Free Thoughts, Are they Free in India?

India the land of mixtures. Yes, you read it right we like to keep it mixed atleast that’s what I was led to believe since my childhood. Maybe it was my parents or maybe my school. I have never alienated someone because of their religion or caste or colour. Strangely I also believed that’s how the rest of the folks of my generation thought. Everyone is equal in the eyes of the law, All Indians are my brutha’s and sistah’s. I was the Cat who had his eyes closed and thought the world was dark.

I moved to Delhi in the year 2000 and that city opened my eyes to reality. No one is equal. Caste and Colour are more important than the grey matter between your ears. Money is everything. And most important of them your religion matters. If you are a Hindu you would be looked down upon if you are seen eating beef at Karim’s. Your Hindu friends would advice you not to go to the Jama Masjid Area because it is filled with thieves and murderers. Muslim’s are to be kept at an arms distance and you should never be best friends with them. It was all new to me.

During this time I was also called by various names Shetty, Ganjoo, Takloo, Kaloo and mostly Madarasi. They would call all south indians madarasi. I tried telling them that they should only call people from Madras as Madarasi. But it never occurred to some that there are 4 states in South India and that Madras is the capital of TamilNadu. They were still living in the British era and I swear some still lived in the Mughal era. These guys still went by how their ancestors addressed the south Indians.

So I threw a party in a friends house in East of Kailash. His uncle was out of town and he had the entire place to himself. It was called the South Indian Party. And the only thing that was served was Idly and Sambar. Ah!!! So a bunch a South Indians and North Indians were invited to the party. And I noticed something really weird the sambar was not emptying in proportion to the idlies being eaten. These North Indian friends were filling the sambar in glasses and drinking it like it was some hot soup. really weird!!! They were not touching the idlies because we did not provide them with spoons. So a session was conducted on how to eat idly with their hands. I remember telling them that it is OK to get their fingers smeared with sambar because they could always wash it off after the meal. I did have to hurry and get more sambar so the idlies could be finished. They did enjoy eating the idlies with their fingers.

So why did I tell that story I think South India should educate North India on why it is not weird to do the things the way South Indians do. There is so much of cross cultural learning that can happen. Yes the cow is a holy animal of the Hindus in north India. But when that cow is roaming around Janpath or the Ring Road aimlessly when it has no where to go then why not kill it and eat it? Who told these Hindus that Beef is not to be eaten? Their Ancestors? It was told in an millennium which has gone by. If we can’t protect a cow which is on the road and posing a danger to the road users then some remedial action has to happen. We don’t live in times when we are using bullock carts. For the sake of the cow so many people are being hurt and killed. Are these politically motivated. Have people in this country stopped thinking for themselves.

Also this whole thing of imposing Hindi In TamilNadu. I am not going to go with the argument that Tamil is a classical Language and it has existed for thousands of years. Well we don’t speak tamil that was spoken a thousand years back. We don’t even speak the same tamil which was used a hundred years back. But don’t impose a language which the people in the state don’t want thrust upon them. Yes, Hindi is not our National Language.

Everything changes in this world. If we don’t change with the times we will stop existing. Change will happen only when we can think freely. That’s why we should cherish the freedom that we got from the foreign rulers.

Jai Hind!

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