Sterlite Protests: Development hits minority roadblock

The recent Sterlite protests in Tamil Nadu that eventually led to the closure of the factory should serve as a warning sign of what is to come for all Hindus in India, including the economic/moderate/center right wingers of the country. Through continuous planned, organized protests, the anti-development forces have successfully caused closure of a major factory in the state. Though significant part of the blame for the closure goes to the poor handling of the crisis by the government, the root cause behind the protests and the eventual closure of the plant should not be ignored. The root cause of the problem was the Church and its countless coolies, ably funded by the foreign money, which provided massive monetary incentives for the protesters in the region.

These type of protests against development and factories is becoming increasingly common in Southern part of Tamil Nadu, be it the anti-Kudankulam Nuclear Power plant protests or the anti-Colachel port development project or the now famous Sterlite protests. One should take a note that this is not so widespread in Northern, Eastern or Western parts of Tamil Nadu. The reason for the success of these protests is the significant presence of Church/Christianity has in the South. In fact, the district of Kanyakumari is almost 45% Christian as against the state average Christian population of 10%.

Christians in Tamil Nadu have a presence of more than two and a half percent in all districts, except Krishnagiri, Dharmapuri, Salem, Namakkal, Karur and Perambalur. In the rest of the State, Christians have a non-negligible presence everywhere.

So why does the Church oppose all such development projects?

The primary reason the Church (and hence its coolies like Sebastian Simon or Thirumurugan Gandhi) oppose such development projects is because these development projects create lakhs of jobs for the local population and help improve livelihood prospects thus providing a strong bulwark against the conversions by these soul vultures who primarily target the weakest sections of the society with rice and money (the aptly coined name Rice Coversions thus rings a bell). Ever since the economic liberalization of the country in 1991 and the widespread economic growth, the rate of conversions to Christianity has fallen sharply, largely thanks to the resurgent middle class. Nowadays , the only people these soul vultures are able to target are those at the death doors in the hospitals and ultra poor people who are still to receive the benefits of economic liberalization.

For instance, the Sterlite plant in Tuticorn is providing direct and indirect employment to over 35,000 people (read 35000 families i.e. 1.5-2 lakh people) in the area. Now these 2 lakh people are for all intents and purposes immune to any kind of soul preying by the Church. The expansion of the factory would have further dented the conversion efforts as it would have benefited 2 lakh additional people in the region. This is the reason why the Church is so opposed to any kind of development in the region. In fact, according to anecdotal evidence the “activists” on the site were paid a daily wage of 400 per head for protesting against the factory by the organizers of the protests.

The Bogus Environment argument

For all the claims of environmental damage by the protesters, they are yet to submit a single research paper supporting their claims to the court. The only reason the govt has even closed the factory now is because of the political pressure to act on it. In fact, the Sterlite Factory in Tuticorin had even obtained clearance from TNPCB (Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board) for its operations. Of course, there were some accidental leaking of the pollutants in the nearby areas but they had been quickly corrected then and there. And even if the standards imposed by TNPCB were not good enough for the “paid activists”, the answer would have been to improve the controls and not shutting down the whole plant given the large number of dependents on this project. But this is exactly what the soul vultures wanted- stop economic development and harvest more souls in poverty stricken neighbourhoods.

One must not forget that there are several worse polluting factories and establishments in various other parts of the state; be it the dyeing factories of Tiruppur or the coal mines in Neyveli or the slaughter houses of Vellore. These protests will not reach Tiruppur as it is dominated by Hindus, who will never allow these charlatans to threaten their livelihood nor it will reach Vellore as it is run by Muslims, who will slaughter them before they can squeak about it. They will not protest against Neyveli either as it is benefiting lakhs of Government workers who will collectively block entire Tamil Nadu by killing electricity generation.

Cautionary Tale for the Center Right/Economic Right/Moderate Right/Libertards

What happened in Sterlite is a cautionary tale for the entire moderate right wing of the country. Even the economic development of the country, which is supposedly the only thing they think matters, is dependent on favorable demographics. When the demography is even slightly hostile, the economic development also takes a hit due to religious politics as witnessed by the closure of Sterlite. The example set by Sterlite will be closely followed up in other development projects also. Recently, Tamil Nadu lost a 6,000 crore factory construction to Andhra Pradesh for precisely this reason and Tamil Nadu, once a heaven for business (which was the reason it became the 3rd richest state in India) is slowly turning into another West Bengal, all for the needs of the soul vultures to find their prey. This is only the beginning of a much sinister plot regarding the development and prosperity of the nation and the moderate/economic/center right wing will do well to read the sings on the wall carefully.

Author: The author is a native of South Tamil Nadu and shared this post with us.

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