Partha Chatterjee – the Archetypal Hard-Left ‘Scholar’

I first met Partha Chatterjee in the 1970s at the Swinhoe Street Calcutta home of the renowned poet, Samar Sen and was a little taken aback by Chatterjee’s vaulting self regard. The lofty demeanour was unchanged when I subsequently encountered the ‘great man’ (sic!) some years later.

His crass abuse of Bharat’s Chief of Staff, General Rawat and, by implication, the Union of Bharat he represents doesn’t surprise since Chatterjee’s appointment at Columbia must have inflated his ego further! Professor Chatterjee belongs to a tiresome cast of familiar hard Left Bengali anti nationals who rate themselves highly. They feel too big for the confines of Bharat and the foreign pasture, where they could be adequately appreciated, had to be the imperial US, currently wreaking havoc in the Middle East.

Only the fate of Muslims of Bharat concerns these calculating pseudo humanists, rather than Palestinians and Arabs, since that would be inconvenient for anyone making a good life the US. The fact that a small minority are engaged in terrorism in the Kashmir Valley and directed by the army that committed genocide in East Pakistan and raped hundreds of thousands of Bengali women has escaped the idiot professor. These are the same terrorists that expelled the Pandits to the accompaniment of torture, murder and blood thirsty Islamist war cries, warning them to leave their womenfolk behind. The parallel of the mass murder of Yezidi men by ISIS and the enslavement of their women had been anticipated. The fact that the province is governed, unlike General Dyer’s brutal colonial occupation of the Punjab, by elected representatives, who are essentially Muslim themselves, is deliberately overlooked. And the mass murder by General Dyer of hundreds of innocent civilians, unable to flee, is being proposed as a comparison?

These pen pushers are making a very good and profitable life in the US rather than undergo the rigours of life in Bharat’s countryside with the Naxalite killers with whom many of them have sympathised. These self regarding luminaries have been inducted by universities like Chicago, Columbia, Berkeley and Harvard (increasingly bastions of illiberal hard Left-Islamist sectarian terror.) Harvard is of course the base of operations of their spiritual mentor, from where he slanders Prime Minister Modi and the values he shares with an overwhelming majority of the people of Bharat. Of course Chatterjee’s signature was prominent in the silly petition denouncing Prime Minister Modi’s invitation to Silicon Valley to join the Bharatiya national venture to empower ordinary Indians through IT.

Their apparent ’eminence’ is not based on intellectual contributions of lasting value, but vacuous social science contortions to which post modernist linguistic gymnastics have given absurd legitimacy (on this subject one should read Professor Ernest Gellner; on their other nondescript intellectual inspiration, the late Edward Said). These intellectual entrepreneurs were also a product of the dying echo of the Cold War when Western governments were embracing any ambitious Bharatiya willing to denounce the Bharatiya State, disliked as an alleged accomplice of the USSR. The halfwit ideologies of these puffed up individuals were ignored by the intelligence services that identified them for deployment because they were never going to wield political power. But their ability to contribute in de-legitimising the central Bharatiya political system was deemed invaluable.

This is the lineage of the self important, but essentially mediocre Partha Chatterjee, whose personal arrogance and laughable self regard I will always recall.


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About the Author

Dr. Gautam Sen
Dr. Gautam Sen taught international political economy at the London School of Economics and Political Science for over two decades.