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Indians are often proud of the ‘Unity in Diversity’ adage that is commonly used to describe the country’s ethos. However, diversity in India has most often brought about an array of conflicts—the most significant between Hindus and Muslims—some of which continues to this day. ‘Hinduism’, the term most commonly associated with India, actually embraces an eclectic range of doctrines and practices, from pantheism to agnosticism and from faith in reincarnation to belief in the caste system. It is a religion without fundamentals. And yet, Hindu fundamentalism is one of the biggest threats that secular India faces today. So how is one to make sense of this country? Read on as Shashi Tharoor, eminent thinker and writer, analyses the many inconsistencies and idiosyncrasies that make up India in ‘Unity, Diversity, and Other Contradictions’.
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