February 11, 2016

Dear bad fish of Bengaluru, what's your grouse? Really, what's it?

Good that cops have been suspended and people arrested over the racist assault on the Tanzanian student in Bangalore, but how do we arrest the main villain? The evil figure with deep roots that enjoys unquestioned loyalty of the masses? How do we arrest the hate mentality?

If not for the noxious 'them versus us' theory, why was it that the distressed woman received no help in a bus full of people? And why do such attacks keep happening? (Those in denial, try Google.) While the entire country, and more so the sensible side of Bangalore, is hurt and ashamed, racist remarks from many Bangaloreans continue surfacing on the internet unabated. Venomous, unapologetic and in your face.

These people might not have been a part of that mob, but they surely are a part of that mob mentality. Just as guilty. It's like multiple Donald Trumps on loose in Bengaluru.

Their go-to argument for justifying aggression is that migrants disrespect the local culture. I want to understand how so. Please specify so that they can learn the dos and don'ts.

People from the South go for Chaar Dhaam pilgrimage up North and people from all over the country make a beeline for Kukke Subramanya Temple. What you celebrate as Ugadi, other states celebrate under different names. Migrants call RCB their home team, relish the local cuisine and gush about the city's fantabulous weather. We're all made up of the same cultural thread, the same social fabric. What disrespect, then, are you talking about?

People come to Bangalore for education or to make a living, what incentive can they possibly have to rile the people who call this place their home! I request you to introspect and see if there's a valid reason for your predisposition towards us. If there is not, please drop your hostility. Please live and let live.

Ummm... Aren't you mad at us because we can't speak Kannada? Is this what you perceive as disrespect? See, we know and respect that Kannada is a classical language with a rich heritage. That we have only a basic knowledge of the language shouldn't be mistaken for a snub. We enjoy picking up the language in bits & pieces from our friends and colleagues. It's when you seek to push it down our throats that you make us loathe it.

You may argue why we stay in Bengaluru if it's so bad here. We choose to come and stay there despite you, not because of you. You are thorns on the beautiful rose stem that Bangalore is.

If you truly care for your cultural pride, then please quit being in denial and realise your ideology is only shaming your 'culture'. Please introspect. The solution to rash driving isn't beating up whoever you can lay your hands on. Report it to police. For the sake of your city's reputation, don't assume the role of judge and executioner. Because when you judge, the world judges you. 

“Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.” —Samuel Johnson

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