Actor Kangana Ranaut believes nationalism should not be internalised and rather be shown in every way possible, including the expression of chest-thumping.
Ranaut, who is gearing up for the release of the Rani Laxmi Bai biopic Manikarnika, has been forthcoming about her views on patriotism at the film’s promotions.
At the launch of Manikarnika song “Vijayi Bhava” on Wednesday evening, the actor, who identifies herself as a nationalist, said people have made words like “chest-thumping nationalism” and “jingoism” something to be ashamed of.
“Nowadays, words like chest-thumping nationalism and jingoism are used for shaming. When we used these words on our set, Prasoon sir (film’s dialogue writer and lyricist Prasoon Joshi) and Vijayendra Prasad (film’s writer) would tell us, “Yes, it’s chest thumping. So, why not?”
“How beautifully Prasoon sir said that whichever kind of love one has, one should not be ashamed of it. Flags of various colours are being waved, so what’s bad in our tricolour? We should not be ashamed about it,” Ranaut said.
Her comment was preceded by Joshi’s remark as he said it hurts him that “today’s youth considers nationalism uncool.”
“Don’t know who has done this but someone has made love for the country uncool. They are like, ‘What’s this nationalism?’ Whatever love we have for someone, it should remain cool. I get hurt when youngsters question why we need to show it? We need to. When there’s love, there is a need to express.
“I have been wanting to start this hashtag ‘Desh prem jatao’. There can be no better platform than this to start this hashtag. There are several ways of doing that. By writing a poem or making a painting. But boss, you have to show it. If you have love, you need to show it. Wear it on your sleeves. Ishq aur mushq chhipaye nahi chhipte. Chhupane ki kya zaroorat hai? (One cannot hide love and fragrance. What’s the need to hide it?),” Prasoon Joshi said.
Later, in the press conference, the actor-writer duo was asked if it is correct to dictate to people the ways in which they can or should express their love for the country.
Kangana Ranaut said, “Like Prasoon sir said, love is love. If you love your partner and you never want your partner’s company, it’s up to you. You can internalise it, but it will never manifest into anything concrete. It will never really manifest into a very beautiful relationship and nothing will come of it. It will always be inside of you.”
The Simran actor invoked India’s Constitution to support her argument.
“Constitution is a promise we have all made with each other, with the motherland. You understand Constitution, right? It’s not fallen from the heaven as a gift. If we add a piece of land to our land, we make a promise with even those set of people. That promise needs to be owned. It needs to be shown that we own it. It is not something to be internalised,” she further said.
Prasoon Joshi said, “Don’t take this in another direction. You said you can express in your own way, but something is definitely needed. If you are saying, ‘I will sit alone in a room and will tell people when they ask me about it.’ No. If you love someone, then say it a little bit, show it a little bit… Of course in your own way, but one should express it. It is important.
“It reflects in the eyes, in your gestures, in your hugs and touches. Don’t base the love for your country on convenience. If you are hiding behind convenience, then I have a problem,” he added.