Looking back, the most shocking thing was that, I was not shocked enough.
In 1991, eight dalits were hacked to death in broad daylight by a violent mob in Tsundur in Guntur district. This massacre was allegedly orchestrated so that the dalits will know ‘their place’ and as to ‘teach them a lesson not to eve-tease upper class women’. The upper caste families did suffer later, from protracted trial and punishment. A whole generation of the village became unproductive for a lifetime.
Shocking!! Right? Now listen to this: A few days ago, on October 9th this year, groups of Muslims and Hindus in Siddipet, in Medak district, destroyed each other community’s commercial establishments, in what were the worst communal clashes for the last 30 years.
Two very different incidents, very different communities, but the same hatred prevails. Hatred continues! Is it not? What’s more devastating is that there is no government policy to promote harmony among different communities in our vastly diverse country.
In India, Muslims hate Hindus hate Christians hate Muslims hate Sikhs. Jats & Gujjars, Bengalis & Gurkhas, Marathis & Biharis, Kannadigas and Tamilians, the list of hatred is endless. It’s the same story when we look at the whole world: nearly 5 crores died in World War II, out of hatred.
So what the government should do to stop this kind of hatred? Well, it can start with forming a ministry for sectarian tolerance, tough anti- xenophobia laws, councils to predict, understand and prevent regional, communal & sectarian differences, promote research and give awards for exemplary works in the field.
What should individuals do? I say, love is the answer! But when I tried to explain this to a friend, he quipped that everybody knows that love is the answer, but nobody would follow it, so what’s the use saying it? Well, maybe he is right. Love is so difficult that many of us don’t even love our own partners enough. How can we love a different clan, when we are not able to love our very own? I think that it is where we should start.
So starting today – if you want world peace – please try this: You love your spouse regardless of his loving you back; regardless of his coming home late; regardless of the time he spends with you; of what he buys for you; what he calls his mother-in-law; what sounds he makes during his sleep and of course, whatever his friends are like.
And for the guys, try loving her sincerely even if she nags you, even if she overspends money or over-pampers kids, even if she talks to you only during the commercials of a ‘sass- bahu’ drama on TV, even if she doesn’t approve of your ‘social’ drinking, even if the only thing she ever does is to whine and dine and of course, even if she is not interested in any sport.
Remember! True love is always unconditional. True love never expects itself back, but always gets it.