In a bizarre editorial, Times of India has asserted that the Indian government must violate its own laws in order to prove that India remains true to its democratic ideals. TOI says that revoking Aatish Taseer’s OCI card could lead to India being isolated at the international forum.
The editorial said, “Aatish’s OCI status must be restored to send out a signal to both the diaspora and international community that India remains true to its democratic ideals. If New Delhi cannot achieve the latter, then instead of isolating Pakistan it will itself stand isolated and lose control of the international narrative.”
The editorial notes that “certain actions by his own government undermine the PM’s energetic efforts, such as the move to revoke diasporic writer Aatish Taseer’s OCI status soon after he wrote an article critical of Modi in an international newsmagazine. In a significant move 260 prominent authors, journalists, activists and artistes – including Nobel prize winners – have signed a letter urging the PM to review the drastic decision.”
It appears that TOI is vastly overestimating the importance of these ’eminent intellectuals’. Not even the ordinary American takes them seriously. In fact, Donald Trump was elected in large parts because he was hated by these very individuals and during his presidential campaign. Trump went out of his way to pour scorn on them.
Furthermore, the ’eminent intellectuals’ did not provide any significant reason as to why Aatish Taseer’s OCI card should be revoked. ‘Liberals’ had claimed that the OCI status was revoked because he had written an article critical of Narendra Modi. TOI followed the same path and made the same argument despite the fact that it’s obviously not true.
Aatish Taseer’s OCI card was revoked because he failed to disclose the fact that his father is a Pakistani. Furthermore, that fact alone makes him ineligible to hold the OCI card. The only controversy is how did he manage to acquire it in the first place. Therefore, to claim that India must violate its own laws in order to prove its democratic credentials is utterly ridiculous and the heights of entitlement.
Like the ’eminent intellectuals’, TOI, too, has decided to vouch for Aatish Taseer only because he belongs to the same club. This set of individuals are so accustomed to ‘liberal privilege’ that they live under the delusion that ordinary laws do not apply to them. The manner in which these set of individuals are demanding that the Indian government make an exception for one of their own only reveals the extent of their entitlement.