In The Age Of Free Expression And Lost Mind

A lot is happening these days. JNU, Rohith, Parliament, Beef, GST, Intolerance….the list just goes on. There are slew of speeches that appear in my FB feed every day.  Modi, Arvind, Rahul, Kanhiya, Smiriti, Anupam, Barkha, Ravish…. again the list goes on. People slam each other as bhakts, pseudo, anti-nationalists and what not. Everyone seems to be having an opinion on everything and they don’t hesitate to express it on social media and other places. Social media has become the thrash bag where everyone who was never heard have a voice.

I am not the judgemental type and frankly have least interest in learning what opinions people have of the myriad of issues that never seem to end and given the way we have been behaving, will never end. I sit back, trying to analyse each issue objectively, and reach to the right conclusion. I am unsuccessful till now. I just don’t have a definite opinion on anything.

Modi is working 18 hours a day, and leading from the front for tight administration. His cabinet is equally supporting him with some awesome initiatives. After a long time the government seems to be working pro-actively on things. I don’t doubt any of this.

Amit Shah began his UP campaign by polarising voters calling them to vote for nationalists (read bhakts) and anti-nationalists (seculars). Ram Mandir is on the cards. Beef was brought in during Bihar elections. Modi didn’t hesitate to play his OBC card in a place he knew is known for cast politics amidst all talks of development. Freehand to RSS and support to PDP. Swami and Yogi for preaching hatred, Modi and Suresh Prabhu for showing development. The lynching, the hooliganism, the intolerance (yes, that word) against any opposition and the unabashed and unapologetic way in which the main political party is functioning. I don’t doubt that either.

Kejriwal saves 100 crore on a highway project, spends 300 crore on self-branding. Takes new initiatives and controls corruption but never leaves any opportunity to project himself as a mass leader. Rahul visits every distressed person in India, eats food with them, expresses solidarity but is never able to help them. I feel pity for him. Leftists want ‘azadi’ from capitalism, but will never tell how. People are reminded of their casts when votes are sought and everyone cringes when it translates into drama over reservation. The so called seculars support terrorists to please a minority (who keep wondering how does that help them) and the saffron brigade leaves no stone unturned to assert their dream of Hindu nation.

There is no dearth of examples of hypocrisy by all parties across India. The idea here is, everything we see is somehow politically motivated. Every move that a party makes is meant for two set of audiences. One that can see things objectively and can see through all the hollow claims (and sometimes lose their mind), and others whom they think are trying to please- but are really striving for some real development.

May be in the hindsight these hypocrisies, however cringe-worthy, lets the democracy function. We are a difficult nation to govern and more often than not a decision by a government will please one community and offend other.

Maybe we should already accept the fact that any idea of good governance and development is unrealistic, given how deep rooted beliefs people have, and how over the years they have been ploughed over and over again and harvested.

And I am not at all discounting here the role of the most honest and incorruptible media we have. There well researched reports and professional way of presenting them are making intellectuals out of everyone. Heartfelt thanks to them!

Rajat Agarwal

PGDM student at IMT Ghaziabad