I apologise...  

Posted by Praveen in , , ,

Over the last few years, I've written quite a few blogs which am not proud of right now on a second reading. Some of those blogs were written in a fit of anger, as reactions to some off incident. The lack of proper research shone through, as did the unwanted usage of expletives. There was lot of rhetoric and as much lack of substance. I would like to use this post to set some of those wrongs straight and apologise to some personalities who were subjected to unwarranted criticism due to lack of knowledge and proper research. And added to that, writing in the heat of the moment resulted in clouded judgement thus producing one sided articles. I would like to apologise to...(Not that any of these personalities gives a damn to what I write...Just that I thought its better to own up your mistakes)

1. Arundathi Roy
I've n't bashed anyone like I bashed her. From making noises about her supposedly pseudo-intellectual behaviour to calling her a bitch, I've done it all in this blog. Till sometime back, I was a firm believer in the unlimited goodness of the nation that is India that I failed to see the shades of grey or rather the total blackness on its part in several cases. And when she talked exactly about those greys and blacks, it made me uncomfortable. For me, anyone who questions the nation was equivalent to a terrorist and so it was easy for me to brand her as one. The idea of state sponsored terrorism was hard for me to swallow, until a certain Binayak Sen went to jail. That opened my eyes to a new world where the state was even worse than some of the so called terrorists or maoists. It was all there for me to see, just that I closed my eyes and shielded my ears to something which went against my beliefs, until a hard enough knock made me wake up. I used to view human rights activists as pests who were out to demean the nation and hog the international limelight. The idea that their presence is a necessity for a healthy democracy dawned on me much later. We need people who risk their lives and ask those hard questions. We need people who lays their reputation in line while expressing their views which might be mis constructed as anti national by vested interests and mis-informed bloggers! I still don't agree with many of Roy's views but now I know that atleast half of which she speaks is true as far as India is concerned. Sorry Ms. Roy, for all those harsh words. You didn't deserve any of those...

2. M.F.Hussain
Now, here comes a double flip. First, I started off as a flag waving member of the 'tolerance' club. I had seen only the 'bharatmata' painting and I found nothing wrong with it. Then I came across a site where some of his 'selected' works were featured. It consisted mainly of Hindu gods and godesses in compromising positions with titles which were formulated to stir up anger. There were one or two paintings of a fully clothed muslim lady(again titled). From that day, I been a strident critic of the man without ever caring to do a research on his body of work. I never had a problem with hindu gods painted in whatever positions he liked. It was the double standards that he supposedly displayed in portraying muslim ladies fully clothed which angered me. And then, recently he passed away. My first reaction was, 'good riddance'. Then, out of curiosity, I decided to dig a little and what it throwed up shocked me. His body of work was massive and the ones featured in the site were drawn sometime in the 60s. Most of those titles in the site(which were designed to stir up anger) were made up by the site owner. Until mid 90s, no one in India really bothered about these few paintings. That was when the Hindutva brigade came into limelight. Once the Ayodhya issue was milked to its capacity, they needed something new to latch on to. Someone digged up the old paintings and thus started an orchestrated campaign to kick Hussain out of India. Sadly, most of us fell prey to that game, hating the man till his death. A quick run through of his work will tell you how these few paintings were insignificant compared to his mammoth repertoire. The bigots never talked about the other beautiful paintings he made of Saraswathi, Gandhari or Mother Teresa. I am not an art connoisseur, but some of those paintings touched even a layman like me(although a large percent just flew over my head!). You can view some of those works here- http://www.mfhussain.com/paintings/ . I feel guilty as well as sad for inadvertently playing a part in drumming up hatred against a great artist. I am no different from those bigots of the Hindutva brigade!

3.V.S.Achuthanandan and the leftists
My criticism of Achuthanandan came with the package of being a staunch anti-leftist(for the first 24 years of my life). I could never empathise with the ideology of a party or a man who came with a red flag wherever some development was about to happen. I could never digest the fact that someone was making such a big fuss about a few huts being relocated for an IT park or some other mega development project. That was until words like corporate plunder, land grab etc entered my dictionary. Come 2008 and there was all the hullaballoo about Achuthanandan's 'dog' remark at late major Unnikrishnan's residence. The night I saw that, I sat down to write and all I could see was an old filthy useless politician making fun of India's slain hero. Once it was published, I got calls from many, including one lady from Mysore who was particularly emotional, asking me whether I've atleast heard of the land reforms that VS helmed. Truth be told, I didn't have an idea of the man's history in Kerala politics before the 90s. I didn't bother to read it up at that time too. It was after several months when I saw 'reason' and 'consistency' on the left side that I bothered to read some history. And boy, din't I repent! The anti-leftism is a thing of the past for me. The left and the few who still believe in that ideology(or atleast the watered down version of it) are an absolute necessity in the Indian political landscape, even if it is in a handful of states. The day the red flag bites the dust completely would surely upset the balance of our democracy.

