The power of Social media these days cannot be underestimated. What started off as mass circulation of mails and facebook pages creating awareness has extended its outreach by means of Whatsapp messages. Now, these messages that ping us daily are such a vital component of our existence that it is difficult to live without browsing through some of the “ekdum fresh” jokes etc.
I received a message today which talks about how we Indians should take a lesson from Ratan Tata’s true blue kind of attitude towards our country with reference to certain Pakistanis. I’m sure you all would have come across a lot of inspirational quotes from this gentleman and I respect the kind of speeches he gives in colleges. Just like any other message talking about what he has to say, I eagerly browsed through what this message was about.
So, its basically that after the 26/11 attacks on the Taj, Mr. Tata invites tenders for remodeling its structure. The bids that come in also include some from Pakistan. It goes on to say about how Ratan Tata refused their offer by saying, “you could be shameless, I am not.” I don’t know how much truth this statement holds but the author of the message has moulded it in such a way that he is urging readers to take inspiration about how we should have that kind of ‘love’ for our motherland!! It has a very dramatic end saying “Awake countrymen, the nation is above everything else!”
Take a minute to analyse what is being propagated. Just because the attacks were from Pakistan, we will not allow any kind of interaction from any Pakistani who is taking genuine interest in reviving our heritage! Dear Author, I think you are one of those first countrymen who needs some awakening!
From a hard core, irrational patriot’s perspective, this may seem as something which should be applauded and circulated amongst all. But look at this from the point of view of those industrialists… or let me specify “Pakistani” industrialists. They must have obviously thought about the rare chance of their bid being approved because the attacks were also from their country but irrespective of what people would say, they came to India! They were denied a meeting with Ratan Tata after hours of wait at the reception but they enthusiastically went all the way to Delhi only to request for a meeting. Had we Indians been treated in such a way, we would have walked out with the choicest of abuses to be served to that arrogant Head! We would have gone all out against Pakistanis and made such a hue and cry about how rudely we were treated. But for them, mutual co-operation was more important than their egos!!
And by the way, where was the principle of “Atithi devo bhava” that we keep harping about in every incredible India ad?! Is it just meant for select countries from whom we need to extract some advantages? Is the Indian ego bigger than this statement that is part of our rich legacy?? Debatable!!
Its so strange that on one hand we talk about becoming a superpower in the next decade and on the other hand hold such prejudices in our minds. This is not love and respect for the motherland! Why, we don’t even get up with 100% pride to sing the national anthem in cinema theatres! Till such time these kind of ideas and notions persist in our society it is very difficult to progress. We might as well progress materially but that is not what we want our future to be.
Indians, Pakistanis, Americans, Jews, Muslims, Dalits and all of us sharing this tiny planet are humans at our heart, after all! Why should someone’s nationality or religion make us think in wrong light about them? We talk about concepts like globalism and international relations and let us include Aman ki Asha also for that matter…. This eutopia will remain in black and white forever if we don’t practice what we preach! If we do have the “Asha” to establish peace, let us not sit hand on hand waiting for the governments to launch various other such fancy campaigns… Let us change our mindset, let us just intend that we shall look at the world through a broader perspective, through a rational perspective and not blindly get flown along with the crowd.
Just a mindset change and believe me, we shall be halfway through!!!