16 May, 2021

Here Be (No) Dragons

The Indian media reserves its vitriol for China. It’s horribly unfair.

Here Be (No) Dragons

It’s an understatement to say that there’s China-bashing in the Indian media. Occasionally, there are rational and insightful voices, but these, by and large, are often submerged by many a 24/7 news channel and the patriotism-trumpeting column inches in newspapers. China is always drawn in cartoons as the Fearsome Dragon with a fang, or an Ugly Big Brother with a shadow. Stereotyping is the name of the game.

Recently, an English daily devoted an entire Sunday page to asking prominent Indians: Would you choose to be Chinese or Indian? Really, would any sensible citizen, let alone those “prominent”, publicly opt for another nationality? Worse, the answers of prominent Indian citizens to the question ranged from “They dress like robots” to “Indian Chinese food trumps Chinese Chinese any day”, from “China’s success is overrated” to “We are the best Asian country”.

The crowning glory in stereotyping must go to the piece a fiction writer wrote titled...

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