Dr Shashi Tharoor is very obvious. A few difficult words drawn out of obsolete lexicons and regular remarks that he makes in attempts to saving his grace and arguments and also his party’s reputation and his self-righteousness. Nevertheless, most of the time he wins and appears to be what he wants the world to see in him. However, at times, things are not too easy even for Mr Tharoor. Recently, in a conclave organised by the India Today TV network, Dr Tharoor and noted historian and famous biographer of Veer Savarkar, Vikram Sampath were discussing history and the ‘new rise of consciousness’ in Indian Hindus. The panel moderator was Mr Rajdeep Sardesai and he is very famous.
Before you learn anything more about the event, you must know the famous remark that Sampath made. He said that India needs to reclaim its history from Delhi. Indian history is not only about some lesser-known and partly ruling dynasties of Delhi after the barbaric invasion by the Islamists. India is also in the south, the northeast and the west and east.
The discussion was rather enlightening. The audience got to know that Dr Tharoor stands against his party’s decisions and remarks and public stands when it comes to free speech and differences of opinions. He also stated that the recent Kerala episode was unfortunate in which the inclusion of RSS thinkers in the college syllabus was widely opposed by the left and subsequently withdrawn. Well, I did never get to see anything about it in the media with the same fervour and shout as we get to read and watch about some xyz person saying something about Gandhi. However, Tharoor’s remarks about historical reconciliation were rather slippery and he was caught instantly. Sampath spoke with poise and his thoughts were articulated in a way that many could relate to it, almost instantly.
Vikram Sampath was all in for ‘truthifying’ history without any left or right leanings. He argued that history should be our teacher and frontiers and we must remember what not to repeat and what should be maintained in order to lead our lives peacefully and progressively. When Dr Tharoor brought in the Partition Horror Remembrance Day episode from the recent Narendra Modi’s decisions to remember the horrors of partition of the nation in 1947, Sampath got him once again with his argument about remembering the holocaust episodes and museums that display those memories. While one is deemed as ‘should be remembered’, how can we forget the other?
In all the exchanges that took place, the most interesting ones were coming from Rajdeep Sardesai from time to time as he seldom appeared to offer the dais to Mr Sampath. Rajdeep was very happily married to the thoughts by Dr Tharoor and they both appeared as having an exhibition tennis match where none of the two players wants to win points. It was hilarious.
Vikram Sampath has recently brought the second part of his book on Veer Savarkar and he has conveyed that Savarkar and many freedom fighters like him were very complex figures. We can’t judge them with one or two aspects of their personalities and put things to rest. He also reminded me how intolerant the Congress government have been to differences of opinions after the independence of India. (Tharoor said sorry as if it mattered just that.)
By Sarthak for Literature News