Before I venture out, let me make a few things clear. I haven’t seen Slumdog…and given all the hype surrounding it, doubt if I will ever see it.
But the reason am writing this is because I read a lot of things in the papers about people opposing Slumdog. Reasons were because the movie showed India and Indians in a poor light. (Given that the movie is about slums, light got to be poor na..) Then I watched Delhi-6, last week.
Though my friend Shakti disagreed, I sort of enjoyed the movie. With a few amends here and there, movie could have been much better but anyway, am not writing a review. Either-way its too late to write one (am talking about the time right now)
In the midst of the movie, a thought struck me. Isn’t Delhi-6 also showing us in a poor light? As foolish people, who can be influenced to kill by an uneducated baba and the solution to everything lies in plucking a hair out of a monkey’s body!! And this is the state of mind of those residing in middle class homes in the capital of the country, to top it all! Wonder if the movie also hurted the pride of those opposing Slumdog.
Just like those firangs must have pitied us while seeing Slumdog, they must have ridiculed us while watching Delhi 6. But not reading those protests/opposings much? Why? Is being ridiculed much better than being pitied upon?
As I see it, people can laugh, pity us or exercise whatever emotion they can but fact remains that in the midst of this economic gloom, its only India along with China whose growth will contribute positively to the world economy. Mind you, US, UK, France, Japan have contributed albeit negatively. And to look back, its Indian engineers who drive NASA space programs, Indian doctors and other professionals who Mr Obama wants in his team (not seeing much of China, UK or any other country for that matter in Mr Obama’s inner circle). And I can keep typing….
Point remains, we as a nation and civilization are the proverbial ‘like this only!’ Read Sunil Khilnani’s Idea of India, a book which very well explains how India was never to be a country, forget being the world’s largest democracy and other attributes. Our innumerable conflicts, contradictions, communalities, and, despite all this, co-existence is a marvel that needs to be applauded and cherished.
So whether a Slumdog shows something or not, we are too big (in size and manner) to be affected. Whether a Slumdog shows something or not, we don’t have the time to look at anything to divert ourselves off our goals. Looking ahead is what we need to do, constantly.
Even I don’t have the time to write any more on this topic.