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Entertainment, history and a slow poison

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For thousands of years our history got preserved in the forms of Folk songs, folk shows, scriptures and sculptures. Most of our temples and heritage sites depicts our culture and are witness to the history. It has seen India from being the wealthiest country to a mere colony. It has protected and preserved the history for the future generations to learn from it. It has shown us our flaws and it has shown us our greatness. But since last some centuries a dedicated effort is being made to change the history.

Winner writes the history is true but the loser also writes it somewhere. What we needed to do was to dig out the lost history but we clearly failed in that. Today the history is being changed in front of our eyes but we ignore it or rather we don’t know that it is being changed. As I said the form of recording a history is not by writing it but by the entertainment of that era. Meaning of entertainment has changed in the past few decades and with modernization, we forgot that films and songs are not just to entertain you but they are to preserve a history.

The problem is that from the independence our society believed that politics is just about elections and government. We believed that sports and entertainment do not form part of it. We have kept movies and sports always from our political thoughts. The game started there and it finished with the success of corrupting a generation. Most of us watch movies and when we go inside a multiplex, we keep our political mind outside. This is the biggest mistake we do, we keep politics out of entertainment but not the filmmakers. Most of the films carry a political ideology and agenda and we fail to identify that.

With the improvement of technology we do not need to go out for entertainment, it comes straight into our hands. Web series and movies make a big part of it. Unknowingly the web series you’re watching or the movie you are planning is creating a history and a false history. In the name of fiction, things are depicted in wrong ways and the counter to that is missing. There is no problem in creating a movie with political bias but the worrying thing is the no existence of opposition. Let’s discuss few examples.

In the past five decades one thing we remember is the role of Sahukar in movies. He is shown as a greedy and rapist all the times. The shopkeepers are shown as corrupt every time and a Brahmin is always shown as a fascist. After watching hundreds of movies we made it a norm that a Baniya is corrupt, a Sahukar is rapist and a Brahmin is fascist. We do not challenge it even today, we just believe it as a fact. Another example is in the movie Jodha Akbar, Akbar is shown as a secular and democratic king what the missed are the massacres and killings of thousand innocents in Rajput clans. What they missed is the Harem he had and thousands of sex slaves. History is being told one way and we believed it as true.

Sex was told to be a taboo in India and what does a taboo means. People not talking about a particular topic is taboo, who made Khajuraho famous for sexual depiction and families shouldn’t visit there. Khajuraho has the best of our history and it is being neglected just because it contains some explicit depiction. Which culture makes such depictions? A regressive culture who thinks sex as a taboo?

My only motive to write this down is to make you understand that you may not like history culture and politics but it is integrated in your life and you are consuming it without knowing. My humble suggestion especially to the youth is to learn about the two sides of anything. Before you believe that somebody becomes a terrorist because an army man slapped him, do know the thoughts he possessed to get that slap. Before you believe that Indian culture is regressive, do learn the history and the Indian liberalism. Read it and understand it otherwise our already half vanished history will become a vanished future.

If we continue in the same way we are going, I’m sure that after five hundred years, some people will talk about the extinct, great Indian civilization just like we talk about the lost Egyptian civilization.

-Sharang Pathak

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