It’s altogether a different feeling to stalk back certain moments when one realises the harsh, yet real face of certain ‘supposed’ freedoms which we as citizens of India are given. I stalked back certain moments from my school and college days. I remembered studying books which elegantly, like a long stream, listed the freedoms the citizens of India had. It felt liberating to read the words ‘democratic’; it felt exhilarating to know that I along with my batchmates had the ‘Freedom of Expression’ sans any fears attached; it felt wonderful to know that four whole articles in our honourable Constitution were dedicated for this very Freedom of Expression. But that’s all what it was and it is! Just a few words embedded in various sheets of paper. I think the editor who edited those sheets forgot to add a single line ‘if it’s in accord with our dear netas’ after editing the Freedom of Expression paragraph. Or maybe it was just one of our dear netas who ordered him not to tell the writer to add it.
"Maharashtra and Mumbai??? Why not? Mumbai has always fancied itself as an independent entity, anyway. This game has countless possibilities."
It’s just an expression (that too satirical) consisting of 20 words (that too on Twitter). But expressing 20 words is baap re baap, isn’t it dear netaji?
And we don’t understand or need humour, isn’t it netaji?
And how can we use the term ‘game’. It is a question of the land, and crores of emotions attached to it, isn’t it netaji?
And how can Mumbai obtain a separate stance, isn’t it netaji?
Well netaji, I along with millions of others already know that you can’t take satire or humour in good spirit. Fair enough, but what exactly happened to the Democracy status? Where exactly did our freedom of speech and expression (which our Constitution clearly states) evaporate?
We can’t use satire. We can’t use words like ‘game’. We can’t express our views, and even while tweeting on Twitter or posting on Facebook we need to spend hours to analyse our tweets and posts, ensure that it is in accord with every neta party (and maybe even send it to your office to get your approval) and receive an approval/ rejection receipt maybe after a year (considering the reputation with regard to time management you guys have). Oh, and we should also know that if it isn’t in accord with your terms and conditions, we should totally expect personal remarks, protests in our compounds and threats.
But dear netaji, I on behalf of the youngsters of this nation must tell you that you have very well, in absolutely life-like picture quality, explained to us a side of the word ‘opportunist’. Against all odds, if one of us bravely decides to express his or her view, you-the dear netaji sees a great opportunity to tweak the interpretation to maximise the vote bank and suddenly express boundless and elevated love for your constituency (strictly through words).
So now I’m left with a hazy understanding of this concept ‘Freedom of Expression as practised in India’. Until an actual amendment is made in our rule book or a restriction is added under the prevailing heads, I’ll continue to go ahead with the one currently stated in our Constitution; even if our dear netas lack humour, find expressions offensive or pricking! And I’m sure there are several other youngsters who would do the same to keep democracy alive.