Hum Hindustani

I have quite a few blogs cribbing about the state of affairs in Good ol' Hindustan. For a change, I thought I'd look at the bright side - and boy is there ever a bright side, even ignoring the economy and all that good stuff. So here goes:

A and I have recently been hooked onto watching the various musical reality shows on indian channels - Sa Re Ga Ma Pa, Voice of India and Indian Idol. And each season when one watches, one gets blown away by the sheer quantum of talent and general musicality of Indians. There's got to be some deep soul in anyone who enjoys music, and we Indians surely do enjoy music. I can't think of another country which has a party game dedicated to music ( Antaakshari), or in which people routinely know the words and tunes of literally thousands of songs.

Another thing - recently on sa re ga ma pa, there was a controversy because there were media allegations that the Pakistani candidates had refused to sing Indian patriotic songs. Frankly, who could blame them - how many Indians would agree to go on national TV in Pakistan and sing Pakistani patriotic songs? Anyhow that's beside the point. The candidates refuted these allegations and said that they had been so at home since they came to India that they had forgotten this was a foreign country, and that after the controversy, for the first time in 4 months, they had started missing home. There was not a dry eye in the audience. Men, women, other contestants, us watching at home - everyone's eyes welled up with tears, and some of the other participants openly boo-hooed. I think that a country where most people, male and female, are not afraid to cry in public has to have something fundamentally decent and honest at its heart.

Third thing - during the same controversy - various members of the studio audience stood up and said that everyone in India was as much behind the Pakistani participants as the Indian ones, and that there should be no elimination round based on the controversial episode. Large-hearted or what?

So, tell me what is making you happy to be an Indian just now?


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