With political and public discourse increasingly becoming bitter, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today called for tempering it with humour and satire.
” I think we need more satire and humour. Humour brings happiness in our lives. Humour is the best healer. The power of a smile or the power of laughter is more than the power of abuse or any other weapon,” he said.
Mr Modi’ s remarks came while he was addressing the 47th anniversary function of Tamil magazine Thuglaq in Chennai through video conferencing.
The magazine was founded by the late Cho S Ramaswamy, who was his close friend.
Admiring the noted journalist’s ability for satire and humour, Mr Modi called for more of this in daily life.
“Humour builds bridges instead of breaking them… And this is exactly what we require today. Building bridges, bridges between people, bridges between communities, bridges between societies,” he said.
The Prime Minister in this context spoke of a cartoon Ramaswamy had done of him and said it was “apt” to the current situation.
“This reminds me a cartoon of Cho wherein people are targeting me with their guns and the common people are standing in front of me. Cho asks who is the real target, me or the common people? How apt is the cartoon in today’s context,” he said without referring to any incident.
Though the prime minister did not elaborate further, his mention of this particular cartoon could be seen in the backdrop of the Opposition attack on him over demonetisation saying it had hit common man hard while Mr Modi said it had brought out black money and the pňor need not have any fear.
The Prime Minister in his speech paid glowing tribute to Cho Ramaswami who. He said it was not easy to understand and to do this, one had to understand his courage, conviction and sense of nationalism, “which went beyond parochial wisdom and linguistic”