Thursday, August 20

Jai Ho!!

Jai Hind!

Wish you a belated Happy Independence Day!

This comes late, I know... I was ruminating over a number of things before I came up with this post. (And the previous one, a poem, if you haven't read it yet.)

Say, it's good to know that my countrymen are all Indian... At least in spirit, if not in action.

Of course, we stand up when the national anthem is played before every movie in the cinema hall, and we cheer when India is playing a cricket match against Pakistan or Australia.

We feel proud when Akshay Kumar rattles off impressive statistics quoting the greatness of our nation in Namaste London, or when Shahrukh Khan admonishes his team in Chak De for not giving precedence to their nation, referring to their individual states instead.

When an Indian wins an international honor, we celebrate in our homes and streets, and we join peace marches for deaths that happen on the battlefield.

We forward e-mails and sign petitions...

But do we all vote?

This year maybe we did, courtesy the stunning Jaago Re campaign.
But do we know and practice our responsibilities otherwise?

I confess, I am a stupid citizen. I don't have a voter's card, despite applying for it thrice in the last 4 years. I hate politics and I don't know what I can do to prove myself a worthy and partiotic and well-meaning Indian. I don't pollute the air/water/soil much, but I also have not made any significant contributions to humankind or the world yet. Some righteous folks might say I'm as good as not living... if living is the right of those who know how to make a difference, those who know how to make their countries proud and strive to its development. Maybe I'm self-centred and cynical. Just like the rest of us...

However, the truth is I feel very bad for our nation, and I wish there was something we all could do to make it a better place. We have the best of everything - people, resources, intelligence, capability. But we aren't utilizing it effectively. I'm aware the simplest way out is to blame the bureaucracy and corruption, but though I admire and enjoy Anil Kapoor in Nayak, I can't be him... Wish someone was...

I asked a couple of folks what Independence meant to them. I asked what they would say to Mother India if they happened to meet her, and what she would say to them. Here are a few answers I received... Reproduced by permission.
(Thanks, friends!)

Bhanu (Guru, met him at ISABS, inseparable since) - What would we say to her? Nothing. She knows it all. Half of us would stand in pride, the others hang their heads in shame.
I hope in her second visit, we'd all be proud!

Sibi (THE Buddy) - To me, freedom is leaving the house at 2 am without fear, doing what I want to do, legally, of course.
If Mother India arrives, she'd look into our eyes and say "care for me a little bit and I'll take care of generations that are yet to come."
And we'd stand there expressionless, waiting to get back to our work and schedules...

Abba (
my Uncle, who I refer to so often here. For the record, my grandpa was a freedom fighter and Abba, as leader of banks and educational institutions does more than a few flag-hoisting ceremonies back at my ancestral place) - Every Independence Day reaffirms my faith in India.
If Mother India appears, she would say your society passes, but just barely!
I'd reply, we could've done better had we not all been so selfish and unscrupulous...

Ketaki (a school-and-college-mate, a very smart lady, as you shall shortly acknowledge) - Independence to me is light and liberation of every Indian citizen.
If Mother Earth ever incarnated down to our Motherland, she would rightly show us the path towards illumination, which would be virtuous and lawful victory over the social and economic demons that dwell here.
We, as Her children would ask her to bless us with the power to think with precision, challenge and work towards a better and brighter tomorrow for us and for the generations to come.


Hmmmm... smart folks, eh?
Would love to hear your answers and comments, too readers!

Thank ye all, and lets pray we become a better community and nation soon... I'm sick of hearing "India is a DEVELOPING country" and "a superpower in the making"... Bring it on!! Enough of the waiting...

Cheers!
Anuja

3 comments:

ani_aset said...

thanks for putting up some comments from your friends here
I have enough faith in our nation in winning hearts of the world
I do take enough pride in the diversity we have (read food :D)

vishal said...

Hi,
It's commendable on your part tp write in this particular of way..Being an Indian not just on I-day but to stand up on every occasion stand important,like helping that poor person..however big or small,but the gesture stand important..Well,I reconnected with the land of my forefathers for five years..I realised the importance of being an Indian.the identity that so many have carried with the..I realised my Indiannesss..the connect with this beautiful land..
Sure,so many have to be won..an inclusive Education for all,the great divide between Bharat and India,corruption perpetuated by Netas..It's about us a nation..the change should start with us....
I was planning to be part of the TEACH INDIA movement but unforeseen circumstances..had to go back to Mauritius for a change..it was a sentimental problem..was hurt in love..it was selfish and I regret not being able to give to India which it has given to me..Hopefully,some day I hope to give it back..
Okie enough of my bak bak now..cheerz..

Bhanu said...

Hi mate. Enjoyed reading others' comments. Where's yours?

The Guru