In the wake of his remarks on ‘growing intolerance’ in the country, Aamir Khan trended on the social media the whole day. He was supported by some, ridiculed by more. Jokes, sarcastic posts were hurled at the actor for merely exercising his right to free speech.
Particularly, Snapdeal endorsed by Aamir faced people’s wrath. The mobile application was deleted or given low ranking by many of its users so as to lodge their protest of the former’s ‘unwarranted’ remarks.
Social network has changed the dynamism of everything from politics to social issues. Its grip over the youth of the country is remarkable to say the least.
The point Aamir made was that there seems to be a climate of growing intolerance in India. We can debate whether he was right or wrong but the way people reacted to his comments, unfortunately, proved his remarks right.
Facebook saw a series of campaigns where people put Aamir and recently martyred Colonel Mahadik’s pictures side by side, asking a rhetorical question as to who was the “real hero” among them.
Colonel Mahadik deserves utmost respect considering his ultimate sacrifice for the country but comparing him and Aamir is like comparing apple and oranges. Aamir has never claimed to be a real life hero. While Col Mahadik’s and many of such army personnel’s sacrifice can’t be thanked enough ever but that does not mean anyone who doesn’t serve in the Army does nothing for the country.
This habit of playing on the guilty conscience of the people on social media has become a little too commonplace. There is a theory called ‘Spiral of Silence’ in Mass Communication which says while being in a group some people will just go with the majority so that they do not end up alone.
It applies in this case. There are posts where people show their support just to be with the majority e.g. How many likes for this brave soldier or cute God. Sad.
BJP termed Aamir’s comments as a part of a conspiracy. However, in my view, comparing Aamir with a person who just sacrificed his life for the nation is the much bigger conspiracy. They know that people will support the colonel and, as a result, more hate against Aamir. Simply involving a man, whose family is mourning his death, is shameful.
This is intolerance when somebody speaks his mind and you just label that person and blindly follow all who agree with you.
The extreme reaction to Aamir’s remarks has only proved him right.
It would have much better if everyone would have been more sensitive. Aamir, in using the country’s name but more importantly, thousands of those who targetted him, they should have tried to understand his point of view. If asked, many would answer the same thing that intolerance is growing, however, ”leaving the country” remark could have been avoided simply because running away is not the option.
All the talks of India being intolerant are not right. India was tolerant and will always be tolerant. There is only one specific section of the country which is becoming intolerant or maybe it always was.