“Brahaminwaad” no more, Baniyawaad all the way


More recently, Baniyas have taken the reins in their hands turning democracy into Corporatocracy, with the help of the intellectual power of a section (not all) of Brahamins and the muscle power of Kshatriysa. This is the most dangerous phase because when the money rules, morality soon gets cremated with full honours.  In Indian terms, my now well-known phrase of “economic fundamentalism” can easily be translated into “Baniyawaad” and Baniyas as the biggest economic fundamentalists. Brahamainwaad represented dominance of the power of “knowledge”, Baniyawaad represents dominance of the power of “money”.


Dr. Javed Jamil

It has been rather a fashion for long to say that Brahamins and Brahaminwaad continue to rule the country and it is they who are responsible for the majority of the problems of the country, especially the plight of the deprived sections of society. We have failed to realise that the balance has changed quite some time back. While the Upper Caste Hindus continue to monopolise India’s socio-economic structure and their hegemony is ever on the increase, it is not Brahamins and Brahaminwaad but banyas (Vaishyas) or Baniyawqaad that now reign supreme.

All the propaganda about “Appeasement” of Muslims, and to a lesser extent about the schemes favouring Dalits and OBC Hindus, emanate from the desire to continue the centuries-old domination of Upper Caste Hindus. In the remote past, Kshatriyas ruled with the help of the intellectual power of Brahamins and the Money Power of Baniyas (Vaishyas). Then Brahamins started ruling the country with the help of the money power of Baniyas and the Muscle power of Kshatriyas. More recently, Baniyas have taken the reins in their hands turning democracy into Corporatocracy, with the help of the intellectual power of a section (not all) of Brahamins and the muscle power of Kshatriysa. This is the most dangerous phase because when the money rules, morality soon gets cremated with full honours.  In Indian terms, my now well-known phrase of “economic fundamentalism” can easily be translated into “Baniyawaad” and Baniyas as the biggest economic fundamentalists. Brahamainwaad represented dominance of the power of “knowledge”, Baniyawaad represents dominance of the power of “money”.

I am giving below the list 0f 100 richest Indians (Forbes List) and leave it for the readers to count how many of them are from minorities and how many from Hindu castes other than Vaishyas. Please also add their combined wealth. This will give an idea of just how Baniya community has already monopolised India’s wealth, and to perpetuate it, they will of course try to use politicians, media and bureaucrats.

#1        Mukesh Ambani          $18.9 B            58        petrochemicals, oil & gas

#2        Dilip Shanghvi             $18 B               60        Pharmaceuticals

#3        Azim Premji                 $15.9 B            70        software services

#4        Hinduja family             $14.8 B            101      diversified

#5        Pallonji Mistry              $14.7 B            86        construction

#6        Shiv Nadar                  $12.9 B            70        software services

#7        Godrej family               $11.4 B            118      Consumer products

#8        Lakshmi Mittal             $11.2 B            65        steel

#9        Cyrus Poonawalla       $7.9 B              74        vaccines

#10      Kumar Birla                 $7.8 B              48        commodities

#11      Gautam Adani             $7 B                 53        commodities, infrastructure

#12      Uday Kotak                 $6.5 B              56        Banking

#13      Sunil Mittal                      $6.2 B          57        Telecom

#14      Desh Bandhu Gupta   $5.9 B              77        Pharmaceuticals

#15      Shashi & Ravi Ruia     $5.8 B              –           Diversified

#16      Anand Burman            $5.5 B              63        Consumer goods

#17      Micky Jagtiani             $5.3 B              64        Retail

#18      Subhash Chandra       $4.8 B              64        Media

#19      Bajaj Family                $4.4 B              –           Motorcycles

#20      Vikram Lal                   $4.3 B              73        Motorcycles

#21      Pankaj Patel                $4.1 B              62        Pharmaceuticals

