The Mahabharata & The Modi Model

An earlier essay noted the distinct connection between sabka saath, sabka vikas, sabka vishwas, sabka prayaas as the official policy and practice of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and the realpolitikal delusion of Ramakrishnaism and Swami Vivekananda’s prescription for India as ”Vedanta brain and Islam body”.

Then came the result of the 2024 General Election, Parliament was convened, and in his 2+ hrs reply to the Motion of Thanks on the President’s Address in the Lok Sabha, Shri Modi made only a single truncated reference to that his mantra, dropping sabka vishwas and sabka prayaas – and sanatani optimists are assuming he has now recognised that Muslims as a community do not and will not subscribe to it. (He also made only a single reference to the samabhava bleat, changing sarvadharma to samapantha). He referred to the Congress eco-system (in which flourish those some of us call panchmakkars) represented now in Parliament by the Congress and its Leader of the Opposition Rahul Gandhi.[1]

He said quite explicitly that –

2014 में सरकार में आने के बाद देश के सामने एक बहुत बड़ी चुनौती कांग्रेस के साथ ही कांग्रेस का eco-system भी रहा है। ये eco-system से मिली खाद्य-पानी इसके दम पर ये कांग्रेस की मदद से ये eco-system 70 साल तक फला-फूला है। मैं आज सभापति जी इस eco-system को चेतावनी देता हूं। मैं इस eco-system को चेताना चाहता हूं, ये eco-system की जो हरकतें हैं, जिस तरह eco-system ने ठान लिया है कि देश की विकास यात्रा को रोक देंगे, देश की प्रगति को de-rail कर देंगे। मैं आज eco-system को बता देना चाहता हूं, उस हर साजिश का जवाब अब उसी की भाषा में मिलेगा। ये देश, देश-विरोधी साजिशों को कभी भी स्वीकार नहीं करेगा।[2]

So what are we to make of this?  Have Shri Modi’s eyes opened? His ears? Most crucially, has his cerebrum opened?

This essay argues that it is, at the time of writing, uncertain whether it has done so. Shri Modi certainly is aware of the history of abrahamic realpolitik, but has he comprehended its existential implications for the sanatana dharma?[3]

Time will tell, hopefully before it is too late.  Shri Modi remains in a reactive mode, not in a proactive one. And so the aggressively dominating political narrative in Bharat remains set by the Congress eco-system.

In the Lok Sabha, the Opposition was belligerently offensive – with its Leader standing and personally conducting the cacophony in what was clearly a planned strategy to destabilise Shri Modi. Its performance the next day in the Rajya Sabha was as strident, if briefer.  That it did not succeed is testament to Shri Modi’s self-command. Shri Modi’s mordant wit impresses us sanatanis, but is water off the Opposition’s back.  There are powerful international interests backing the tukde tukde forces, and the Leader of the Opposition remains arrogantly unrepentant, supremely confident, and brazenly combative in his mission.[4]

Shri Modi saw and heard all that went on, but has he understood its implications for himself and for Bharat?

The case has been made earlier that what Bharat requires is not ramakrishnaism but chanakyaniti.  Especially in the specific context of the political Opposition led by the Nehru-Gandhis, the Mahabharata has much to guide us.

Stephen Knapp has a compilation convenient for a ready reference –

Defending the Country–Being Aware of the Enemy: In protecting the citizens from obstacles, overseeing the safety of the country from enemies is certainly a prime concern that must be addressed by the ruler. Herein it is further advised:

“O king, it is neither written on one’s countenance nor engraved in words that so-and-so is an enemy or a friend. The one from whom one experiences harassment is termed as an enemy.” (Mb.2.55.10)

“Despite being feeble those who are cautious are not slain by the enemy, as against this is a powerful one who is not vigilant about the enemy is annihilated even by a weak enemy.” (Mb.12.138.198)

“Even if an enemy is weak when its strength rises, even a powerful man cannot afford to ignore it.” (Mb.5.9.22)

“Even if one is powerful one should not consider a weak enemy inferior because though a flame is small it is sufficient to burn, and even a minute quantity of poison is enough to snuff out life.” (Mb.12.58.17)….. 

