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Kobad Ghandi

The recent arrest of Kobad Ghandi was the first time I came to learn about this remarkable life.

I say this is a remarkable life because it's definitely an unusual life: this was a person born with a silver spoon in his mouth who chose to forego pursuing all the opportunities that naturally open up if you have the privilege of education as he had.

I remember Robert Kennedy talking about this and the natural desire to live a life of personal ambtion and financial success: that's what most of us aspire to do.

It's good to see in this atmosphere of overwhelming conformity as exists in Indian society that there are still individuals who are willing to live life on their own terms.

The benefits or otherwise of the naxal movement are of course open to debate. What's important is that there should be people with different points of view: such as an Arundhati Roy.

People claim that she's an useless armchair intellectual taking up fashionable causes. People complain about human rights activists when these activists complain about police staging fake encounters.

The dangers of cutting corners with the core values of democracy may not be apparent too quickly: but when the values corrode, the damage will become apparent eventually.

It's important in a democratic set up to have room for debate: after all, British society had rebels such as Bertrand Russell who didn't agree with the official position about the War.

We need more subersives in India, and not less ...

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