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Monday, December 21, 2015

Middle - The Tolerant Indian

key words: Middles. creative writing, tolerance, Indian, Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Jupinderjit Singh

MR Prime Minister, 

like millions of Indians, I too am aghast at the ongoing debate on intolerance in the country. I am not writing this to take a side. There are too many intellectuals busy in arguing and counter-arguing the issue. But yes, I am pained, rather deeply pained. For, no country and its citizens are more tolerant than us. 

I can prove you that. Our life is all about tolerating something or the other every moment of our existence. Start from the air we breathe or the water we drink. I wonder if anyone has more tolerating immunity than us. Anti-pollution policies are framed, crores are spent and yet we tolerate the deterioration in these basic elements of our survival. 

We call our river sacred and yet we tolerate its pollution. We are so tolerant on throwing all kind of pungent, poisonous stuff in water bodies and still happily take dip in those. Not just rivers, we tolerate people throwing garbage on roads and streets. In fact, our tolerance starts in the wee hours of the day. Loudspeakers atop a religious place shake us out of our slumber and disturb children’s studies. We let it be. The milk we drink is without the promised nutrition. The fruits and vegetables we eat are laced with chemicals and contain dangerous metals. But do we complain? No. We tolerate. 

We also ignore people jumping red lights. We tolerate people jumping queues or forming a third or fourth queue on a road. We tolerate people pushing and jostling us at bus stands, railway stations and markets. We tolerate when VIPs get preferential treatment. We even smile and embrace our destiny when VIPs first get darshan of deities in religious places. We tolerate never-ending serials, high-decibel meaningless TV  debates; we tolerate the same kind of movies and see them happily. 

We tolerate paying 10 times more for popcorns and water. We tolerate political parties promising the moon during every election and we don’t remind them. We tolerate listening again and again to their anti-poverty slogans. We play along with their divisive politics. We tolerate riots. We tolerate scams. Our farmers tolerate spurious seeds and ineffective pesticides. They tolerate selling potato for Re 1 kg only to buy it later at Rs ten a kg. We tolerate delayed medicare and salaries. We tolerate when merit is ignored merit and remain happy in the ‘chalta hai’ attitude. 

As a nation, we tolerate the regular killing of our jawans at the borders. We even take the brutal beheading of our jawans in our stride. We tolerate those occupying our lands. We smile when they interpret our offer of friendship as weakness. We forget soon the bomb and terror attacks on our motherland. We tolerated for long a PM who rarely spoke and the one who seems to be staying more abroad than in the country. No, Mr PM. The whole debate and accusation of India being an intolerant country is wrong. We are tolerant in each breath we take.

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