The waving tricolour has witnessed many a Prime Minister (PM) – ranging from a loyal socialist to a highly secular one, and from a silent one to a super-extrovert. After all, Mother India has breathed 70 years of independence.
I got my first lessons about the nation officially in my primary school during some social science lecture. We were always taught to be good citizens of India and of this planet. Symbols and elements of national significance were treated with utmost respect by us and our textbooks. Neither were we ever compelled to stand up for our national anthem, nor was there any need to do so, as I recall.
However, the current scenario indicates a possibility that this might not remain the same from now on.
India is now served and led by a person who works arguably for 20 hours a day without demanding a single leave! This person has pitched India ‘as a brand’ so magnificently that, according to the World Bank Group flagship report, the ‘Ease of Doing Business‘ ranking of India has jumped from 130 to 100. This clearly shows that our prime marketer is undoubtedly doing his job well, and that he deserves his incentives.
The best ‘incentive’ for such person could be a ‘genuine appreciation’ backed by patriotic respect. However, petty politics and its pawns are so vehemently devoted to criticising PM Modi that, it seems to me, they (the Opposition) have lost their rationality. Recently, Rahul Gandhi even took a dig at this report, in spite of the fact that the World Bank is a globally-revered body of the United Nations.
Despite being a great ‘soft power’, India is yet to become a superpower. The largest democracy on earth was shamed by a foolish claim of the PM corrupting a global body – that too by a dynastic politician from the oldest political party of India, of which he happens to be the vice president. Media has not ignored the claims of the scion of the Nehru-Gandhi clan – made, in my opinion, blindly for political gains.
This is where it affects India the most. When such blind allegations are made, it hurts us in every manner, just short of being a physical blow to the nation. Can India afford to destroy its own integrity? Rahul Gandhi must at least start speaking some logic. India cannot tackle another puppet PM, and waste another five years or a decade, like it did pre-2014.
India needs a PM who strives to make a developed economy, backed by its rich cultural heritage. It is evident from the history of 2014-2017 that Modi is the best fit for this task, currently.
Despite having one of the strongest armed forces, India has been a phenomenally ‘soft power’. Yoga’s contribution towards making India a ‘soft power ‘is truly remarkable, as is evident from the unanimous declaration of June 21 as International Day of Yoga by the United Nations. Indian cuisine, Bollywood, ragas and rhythms are loved and cherished by millions residing across the globe. Many Indians today feel a profound pride when a foreigner bows down, greeting with folded hands, and says, “Namaste!”
It’s high time to ponder on and ask ourselves – what kind of nation are we indeed becoming?
The author is a Reiki master based in Ahmedabad and New Delhi. He can be reached at [email protected].