Lion of the Legislative Council
Father of Hindu Nationalism in Trinidad and Tobago
By Darius Figueira
DAURIUS FIGUEIRA on CAPILDEO
of mice and MEN
An analysis of the politics of Trinidad and Tobago over the last forty-seven years will show that two men so dominated our political
world of the fifties and sixties that even today their characters expose past and present day would be politicians to be mice like
creatures scurrying crazily over bits of treasury cheese. One of the men was Simbhoonath Capildeo. Read what Figueira has to say:
It is Simbhoonath Capildeo who insisted that he wished he could burn every sugar estate in Trinidad to effect the liberation of the persons so trapped on the sugar plantations. He would also call upon the Maha Sabha to burn every school building, which the PNM refused to grant permission for their use as schools. Capildeo would insist that every Maha Sabha school building that remained closed must be burnt to the ground for they were megaliths of shame rebuking the servile, hand wringing shucking jiving impotence of the Maha Sabha and Hindus of Trinbago in the face of triumphalist PNM racist hegemony. Long before Rudranath Capildeo made his infamous call to arms during the 1961 general elections campaign. Simbhoonath Capildeo single handedly led the assault on the system of electoral reforms rammed through the House of Representatives by the PNM led by Williams. It was Simbhoonath Capildeo who called for civil disobedience to resist the electoral changes put in place by the PNM especially the changes in electoral registration, the electoral boundaries and the voting machines. Capildeo would call for the destruction of the voting machines by citizens of Trinbago in an act of defiance to signal rejection of the attempt by the PNM to fraudulently acquire an electoral victory in the 1961 general elections. The issue was not at the time the accuracy of the claims made by Simbhoonath Capildeo against the PNM and the introduction of the voting machine. But the fact that in the face of a bold and brazen attempt to steal a crucial general election clearly indicated by the collusion of the colonial overlord with the PNM to gerrymander the electoral boundaries and to dramatically switch from the ballot box to the voting machine when for the first time a national voter identity card was introduced reeked of the quest for falsifiable means to ensure an electoral victory.
Capildeo stood alone as the leadership of the DLP openly and brazenly capitulated and sold out the persons who had elected them to the Legislative Council and the House of Representatives. The servile gunga dins of the DLP were duped, intimidated or simply sold out to the colonial overlords and their PNM lap dogs. Stephen Carpoondeo Maharaj was simple defeated at the level of the idea as a member of the boundaries commission appointed by the colonial overlord. Sinanan and Seukeran would sell out for favours granted by the colonial overlord and Williams. Simbhoonath Capildeo stood alone in his refusal to be a servile gunga din and for that he paid the price within the DLP and in the wider society. But the deepest cut would be placed by his brother Dr. Rudranath Capildeo.
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