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Tuesday, 8 November 2016

On being Hindu

When India is publicized on an international platform, it is flaunted as a rich country that accepts all religions. People from diverse cultures and languages, celebrates all sorts of festivals, together. There is no doubt in the fact that India is the only country on this earth, where there are so many different languages and so many different religions living collectively.

However, I think that this quality of India has now become a burden on her. For how long can one pretend? For how long can a person suppress their hatred? It seems that these days, India only wants to breathe in one word as though it is a lifeline, “Hinduism”. From time to time, those who belong to a different religion or cast, are forced to take in that they are not Indians, and so they should always be ready to face hatred and demise.

Usually we get to see that a Lion kills other carnivorous of the jungle, because he believes them to be his competitor, although he never eats them. When given a closer look it becomes clear that the temperament of every (carnivorous) being is quite alike. Humans are the only living beings in this universe that holds analytical and logical wisdom; and this the quality that makes humans different/singular from other intelligent beings.

However, why should I talk about the universe or the world, I am more worried about the place I live in; I am concerned for myself. I am concerned for my thoughts, for my existence. I am worried about the religion and values, which I have inherited. I am worried (scared) about being a fraction of Hindu, despite the fact that I am Bhartiya. I am worried about my Christian mother. Will someone cut me in two pieces one day on the middle of the road, and would name one part Hindu and the other part Christian?

A few days ago, I got the chance to read news that said, “Nawazuddin siddiqui was stopped from playing a role in Ramlila, in his own village; because he was a Muslim who was daring to play the role of a Hindu.”

It would be wrong to think that Indians (Hindus) have started to believe these things unexpectedly. Discrimination among casts is the very foundation of India. History of India is replete with stories of racial discrimination, in which Hindus (of “Upper Cast”) were always given priority. Any other casts or religions on Indian soil were considered as aggressors and encroachers. They were never believed to be an equal of Hindus.

Karn wanted to learn archery, for which he went to Guru Dronacharya. However, Dronacharya only trained Shatriyas. He insulted Karn by calling him a “Shudra Putr” and refused to teach him, after which Karn sworn to become a greater archer than him. He then went to Dronachrya’s Guru, the Shiv bhakt Parshuram. Parshuram only taught Brahmans; and so afraid that he too would refuse to teach him, Karn lied about being a Brahman.

However, even Karn did not know the truth about himself at that point of time. When Pashuram found out that a Shudra family had raised Karn, he cursed him; a curse that ended up being the reason of Karn’s death. Dronacharya had also refused to teach Eklavya, for he was a Bheel by cast (and was a better archer than his prized student Arjun). Eklavya then became a great archer on his own, and was tricked and killed by Krishna in a war.

There is no sign of sorrow in the books of history, for the disdain these two characters (Karn and Eklavya) had to endure. What we do get to read quite often is the mention of their defiant nature, which simply was the result of the disdain they had to endure even though they were proficient.

Even today, whether the person is alive or dead, he/she is treated according to the cast and religion that they practice. However, it seems that nowadays, all the boundaries of cruelty and hatred for casts and religions have been crossed in Hindustan.