#22      Benu Gopal Bangur    $3.9 B              84        Cement

#23      Savitri Jindal                $3.8 B              65        Steel

#24      M.A. Yusuff Ali $3.7 B              59        Retail

#25      Sudhir & Samir Mehta $3.3 B             –           Diversified

#26      Madhukar Parekh        $3.1 B              69        Adhesives

#27      Brijmohan Lall Munjal  $3 B                 92        Motorcycles

#28      Yusuf Hamied             $3 B                 79        Pharmaceuticals

#29      Anil Ambani                 $2.9 B              56        Diversified

#30      P.V. Ramprasad Reddy $2.8 B           57        Pharmaceuticals

#31      Vijay Chauhan             $2.7 B              79        Biscuits

#32      Kalanithi Maran           $2.7 B              50        Media

#33      Reddy Family              $2.6 B              –           Pharma

#34      Kushal Pal Singh         $2.6 B              84        real estate

#35      Harsh Mariwala           $2.6 B              64        consumer goods

#36      Vivek Chaand Sehgal $2.5 B              59        auto parts

#37      Amalgamations family $2.5 B             –           Tractors

#38      Kapil & Rahul Bhatia   $2.4 B              –           Airlines

#39      Kuldip Singh & Gurbachan Singh Dhingra

$2.4 B              –           Paints

#40      Ravi Pillai                    $2.4 B              62        Construction

#41      Baba Kalyani               $2.3 B              66        Engineering

#42      Murali Divi                   $2.3 B              64        Pharmaceuticals

#43      Ashwin Dani                $2.2 B              72        Paints

#44      Chandru Raheja          $2.1 B              75        real estate

#45      Mangal Prabhat Lodha $2.1 B            59        real estate

#46      Rajan Raheja              $2 B                 61        Diversified

#47      Sunny Varkey              $2 B                 58        Education

#48      Sunil Vaswani             $2 B                 52        Diversified

#49      Samprada Singh         $2 B                 89        Pharma

#50      Glenn Saldanha          $2 B                 44        Pharmaceuticals

#51      Anil Agarwal                $2 B                 62        mining, metals

#52      Lachhman Das Mittal  $2 B                 84        Tractors

#53      N.R. Narayana Murthy $1.9 B 69        software services

#54      Leena Tewari              $1.9 B              58        Pharmaceuticals

#55      Ashwin Choksi $1.9 B              72        Paints

#56      Rakesh Jhunjhunwala $1.9 B             55        Investments

#57      Indu Jain                     $1.9 B              79        Media

#58      Rajendra Agarwal       $1.8 B              –           Pharmaceuticals

#59      Habil Khorakiwala       $1.8 B              73        Pharmaceuticals

#60      Abhay Vakil                 $1.8 B              64        Paints

#61      Venugopal Dhoot        $1.8 B              64        Electronics

#62      Ajay Piramal                $1.8 B              60        Pharmaceuticals

#63      Malvinder & Shivinder Singh

$1.8 B              –           Healthcare

#64      Ranjan Pai                  $1.8 B              42        Education

#65      Rajesh Mehta              $1.7 B              51        Gold

#66      B.R. Shetty                  $1.7 B              73        Healthcare

#67      Senapathy Gopalakrishnan

$1.7 B              60        software services

#68      Jitendra Virwani          $1.7 B              49        real estate

#69      Nandan Nilekani          $1.6 B              60        software services

#70      Rakesh Gangwal         $1.6 B              62        Airlines

#71      Devendra Jain             $1.6 B              86        Chemicals

#72      Dilip & Anand Surana $1.6 B              –           Pharmaceuticals

#73      Ravi Jaipuria               $1.6 B              60        soft drinks

#74      Vinod Gupta                $1.6 B              70        electrical equipment

#75      Radhe Shyam Agarwal $1.6 B            70        consumer goods

#75      Radhe Shyam Goenka $1.6 B            69        consumer goods

#77      Ramesh Juneja           $1.5 B              60        Pharmaceuticals

#78      Mofatraj Munot                        $1.5 B              71        real estate

