Why Pragati?

From our inaugural editorial

The National Interest
In a land of over a billion minorities, the Indian republic—which owes its existence to the loftiest moral struggle in modern times—presents the best hope for the well-being and development of all its citizens. The survival, security and strengthening of the Indian nation and its institutions, therefore, is not only a matter of supreme moral consequence, but of immense human importance.

Frequently imperfect application, repeated attempts at its perversion and creeping cynicism about its effectiveness must not prevent us from recognising that the Constitution of India offers an enlightened way for us to organise our society and ensure the greatest welfare of all citizens. Surely this is something worth defending. We at The Indian National Interest community strongly believe so. Ergo, this publication.

To rule over the hearts, minds and affairs of the Indian people, their rulers and their adversaries alike have historically employed the device of ‘divide and rule’ and exploited the immense diversity in religion, language, ethnicity and economic background to their own advantage. To our collective loss, we observe that it is happening to this day.

We believe that the national interest lies in defeating the divide and rule paradigm: by upholding the rights and freedoms of the individual and by dismantling the barriers which stand in the way of equality of opportunity.

Pragati expresses several of the themes that we care about dearly: economic freedom, realism in international relations, an open society, a culture of tolerance and an emphasis on good governance. The environment, poverty eradication and rural development have long been appropriated by vested ideological and political interests, over which they have come to assert an exclusivity of sorts. We challenge these claims of intellectual monopoly…

This publication is the product of independent minds, who—­transcending ideological pigeonholes—are ­united in our determination to see a better future for our nation.

April 2007