Abdul Kalam is one of the most respected citizens of India. If he happened to be the former President of India, it is just a statement of fact. Recently he was detained by a foreign airliner for security check. It was under the general procedure and not exclusive for Mr. Kalam. The agency would have credited itself by avoiding such detention to a dignitary of Kalam’s stature but one cannot discredit it for not doing so. Many on his behalf felt humiliated but not Mr. Kalam, whose humility is exemplary. He is respected by one and all because he does not claim for more equal status anytime anywhere.
Very recently noted film actor, Shah Rukh Khan was detained at Newark airport. It was not exclusive for him but for the title Khan. Security checks are not meant for humiliation; they are the need of the hour as one of the measures to minimize terror threats to humanity. It is a day to day experience for the common passengers but in India, the more equal status to some simulates protests.
All are equal before God but not for Indian Gods. The common man has to wait in a temple queue to accommodate special or VIP darshan to political leaders, who were elected to serve the cause of common man. Why only politicians? Film actors, Sport stars, Business tycoons, too acquire the ‘more equal’ status before God to inflict and enhance the waiting misery to the common man. In a democracy where people are considered Gods, how does the concept of VIP status to some of people’s servants fit in?
Only God can answer!