The topic on the subject tolerance has been discussed before but this remains important in all situations. We have been witness to the violence taking place in different parts of the country due to one or the other reasons. The state of Jammu and Kashmir was comparatively peaceful till the end of seventies and the trouble started in the beginning of that decade. The so called advocates of the humanity brought forward many reasons for the upsurge of the violence as violence was the natural consequence of the mishandling of the issue. There might be truth in that but that was taken by the people who indulged in the act of violence as they were given the certificate of being right in their approach. The result of that is that we have lost thousands of brave soldiers and innocent people in and outside the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Later on, the unfortunate innings of violence gulped one of the most prosperous states of our country, Punjab which could be brought to normalcy again after paying a heavy price in terms of human lives. We all are aware of the problems being faced in the name of rich and poor, developed and underdeveloped areas, majority and minority based on religion or the language and so many more. There are large number of people who try to justify such violent acts which may seem to be a profit quotient to them in a short run but, would prove to be dangerous for the nation. We should not forget that our existence is because of our great nation and not vice-versa. The recent incident in which Mr. Prashant Bhushan was manhandled by three youths in his office because they were agitated on the remarks made by Mr. Bhushan on Jammu and Kashmir on 26th Sep. 2001. Till this incident took place not many people knew about the statement given by him. The media also played a mature role by not highlighting something which was not good for the county. This act of violence of these people has made everyone know about his controversial statement. Though what Mr. Bhushan said are his views and no one can be stop him from sharing and speaking his/her mind because our constitution gives that freedom of speech to all citizens of the country. What happened on 13th Oct. outside a lower court where the case of these people was argued is further a bad precedent and the same should be condemned and controlled immediately. But at the same time, all citizens of the country should debate on the areas which are above my knowledge and are of a serious concern for the safety and security of our nation. In the name of freedom of speech should we forget our duty towards our nation? A few months back also similar statement had come from another person who considers himself as the champion of freedom of speech. The state of Jammu and Kashmir is the integral part of India and accession of the same is final, so nobody should have a doubt about that. We can expect other countries to try to destabilize our country which is heading to become a powerful nation of the future and due to this the other countries may not be happy with us. But the same cannot be expected from the citizens of this country. We may raise the issues regarding the problems faced by the people but nobody should be allowed to voice anything which amounts to breaking this country into fragments. Any statement which goes against the interests of our nation should be condemned whether it is said by an Indian or citizen of any other country. So those who talk of the freedom of speech and other rights of the individuals should also understand and talk about their responsibilities and duties. Rights without duties do not make any sense and this should be clear to everyone. Anything spoken against the interests of the country should be considered as the insult to our freedom fighters and such people should be made to realize their mistakes.
The problem is that such controversial statements confuse our children and they do not know what is right and what is wrong. They also learn to say the things which make them popular very soon. If we take the case of United States of America then we realize that though the citizens there are free to express their views before they reach to a decision but once they reached a decision all will speak in one voice. Even the media will not air or telecast or print anything which goes against the interest of their country. This is true for European countries also. That marks the difference between our approach and the definition of democracy. They do not get carried away by emotional feelings of few people but do what safeguards the interest of their country and not necessarily the individuals.
My request to all individuals and groups is to control the emotions and concentrate more for the welfare of the country and that should be the most important priority in our mind. Our children learn more what they are exposed to by media and see what is happening in the society. The schools alone may not be able to inculcate patriotism in the children because they do ask questions when such things happen or are shown on TV as something great has been done or said. Education is not confined to schools only but most of that is learned outside school. So two important things come out here; one, we should learn and remind ourselves of our duties and responsibilities also and should not cry only of the rights and we should remember that our children learn a lot from what we do or the way we act. So let us try to consider that our duties are more important than the rights and this will make the life of everyone more comfortable. The children should not be made to feel as the people do not owe anything towards the nation but for self only. Acts of violence should be condemned but the society and the individuals should also be careful so that they do not give any chance to disgruntled people to act in a violent way. No act of violence should be justified for any reason.Violence and hatred are like acid that destroys the vessel that holds it. This is the country of Mahatma Gandhi who taught the world the lesson of nonviolence. Let is all understand the sanctity of his principles and follow them religiously in our lives.As the best way to take care of the future is to take care of the present.