We've sold ourselves.To the first gora who came along.Christian Colson(not sure about his name, though) , that is.
Saying the truth is one thing.Shouting (possibly) one man's truth (or not even that) to a firangi public that will readily generalize this notion to all of India is wholly another.Right now, there is some fat ***ed American munching his caramel popcorn, thinking "Man, these Indians are backward.Religious riots, children begging in scary numbers on the streets and garbage all over."I don't know about you, but my blood boils just thinking about it.
We had tried Lagaan-ing,even tried Paheli-ing, but the golden lady was eluding us.There was only one way out.Put our garbage-filled railway stations and cockroach-infested kitchens up for global entertainment.And now that we've smiled, posing with the award, we're happy.Happy that a bunch of foreigners approved of how dirty our country really is.But we don't think about all this.We've got Indian cinema on the world map, they say.At what cost?, I say.
There are loads of nice things about India.Every aerobics class that makes the people perform Suryanamaskar must thank us for it.Every time they pick up a Deepak Chopra, they should remember us.Forget India, let's talk about something closer to home.Dharavi.No one talks about love stories unfolding while waiting in queue for using the common toilet.And the fact that the kids at Dharavi know better English that you'd imagine, thanks to adventurous foreigners who visit Dharavi for a whiff of the real Mumbai.There was Kalpana Chawla, there was Rabindranath Tagore and then there was S.Radhakrishnan.I don't see movies being made on these.
I know we're all tired of the "snake-charmer, mystical" typecast on us.It is gone for good. But if we just sit there, there is a new typecast ready to take its place.Which will take long and lot to erase.