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April - June 2024

RAMA RAJYA by Natyacharya V.P.Dhananjayan

Now that a great temple for Sri Rama- the ultimate Maryada Purushottama – has come up in His janmabhoomi Ayodhya, we can hope and pray for a Rama Rajya in the days to come. Sri Valmiki in his Aadi Kavya Ramyana eulogises the attributes of a perfect and benevolent king whose ideology is nothing beyond serving his subjects with justice and truthfulness, judicious approach aiming at a peaceful, easeful and useful administration for absolute well being of His ‘praja’ or subjects. At the beginning of the Kavya itself, we are introduced to Sri Rama as, Gunavaan (blemish-less character) veeryavaan (courageous & valorous), dharmajna (righteousness personified), kritagna (dutiful), satyavaak (truth personified), dhridha vrathaha ( steadfast) all such good qualities needed for a ruler of a country. Rama Nama and His story runs in the veins of all Bharatiyas around the world irrespective of any man made religions. During ancient periods before and after Rama there existed no religion by the name of the Hindu. The solid rock foundation is laid of a life style called “Sanatana Dharma”, synonymous with the term Rama Rajya.

After Valmiki Ramyana, Rama Rajya is a term that was popularised by Mahatma Gandhi – an ideal society that he envisioned for Swathantra Bharatam (independent Bharat) based on the rule of Sri Rama. The concept of Rama Rajya reflects the idea of an ideal society where everyone is equal, and justice prevails. The term represents the ideal king who ruled with wisdom, compassion, and justice. Mahatma Gandhi envisaged Rama Rajya characterised by the following principles:

  • Satyam-samathwam-swathanthryam:: Gandhi emphasised the importance of truth, equality and freedom in his concept of Rama Rajya, symbolised in the tricolour national flag, saffron for truth, white for equality and green for He believed that all individuals, regardless of their caste, creed, or gender, should have equal opportunities and rights; a society practicing the ideology of “there is no religion higher than truth”.
  • Justice: Rama Rajya was a society where justice was served, and no one was above the law. Following the tenets of Valmiki Ramayana, Gandhi emphasised the importance of self-discipline and self- sufficiency in achieving He believed that individuals should work to become self- sufficient, both economically and spiritually, in order to be better equipped to address injustices in society.
  • Ahimsa paramo dharma: Non violence is the hallmark of Rama Rajya, a society where violence was shunned, and conflicts were resolved through peaceful means. Non-violence is the cornerstone of Gandhi’s concept of Rama Rajya. He believed that violence only begets violence and that the use of force can never bring about lasting peace. Instead, he advocated the use of non-violent means such as satyagraha (civil disobedience), ahimsa (non-violence), and self-control to achieve one’s goals.
  • Self-Rule: Rama Rajya was a society built on discipline, devotion and dedication, a system where people could engage themselves in self-governing and have the power to make decisions that affect their lives.
  • Prosperity: Rama Rajya was a society where everyone had access to the basic necessities of life and had the opportunity to pursue their dreams.
  • Moral and Spiritual Values: Gandhi’s vision of Rama Rajya was not merely a political system but rather a society based on moral and spiritual values. He believed that society should be grounded in truth, love, compassion, and Individuals follow conscience to serve others, not self-interest.
  • Decentralisation of Power: Gandhi believed that power should be de-centralised and that decision-making should be made at the local level. He advocated the establishment of Gram Sabhas, or village assemblies, where the people could come together to make decisions that affect their community. The representatives of such self governing bodies should be absolutely blemish-less, clean popular leaders, absolute selfless persons
  • Trusteeship: Gandhi believed that Trusteeship was essential for creating an equitable and just society. He argued that wealth was not an end in itself, but a means to serve the common In Rama Rajya, the wealthy and powerful would act as trustees, using their resources for the betterment of the poor and the needy. Gandhi’s idea of Trusteeship was based on the principle of non-violence and voluntary cooperation. He believed that the wealthy and powerful should voluntarily surrender their wealth for the betterment of society, rather than through force or coercion.
  • Economic Equality: Gandhi believed that economic inequality was one of the root causes of social unrest. He advocated the establishment of a society based on economic equality.
  • Self-Sufficiency: Gandhi believed that self-sufficiency was crucial for the development of society. He advocated the establishment of rural small-scale industries and the use of local resources to promote self-sufficiency.
  • Education: Gandhi believed that a right kind of education emphasising good character and conduct was essential for the development of individuals and He emphasised the importance of holistic education, which includes both intellectual and moral development. Moral values should be inculcated in children from the formative ages for which a spiritual upbringing is essential to lead a peaceful, easeful and useful life.
  • Democratic system:

Constitutionally Bharatam adopted this modern concept of Abraham Lincon founder father of the United States of America (USA) and defined the system as, of the people, by the people and for the people – a perfect match to Ramarajya provided the elected representatives fall in line with the prescribed yardstick of Ramarajya.

A big question should be addressed to our electoral system where any tom dick and harry irrespective of their character, conduct and qualification could contest an election and even become ministers and hold high office. Statistics say 40 to 60 percent of MPs and MLAs have different kinds of court cases against them.

Multi party system has proved detrimental to a true democratic administration and unless and until we have blemish less representatives elected to the parliament and State assemblies the prevailing democratic system cannot come closer to Gandhi’s Ramarajya.