Discussions over Tea (Of course, cutting maar ke)

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

POLITICS : Double speak by the Indian PM?



I have a healthy respect for AB Vajpayee and consider him to be a man to make the right decisions (even though I think he takes his time over them). Yet, some of the points he mentioned in his speech to the Indian "diaspora" touched a nerve somewhere. This nerve, mind you, wasn't the sympathetic one.. it was the nerve of regret and disappointment, to hear the PM having dual standards for the residents Indians versus the NRIs.
Rediff, reports with the following statements -
The PM also urged the community -- fractious at the best of times -- to rise above differences of religion, region and language and forge an Indian identity.
Yet, in my opinion, our diaspora are more united that the rest of the resident Indians, not having issues like "religion, region and community" to fight over. Other statements such as this one ---
"But this is just the beginning, not the end," he said, asking NRIs and PIOs to not only put their money where their mouth is, but also contribute in terms of ideas and inputs
--- wouldn't inspire any awe in the eyes of the new diaspora, who readily believe that the onus of change in the political and social climate of the nation, lies in the hands of the politicians.

My issue with this is, why distinguish between the NRI and the resident Indian? Has the Indian resident ever been exhorted to pursue the right path? Or does the resident Indian have the right to live in "shades of grey" whereas the diaspora live lives in black and white?

While, ABV is right to say, that the diaspora should not only contribute in terms of finances, but also in terms of ideas and efforts to the social revolution, the onus does lie in the hands of the government. There will be pockets of change, that will be brought about by individuals and groups of society, but the larger change has to be brought about, as an instrument of state policy. The differences in identity which is being created within each resident, to isolate and capitalize on every single least common factor, is tearing the nation apart. It requires a strong leader, who can rule with an iron fist, weed out corruption, social politics and look beyond the next election to cleanse this land of it's sin. Vajpayee could've been that leader. Vajpayee can still be that leader, if he takes the steps to.

FILMS : New York Film Festival



The NYFF is running between Oct 3 - Oct 19 this year. All movies will play at Lincoln Theatres. Pray I get to see a few of them. The ones I want to see are Mystic River and The Barbarian Invasions.

P.S. Why does Rediff have a photograph of Denzel Washington on the feature page, when they clearly state in their article -
You won't find a Denzel Washington extolling how much he loved working in the cop drama "Out of Time"...


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