Showing posts from January, 2013


The Tamil film "Viswaroopam" by Kamal Hassan has been banned in Tamil Nadu on the grounds that it hurts sentiments and therefore poses as a law and order threat. To begin with, it is a culture that defines its citizens and literature. In one of the oldest civilizations prevalent, we are seeing a rising culture of intolerance. As sociologist Ashis Nandy recently told a television journalist that we are today less willing to debate about clash of ideas and are only interested in platitudes which is a pity.

Today, across the spectrum, artistic freedom is under assault.  To illustrate this point further, consider these examples: a film's title is changed because it has "Barber" suffixed to its title which offends the community of barbers. Can it get more ridiculous than this? Meanwhile, there is a song from a Hindi movie in which an entire line is beeped out as it offends a community despite the fact that it quotes a Hindi proverb. The unfair treatment meted out to …

Rest In Peace, We Won't

Pain and anguish are as much part of our lives as much as happiness and joy. Some weekends are meant for anger and pain like the weekend of December 22-23, when enraged youngsters in Delhi braved water cannons, brutal lathis and tear-gas as they protested against the horrific gang rape of a girl. Or like the weekend of December 29-30 when the nation woke up to the tragic death and mourned for her death. Repressed public anger, reliving of personal experiences of sexual harassment against women, of constantly reading about crimes against women and our sheer inability to do anything about it and the pent-up anguish eventually manifested itself through the rage that came pouring out after her death.

Yes, the youth of the country are still angry and protest marches are still being held. Surely, it is unfair to call her a rape "victim" due to her resilient fighting spirit making her a true survivor even in death. She died uniting us in death and awakening a nation's conscience…