“India, that is Bharat, shall be union of states”-Article 1 of the Indian Constitution
India- a country with different language and its accent, caste, creed, religion, culture, food habit, body shape and many more. India is differently unique and uniquely different. India never was a monolithic society or state and never will be. Unity in diversity has been the mantra of this country. But unfortunately there are so many people, organization who believed that India means one language, one religion, one food habit and one culture. But in reality this is not. India taught the world to respect everyone irrespective of its color, culture, caste, language, religion. India taught the world to respect the differences. For me, India as a civilization is older and bigger than any religion or idealism. For me India, its value, principle, thinkings itself a religion. This is why we need to protect this idea of India. This is why I am writing this article.
Bitter truth- I used to play football video game and this is why one day while playing I found a campaign ‘No room for racism’. This campaign had very significant affect on me. From that day I wanted to write something on this topic. History is the one of my favourite subject. I used to finish our history syllabus in school before our teacher started to teach the first chapter in our class room. From that time I found that it all started with racism. Racism simply means hatred towards any race or in a broader sense feeling superior over other race; this leads us to the catastrophy. This led us towards two devastating world war.
Now if we look into India, we can say hindus who are the majority, divided into various castes and sub castes. We have so many differences but we could learn to respect it. Do you know why? We do not only inherit ancestral property, but also inherit the hatred and bitter experience of one or more ancestors towards a race. We not only inherit but also continue the legacy of hatred. This is where problem continues. Social media has become war zone and you can find racist comment here and there. This means netigen could not break this vicious circle of hatred. If we look into India, we bengalis, who have laid down their lives more than any other race present in India, for country’s independence struggle termed as termite, bangladeshi, beggars for our culture, language, food habit. They do not know bengal suba generated upto 50% of the then Mughal India’s gdp and 12% of the the then world’s gdp. It was several natural catastrophy (such as drought, flood) every year(even now), continuous attacks from the then imperialist foreign power (such as dutch, portugese, british, french), continuous maratha raids over bengal. This not only ends here- bengal was divided, torned and partitioned several times. This leads to the decades old problem of migration and refugee crisis. Decade long continuous exploitation of britishers and after independence some policy of the union government towards bengal, hinders the development. From then we are facing the crisis.
Now we have talked about Bengal so much. It is my pain to share that many indian movies, shows etc entertain heinous mocking of sikhs over various issues, cracking jokes on them. They make fun for the language, color of the people from southern state. Some times they call people from north eastern state momo, chinki, corona, chinese; they even mock body shapes ( specially eye, nose). Even some people mock others over not knowing or understanding hindi and threatens to go to other countries. This should not be tolerated. Time has come to stop it- stop it once and for all. We are in the digital era and still there are untouchability, racism exist in the society. Racism is an undiagnosed disease threatening to be take the shape of disaster.
Indian law on racism– Article 14 of the Constitution of India says that the state shall not deny any person equality before the law or the equal protection of the laws within the territory of India. Article 15 of the Constitution of India prohibits any kind of discrimination on grounds of religion, race, caste, sex, or place of birth. Article 16 deals with equal opportunity in public employment. Article 17 prohibits the untouchability. Article 21 deals with right to life and personal liberty. Indian penal code does not have a dedicated chapter to tackle racism though section 153A criminalise the use of language, spoken, shown, written or uttered that promotes discrimination or violence against people on the basis of race, caste, sex, place of birth, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation or any other category. Information Technology Act, 2000 is there but is it enough? Whether all of those legislation enough?
My stand-Before we introduce laws we need to do many more things. First lets do it from the primary stages. We need to create more opportunities for the psychologist and place them in the school so that no child can nurture any kind of hatred from its childhood. Even mental counselling may be initiated for the parents as well to end this vicious circle.
Mental health care should be given utmost importance. We need to remember all the things- good or bad starts in the mind, stays in the mind. Nurturing good things from childhood, stopping any kind of bullies in school, dedicated mental health cell in every school, colleges, offices. I do not mind if political parties start a separate cell for psychologist for the welfare of the people and psychologist. They will work in ward level in municipality, gram panchayat level. We can have a headquarter in the district level and state level.
More quality teachers should be inducted every year in the school, colleges. There should be a monitoring committee who will monitor, look after and ensure the enhanced qualities of those teacher. There should be an equilibrium in student-teacher ratio.
A police has various duties, if a separate wing can be created in police department for tackling racism it will be easier for police to do the jobs. Not only that I will also suggests a separate department along with ministry can be created in centre and state level to tackle racism this will bring a new dawn-golden era in India.
Lets go back to legislation- we need a separate legislation which will be framed to tackle, stop spreading of any kind of discrimination, racism. This is the need of the hour- a concrete, well codified legislation. Separate court can be formed to punish the offenders quickly. For the punishment segment I will suggest detterence and rehabilitation should be primary aim and for the habitual offenders punishment can be severe or retributive.
Ngo, civil society, influencers can help in this cause by spreading awareness on racism. They can make people understand the evil of racism. Anti racism policy not only works as a boost for the integrity of a nation, but also it helps to zero the integral disturbance which can lead to any civil war.
Police personnel, police station should be people friendly. Local police station should organize meeting with the local people in its jurisdiction along with the help of information technology.
Every University, colleges, offices should take strong policy to tackle discrimination and racism. More and more seminar, research programme, conference should be organised on this issue, that too on regular basis.
Now the main issue many people hardly care to look into. Insecurity and its exploitation also leads to the discrimination and racism. Inter stat migration, population explosions are allied issues on this burning issue and covid-19 made it a naked truth. Every state with the help of the centre should introduce a separate wing/ department/ division/ welfare board on migrants. Govt of India should formulate policy for the welfare of those migrant. Refugee rehabilitation and migration welfare can be made as a separate ministry. Local people, language should be given more importance and preference for employment.
Conclusion– In this article I have talked less about types of discrimination and talked more about tackling it because we know the problem. Talking about problem will not solve the problem; lets remove all the differences, lets come together so that we can build a beautiful India. A beautiful India without racism-a secure future for our future generation.