So, our dear leaders have caved in to the politics of vote banks yet again in election season. I use the term "dear leaders" advisedly, after all, we are taking a leaf out of the book of North Korea to prevail upon Salman Rushdie not to visit the Jaipur lit festival. <br/><br/>This gnomic fascist mindset of the Congress party does not do the minorities any credit. Do they really believe that the Taliban fringe of the Deoband speaks for all Muslims? And, why the closing of the Indian mind with ridiculous cases against Google and Facebook. <br/><br/>The Congress has a standard knee-jerk reaction to always play the nanny state. It is shameful that a great author who is a proud possessor of a Person of Indian Origin card and who by any reckoning has brought insight, delight to readers and glory to our country is not welcome as a supine Congress party quivers at the dictates of the loony fringe. <br/><br/>Isn't it curious that Rushdie has been a regular visitor for years and yet when elections in UP are a fortnight away, the Deoband decides to test its mettle. <br/><br/>Despite, the fact that the fatwa on Rushdie also came about because of a similar jelly like approach to ban his novel, as India was the first country in the world to do it, Rushdie still finds his creative wellsprings here. Shame on us then. Remember another great democracy the United Kingdom spent millions protecting Rushdie from the fatwa. <br/><br/>The politics of bans, quotas and appeasement of all kind of every lunatic fringe is in the DNA of the Congress party. <br/><br/>Even the diminishing returns of the politics of appeasement have brought no realisation. So libraries are burnt down, books banned and yet we still piously and smugly proclaim our democratic credentials. The Economist newspaper has repeatedly pointed out that the Indian censors zealously guarding Indian maps beat China hollow. <br/><br/>When are we going to understand that dissent is the essence of a mature country? Does the Congress party really want to act as a thought police and cave in every time a special interest group wants to flex its muscles? <br/><br/>A responsible government would have spurned the call to deny Rushdie a visa, yet Ashok Gehlot still engulfed in the Bhanwari Devi sex murder tries to pressure the organisers to ensure that Rushdie stays away. <br/><br/>The Muslims should punish the Congress party for insulting their intelligence with these gimmicks, complete with Rahul Gandhi's flexi beard. <br/><br/>For all you know, the meeting of minds between the Taliban and the Congress party might have some interesting results. <br/><br/>But, Shame.