Former Supreme Court judge Justice Markandeya Katju’s blog ‘Who are the real Indians’ has become a roaring hit in Malayalam dailies and gone viral on social media.
In his lengthy blog, Katju, also former chairman of the Press Council of India, says he regards “Kerala as the real India because it represents a microcosm of India.”
Noting that ancestors of perhaps 95 per cent people in India today came from abroad and the original inhabitants are pre-Dravidian tribals known as Scheduled Tribes, he said, “So to live united and in harmony we must respect every group of people.”
“In my opinion the Keralites do this the best and therefore they are symbolic and represent the whole of India. So they are the real Indians and all of us must try to emulate them and imbibe their spirit. I regard Kerala as the real India because it represents a microcosm of India.”
“As I said, India is broadly a country of immigrants. The essential quality of Kerala is its openness to external influence - Dravidians, Aryans, Romans, Arabs, British, Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Marxists, etc,” he said. Katju said Keralites are great travellers and everywhere in the globe one will find Keralites.
“There is a joke that when American astronaut Neil Armstrong landed on the moon in 1969 he found a Keralite there offering to sell him tea,” he said.
“Keralites are hard working, modest, and intelligent. They are broad minded, liberal, cosmopolitan and secular in their views (though no doubt there are a few exceptions). All Indians must learn from them,” Katju said. He concludes his blog with “Long live the Keralites!”.
Katju recalled his roots as a Kashmiri, whose ancestors migrated to Madhya Pradesh and later shifted to Uttar Pradesh where he grew up.
Major Malayalam dailies carried Katju’s comments on the front page and the social media saw thousands of Malayalees clicking ‘likes’ for his piece.