Dear Freedom fighters and patriots of 21st century India;

Bharat Mata ki Jaya is a lovely slogan, and if it doesn't rouse you or if doesn't seem to fit well in your definition of patriotism, or if asking you to say it jarrs your understanding of freedom, then.

THEN, I may choose to ignore you, or reserve my comments, or may even brand you as anti-national, or can even ask you to leave the country. As a lover of freedom, brave all of this. For, I have a freedom to deem hurting sensibilities of a religion or a community or a nation far worse than challenging the freedom of a few individuals. I have the freedom to think I don't like you. So, respect me in the name of your Freedom. Come, debate with me, but don't cry foul. I am ready.

As a staunch supporter of the right to freedom, you gotta hang in there, till there's a threat to your life. Don't expect people to be just to you to respect your freedom. For, you too haven't been kind to them while using your freedom. Don't worry, you'll anyways become a star if people start threatening you or throwing ink at you, and you may even get lapped up by a political party.

To people like me who don't mind wearing their patriotism on their sleeves, I say exactly the same thing. Just hang in there. Brave the wrath of people whose concepts of patriotism you may have willy-nilly challenged, and who feel sad and hurt about being seen as unpatriotic. They may find you a showoff, ridicule you for your limited understanding of patriotism, or lambast you for directly forcing things on them by your statements; or indirectly, by your conduct. Just hang in there. Till you also face a death threat. And you also become an MLA material. And a star, of course.

But I can help in your Job of hanging in there. Just decide to count only on your judgment, on your analysis ... don't 'source' your arguments from trolls. Get Philosophical, use Management, use Sociology, Religion... anything, any body of knowledge you use in your profession... it will have a way to help you form a theory of your own.

Whatever you do, DON'T borrow your ideas from those cheap newspaper headlines or tacky trolls. You can't keep anchored in there for long by alleging or crying.

You can become more attractive to all your constituencies by being original.

Have a great fight;

A showoff backward patriot.

Sanjeeva Shukla