9 Apr, 2016
Patriotic slogans are like smiles — outward manifestations of an inner state. You cannot force people to be patriotic, just as you cannot force them to keep smiling for 10 years for reasons they know not. The mindset of coercion is driven by raw, adversarial power. It bristles with hostility towards a person, group or community, not love for the country. The returns from forcing someone to shout a slogan of your choice are psychological, not political or patriotic. What is at work is the imposition of one’s will on the target of coercion.It is unpatriotic to target individuals and communities. All the more so, if it is done in the name of Bharat Mata. The idea of requiring someone to shout Bharat Mata ki Jai is that Bharat is our common Mother. (Why should I shout Jai for someone else’s mother?) So, we are members of the same family, wherein love rules and coercion has no place.