Monday, August 16, 2010

Happy "Independence" Day

Yesterday we celebrated our 64th Independence Day. Unfortunately, the shining IT fueled economic success of recent years sometimes hides the fact of how far we have to travel before we can realize Tagore's vision of India.

"Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high;

Mumbai 26/11 - CST

Mumbai 26/11 - The Taj
Where knowledge is free;

Police action against student protests in Bangalore
Self Immolation in protest against Mandal Commission 
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow domestic walls; 

Protests in Kashmir
Raj Thackarey's thugs beating up a taxi driver in Mumbai
A Naxalite encampment in Chattisgarh
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way into the dreary desert sand of dead habit; 

Caste politics still dominate the nation

Manoj and Babli, who were murdered in cold blood on the orders of Khap Panchayats
Child marriage is still widespread

Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake." 

Half of the children in India are underweight

Happy Independence Day.


  1. I indeed wonder what this world has come to, we celebrate days of war victory and patriotism but we do realize we neither have the intelligence to perceive what is right and what is wrong nor we remember being human.

  2. well ofcourse there's room for improvement in every country and for India maybe the work to be done is a lot more. Still i would say that due to FREE PRESS and DEMOCRACY the Nehru's idea of multi cultural and multi lingual INDIA has survived for 64 years.

  3. Well people may say that I am a hardcore pessimist but the fact is India can never improve.. The statements like "India is shinning" and "India can improve" etc etc are all sugar coated ideologies coming from people like "us" sitting comfortably in the AC rooms and claiming to be big intellectuals..but the true face is what has been posted by ratul and neither aam janata nor Govt had (are) or (will be) doing anything for it.We are all bunch of escapist and selfish barbarian... The bridge between "have" and "have nots" will rise with each passing years and seriously speaking no one can stop it.. Being a hardcore pessimist I dont even the tiniest ray of light at the end of the tunnel ... (sorry if my comments hurt someone's sentiment)

  4. Everyone can see the all-prevailing darkness, but we often fail to see the million candles which can remove this darkness. We are the harbinger of light.

    It would be better to go and feed a hungry child or donate blood (I do that). It may be a small ray of light, but who knows, it might light up someone's life.

    To remove the darkness, a candle has to burn...

  5. Without a shade of doubt it can be attributed that, there is growth in India but the perennial problem remains; growth is not an all inclusive one....Its sad that Tagore's vision of our country has turned into a mere utopia. Such an endeavor is tough but sumhow large segments of society has been relegated....wide spread violation of human rights, corruption, dirty politics, ineffective judiciary systems have plagued the happiness of society and have turned the entire machinery into a circus. True that we know all of these but we don't contribute effectively in terms of rectifying the issues. Maybe its time that we change ourselves

  6. Just a clarification.

    This post was not just a lament about the state of our nation - rather a reaction to all the celebrations/"india Roxx"/"we are a superpower" type of sentiment that becomes so overpowering among the media and the urban populace at large at this time of the year.
    Yes we are better off than our neighbours like Pakistan, Bangladesh or religious theocracies like in the middle east but why should we be content to compare ourselves to the absolute worst. My chief grudge is against the totally apathetic urban professional class (yes I am one of them) because I really dont expect anything from the political idiots.
    Its almost surreal - the difference between the haves and have-nots resembling France before the revolution, the ruling elite straight out of Alice in Wonderland and the society at large as envisaged in Huxley's Brave New World.
    In fact, as you go away from the city you feel like entering a different country altogether. And we waste whatever resources we have on hosting the bloody commonwealth games.

  7. What's stopping India to have better pictures than those above lie deep rooted in the want of people in the government, who think more about the people of the country and less about how much they are saving for their great grand children.
    About child marriages and caste politics, educate the new generations. It would need a lot of effort to erase the century's old beliefs from the dark minds of the rural population. Efforts that should be taken by everyone who dream to see their country in a better place. But without anyone taking the effort, what else could happen than forever unbridgeable gaps between the have and have nots.

  8. Max my boy, we will always have poverty, child hunger, terrorists, protests, naxals, khaps, child marriages, and everything you mentioned or filed to mention.

    But every year, on the 15th of August we remind ourselves that we are Independent and masters (or is it slaves) of our own destiny. We thump our chests and raise the third finger to the British and say with pride, "We are now free from you!". We force ourselves to stay sober (thanks to the government) and reflect on what was and think of what could be...

  9. And raising our third finger to the British we say, "Sorry for this slum which was blocking the path of the queen's baton for the commonwealth games. We shall clear it, 64 years after our independence."

  10. I doubt if we are really independent. I know this doesn't sound good. But if you open your eyes you will see it. Once it were the Britishers - they employed the divide and rule policy. And now its our politicians who are repeating the same story. Our people are still divided.