Open mind, large heart

News: A heated online debate has erupted after comedian Vir Das’s “two Indias” monologue video went viral. While many are accusing him of insulting India, others are coming to his defence.

Police complaints have also been filed against the comedian.

At the root of the current tension is the idea of an India that is only a few decades or few centuries old. It is much older.

Why Vir Das is being criticized?

He’s been accused of lowering India’s image and prestige abroad.

Why the criticism against Vir Das is unfair?

Mature democracies should be unafraid of introspection and criticism, and instead welcome it.

The greatness or otherwise of India is not diminished or enhanced by stand-up comics or sit down dharnas.

Moreover, nation-building calls for an open mind and a large heart. India, like America, and virtually any nation on earth, is an unfinished process, a work in progress. Criticism and relentless self-examination are what will make it better.

The hallmark of a strong, resilient, self-confident nation is the ability to take criticism even if it is unfounded or unfair.

India should strive towards the ideal of vasudaiva kutumbakam – “the world is one family.”

Source: This post is based on the article “Open mind, large heart” published in  TOI on 27th Nov 2021.

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