The new custom of ridiculing the one who is in pain, suffering has started in this country. Should this be called mere meanness? Or is it a big character downfall? Every few days a new example of this pettiness is seen. It has now resurfaced during the Russian attack on Ukraine.
On the question of bringing back the mortal remains of Naveen, a resident of Karnataka from Ukraine, a Karnataka minister said that 8 people will come back in the number of places a dead body is buried. This statement is like rubbing salt on the wounds of Naveen’s family. The government could not bring him alive from Ukraine, now it is telling useless to bring his body home after death.
Is this meanness or cruelty? So petty, so low, so petty, so petty, so much violence! So stupid! So much hatred for one’s own people and so much readiness to insult them! Where was all this hidden?
This mud has been spreading outside since last 8 years. Not only the feet of the Indian society, but even its soul has been engrossed in this confusion. But didn’t it start earlier?
Every few days a new example of this pettiness is seen. It has now resurfaced during the Russian attack on Ukraine. The way in which the leaders and supporters of the ruling party are making fun of the same students, it is known from the way that they are responsible for their hardships, on the request of thousands of Indian students trapped after the attack in Ukraine. It is quite certain that the self-realization and self-respect in the people of India has vanished.
Otherwise, when it became public for the first time that the Government of India did not take adequate measures to rescue the students trapped in Ukraine in time, instead of expressing regret, the Prime Minister, in his first statement, digressed by expressing concern that after all our children Why do you keep going out?
By not talking about the real issue which is urgently needed, by not telling the public what the government is doing to rescue these students, Narendra Modi changed the subject. Why doesn’t the private sector invest in medical education, why didn’t the state governments provide land for it at a cheaper rate, etc. They started raising questions when they were being asked why Indian citizens were getting late in taking out the protection!
After this, a campaign was started to prove these students inferior. They are ineligible, can’t clear NEET in India, so they go out. The ministers of this government are giving such statements with gusto. Believe it, if that’s the case they should be left to die!
And then, pleading for protection, the children were cursed whether a palanquin should be sent to bring them! The reactions after the death of Naveen, a resident of Karnataka in a Russian attack, are shocking. Supporters of the government start asking in one language after another why he was there till now!
The new custom of ridiculing the one who is in pain, suffering has started in this country. Should this be called mere meanness? Or is it a big character downfall?
You may remember that after demonetisation, the Prime Minister had ridiculed those people in faraway Japan who had arranged for the wedding but suddenly found that money had been taken from their hands. In our country, it is considered a sin to create disturbance in the marriage even at the enemy’s house. But the Prime Minister made fun of the plight of all those people by showing his thumb and those who heard him laughed and clapped!
Similarly, when the workers who were rendered useless and homeless due to the lockdown during the Corona virus infection started going back to their villages on foot, the ruling party MP ridiculed them saying that they have got to meet their relatives now!
When the farmers left their homes and villages and sat on a sit-in on the outskirts of Delhi to protest against the laws related to farming, they were mocked and said that where they are fighting, they are eating pizza.
All this is low level, but in this, every few days now the Prime Minister and the people of his party make a new record. Why are they able to do this? Because people are clapping.
Remember, when the Prime Minister, when he was not the Prime Minister, called Shashi Tharoor ‘Girlfriend of 55 crores’, the public clapped. Then when Sonia Gandhi was called ‘Jersey Cow’, there was more clap.
Even before that in 2002, when the relief camps of Muslims victims of violence in Gujarat were demolished, the then Chief Minister had said that they cannot allow the factories to produce terrorists. There was applause on this too. ‘Hum paanch, hamare pachchi’ cannot be allowed to run, he was applauded for his speech.
We clapped every time. When a politician called it despicable, we lashed out at it. How dare you call meekness lowly? That’s rude!
Then this petty propaganda was propagated from every constitutional post. Let alone the MLAs and MPs, the Governor and the Chief Minister, everyone left his tongue unbridled.
One said that they do not ask Rahul Gandhi who his father is. At the time of the unveiling of the statue of Savitribai Phule, a governor cheered on her child marriage. There was a time when there was dignity of position and opportunity. Now nothing is allowed to escape.
The distinction between Parliament and the road was erased. The language of the leaders of the ruling party can be respectfully called as ‘Sadakchhap’ only. Taking advantage of the election campaign, a 70-year-old man rounds his face and chants ‘Didi O Didi’.
He holds the highest office in the country. The street celebrities seem to have a special affinity in this style. The rest of the civilized people turn their faces and smile at this and enjoy guessing the condition of that woman.
We have to think why this happened. These leaders garnered support from us by nurturing the vulgarity, pettiness that is sitting within us, by provoking it. He told that one does not have to work hard to get out of sloppiness. There is no effort to beautify language and emotion.
There is joy in lying in the mud we are in. In this way an unbreakable relationship was established between the public and the leader. You abuse Muslims openly, the Prime Minister will keep smiling in his heart. You shout slogan to shoot them, you will be promoted as minister.
The lower you fall, the more likely you are to rise socially and politically. One who talks in a civilized manner, behaves decently, will be considered weak, lowly. The one who is powerful already wants to erase the sense of decency, courtesy from the society.
Once the sense of civilization is relaxed, then killing becomes easy. Do we have to go to some other country or some other time to understand this?
(The author teaches at Delhi University.)
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