Stop scrolling Barkha Dutt and everyone of that ilk....am not gonna apologise to you! My opinions on you still stands the same and I don't think I'll ever change it, because some more research did harden that opinion...

From today, I vow never to write anything without proper research. I vow never to use expletives in my writings, so that the message don't get lost in all the din. I vow never to write when I am angry. I vow, even after all this I won't hold it back in cases where it necessitate the presence of a raised finger...!

This entry was posted on Thursday, June 30, 2011 at Thursday, June 30, 2011 and is filed under , , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


awww my god...now what are ur hardcore fans going to say... supposedly some 'geniuses'

11:32 PM

of all the journo's i have seen on screen, i hate Barkha Dutt and arnab the most. no matter what amount of good they do, its just their attitude that irks me the most.
this post of yours sounded more of a reasoning than an apology.
Anyways. Keep writing. Would love to know your opinions. :D

9:53 AM

Praveen... I am ignorant about the other cases, but, about MF Hussain.. I think u shud latch on to your initial reaction... May be one or 2 of his latest interviews on the controversial paintings will reaffirm what u initially believed. Definitely a gr8 artist, but, not really a fair one.

1:26 PM

I had sometimes felt the same about your writing. But this one article is a big step.
All the best!

1:45 PM

I had sometimes felt the same about your writing. But this one really shows how ahead you have gone as a writer!
I appreciate and respect it!

All the best!

1:47 PM

I've never read any of your hate posts on the personalities you mentioned. But its great to see this post. A lot of people write in a sudden fit of anger and don't even bother to care to research enough.
You have brought out a very serious issue. Just coz we can write, we shouldn't use that to malign any soul without any fair hearing of their case. :)
Keep it going bro :)

3:13 PM

goodra! first your language matured, now you've matured as a responsible writer.

allelum pathrathil keri thonnivasam ezhuthiyaal naatukaaru kaalu thalli odikkum!

5:27 PM

I have always criticized your anti-left articles.I knew you were blinded by the 'Big India' picture like anyother middleclass guy living in urban India.

Now that you have realised the value of 'the left', I advise you to read more on tht and disregard what the gringo media says about the communists.
Just spend few mins reading das kapital than the twisting turning thrilling writings from the yankee authors.
May be you can start with Noam Chomsky,Prabhat Patnaik,P.Sainath, CP Chandrasekhar and Jayati Ghosh Thomas Issac,and others who will give you a true picture of how India is embracing the Capitalism like no other and is digging her own grave in the process.
and anyone reading a little of Das Kapital will result in a much better world than now.

The fact is tht people need the Left only when they are under grave crisis and can no longer bear the bourgeois threat.And to understand that Left is Right, you need to either come out of the McWorld or suffer under capitalism like Marx says.

I am happy tht atleast one more person on this planet is getting awakened to reality.
Take pride in living in the poorest of the poor nation where everyone is boasting about becoming the next superpower nation with the help of just three letters GDP.Dont fall into these fantasy carrots anymore.

I hope you ll follow up your apology by writing more and spreading messages about the real leaders of India and against fucking gringo ass lickers who sold our country Mr.Chidambar MR.Not aMan_Mohan and MuKherji and MrKapish

Jaai Baba FuckDev and a Billion Fucking Idiots in this peninsula

fellow comrade
anonymous commenter

12:39 PM

@ Jon
thats left to them :D

Both of them haven't done much good to like them.
and yea, even I felt the apology part was missing when I thought about it now ;)

@vinay vijayakumar
Having jumped on both sides of the Hussain debate and having researched a lot on that, I think I'll settle on this side for now..:)

I remember you once telling me that too :D

yes, we bloggers are prone to that sudden bout of righteousness and anger and spewing venom...I think with age it kind of gets right :D

aa idyil ninnu thanne nee comment ittalle:D kaanumbo oru vishamam! nadakkathe poya oru swapnam...

@anonymous commentator..
I repeat it again...I think I know you!

Among the personalities you mentioned Noam chomsky and P.Sainath are two who've influenced me a lot. Numerous documentaries, speeches and writings of these two did help me in understanding the world better.

I never been a fan of the corporates or the ass lickers you mentioned. Nor was I blinded by the 'shining India' campaign. But I did have a big belief in our army and a myopic patriotic view to boot that anyone speaking against any of these was viewed with suspicion...And so, I ended up hating Ms. Roy. It took some deep reading to get me out of the stupor

1:03 AM

Gosh! This is very different. Personally, I have never felt any of your posts offensive!

1:12 PM

the problem with left is there r so many versions to it and to pick the best would be a tough option.
there is no system of governance that has proved itself totally people centric. but is still believe the leftist ideology is well ahead of others.

So there is no point in getting the right solution...the better one would do

1:03 AM

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