Quantcast
Mantriji- Choose the right leader.

Rajiv Goswami-The Burning Face Of Anti-Reservation Movement In India

Published On : 27 Feb 2017

Article Category : History

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
Rajiv Goswami-The burning face of anti-reservation movement in India

Rajiv Goswami-The burning face of anti-reservation movement in India


Himanshu Tyagi | Mantriji Author
Himanshu Tyagi
Mantriji Content Manager

    

In 1990, the then 20-year-old Rajeev, a commerce student of Delhi University’s Deshbandhu College, had poured oil and set himself on fire amid a crowd of supporters and spectators in one of the most divisive phases since Independence.

rajiv goswamy

Like hundreds of upper caste students in northern India, Rajeev was protesting against the V.P. Singh government’s decision to revive the recommendations of the Mandal Commission, which had suggested 27 per cent quota for backward classes.

Till Rajeev lit the match, the agitation was being viewed as a campaign aimed at derailing social reforms and not many were willing to speak up in defence of the opponents of reservation — a political holy cow.

But Rajeev’s reckless act changed the tone and texture of the agitation, which overnight came to be viewed as a movement spearheaded by selfless youths. It also brought to northern India a mode of protest as well as mourning usually seen till then in Tamil Nadu — self-immolation.
Such was the polarisation over the reservation issue that it forced the hand of the BJP to step up the tempo of the temple movement to blunt the edge of V.P. Singh’s quota card. The strategy — captured in the slogan kamandal versus Mandal — eventually led to the demolition of Babri Masjid and the rise of the BJP as a party that can win elections.

Rajeev survived the self-immolation bid with 85 per cent burns but never recovered fully from the misadventure.

The anti-reservation movement eventually died down and the Narasimha Rao government, which succeeded the V.P. Singh regime, implemented the Mandal recommendations. It is said that later Rajeev used to lament that the self-immolation attempt did not have any impact.


Rajeev’s sole moment of glory since the self-immolation bid came when the human torch tag helped him win the Delhi University Students’ Union president post as an Independent. He later joined a factory owned by another brother-in-law.


The AIIMS intersection in Delhi was temporarily renamed by students to Rajiv Chowk in a celebration of his selfless act.

Rajeev’s parents, Madan Lal and Nand Rani, flew back from America after they learnt that his condition was deteriorating.
In the words of Shri Madan lal Goswami, ‘‘I stood by him during the Mandal crisis. Not for a moment did I think that he did anything wrong by immolating himself. The situation and the times demanded it. He did what was required.’’

Rajiv, a symbol of the anti-Mandal protests, died due to the health complexities aroused by the Immolation on February 24, 2004 at the age of 33.

rajiv goswamy

The reservation system which was supposed to exist only till next 10 years after independence as was suggested by Baba Bhimrao Ambedkar, the Dalit activist and father of Indian constitution, still continues even after 66 years of independence .


Tags : Rajiv Burning Face Movement India

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

TRENDING ON MANTRIJI
Feminism - The Real Truth

Feminism - The Real Truth

Feminism is a collection of movements and ideologies aimed at defining, establishing, and defendi...

Read More
Karma’s Gonna Get You!

Karma’s Gonna Get You!

The Syrian war has been going on for four years, but only in 2015 has Europe woken up to the flow...

Read More
Discovering lost glory-Read what does the great men like Einstien,Mark Twain have to say about India

Discovering lost glory-Read what does the great men like Einstien,Mark Twain have to say about India

What does the great men have to say about India, the country of extremes, the country that is the...

Read More
BACK WITH A BAN(G)- Being (BAN)chod

BACK WITH A BAN(G)- Being (BAN)chod

Its time CBFC wakes up and smells the coffee! The words ‘grossly offensive’ and ‘menacing charac...

Read More
Rising Tigers

Rising Tigers

5 years ago who would have thought that Bangladesh can upset the cricket giants? Probably no on...

Read More
Advertisement Mod(e)i

Advertisement Mod(e)i

Mr. Modi is said to have done more than 437 rallies in the year he was nominated the Prime Minist...

Read More
Subprime Crisis

Subprime Crisis

In 2008, the U.S.A, Europe and many other countries suffered a major financial crisis which led t...

Read More
Comparison is the killer of joy

Comparison is the killer of joy

Two roses can be compared but how can you compare a rose and a sunflower which are so different f...

Read More
Big Fat Republic Buffet

Big Fat Republic Buffet

The success of the Republic Day in India has always been typified by the big missiles, handsome p...

Read More
Taj Mahal- The jewel of Muslim art in India

Taj Mahal- The jewel of Muslim art in India

Taj Mahal is one of the seven wonders of the world, has so much history associated with it.

Read More
10 chemical lochas that need Gandhigiri

10 chemical lochas that need Gandhigiri

Our country’s health is deteriorating day by day due to the prevalence of people’s ignorance, unh...

Read More
14 kinds of friends we all have

14 kinds of friends we all have

Friendship is beyond the fence of words like ‘best’, ‘loyal’, ’true friend’. Try omitting these w...

Read More
Get in Touch