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Hungry people can't be expected to be patriotic
Bhookhe Pet Bhajan Na Ho Gopala (Oh, God, I cannot recite your name on an empty stomach). The story is about one of Buddha's disciples; after graduation in preaching under Buddha himself, he went on to preach the teachings of Buddhism to various people.

He met an illiterate hungry man who had not taken a meal for quite a few days and started preaching to him about the middle path and the principles of Panch Sheel. However, the man just did not listen to him.

Frustrated he went back to Buddha to relate his plight and failure. Buddha asked him to bring that man to the former. The disciple accordingly somehow persuaded that man to come to Buddha.

Buddha first of all fed that man with a nice meal and then started preaching him after inquiring about the welfare of his family. The man started to listen and converted to Buddhism. Then Buddha told his disciple that no hungry man could be given lectures. First he has to be fed and only then he can become religious.

The same is true of patriotism. A hungry man cannot be expected to become a patriot. In fact, 40% of India's population, which lives below the poverty line and is illiterate, cannot be expected to even know what patriotism is. They do not even know the concept of patriotism or nationalism. All they know is that they are hungry and anybody who removes their hunger is their friend.

That is why so many poor Hindus get converted to Christianity because the Christian missionaries offer them food. Similarly, in the past the Muslim rulers had converted a number of Hindus by offering them food and other facilities. The poor people do not understand the niceties of elections but vote for the candidate who offers them food and drinks.

So, Government of India should not expect this from poor people that they would be patriotic. They do not care whether Kashmir is in India or in Pakistan or that Chinese have occupied our lands. Many of them do not know anything about these matters. All they are interested in is getting roti, kapda aur makan. (bread, clothing and housing).

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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