Whenever I can, I listen to the speeches of political leaders and I have done the same with a few speeches of Prime Minister Modi. The following video is about 70 minutes long. The speech was made around May 24, 2019.
Prime Minister Modi is unquestionably one of the greatest orators of this decade. I watched his full speech to the NDA – that is the National Democratic Alliance made up of BJP (Bhartiya Janata Party) and regional parties.
He rightfully acknowledged the contributions of Dr. Ambedkar who gave the constitution and acknowledged the sacrifices of Shaheed Bhagat Singh. Then he added Veer Savarkar as a contributor to the spirit of independence and that is to please the base, as Veer Savarkar is one of the guys who sowed the seeds of discord and promoted ill-will towards fellow Indians. If someone hates a fellow Indian because he is a Muslim or a Christian, it was because of wrongful propaganda of Veer Savarkar, Golwalker and a handful of others. I wish they had believed in freedom and respect for the otherness of the other. We cannot blame them for what they did, but at least we should not repeat their mistakes.
PM Modi talked about Sab ka saath, sab ka Vikas, a great slogan, and added sab ka Vishwa’s – that is the trust. Together with all, prosperity for all and confidence of everyone. He missed the opportunity to achieve that, or he may not have meant it. He has to clarify that.
PM Modi, could have laid out a plan in a few words how to achieve everyone’s trust, urging his base to give up on lynching, harassing and making the life difficult for ‘minorities’ and have a national day where all Indians come together and celebrate unity. Take a pledge that each one of us will contribute towards building goodwill among fellow Indians and not ill-will.
Overall the speech was good but severely deficient, as it was not the speech to Indians, but a speech to his base. He delivered them the red meat.
He urged the audience to speak up when they see something wrong, and my first response was Mr. Prime Minister, let that begin with you, you take the lead and speak up when there is a rape, when someone is lynched, harassed or beaten up in daylight. Don’t wait for three days to stop the damage. Much of the crimes would go away if you speak up instantly. What holds you from speaking? He has to earn the trust of all to bring sustainable prosperity to all.
Do you agree, the most patriotic person is the one who keeps the government on their toes and prevent them from making mistakes? You do your share, and I will do mine because I care about every Indian, and my work would bring Indians together and not pit one against the other.
The Prime Minister can start with one simple step – open the speech with Namaste, Jai Bhim, Salaam, Satsri Akal, Jai Jinendra, Buddha Namo, AlahAbho and Shalom. That is how you start to sab ka saath, the saath of 1.25 billion Indians in one single sweep.
Related: Why Integrated societies are good for America (India).
Mike Ghouse is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day. His book, the “American Muslim Agenda” is about Muslim earning their respectable space in the society. The book is available at Amazon, Xlibris, Google, Barnes and Noble, and Kindle. Mike’s mission is to open people’s hearts, minds, and souls towards each other. He believes that the ultimate purpose of humans is to live freely and be comfortable with their culture, race, religion, ethnicity, sexuality, and individuality. Mike is a public speaker, author, interfaith wedding officiant, a newsmaker and the executive director of the Center for Pluralism in Washington, DC. More about him in three formats at https://www.linkedin.com/in/mikeghouse/