Each parley has its virtue in a democracy, and demands tolerance and equitable living of opposing thoughts and ideas. Intolerance leaves the entire nation naked for outside mocks and derisions.

When I speak to sympathetic countrymen and women, they evince optimism about economic growth and a possibility of improvement in the quality of life. But then there are people who are known for their contribution in their own field of work or people who can drive a pleasant, yet rational conversation for hours. They do not seem to feel the same; and rather, express fear of the onset of a culture of intolerance in the country marking a period of slow progress.

During last few months, India has seen more dialogues and deliberations among general population on the issue of communalism, quota, personal freedom, and rewriting history than economic development, better business environment, health, or for that matter, education. It is rather an aggressive confabulation of what is not relevant or what is not even understood well.

One ideology promotes how India came into being in 1947 while other speaks about thousands of years of our ancient civilization though leaving tactically the last several centuries in between. While each is correct in the premise of their arguments, propositions do not find any common ground. And both sides compete to nudge popular opinion in their favour.

While arguments and counter-arguments are healthy for democracy and progress, any patronage to intolerance and violence by people in power directly or indirectly is anti-national. And, any attempt to brand protests and opposing thoughts as anti-national will be futile; and will set the process of self-annihilation and ridicule in future for their very ideology. Intolerance is no way.



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