Society & Lifestyle
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|by G Swaminathan|
‘Secularism’ is the most misused, misunderstood, misinterpreted, misconceived and exploited word in India. True, no other nation would have had so many diverse religions, languages and culture groups in one place. But, that does not justify that religious connotations and religious concessions should be extended only to the so called minor groups when the whole nation is following one particular religion Hinduism.
Please understand, I am not trying to write about the superiority of Hinduism or deficiencies of other religions. A religion is a way of life which tries to put the wrong doers on the right way so that the life is smooth and happy. But, unfortunately, the maximum bloodshed has happened in the whole world in the name of religion only.
In India, it has started showing its ugly face many decades ago. We pretend as if such fanatic assaults have not been taken place earlier which is totally false. Religious fanatics had been there and fanned the religious fervor into a hatred tirade.
After independence our political leaders have taken the word ‘secularism’ and ‘plurality’ to favor all minor religious groups not with the idea of making the nation one but to garner votes during the elections to acquire power. We find in every religion there is a group which tries to be mad and bent on spreading hatred. Within 65 years of independence, Indian political parties have built as many groups as possible every act with the aim of vote bank politics; not just religion but also using class, caste, community and even sub sect feelings.
The minds have become narrower, the visions have become blurred and animosity and hatred started reigning supreme. The division of people on language has also become another disadvantage. Indians could hardly think themselves to belong to one nation and one language and one religion. Accepted, that is impossible. But, the media and the political pundits only try to fan the disgust and divide instead of uniting the people.
Indian’s hypocrisy has become evident in most cases. Even the religious leaders whip up divisive feelings among their followers so that they can thrive and enjoy political patronage. This destructive tendency is spreading its tentacles in all areas and bringing the country to alarming levels. Intolerance on every act has touched the nadir.
We have too many worship places like temples, mosques and churches. What we don’t find is fellow feeling, patriotism or empathy. Sadly, what we witness today is nothing but destructive development.
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