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Are we Nero’s Guests or are we?

Updated: Jul 11, 2023

“Nero’s Guests”.“Nero’s Guests” is a documentary by P. Sainath and we were shown this in class a few weeks back and so this blog is all about what I gained from it as an individual and an answer to the question “What is the problem as per P.Sainath and how has he contributed to the solution?

The first thing that would come to mind when asked what was the problem as per P.Sainath, is that farmer suicides and other farmer problems are much more prevalent than we know and want to know.

But when one thinks a little more deeply, one realizes that it is not just that. It is more about us, the common people or the citizens of the country. Even though we all know that the government is not doing anything for them or is doing the least for them, we are not doing anything to prevent it or protest against it, personally or collectively.

This is why he compares us to Nero’s guests who did not speak a word for the absolutely inhuman act of burning living human beings, whether criminals or not, for the sake of illumination for a grand party.


He explained this even more clearly by diving deep into the social problem or issue of farmer suicides in Vidharbha, etc. citing several examples of the same in his documentary titled “Nero’s Guests”. One case involved a talented farmer poet committing suicide whereas another case involved a farmer taking his life even though he was against the idea of suicide and had received an award for the ‘Progressive farmer of the year’ for the same.

P.Sainath does not focus on the causes of farmer suicides but more on the after-effect of it on their families. He says that they have to work day and night just to live, or rather survive. Despite this, they don’t receive necessary electricity and food and even have to sacrifice the time they should be spending with their young children.

He compares their situation to that of Mumbai and the Lakmé Fashion Week organised in the same city. This makes one understand the ignorant bubble one has been living in. P.Sainath also goes ahead to tell us that the media, official government, etc. are not doing anything or even trying to draw attention towards this very relevant issue. He gives the example of the government taking 10 years to visit the farmers of Vidharbha and the families of those farmers who took their life, whereas they take only 2 hours to shake hands with the weeping billionaires after a stock market fall.

This goes to show how ignorant we are fed to be, how we choose not to speak even after knowing and how we choose to be like Nero’s guests, whether intentionally or unintentionally, and this is the problem as per P.Sainath.


How he has contributed to the solution is by trying to create awareness about it – how the government took so long to respond, how a 20 minute power cut in Mumbai can provide 2 hours of electricity in such small villages, how they are asking farmers to shift from agriculture to other sectors when they haven’t created any new jobs in other sectors, how the agrarian crisis is gradually turning into a civilizational crisis, how we are all turning into or have already turned into Nero’s guests in the process, knowingly or unknowingly, etc.

P.Sainath has written several articles of how the farmers from different parts of the country are strong and resilient at most times and under most conditions but when they are not given the support they need and deserve, they often fall prey to various social problems.

Moreover, coming out of the context of farmer suicides, I think I can connect this documentary’s theme to that of Pluto’s Allegory of the Cave, wherein all of us are the prisoners still stuck inside the cave and not willing to come out whereas some people like P.Sainath could be said to be like the freed prisoner. There are several examples of the theme that this documentary is trying to depict. One of them could beof Greta Thunberg, who at the young age of 16, is strongly protesting for the environment and is trying to do her best to make a change as she knows that’s the way she could save her future, but the same thing is being ignored by others even though they know about it. This shows how they are like Nero’s guests.

Therefore, what P.Sainath said and what he contributed to solve it stand firmly and strongly from it’s roots.

Have you seen this documentary? Anything similar, maybe? Please feel free to flow your thoughts onto the comment section below. If you liked this article, please do give it a like, share it with your family and friends and also do not forget to follow my blog and Instagram handle for any further blog updates. See you next time! Till then, always remember, Be brave. Be strong. Be great. ❤

P.S.~ The link to the documentary is


“When ignorance is our master, there is no possibility of real peace.”

~Dalai Lama

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Lifestyle | Self-growth

Storyteller at my core & writer at my front, I'm here to share stories with you that help you see the magic in the world.💛


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