Recently, on Eid, one politician refused to put on scull cap and, as Indian media always does, there was a prominent story on Times Of India homepage. Obvious enough, it must be of national importance as the editors and reporter would have thought.
I am in late twenties and have been a journalist for quite some time but not one single time I heard that a politician of other faith put on a Vaishno Devi chunni, or Radhey-Shyam gamcha or put a red tilak on his forehead during some Hindu festival. Nor I read a story on that someone did or did not do it.
Media is the most communal, sexist, racist and disturbing pillar in this nation which wears a mask of secularism, gender equality, respecting racial diversity and the pillar that champions as a watch dog of democracy.
Every riot is reported in bold, with slide shows and gory images. Why? Will it not fuel the passions, negative, inside the people who see their ‘brethren’ being murdered brutally? However, they wouldn’t really care if they died of poverty. Reports of sexual harassment and abuse is very common and the females are subjected to it, often enough. Media is rotten inside and that reflects upon the stories and headlines that it shares to society on regular basis.
If one doesn’t put on a scull cap, it is solely his/her choice. Why would not putting a scull cap make me communal? Being neutral to icons is very well a secular trait, however, being a Hindu putting on a scull cap doesn’t and shouldn’t make me secular.
If I attend an Iftaar party, that alone shows someone is willing to be the part of a tradition, religious celebration. Why should I get a scull cap on? Scull cap has a different purpose, it is not decorative or symbolic.
With the ease that we brand others secular and communal, tomorrow media houses like Times Of India would very well call a politician communal (in suggestive ways, as they always do to maintain their ‘secular face’) because he attends Iftaar party and has a penis with foreskin intact.