One Man’s Fierce Criticism Of Modi Govt Through Spoken Word Poetry - Homegrown

One Man’s Fierce Criticism Of Modi Govt Through Spoken Word Poetry

India has seen so much change in the past three years. The economy has grown at a rapid rate, from 6.4% in 2013 to 7.9% in 2015; demonetisation took a toll on many in the country; Yogi Adityanath was elected the 21st Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh; a complicated nationwide Goods and Services Tax was introduced. The Modi government and its political ideologies have essentially taken over the entire nation, and, more recently, economic growth has been much slower than it should be.

Yet, the leading man seems to be surrounded by a cloud of positivity; most of which, conveniently ignore the 2002 Gujarat riots, and that economic reform is clearly not the Indian government’s priority right now. Very recently, unspent money that was dedicated to funding renewable energy and environmental protection was relocated to compensating Indian states after the blow of the GST – a total of INR 56,700 crore, and yet, Uttar Pradesh is planning the country’s very first Lord Krishna theme park in an effort to promote ‘religious tourism’.

To put it plainly, most Indians are afraid to say a word against Modi’s government. And they have every reason to be – if a simple post on social media about the issue of demonisation could land a 19-year-old in jail, anyone who voices his or her opinion is under threat. This was one of the many reasons why theatre director, writer and actor Devroop Sharma’s poem is so powerful.

Aadmi Bada Achha Hai is, in every sense, bitingly sarcastic. Stunningly performed in exquisite Hindi by Sharma himself, it speaks about Narendra Modi and his governance without explicitly stating his name or any other aspect of the government. One can’t help but notice Sharma’s attempt to replicate an Indian politician with the attire he wears during his performance, as well as the soft overtone Sharma creates with the help of the guitarist next to him, who strums a happy tune that doesn’t quite complement the content of the poem – intentionally, of course. It’s an illusion – the strumming of the guitar, the smile on Sharma’s face, all juxtapose his tongue-in-cheek words, an apt metaphor for the message he is conveying.

Sharma takes his audience through India’s reformation under the current Prime Minister’s reign through a poem that gradually increases in power and critique as it progresses. The strength of this piece and Sharma’s obvious theatre expertise leaves you nothing less than speechless, your feet and hands itching to launch into endless applause.

You can watch it here.

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