Intolerating Tolerance

The word “intolerance” has gained huge significance in the recent past. From writers to journalists to actors, i.e, people in the media fraternity using the medium “media” propagate their feeling of insecurity. Do people like Sharukh, Aamir, Anand Patwardhan, Devanuru Mahadeva feel insecure in a country like India? The reason for mentioning the last two names is to imply that this has nothing to do with caste, creed, religion or language. Some of you may not even know who they are.

There have always been clashes between Shaivite and Vaishnavites, Shias and Sunnis, Buddhists and Hindus, Catholics and Protestants etc, This has not suddenly grown in the past six months. If Aamir Khan feels insecure, he has the option to send his kids out of India with the money earned mostly from the poor Indian fraternity. He will continue to stay in intolerant India to suck people’s money to fund his children abroad

As a common man, do I feel insecure? Am I afraid to walk out of the house? During my recent travel to Amritsar, without knowing both Punjabi and Hindi, I managed myself in the heartland of Punjabis and Sikhs. There were always people to help me with boarding, lodging and commuting. Even for a minute, I never felt insecure in a place 2500 kms away from my native. I can proudly say that India is and will be the most tolerant county in the world.

Other than celebrities, I have not seen any common man (salaried employee or middle class or lower middle class) talk about intolerance. Any reasons? Because we have much more work to do for our living. Our worries are mostly on prices of dal, onions and our livelihood. In Chennai, people are getting drowned in floods. In southern most part of India, Rameswaram fishermen are being mauled by the Srilankan Army. At Kupwara, J&K, as I write, Indian Army is engaging in gun battles with the infiltrators. If a celebrity had returned his award for the death of an Indian fisherman due to a neighboring country, I would have been proud. But for a non existent intolerance? I don’t feel it. Most common people don’t feel it. As Chetan Bhagat said, “wrong to label Islam as violent after stray terror attack.But why did you label my entire country intolerant after a few stray incidents?”

I don’t care if they move to a more tolerant country like United States, France, Russia or for that matter Syria, Iraq or even Afghanistan, but they owe an explanation to the people of this country ,what occurred in the last six months for them to feel otherwise. May be there is too much tolerance in this country for some to tolerate.


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