I would like to start with a saying from a movie that I watched and which really triggers my mind, the actor was shown stating “If you go to foreign countries outside India, say France,Germany,Italy,Singapore or any other countries for that matter; you will only find Frenchmen,Germans,Italian and the likes but If you look at India and its people, you will hardly find an Indian, instead you will see people identifying themselves as Gujarati’s,Tamilians,Bengali,Assamese, Marathas and so many other communities and Caste. This is exactly the diverse culture and traditional background of our country which differentiate one Indian from another by their rituals, cultures, religions and even language for that matter. Correct me if I am wrong but there are only two conditions where an Indian citizen mostly feel Patriotic or realized their Indianness which is; one- during India and Pakistan Cricket Match and the second, when there is a racial discrimination against any Indian citizen in foreign countries.
Our country is famous for its diverse cultures, traditions, religions, art and drama but does this Diversity take us to another level where we start thinking about our own people within our community or religion and not the whole idea of being an Indian? Let me make it simpler by describing this diversity as the Two Eyes where the open eye or the right eye is the Advantage or lighter side of our diverse nation and the closed eye or the left eye depicting the darker side of India and its Diversity.
The Open Eye : India; often remarked as the largest diversified country where you get to see all types of people and backgrounds ranging from languages to religions,community,caste to sub-caste, tribes and even sub-tribes and all these range of people residing within the Country has their own and varied cultural norms,traditions,religious backgrounds and so much more. These wide and rich variations are what the country can brag about with its rich and epic historical backgrounds. This is also another factor which award us recognition from other countries who gets excited and lured to explore the diversity of our country. It is indeed fortunate for us, the citizens of a lustrous and overwhelming history and culture to be able to showcase our unity in diversity no matter how much these variant prompt us to single out ourselves according to our communal, language or religious beliefs. It is also a feeling of pride when other nation describes us and applauds our wide and varied history, cultures, art, drama and religions. Ultimately, we are a nation where Newspapers are published in more than 1000 regional and local languages, the land of spices,festivals,temples, traditional dances and much more, the nation which have more than 22 recognized Regional Languages and boast of 2.1 billion populations making us the 2nd most populated country in the World after China. The country of Taj Mahal, the epitome of Love, The Himalayas which stands within the countries geographies and so much more which we all are aware of and hopefully proud of. All these factors and a lot more contribute to the positive identity of the diversity of our country.
The Closed Eye: Now that we have seen the brighter side of our diversified country, let us explore a bit more about its darker side as well. It is a fact that India is a diverse country and every citizen is proud of its intense diversity. But when we look at the flip side of this diversity we get introduced to the not very encouraging situation which differentiates us according to our caste, creed and language that we originally speak. If you ask a normal Indian within India, who he is, he will surely identifies himself his state of origin, his birthplace, his language and his religion which in fact is a normal phenomenon but also is an indication that the diversification of our nation is a huge drawbacks for its people as well as the country as a whole. These differences in the languages we speak, the state or town we belong, the rituals or traditions that we follows and even the food that we are used to eating since we were born creates a gap between one citizen to another which may harm the communal, religious or ethnical harmony. These differentiations also often leads to clashes from one religion to another, communal disharmony and even leads to communal war which inversely affects the peace and prosperity of a diversified nation. The fact is that, we have, in spite of being united, created a distance amongst others who do not belong to the same origin as ours or follow different rituals which makes us more selfish and narrow minded to suffice our personal or communal requirements rather than urging to care for the overall development and unity of the whole nation.
I am sure nobody, or no Indian will want to imagine a country where there is discrimination in caste,creed or color. We are proud of our nation and its varieties of people living in it and no matter what and how much we will try to distinguish ourselves from our fellow citizens, we should always strive to be identified firstly only as an Indian and nothing else should matters. This, I think should be the top priority and duty of a responsible citizen.
P.S – The font color of this article is a tribute to the tri-color of the nation, but have to use grey instead of white due to background of the Post being white!