On another post about the death of Osama, I got a comment which is excerpted here:
Drawing false equivalences between India and Pakistan to appease them is part of the routine. If you are bad, we are also bad. If you have extremists we also have extremists. If you kill people we also kill people. If you have Shahid Afridi, we have Gautam Gambhir. Nothing wrong with your Islam at all, our Hinduism is worse. And so on the charade goes. The point of the game is not to talk blunt and deliver a reality check to our darling estranged brothers and sisters but to force the idea that they are just "people like us" down *our* throats. D'Souza deserves to be commended for not yet scaling the heights of of discussing "shared" cultural attributes like butter naan and sufi music, but he cannot be accused of not trying to push the envelope.
Pakistan is so far down the road of self-deception that this make-believe is superfluous. They don't need our assurance that their state and society are not particularly evil. Join the game if it makes you feel virtuous to claim that we are the ones who are equally evil.
I wrote a response as a comment there, but on some reflection it seemed to me this little exchange deserved to be a post by itself. So here we are. My response is in the following paragraphs.
The self-deception, it seems to me, is in those who are content in trying to show that India is superior to Pakistan, and who bristle at anything that frays that effort.
That bristling alone tells its tale.
I couldn't care less who is "superior". But I know some truths about Indians and India, some offered at random below:
* Gambhir's remark, off-the-cuff as it might have been, was offensive by itself.
* There are people I have visited in this country, without any huge effort to go to especially remote areas, who cannot buy rice at the government programme's price of Rs 3/kg; this has prompted the government to institute a sub-programme to sell them rice at Rs 1/kg.
* Pretty much the same number of people were slaughtered in Delhi in November 1984 as were slaughtered in NYC in September 2011. Ten years later, a measure of justice caught up with Osama. 27 years later, no measure of justice has caught up with any of those who led the Delhi slaughter.
* There are news reports of dishonour (forgive me, I will not use the word "honour") killings in different parts of India all the time (about three every day according to this report).
* The amount of money mentioned in our 2G corruption scam (Rs 60000 crore) is pretty much the GDP of Iceland ($12bn).
To those who draw conclusions about the state of Pakistan's "state and society" and their "self-deception" from various truths from Pakistan, I'd like to ask: what conclusions do you draw about India's "state and society" and our "self-deception" from truths like the ones listed here?