Widely circulated news of the light moment between the Indian PM and the President of the USA at G7 Summit included the Hindi language. A laugh enlivens life to a comfortable degree. If the two heads of different countries laugh together, optimism gets its fair share. This is what was seen at the get together in France.
During their 40-minute discussion at Biarritz, both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Donald Trump were busy in answering the sharp queries asked by the media persons on the occasion. Our PM replied in the Hindi language while the US President answered in American English. In between the question-answer session, what really lightened the charged atmosphere was Trump’s unusual joke.
It was directly aimed at Narendra Modi who he said was well versed with the English language. This revelation on his part not only made other present leaders burst into excessive laughter but also transcended Modi into a jovial mood by the quick utterance of his humour. The mood and manner of the American president sometimes leads us to think about his changing countenances.
While back in our own country, we came across a scene of some heated exchanges between the anchor and the guest on a news channel debate on television. Over the discussion on the topic of a Rahul Gandhi-led team’s visit to Kashmir, there ensued a scene where the anchor-guest argument reached an intense stage. They also entangled on the language issue. The guests were putting their respective views forward on the situation in Kashmir.
The anchor at one time read a tweet by Priyanka Gandhi but its interpretation was not acceptable to one guest among the panel. He tried to correct the meaning of the same. Upon this verbal argument, the anchor said, “you do not understand English,” and pat came the reply from the guest, “you do not know Hindi quite well.” The heat soon subsided with the anchor swiftly using his wisdom to take control over the debate and invited another guest. In this Hindi-English spat, none of the two burst out laughing, leave alone the other guests.
It can, therefore, be said that what Trump created was not found in the anchor-guest argument. They neither laughed nor shook hands. In no way when giants meet does positivity linger for the time they keep shaking their hands. An American philosopher Martha Craven Nussbaum once said that public emotions, frequently intense, have large scale consequences for the nation’s progress towards its goals. They can give the pursuit of those goals new vigour and depth, but they can derail that pursuit, introducing or reinforcing divisions, hierarchies and forms of neglect or obtuseness.