … now are they? The signs such as devotional music set on film song beats and meter, and feverish dances to go along, were there all along- blaring or not blaring from the speakers!

This is not the first time that a baba has been embroiled in alleged rape case, oh there have been others- cases of disproportionate assets sub standard products and so on. Then what is it that makes the common and the not so common man also, follow the babas and leave their rationale behind in taking to the streets and damaging their life and limb? Faith, it’s presence or absence should be personal, it’s time to reflect on the horrific and shameless representation of faith by one man or one God in this country! It’s not enough to give epithets to women of this country who have been wronged – it’s time to make their anonymous voices heard by justice and law of the land, which I am confident exists! Do you?

A  freelance writer, blogger, corporate trainer  mum- whose writing interests include life , heritage, arts, books, fashion and lifestyle! She blogs here
Views are author’s own