Directed by Anand Patwardhan • Documentary • 2018 • 123 minutes
Those who witnessed the scientific spirit fostered by the Enlightenment would scarcely believe that over 400 years later, Faith would still have an upper hand over Reason. Today as technologically advanced nations still debate the merits of Creationism and Evolution, the developing world falls prey to blind faith and religious war. Everywhere privatization and a rush to corner ever-depleting natural resources has catapulted corporates and their extreme right wing storm-troopers into power. With the collapse of egalitarian values, democracy itself is under siege. That we, the temporarily comfortable, rarely notice, is because an embedded media controls both information and entertainment. We see what they want us to see and quickly tire of seeing anything that matters. Reason takes us to a macrocosm – India, the world’s largest democracy. Its eight chapters are a chilling account of how murder and mind control are being applied to systematically dismantle secular democracy in a country which once aspired not just to Liberty, Egalite and Fraternity, but to lead the post-war world out of its mindless spiral of violence and greed. And yet the battle for Reason is not lost. Even as Brahminism (a priest ordained caste hierarchy that withheld knowledge from the working castes) drapes itself in the national flag and sends out its hit squads, resistance has not ended. For every brave rationalist gunned down or driven to suicide, many more take up the mantle. Reason is then both a warning and a promise.