Let’s be frank, India is fighting a supremacy battle with Western countries. After getting defeated in the previous edition of the war, the West has come forward with a new and sophisticated weapon. This one is called morality. The geographical block which starved India of every essential element of life is now miffed at India for prioritising its own people.
India bans export of Wheat
India’s decision to export wheat on its own terms and conditions has not been welcomed by Western countries. G7, advertised as a group of rich countries, has described India’s actions as non-replicable. “If everyone starts to impose export restrictions or to close markets, that would worsen the crisis,” said Cem Ozdemir, Agriculture Minister of Germany.
Ozdemir also tried to patronise India by stating that it should behave more responsibly as it is a G20 member. “We call on India to assume its responsibility as a G20 member,” added the German Minister. India is set to take over the presidency of the G20 in 2023.
Tables have turned in a massive way
It has taken a very short period for the tables to turn. Though, for newbies, it may seem as if India is trying to stranglehold Western countries into submission, historical facts would never agree with this assessment. Rather than India, it is the western countries which have been starving people of necessary elements of life. Most of these elements like food and water are part of the doctrine of human rights in the modern world. That is some irony.
It all started in 1498
It’s tough to pinpoint the exact date when Western countries cemented India’s status as an ‘exploitable geography’, but it would suffice to say that it started with Vasco Da Gama finding an alternate sea route to India in 1498 AD. The so-called ‘discoverer of India’ looted India so much that his net profit from India’s voyage was sixty times more than his total spending on the route.
Over the next 2 centuries, India became a centre for a multi-partite struggle for supremacy. The winner had the opportunity to chalk out as much profit from India as possible. By the end of the 1750s, the clouds around the supremacy battle started to dissipate and it became an established wisdom that Britishers would become ultimate exploiters of India.
Britishers sucked every ounce of blood
The Britishers’ policy started to use Indians in the worst way possible. For the next 150 years, the colonists sucked the blood out of everything that Indians called their own. They used Indian raw materials, churned out new products from factories established in India, used Indians as labourers and then sold them to Indians at exorbitant prices. The farmers of the country also met the same fate. While Indians kept dying of famine, Britishers kept pushing them for more revenue.
Great Bengal Famine (1769–1770AD), Chalisa famine (1783–1784AD), Skull famine (1791–1792AD), Agra Famine (1837-1838AD), Bihar famine (1873-1874AD) were some of the major famines which left Indians in tatters. During all those years, Indian intellectuals could not find someone claiming that he/she got any kind of aid from their colonial masters. Instead, the increased load of taxation only led to an increase in Indians’ troubles.
First world war and the declining life expectancy of India
By 1900 AD, there was not much left with Indians to loot from. Now, a majority of Indians only relied on Britishers for meeting their needs. The tremors of World War 1 had started. In the hope of political freedom, Indian soldiers were forced to participate. But, Britishers could never be content with Indians’ lives. India being one of their major colonies was asked to take on the responsibility of feeding everyone supporting Britain.
The demand for Indian food rose to astronomical levels. This led to a glut of Indian food in foreign markets, while Indians were deprived of their own produce. Food inflation in India witnessed an upsurge, leading to a hunger crisis in India. According to an estimate, during the war Britishers drained out 367 million pounds from India. The hunger crisis was so bad that by 1920, the average life expectancy in India was 21.16 years, the lowest in history.
Bengal famine was the final nail in the coffin
Any hopes of India getting independence were shattered after WWI came to an end. In return for India’s loyalty, the British served them with new rounds of ruthless policies. The pattern continued for 3 more decades. When the forgettable Bengal famine of 1943-44 finally hit millions of Indians’ stomachs and Churchill stayed agnostic, leaders like Subhash Chandra Bose decided that enough was enough. Finally, India was freed from the British’ clutches in 1947.
West denied helping India
At the time of independence, India was one of the poorest countries in the world. On every human development parameter like Infant mortality ratio, life expectancy, and maternal mortality rate among others, India was within touching distance of Africa. India desperately needed western aid. But, in turn, the west either closed its gates to India or decided to impose such terms and conditions that the solution became worse than the problem. Another reason for the West keeping India on aid tenterhooks was their increased spending in wars like those that happened in Korea, Vietnam, and Afghanistan among others.
Green revolution and denial of medical facilities to India
By the 1960s, a Green revolution had started to take shape in India which made us aatmanirbhar, leading to an increase in life and livelihood opportunities. But, self-sufficiency in food was not enough as we were still suffering from various incurable diseases of the time. These included Polio and Hepatitis among others. The country expected some decency on this front from ‘human rights preachers’.
But West being West again decided to deny India of basic humanity. The Western bloc was not swift in giving life-saving vaccines to Indians. That is why India became a late receiver of various treatments for life-threatening diseases like Polio and AIDS. Due to this, India took a long time to eradicate Polio from her soil. Up until a few years ago, Indians did not have many options to avail of high-end medical drugs. The West has the blood of millions of Indians on its hands.
Pandemic and West’s attempt to re-establish its hegemony
Things eased after India opened its economy to foreign investments. 21 years after the opening of floodgates, India developed enough capacity so that Pranab Mukherjee could muster the confidence to term West’s aids as ‘peanuts’ and of ‘no use’ to India. But West being west was looking for a chance to showcase its supremacy once again.
It got its opportunity during covid. During the peak of the pandemic, Western countries decided to hoard life-saving medical equipment and drugs. India was dependent on the West for more than 80 per cent of medical equipment, but the West decided to turn its head against India. This forced PM Modi to embark on a policy for made-in-India medical devices.
If there is any country which can claim that it has been denied justice then it is India. The evidence is too glaring to ignore. The West has absolutely no moral ground to lecture India for prioritising its own people.