At a recent Lokmat National Conclave, political leaders took the opportunity to air their opinions on various burning issues. Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge accused the central government of curtailing the freedom to speak truth, while Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju defended the government’s stance on same-sex marriage, citing tradition. The same-sex marriage debate aside, the event became a political battlefield, with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi in the spotlight. Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur took shots at Gandhi, implying that he was seeking help from foreign friends rather than focusing on electoral campaigns in India. Yechury, the general secretary of CPI-M, challenged the government to reveal the conviction rate in the last nine years, questioning the fairness of the use of the Enforcement Directorate and the CBI to harass opposition leaders while the Union law minister denied any rift in opposition unity.
The stance of the various political leaders highlights the dynamics of Indian democracy, where opposing perspectives and ideologies clash. However, while the freedom to speak and write the truth should always be upheld in a democracy, it is crucial to ensure that it is not misused to spread misinformation or harm the interests of a nation or its people. Thus, the government’s responsibility to maintain law and order and regulate the media should not be questioned.
Moreover, while upholding traditions and cultural values is essential in preserving a nation’s identity, it is also crucial to ensure that they do not impede progress or infringe upon basic human rights. Thus, it is commendable that the government’s stance on same-sex marriage is grounded in the law and not just cultural or traditional biases.
In conclusion, while the Lokmat National Conclave provided a platform for political leaders to offer their perspectives on diverse topics, it is imperative to adopt a constructive and collaborative approach in tackling issues that affect the nation’s development and the welfare of its people. The use of derogatory statements or criticism of opposition leaders on foreign soil is not a constructive approach, but rather it fuels divisiveness and intolerance, hampering the democratic spirit.