What happened in Vegas should remain in Vegas.
But, I only wish I could buy the above point in regard to what happened last month in India; the whole Salman Rushdie controversy. And not take up the same thing again. But I see it as my responsibility to talk about this.
Since, the day news about Rushdie’s plan to visit India came in news, the protest started across the country. Everybody who did not even knew about SV controversy came on streets.
Whatever that happened was something, a lot of people knew will happen. Salman Rushdie- an Indian first, got no chance to speak his mind; and to mention specifically in his own country. Same had happened with Tasleema Nasreen as well.
‘Educated’ looking people carrying swords in their hands and ours ‘opportunistic’ politicians won the ‘plan’ to not to let Rushdie enter in his own country of birth.
In every set of discussion or argument or debate or even a battle, somebody has to loose and face savior damage. At most of times, people like you-and-me are at receiving end. We’re those who’re at loss. We’re the people, for whom such petty issue does not make a whole lot of difference. The defeat we had in this whole controversy is irreversible. Rushdie is now an Indian non-appearance of our defeat. It is the country’s defeat, the defeat of the people who say they’re liberal in their saying and doing. I don’t give a fuc* to the rule which cannot provide security for few hours to his own author. (Common people are far-sight).
A lot of people, I met including my family members and friends said: “how does it make a difference or say how does it matter at all”; if Rushdie is able to visit India or otherwise. How does it change their life if somebody is deprived of his right to freedom? OR say they themselves are deprived of their right to freedom; In case when the voice on open platform like internet is been prohibited. We’re still kid, when it comes to understanding that, if the person next to you is killed brutally and you remain silent. You could be next- in ‘to be killed’ list.
We Indians are sometime too cocky and fussy about our fundamental rights. The level of freedom given to anyone in India to praise & preach his religion, visit a shrine OR to create a ruckus of public property is also given to a skeptic. Like, everyone else he also has right to not only exercise but promote his ideas and beliefs.
Do we really need to be proud of this country called India?
We think we’re artistically but had no dignity to honor Maqbool Fida on ones’ own canvas, a country which says that, they’re huge at heart but could not give a piece of land to a refugee writer.
One of my Uncles does not believe in any religion; but continues to listen to bells at templates and prayers at mosque every morning and evening. He says
“I have never complained that my sentiments were hurt. I wonder why these ‘Religious’ or ‘Bigot’ people needs to act so troublesome all the time“.
If I go ahead and talk anything bad about anybody’s religious scripture, I will be warned about possibility of riots. If somebody portrays your God in a painting, we take our swords out. On a single unacceptable word, Fatwas’ are issued. And then after, those people continue to be dissatisfied. And look for more ways to be in ‘limelight’.
If you have issued a Fatwa against anyone, then what is your concern with him anymore?
Rushdie, is an example of above statement. It should be of no concern to those Fatwa issuing institutions that what he is doing, where he is suppose to go, what is he speaking or writing. You have yourself declared that he does not belong to your religion.
A single sentence against a religious book, a statute or a picture of Prophet ends up with hundred of cases against you. In India, even the court of law punishes such people stating that his intentions were to hurt religious sentiments.
My Uncle- a skeptic also said: “I have never filed a compliant stating that on Christmas or Id, I was asked to make a compulsory donation at my work place”. If a religious person or institution like Debond can make their point and exercise their right to freedom then why can’t someone like my uncle or even people like Rushdie (this does not mean that Rushdie is a skeptic person). They also have same amount of rights on words.
In our endeavors towards excellence, when it comes to ban a book; we certainly have earned a good name. We feel proud to insult a writer or an artist. We have become so conscious of ones’ presence and intolerant that now we can’t even listen to a writer.
No matter, what amount of risk was on Rushdie, regarding his visit to India, the government should not have escaped from their responsibility to provide enough security?
Do we really need such a government-which is worth nothing? World 3rd largest democracy does not have guts to provide an Indian born person enough security to visit his own country. Do we still need to have faith on our government and police, who themselves are somewhat handcuffed by institutions like Deoband.
P.S. My intentions are not to hurt anybody’s religious sentiments. *PEACE*