By Perkriti Malhotra
Edited by, Nandita Singh, Senior Editor, The Indian Economist
The glamour, the popularity, the aura, we saw it all at the Madison Square Garden (Oops! Modison Square Garden.) Since his speech that day, Narendra Modi has not only been the talk of New York, but also of the whole of U.S. Dressed in his characteristic Nehru jacket, talking in the mesmerizing way that he does, Modi has been successful in establishing India as a brand. Well, Modi might have been successful, but there were others who failed miserably.
Behind all this, something else was also happening: a fight between the Indian journalist, Rajdeep Sardesai (known for his Anti-Modi stand) and a crowd of Pro-Modi supporters. Let’s think about it. On one hand, we have our Prime Minister delivering speeches in the U.S, where he talks about “Come, Make in India” and “the strengthening of Indo-US relationships” and on the other hand, we have a fight between an Anti-Modi journalist and a Pro-Modi NRI crowd. What is the message that we send out to the world at large, let alone The United States.
Whether somebody is Pro- Modi or Anti- Modi is a matter of personal choice; we live in a democracy (Mind you, world’s largest democracy!) and as citizens of a democratic republic, we have the right to accept or reject, and appreciate or criticize any candidate/minister/politician. This in no way should form the basis of a fight between people who take two different views on the same politician. Both of them are justified in having their own opinions, but not in coercing their opinion on the other. The video showing the crowd beating up the journalist went viral, yet after this there was a video exposed by Zee News showing the journalist taking the lead in abusing the Pro-Modi supporters. Considering the way things are molded by the media for their convenience, perhaps we might never know who started it. Whatever may be the case, at the end of the day, there was an action from both sides. This is a matter of sheer disgrace for our country. I do not say that the fight would be justified if it happened in India, but the fact, that it happened in the US, especially on such a prestigious and esteemed occasion, is even more disgraceful.
Why are we being anti-national in our approach? Do people actually have the freedom of speech and expression, or is it merely a basis to criticize people with different thoughts? When we as Indians are not willing to cooperate and are unsuccessful in maintaining intra country relationships, how do we go to another country and persuade them to work on strengthening our ties with them? The day we answer these questions is the day we will be truly successful in establishing India as a brand, because only when we strengthen our intra-country relations will we be able to strengthen our inter-country relations.
Perkriti Malhotra is a student of Commerce at Shri Ram College of Commerce, Delhi University. As a co-founder of a Start-Up Society and an editor of the College magazine, she loves coming up with new creative ideas. She writes about anything and everything that catches her eye. Community service is something she finds solace in. She is a passionate tennis lover and Roger Federer is someone who inspires her. A foodie, she loves to try out new places to eat. She spends her leisure time baking cupcakes and brownies and searching for new and interesting ideas on the Internet.