Friday, 12 August 2016

Are we elevating Hypocrisy to a new level?

We are all familiar with the term hypocrisy. We all know it when we see it. Say one thing, do another and you’re there. ‘Hypocrisy’ means the practice of claiming to have higher standards or more noble beliefs. There have been times when we have all said something, then were exposed minutes later for not staying true to the same course. We are all hypocrites. (There, I have said it) We say something, do something and then hope for something completely different. Hypocrisy is nothing new to India. Rather, I would say that it is deeply ingrained in our society and also in our individual psyches that it is perceived as a way of life. So, the question is, how did we manage to get here? Many people attribute this to the colonial hangover, a parting off gift by the Britishers, who were unable to apprehend the multi-dimensional Indian way of life. Or maybe, it is all because of our obsession to be politically correct. Another reason for our hypocrisy is that in a quest to catch up with the fast-paced world, we are losing our very own traditions and inclining towards this fa├žade.

There are numerous instances, where our hypocrisy is not only proven but can be seen as something that makes us feel sickened and appalled. “Feminism”, is in today’s scenario, the biggest victim of hypocrisy. Remember when Anushka Sharma became a victim of numerous trolls and memes by the very urban junta on social networking sites and was being impugned when Virat Kohli didn’t perform well? She was mocked for a very long period of time, for something she had absolutely nothing to do with. These very feminazis who stand up for women’s rights, voice opinions about how women should be empowered, didn’t say a word, I suppose.

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To validate my point further, many-a-times, women who on one hand, don’t miss an opportunity to ridicule men for being women oppressors, feel very comfortable in asking men to give up their seats in metros and buses. We can claim to be rooting for equality, but God forbid if we let go of the privileges which come with being a woman. When staunch meat eaters, turn vegetarians on select days of the week, when we create outcries over kissing scenes, and then cheer our children as they imitate the pelvic thrusts that pass for Bollywood dance moves, when we are asked to stay away from strangers but are then married off to one, when we insist on loyalty and then proceed to befriend those in ‘useful’ positions while dumping those who are not or when we claim to be secular and cosmopolitan, then look for matrimonial alliances within our own caste, aren’t we being hypocrites?

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Moving on, talking about the recent ISIS bombings in Brussels and Paris which were heinous and condemned worldwide. Precious innocent lives were lost. The world was stunned at such an atrocity. Profile pictures were changed, messages were circulated. But many Middle Eastern countries which are Muslim dominated have been facing the brutality and callousness of terrorism since a long time. But not much concern is shown towards them. The attack on Gaza, or the war between Palestine and Israel, or the attack on Lahore, just after the Brussels violence, was not much talked about. And still, the nonchalance of the educated continues. In our own country, we differentiate between North Indians and South Indians, and then label the foreigners as being racists. We boast of varied cultures and ethnicity but refer to people as Chinkis (although offensive) or Madrasis.  Affairs of Northeastern part of our country, fail to find a slot for themselves in the news. When Anna Hazare stood against corruption, the whole nation supported his cause. But when caught breaking a traffic law, the very population resorts towards instigating bribery to avoid the long procedure to pay the challans.

We, Indians claim to be broad-minded, modern and extremely convivial, maybe it’s time that we begin to live up to our assertions. We need to modify our thinking without compromising on our culture. In a way, we are just pseudo-westerners. We have to find an identity to which we can associate ourselves without delving into false pretense and dual-facedness. It’s a great country, guys; we just need to open our minds to embark on a journey of development in its truest sense.

Written by Chhavi Minhas
“A free spirit, dreamer and admirer of this puzzle called life”

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