(This video was first published on 14 November 2019 to mark Children’s Day and has been reposted from The Quint’s archives)
Video Editor: Kunal Mehra
Camera: Abhishek Ranjan
In India, religion has always been a topic of debate. While adults talk about it often, it also affects children who are being brought up in this country. Teaching kids about religion, god, faith, etc is a knotty business and it is also an important job to keep their curious young minds immune from picking unwanted and false information from the world.
To find the impact of India’s religious pluralism and the incessant debates on prime time television, The Quint had freewheeling chats with kids under 13 years of age.
We asked kids if they knew about the Ayodhya dispute and what according to them should be built there. Most kids didn’t know about the issue, and amongst those who knew, they simply said that there shouldn’t be a fight over a piece of land. They also added that if something needs to be built on the land, it should be something like a school or hospital which could be used by all communities.
If there is so much conflict then why make these two things? Don’t construct anything at all. Construct a playground for kids, a mall or something like that and make a mosque or temple somewhere else. There is so much empty land.Bisma, 13
We spoke to about 30 kids in Delhi-NCR belonging to different religions and cultures as well as diverse social and economic backgrounds. Most girls pictured a woman when asked about god and most boys named a man, while other kids think of god as ‘power’, ‘energy’ and the ‘culture maker’.
Some people say god is the one who created us. I think god didn’t create us and it’s the genes and DNA.Tenzin, 10
Nearly all kids said that religion isn’t important and the country will be more peaceful and happy without any religion. They also said that the worst thing about religion is that it divides people and makes people fight.
What is striking is that all these kids admitted to being aware about the conflicts between Hindus and Muslims in the country.
Like, I am from a different religion and the other person belongs to other religion, then fight happens. Like how Muslims and we (Hindus) fight.Tushar, 12
Watch all the other interesting things the kids had to say in the video.