One Year Past 26/11: Mail of the week

Posted on November 28, 2009 in Politics at Play, Society

Siddhrath Vishwanathan

Its been one year since the terror attacks hit Mumbai. Let us for the moment, forget about the event, and focus on the behavior of we the people. After all, history shows us that one catastrophic event is enough to galvanize a nation and its people to be one.

However, in this case, we seem to resorting to our colonial mindset of divide and rule for some kind of cultural superiority.One year on, we still do not know what is right and wrong. If there are Marathis beating up people from UP and Bihar, we cloak that under the economic and cultural blanket, thus muddling up the issue. Cannot we, for now, stand up and say that no particular group of people are allowed to beat another group of people? Just because the language and culture is different does not mean that you become a target. Whatever we are witnessing between the MNS, Shiv sena is part of a braoder political game that they want to build on the blood of people. Although they are promoting soft culture in the form of Literature and culture, it is essentially remebered as an irrational outfit because they have allowed themselves to become one.

Now, just before the anniversary, the so called unity has now being shattered because the Liberhan report was deliberately leaked and after its official tabling, it has caused political disunity. The Ayodhya Carnage, to go with the Sikh and Gujarat riots have totally strained the social relationships among ordinary indians. Everybody is now under the illusion that assertion of religious identity for dominance is required so that this country can improve. The ordinary people know it is pricking their conscience, and that they do not care about people’s religious background. There is an awakening, but it is not seen. If people care about it, they dont speak up or remain quiet on the sidelines.

For milleniums together, we have allowed few to dominate millions. If there are goondas, 20 to 30 of them, and are targetting a particular institution, then we are unable to find 100 who will personally volunteer and stand up to the goondas. We know that the police were ineffective, yet we are hearing ads from Idea Cellular network which promises that for a particular period in which people will talk, all those benefits will go the revamping of the Police force. Why are’nt citizens, with the numbers advantage, not able to stand up in all political institutions and say that the police force has to be revamped now and immediately?

We are each caught up in the stresses of daily life, and Corporate culture does not allow us to do constructuve stuff, because it has installed a mindset of apathy. Cultural strands are dominated by irrationality and not by common goodness. We, as a people, one year from now, allow ourselves to be confused by the over-sensationalist media. We have still not managed to remove prejudice from religion and caste. If it is something we have learned ever since 26/11, it is that we continue to make more noises, and that is the only thing which we will learn. Because participation of change is not in the Indian psyche.

My long writing will not affect anyone, because we have to move on. People consider us ridiculous if we become idealists. Media is just another product, like a bar of soap. Unless we do not become idealists and continue to be realistic and fatalist, we can expect more 26/11s. The case being that 26/11 made us helpless, now we will continue to become helpless if we become fatalistic

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