Intolerance, the opposition parties’ alleged jugular hold to get the Modi government down on the mat, saw engineering students in Madhya Pradesh’s capital hotly debating the issue online for 24 hours.
The debate, organised by the literary society of the Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology (MANIT), began on Saturday and engaged 50-odd students into a live chat whether ‘India is tolerant or intolerant country?’ The organizers said the best debater would be honoured for his views.
As the discussion progressed, Vinay Teja Reddy cut in with his incisive, “It is a problem to be solved.” However, Archit Gupta wrote dubbing India “intolerant” is ‘a huge generalisation” and “generalizations are always bad”.
Vedant tried to nail the cause and wrote back it all started with a film star (Aamir Khan) quoting his wife and indicating that the atmosphere had turned so intolerant that she feared staying in India. He opined that media blew the issue up by reading too much into it. Every event that started thereafter was an example of Intolerant India as it had a tinge of communal hatred.
However, one Jitesh Rathore brought in Chanyaka’s quote to justify Narendra Modi government’s stand. He wrote, “When the king becomes stronger and controls the nation, petty thieves, terrorists and traitors feel the heat and complain of intolerance in society....”
His argument was strongly contested by Aditya Ram who questioned Modi’s silence “even after many intellectuals have returned their awards on the issue of growing intolerance.”
He should have clarified his position in public to defuse the situation , he wrote.
Others pricked Ram’s argument by holding that Modi wasn’t a party spokesman but the Prime Minister of India. Nikhil Unni brought Aamir Khan back into the discussion and wrote leaving India was not an option but living in harmony was.
Nauneet Kumar wrote, “ We can’t be understood on the semantics of tolerance and intolerance.”
But, Samrath Rathore strongly suggested that “our country has become Intolerant” and argued that the who nation tastefully debated intolerance even as Chennai suffered the worst floods. However,Tarun Thakre brought the spice back into the debate by writing, “India doesn’t just tolerate other cultures, but respects, appreciates and celebrates them.” Is that intolerance? He argued.