Monday, December 27, 2010

Freedom Of Speech & Common Sense Do Run Together !



A few centuries back, French philosopher Voltaire quoted “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” Freedom of Speech or Expressions is such a right. The devoid of it is despotism. With this indispensable freedom for human race come two associated requisites: One is rationality and the other is accountability. We as a citizen of India are equally responsible of what we express and how we express. 
Everyone does have a right is understood in democracy. Although,when it is not understood or exercised in true perspective of freedom, it subsequently release fumes of hatred, violence, misinterpretations and hostility among the same people for whom it was meant.
There are numerous instances where this inevitable requirement backfired at our own institution. Way back in 1996, India’s most celebrated painter Maqbool Fida Hussain created fur ore in Hindu community by painting the deities of Goddesses Saraswati, Parvati, Durga, and Draupadi naked on canvas. His creative autonomy did allow him to do so, but the free will was not aimed for such negligent artworks in a country where people are relatively sensitive over religious issues. He certainly failed to recognize that. Besides, he has got no right to hurt the sentiments through his artwork every other day and then ask for apology. This entire episode was not a story of Islamic prejudice but a story of Hindu sensibility being insulted. Even the people and extremist Hindu organizations affiliated with them had no right to sabotage his artworks.
Knowingly or unknowingly, if Hussain misunderstood it, so did the extremist Hindu groups. Both lie on the same side of a coin who misapprehend the whole idea.
Recently, noted author and social activist, Arundhati Roy gave a provocative speech underlining her full support for Kashmir’s separatist movement. Nothing new by her as Pakistan has been airing such sentiments for decades. Furthermore, Roy says Maoists are “Gandhians with Guns”. Anyone with even an ounce of an idea about the diligent non-violent freedom struggle by Mahatma Gandhi can say that this particular declaration by her is not in sync with the Gandhian philosophy. Roy’s blatant comment without a doubt tells us how to differentiate between a scholar and a squalor. 

Any citizen can’t render his/her political or artistic statement depending on their personal mood swings. And if you think, all these comes under the right and I have it, to use it as I want and wherever I want to. Then even the government has got the power to curtail it wherever  mandatory.

Although a political statement is an art of how we choose words and craft accordingly. But having some common wisdom should always be the keyword to it. A political comment on any political situation must be judged politically rather than as a right. Freedom of expression is not an art but an essential political power of any citizen in India. Still, at the end of the day any seditious speeches or defamatory artworks are not liable to be curtailed until it becomes a real threat to the unity and integrity of India. The principle behind this idea is far more essential than any individual. Using this liberty for the rationale of publicity is a disregard of this right.


We all are free to say anything as long as our speech or expression does not invade the fundamental freedom of others or cause harm to anyone. The basic design of this belief is not at the expense of causing harm to others. However, in reality what counts as harmless is a complex and unresolved issue. The solution remains in reasoning it through our common sense. The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook. And we must know what to overlook. At last finishing off with a famous statement which says “A man begins cutting his wisdom teeth the first time he bites off more than he can chew.” So it's better to respect the sanctity of this freedom.

12 comments:

vaibhav.agrawal said...

Freedom of speech is the biggest gift to the mass of democratic countries but in a country like India,which is full of diversities,this can be atrocious if the fine line between giving opinion and making a statement that can hurt the sentiments of particular class/religion/clan is crossed. I believe, it is high time that government should had defined the execution part of freedom of speech in detail.We should not forget that "A tiny hole in a ship is capable of sinking it."

Manish Singh Chauhan said...

It is something that can't be defined but only understood..
and just think where can u create lines in the way humans express...
n if controlled then it is gonna make a deep hole in the way of democratic roles....

Janak Bhatt said...

hey boy nice keep it up ::

Manish Singh Chauhan said...

Thanx a ton sir..
encourages me to write more..
i will KEEP WRITING..

Kartik Kapoor said...

great job..

docmench said...

Very well said! I lie the line: We all are free to say anything as long as our speech or expression does not invade the fundamental freedom of others or cause damage to anyone."

Manish Singh Chauhan said...

Thanx Docmench!

kiran said...

" the art of being wise is knowing what to overlook" ! A profound truth! Hats off to you...Of all the things i like the way you concluded the post. The ideas stated are worthy of praise.. keep going!

Betsy Grant said...

A wise man once said "be neither for nor against anything". This attitude encourages a state of detachment which leads to a Soul or divine viewpoint. Sometimes the common sense action is to exercise the right of "freedom of silence" which can lead to a greater state of harmony, rather than going with the knee-jerk reactions of the two-sided human state of consciousness which lead to war and strife.

Ravi Kumar said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Manish Singh Chauhan said...

Exactly Kiran!

Manish Singh Chauhan said...

Well said, Betsy!