Dealing with an Enemy:

Once an enemy has been recognized, there are specific ways of dealing with them, according to one’s position. “One should befriend an enemy by conciliation with a false air of friendship but should fear him constantly like a snake that has entered the house.” (Mb.12.140.15)

“One should speak (to the enemy) meekly but should actually be heartless. One should speak with a smile but never reveal one’s true nature by performing a harsh act.” (Mb.1.140.66)

 “One should win the enemy’s trust by convincing him with valid reasons and after sometime when his position becomes unstable, one should attack him.” (Mb.12.140.44)….

“A king who does not annihilate his enemy will not gain fame on this earth, will not acquire wealth and his subjects too will remain insecure. Even Indra was accorded the status of Mahendra after he slew the demon Vritrasura.” (Mb.12.15.15)

“A person who foolishly disregards a flourishing enemy is totally vanquished by it, akin to an ailment in its terminal stage.” (Mb.2.55.16)

“One should not let an enemy realize one’s weaknesses. However, one should certainly find out the enemy’s weaknesses. Just as a tortoise keeps all parts of its body hidden beneath its shell, a king should keep all the strategies of the state a secret and should be careful about his weaknesses.” (Mb.12.140.24)

“One who trusts an enemy and sleeps peacefully after making a truce with the latter is akin to a man sleeping on a treetop who wakes up only after he falls down.” (Mb.12.140.37)

“One does not acquire the great Lakshmi bestowing governance (Rajalakshmi) without striking the enemy at its strategic points, exhibiting tremendous valiance and without slaying the enemy like a fisherman kills his catch.” (Mb.12.140.50)

“When the enemy becomes weak, wise men do not hesitate even for a moment to destroy it. An enemy should be slain specially when it is facing a calamity. If a clever one annihilates an enemy in such circumstances, not only is he called righteous but he also becomes famous.” (Mb.8.90.71) An enemy in this regard is also considered to be an enemy of Dharma, the destruction of which destroys all means of peace and stability in society. Thus, Dharma must be defended at all times.

Sri Krishna to Yudhisthira explains: “O Dharmaraja, vanquisher of enemies, so long as you continue to reconcile with them (the enemies of the Kauravas-sic) they will continue to rule your kingdom.” (Mb.5.73.8)

“Despite being intelligent, if a king does not attack his enemies, then like a non-venomous snake he will always fall prey to his enemy.” (Mb.12.58.16)

“If one finds an enemy who deserves to be killed, then one should never let him go.” (Mb.5.38.29)

“Just as a debt keeps growing even if a fraction of it is unpaid, if the lives of your enemies are spared, then because they have been insulted, in the future they will generate terror just as neglected diseases become dreadful later.” (Mb.12.140.59)

“Even if the enemy who charges with a weapon on the battlefield is a scholar of the Vedanta, a king who observes righteousness (Dharma) should wage a righteous war and defeat him.” (Mb.12.56.29)

“One should speak to him (the enemy) sweetly both when contemplating an attack on him and also during the attack. In fact, even after the attack one should show sympathy and grief and shed tears as well.” (Mb.1.140.56)

“One should not fight several enemies alone. One should resort to the four methods of reconciliation, compromise with money, breaking the amity of allies and punishment appropriately and annihilate them one by one. Even if very powerful, the wise should never make the folly of fighting several enemies simultaneously.” (Mb.3.52.22)…..     

“He should amass troops, and this should be done in secret. A king can never protect his kingdom by candor and by simplicity. A king should be both candid and crooked. He must employ crookedness and wrong acts when he wants to subdue the enemy. All these things should be concealed behind a candid and open exterior.”[5]

To these one must add Mbh 5.37.7 – Vidura to Dhritarashtra: ”One should behave towards another just as that other behaveth towards him. Even this is consistent with social polity. One may behave deceitfully towards him that behaveth deceitfully, but honestly towards him that is honest in his behaviour” (tr. KM Ganguli), and Mbh 9.57.7 – Srikrishna to Arjuna: broadly ”To those who deceive, respond with deception”.

