In the period since my last blog post over 25 authors, 12 film makers and the latest is a Padma Bhushan awarded scientist have returned their awards to the respective institutions that awarded them. The question that arises is why now?
The Dabholkar murder happened when the UPA government was in Delhi. The murder of other rationalists and a few writers and journalists and a few unfortunate events involving some literary and cultural events happened in recent times.
The people who seem eager to appear as the upholders of liberal values were quiet when the Congress led government was in place at the centre but seem to have woken up from their deep slumber all of a sudden. Have they forgotten that Law & Order is a state subject in India and Karnataka is ruled by a Congress government ?
The people who enjoyed state patronage under the Sonia Gandhi led dispensation and won awards many a time for less than good reason and for sub-standard work now seem keen to discard those awards fearing that this government might somewhere raise questions about the quality of previously awarded work. They forget that India is today a Congress-mukt country. Even Sonia and Rahul Gandhi can not hope to revive this dead colossus.
So my suggestion to these guys is wake up and smell the coffee. India is a society in a fluid state and such events though not excusable are something that has to be seen from a suitable perspective. Those whose hackles are raised every time a member of the minority community is touched by someone who happens to be a Hindu are unperturbed when a member of the Hindu community is brutalised. Isn't it being selective in your condemnation.
Raising questions about the society's intolerance is always important but how we register our protest is equally important otherwise we end up giving a handle to the saffron brigade that moves public glare away from the events.