#79      Harsh Goenka             $1.5 B              57        Diversified

#80      Sameer Gehlaut          $1.5 B              41        Finance

#81      Azad Moopen              $1.5 B              62        Healthcare

#82      Nirav Modi                   $1.4 B              44        diamond jewelry

#83      Balkrishan Goenka      $1.4 B              49        –

#84      Mannalal Agrawal       $1.4 B              68        Pharmaceuticals

#85      Shishir Bajaj                $1.3 B              67        consumer goods

#86      Binny Bansal               $1.3 B              32        Flipkart

#86      Sachin Bansal             $1.3 B              34        Flipkart

#88      Abhay Firodia              $1.3 B              70        Automobiles

#89      Achal Bakeri                $1.3 B              55        air coolers

#90      Salil Singhal                $1.3 B              68        Agrochemicals

#91      P.N.C. Menon            $1.2 B               66        real estate

#92      Murli Dhar & Bimal Gyanchandani

$1.2 B              –           Detergents

#93      Chirayu Amin              $1.2 B              68        Pharmaceuticals

#94      Hari & Shyam Bhartia $1.2 B              62        Diversified

#95      Sunder Genomal         $1.2 B              61        Garments

#96      K. Dinesh                    $1.2 B              61        software services

#97      Sanjiv Goenka             $1.2 B              54        Diversified

#98      Radhakishan Damani  $1.2 B              60        investments, retail

#99      Anand Mahindra          $1.1 B              60        Automobiles

#100    Raghuvinder Kataria   $1.1 B              66        Diversified


Not only the consumer industry is largely controlled by the Baniyas, even education industry is dominated by them. The mushrooming of tens of thousands of Private institutions of all kinds in the country has introduced another kind of Reservation – the Reservation for the Rich, which again hit the Muslim community in a big way because less number of Muslims is likely to be able to pay the exorbitant fees that good private institutions demand. Privatisation has also benefited Upper Caste Hindus on business front in a big way. Through them they earn huge money and get their children highly educated. And of course they get most of the jobs in private companies.

There was huge political and social response to the Implementation of Mandal Commission Report in 1990s and the media was abuzz how this would be a grave injustice to the students who do not fall in the reserved categories. But the rapid industrialisation of education has seen no mass movement against it because the big business (read baniyawaad) is involved and it supports the rich (most being Upper Caste Hindus). No one is arguing that the policy of promoting private institutions in the country has resulted in virtual reservation of the rich. The ones who can afford to pay the fees can get admission in management, technical and other professional courses in reputed private institutions even if they have less than 60 per cent marks in Intermediate. Those who cannot afford cannot get admissions even if they have more than 80 pc marks.  These institutions develop partnerships with major companies and their products get good placements. Again this reservation of rich is hitting the Muslim community in a bigger way than others because it is poorer than others. With lesser percentage in private institutions, their percentage in private sector services is going to further decrease.

There is a big debate these days on Uniform Civil Code.  They talk of Article 44 but forget that Article 44 related to Common Civil Code is not the only directive principle not yet enforced. There are many others, which are much more important as they relate to the common masses. For example, there is a directive principle that the State shall work towards reducing economic inequality as well as inequalities in status and opportunities, not only among individuals, but also among groups of people residing in different areas or engaged in different vocations. Hindutva Brigade does never raise this issue because their upper caste Hindu fellows are most responsible for the huge and ever increasing economic disparity in the country. And of course, they will not even like the mention of Economic Inequality between Hindu and Muslim communities, which again is quite big. It also says that “The State should work to prevent concentration of wealth and means of production in a few hands, and try to ensure that ownership and control of the material resources is distributed to best serve the common good”. As we have seen in the Forbes’ list of 100 richest Indians, wealth is concentrated only in the hands of Upper Caste Hindus, especially Vaishyas. But Hindutva Brigade not only does not talk about it but also keeps supporting measures that further accentuate this inequality.



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