“Is it a sin to be a Hindu?” Former ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan questions cancel culture, unfair criticism and religious targeting amidst the release of Rocketry: The Nambi Effect.
I am pretty sure you all must be well aware of who Nambi Narayanan is. If not let me take a minute to refresh and jog your memory a little.
A rocket scientist and aerospace engineer, Nambi Narayanan, born on 12th December 1941 has worked at the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), contributing to the development of the Vikas Rocket engine, which has been used for many of ISRO’s rocket makings including the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) and Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV)
He has been in charge of the cryogenics division. He came into the limelight in 1994, after his arrest under false charges of espionage. Having been cleared of all charges and acquitted by the CBI. He was also given compensation by the Kerala government. He was also conferred with the third highest civilian award Padma Bhushan in 2019 for his contribution to the development of rocket science in India.
So, having been earlier accused of sharing confidential information about India’s space program with 2 Maldivian nationals and after an arrest and scrutiny for the same, I fail to understand why is it that this exemplary personality too is not being spared when it comes to being trolled and shamed for choosing to depict his personal religious sentiments publicly.
So Why does being a Hindu become a problem?
The whole debacle has begun when certain reviewers who reviewed the movie Rocketry: The Nambi Effect made on him decided to criticize the Hindu identity depicted in the movie. In response to the same, a video which went viral for the same shows us his side of the story. Nambi simply has asked whether it is a sin to be a Hindu. He further reiterates that this chastisement simply has no point since the whole issue of his portrayal is just being coloured up and blown out of proportion for no reason at all. He says that if being a Brahmin, he is being portrayed as the same, he sees no reason for anyone to cut him short on just that. Is a portrayal of being devout to your religion so objectionable and cumbersome that even your loyalties and patriotism are questioned?
Well, exactly the point I have been meaning to make for ages. Why is it that we need to behave, act and live in a particular pre-set manner, always? Why is there a standard, so-called “acceptable” norm for everything one does or behaves, in life? Why can’t we all just be ourselves, portraying our true selves? Why is it that even for choosing to be my own self I need validation of sorts, approval from those who always tout themselves to be the “deciding authority” permanently? Being vilified, made a victim for choosing to live through your ideologies and following them cannot for certain be classified as an act of crime, right? Since when has settled one’s personal vendettas become a part of an agenda which seems to have become the latest rage with each and every one of us always on the lookout to “cancel culture”, lobbying against someone, in particular, wanting to simply defame or character assassinate them because we deem them unfit to be present in our socially created societal systems?
Related: Book Review of Hinduism: Ritual and Beyond by Ashok Mishra
Shame on all those, I’d say who indulge in such lobbying, and wrong malpractices that simply disrupt the peace and socio-cultural balances of any country. Deciding to do something is a matter of personal choice and matters such as the choice of religion, and freedom of expression of a person should definitely not be seen as a ground for harassment. It reeks of bad faith and vandalism, distorting another’s image, trying to hurt overall sentiments simply to fulfil’ one set behavioural pattern.
As an influencer, today in fact is a part of modern, independent India, thanks to such cancelled culture, and such target shaming I feel intimidated and am always feeling queasy to express my real thoughts and opinions on my own religion. Why is expressing yourself on your religion bifurcated as a left or right-winged approach and not taken as an opinion devoid of any favouritism or bias? Why can’t I and everyone just be? Why has life become so difficult? Forming an opinion is daredevilry and expressing it has become taboo, I’d say.
I would say more than the Government or authoritative bodies, people on Instagram, Twitter and other platforms have become more nosy, getting into other’s lives, businesses, and opinions for no reason.
Coming back to the infamous Nambi case, I just want to say that today, even after years of acquittal, after receiving compensation too, the wrongdoers presumably move around Scott free as Prof. Nambi still continues the fight of bringing justice to book in their case. In such a scenario, chastising religious depictions just for the purpose of sensationalism is not the “done” thing guys. Please don’t commit such travesties which reduce another to thinking if we as a nation still continue to be bound by narrow-minded, low-quality thought processes. Don’t compel another to believe that yes, we cannot live freely as per our choice of expression and that freedom is but simply a farce.
Hope you guys agree with Unabashedly Anon’s view on ISRO Scientist and his movie Rocketry: The Nambi Effect – yeah a new nobody amidst your midst, to bring your attention to those little things which are trivial but do matter. Do let me know in the comments your views on this issue. Let me know your thoughts, let me hear your voice on this so that together we can make an opinion which is fair and which counts in a country famous for its freedom of expression.