In general terms, this is The Golden Rule of Reciprocity, to which I have added my Rider of the Pre-emptive Strike: Do to others as you would have them do unto you – but if you have sufficient experience of what they’ll do unto you, you do it to them first.

KPS Gill put all this in five words, four of which are of one syllable each: ”Kill before they kill you”[6]

In 2014, Shri Modi proclaimed –

“People of India have decided to uproot the Congress. Congress Mukt Bharat BJP ka naara nahi hai, jan jan ka sankalp hai. When I say Congress Mukt Bharat, I mean not only the Congress Party leaders but the culture the Congress has come to represent. In various ways, through various leaders and parties, this Congress culture has spread across India. India needs freedom from this. Be it dynasty politics, nepotism, corruption, communalism, divisions in society or poverty, getting freedom from all this is what I mean by a Congress Mukt Bharat.”[7]

No, Shri Modi, the people of India have just given the Congress eco-system a new lease of life.

Shri Modi, you are a Ram bhakt. Rama is an avatar of Vishnu.

Destroy the demons, instructs Vishnu in the Bhagavata Purana.

Please destroy these demons before they destroy you and us and Bharat.


This essay follows Maha-Tamas, not Mahatma: Do Hindu Lives Matter? and Swami Vivekananda & the Modi Model

  1. Mullahs, missionaries, marxists, macaulayputras, and mercenaries [adapting from Sanjay Dixit]. One can add mainstream media, minority-appeasers, and milords – but these are really subcategories of the main ones.
  2. PM’s reply to the Motion of Thanks on the President’s Address in the Lok Sabha, PM India, 02 July 2024,
  3. The RSS, from which Shri Modi emerged, has not. After the General Election, in a homily that was widely assumed aimed at the BJP, the RSS chief Shri Mohan Bhagwat said of the Opposition that विरोधी पक्ष कहते हैं मैं प्रतिपक्ष कहताहूं वो विरोधी नहीं है उसको विरोधी मानना भी नहीं चाहिए प्रतिपक्ष है,  In other words, this Opposition is not an enemy –  #opposition Not An Adversary, Dignity Of #elections2024 Not Maintained’ Says RSS Head Mohan Bhagwat, Mint, 11 June 2024,  Whatever the subtlety between vipaksha and pratipaksha, it escapes the Opposition which has been and is clearly going for Shri Modi’s jugular. Perhaps Shri Modi now realises it, but Shri Bhagwat is still in his vivekanandan la-la land.
  4. For example, ”Whatever I had to say, I have said and that is the truth. They can expunge as much as they want, but the truth will prevail,” Rahul urges Speaker to restore expunged remarks, The Pioneer, 03 July 2024,–restore-expunged-remarks.html. Cf. the abrahamisms propagating themselves as The Truth.
  5. Knapp draws on the Mahabharata, translated by Kamala Subramaniam, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, 1982. He also cites Bhagavata Purana 8.6.20: Lord Vishnu told the deities before the churning of the ocean of milk, “O deities, to accomplish a great task, you may even have to befriend the enemy. Do that and once you accomplish your mission, just as a rattlesnake swallows rodents, destroy the demons.”

Stephen Knapp, Purpose and Function of Government According to Mahabharata, 30 June 2009,

  1. Chandan Mitra, Bharat’s Ratna, The Pioneer, 27 May 2017,

The lex talionis is well-established Abrahamic law and is still practised as retributive justice in some form or other in the West. And, no, Gandhi did not say that an eye for an eye will make the whole world blind – see fn 14 at

  1. “Congress Mukt Bharat is not merely a slogan, but the determination of the people of India”: Shri Modi at Goa’s Vijay Sankalp Rally, Narendra Modi, 12 Jan 2014,
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