Why fretting over Citizen Pranab Mukherjee’s decision to attend RSS event is pointless
New Delhi, June 5: The next time a Union minister tricks us into believing that the whole nation is glistening bright in the dead of night with the help of some old NASA image taken from the space, India might look "saffron".
But seeing those 'sparkling' images, don't shut your eyes to avoid getting blinded by the saffron flood of light. Because it's too late to remain in denial and close your eyes to the reality.
While the bhakts vociferously went ahead spreading Hindutva ideologies to as far as in the tribal land of Arunachal Pradesh, the so-called liberals embraced the softer version of militant Hindutva and proved their love for sanskari traditions by flashing their janeu (the sacred Brahminical thread) and visiting mutts and temples.
The pilgrimage of the 'liberals' like their more belligerent Hindutva opponents has no space for Muslim, Christian or Sikh shrines. After all, it is the Hindu religion and the Hindus who are in danger, not the minorities, Dalits and women.
It is the same practitioners and protectors of freedom of speech who have been winning all the wars for the common man by outraging on Twitter within the confines of the 140 characters (oh, sorry! it has now been doubled to 280 characters).
These days, everything has been doubled, even human prejudices. So every time there is a horrifying murder of a commoner by a mob in broad-day light, the 'liberals and nationalists' lynch each other on social media. Job done, duty fulfilled and revenge extracted.
The same gets repeated every time there is a rape of a child or a woman. It's like both sides have perfected the plot and execute it without failure every time. It doesn't matter what is the issue at hand--farmers' woes, crimes against women, 'love jihad', lynchings, black money, white-collar jobs (or the lack of it)--there is outrage over everything and it's outrage only that we see.
In"New, Smart, Digital India", crimes happen with equal smartness and forgotten in the same speed. But how would they wipe off the blood stains of a man killed simply because he ate a different kind of meat, prayed to a different kind of god, sported a different kind of beard, preferred his white kurta over his stripped shirt, spoke a different language and skinned dead cattle to save the neighborhood from the unbearable sight and smell and in the process earned a few penny?
History can be rewritten and cities and roads can be renamed to suit the whims and fancies of whoever is in power, but some curses will haunt the nation long after all those who orchestrated the religious coups to remain in power are gone.
But perhaps it will be too late by the time we wake up and start fighting the actual wars for everyday survival, and not just the war of wits on Twitter -- who got the most retweets for the smartest post or which trishul-wielding proud follower of a certain 'dictator' slayed how many sickulars.
How does it matter to the lynched man clinging on to his last breaths or the little girl raped and drugged and raped again that if or not a certain 'Citizen' should go to Nagpur and address those who once he used to dismiss as un-secular.
Because my dear naive people, let me remind you that this is exactly what is politics. The lament over a Citizen changing his 'secular' stripes to 'saffron' is inconsequential when a portrait of a man from the enemy nation can paralyse a university for days.
It also does not matter if India's growth did not reach the promised double digit. What really matters is when highly educated men are forced to fry pakoras or ride cycle rickshaws by covering their faces with a piece of cloth.
Shame is not in doing menial job; shame is when sabka saath sabka vikas government fails to create employment opportunities for all, and instead of development offer 'division'. Shame is when an equally opportunistic opposition tries to milk the situation by offering more fake promises if we bring them to power in future.
So instead of fretting over issues over which we have no control like who is going where and meeting and greeting whom, let us for a change talk about some real issues -- malnutrition among children, starvation deaths, farmer suicides, manual scavenging, female foeticide and rise in rapes of children, to name a few problems.
But not just on social media, please. Because once you descend from your social media horses, you will realise the real fights are not limited to 280-character inane rants. Come, let's give it a shot.