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February 18, 2009

Living under the shadow of fear

WHILE WORKING in the kitchen, if u burn your hand accidentally, your only reaction is ’ouch! it hurts’. Just think about those hundreds of people then, who were charred to death in the Mumbai local trains blast . A chill does run down your spine, right?

Are we really independent, after 61 years of independence? No, we are still under the passive control of terrorists. It’s the terrorists who are deciding who’s going to die next, they are the ones planning, which city to attack, they are the ones laughing malevolently at our panick-stricken state and, yes, it’s they who mock at our lack of intelligence. Be it Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Delhi, Jaipur or Bangalore, it’s only we, the common people, who have to suffer. A man goes to work every morning, uncertain whether he will return home safely. A mother waits for the clock to strike 2, the time when her son will be back home, safe and sound. A child goes to play every evening, not knowing that the next target of the terrorists might be that very ground. Is this how we are supposed to live? Under constant fear?
Terrorism is spreading in our country like venom. The state is such that we have almost got used to seeing sanguinary market places and bus stops. It has become our habit to cope up with the situation following every terrorist attack.

Why can’t we fight against this evil? Why are our intelligence sources failing to save hundreds of innocent lives time and again? Why is the evil interest of the terrorists, of robbing us of our joy and ripping our country apart, being satiated?

Terrorism is an unending battle, India has been fighting ever since independence. In the recent past, the terrorist activities of militant groups like Indian Mujahideen, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad, etc have precipitated like never before. People are being killed ruthlessly and nothing is being done at all. After every attack, the politicians are seen taking trips of the affected regions and making fake promises to the masses but it’s high time we understood that these are mere gimmicks! Had they felt the tears, of those who lost their closed ones, with full heart and understood the gravity of the situation, our country wouldn’t have been among the 20 most dangerous places of the world!

This deep rooted, recurrent disease has to be wiped out completely and for that we, the common people, have to work hand in hand and raise our voices. Shying away from responsibility and fearing dire consequences will only add fuel to the existing fire. ’We’ can make our country a better place to live in. Until then, yes, we are unsafe!

Living under the shadow of fear

WHILE WORKING in the kitchen, if u burn your hand accidentally, your only reaction is ’ouch! it hurts’. Just think about those hundreds of people then, who were charred to death in the Mumbai local trains blast . A chill does run down your spine, right?

Are we really independent, after 61 years of independence? No, we are still under the passive control of terrorists. It’s the terrorists who are deciding who’s going to die next, they are the ones planning, which city to attack, they are the ones laughing malevolently at our panick-stricken state and, yes, it’s they who mock at our lack of intelligence. Be it Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Delhi, Jaipur or Bangalore, it’s only we, the common people, who have to suffer. A man goes to work every morning, uncertain whether he will return home safely. A mother waits for the clock to strike 2, the time when her son will be back home, safe and sound. A child goes to play every evening, not knowing that the next target of the terrorists might be that very ground. Is this how we are supposed to live? Under constant fear?
Terrorism is spreading in our country like venom. The state is such that we have almost got used to seeing sanguinary market places and bus stops. It has become our habit to cope up with the situation following every terrorist attack.

Why can’t we fight against this evil? Why are our intelligence sources failing to save hundreds of innocent lives time and again? Why is the evil interest of the terrorists, of robbing us of our joy and ripping our country apart, being satiated?

Terrorism is an unending battle, India has been fighting ever since independence. In the recent past, the terrorist activities of militant groups like Indian Mujahideen, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad, etc have precipitated like never before. People are being killed ruthlessly and nothing is being done at all. After every attack, the politicians are seen taking trips of the affected regions and making fake promises to the masses but it’s high time we understood that these are mere gimmicks! Had they felt the tears, of those who lost their closed ones, with full heart and understood the gravity of the situation, our country wouldn’t have been among the 20 most dangerous places of the world!

This deep rooted, recurrent disease has to be wiped out completely and for that we, the common people, have to work hand in hand and raise our voices. Shying away from responsibility and fearing dire consequences will only add fuel to the existing fire. ’We’ can make our country a better place to live in. Until then, yes, we are unsafe!

February 13, 2009

valentine day and moral police

WITH VALENTINE’S Day around the corner, hearts are fluttering! Love is in the air but there are certain things that may act as dampener in the festive mood of love and lovers. However, those who are all excited to celebrate the day of love are looking forward to this Valentine’s Day with great enthusiasm and would leave no stone unturned to pamper their love interests.

Market slowdown and the moral policing may have erected obstacles in the way but the love birds are still optimistic to celebrate in full zest.

Notwithstanding, with prices soaring and pockets shrinking in the times of recession, the love birds are a bit cautious and are forced to watch their pockets as they gear up for the Valentine’s Day. With the economic downturn having a hard hitting effect on almost everyone’s pocket, the slam bang expenditures and flashy show-offs seem to have taken the back stage.

Not only are the people a little hesitant to go all out, the shopkeepers and event managers are also feeling the heat and are reeling under the recession blues. However, a bad economy won’t stop cupid this Valentine’s Day but it would definitely slow him down. Adding to the woes of the love birds in the times of recession is the ever growing band of moral brigades or the so called saviours of culture. The moral senas are all out to show their might in vandalising the celebrations and beating up the love birds as well as those involved in providing celebration platforms.

In the recent years, Valentine’s Day has become increasingly popular in India. One could discern the festivity mood with retailers selling red balloons, velvet pillows and teddy bears to mark the festival and people flogging to the gift shops and places of celebration to mark the day. Side by side, this celebration of love has also sparked countrywide protests, which even turn violent and ugly.

Valentine’s Day comes every year with its share of spoils with the moral brigades playing spoilsports in the name of culture and tradition. This year isn’t going to be any different with already the moral brigades like Sri Ram Sene, Bajrang Dal and Shiv Sena are ready to spell doom on those in the mood of celebrating the love on love day. The moral police under various banners will be on a prowl at vulnerable dating points to swoop down on those who are found to be expressing love or engaged in intimacy!

These so called moral police justify their act of violence in the name of what they call protection of traditional and cultural values from being corrupted by unethical Western practices of expression of love on Valentine’s Day. These hard line groups are of the opinion that the celebrations are commercialised and offend the country’s traditional sensibilities. Now, who has given them the right to dictate what is right and what is wrong. Are they themselves clean and well-cultured? It is ridiculous that those who themselves are offenders of law and order are teaching a lesson to others.

Though there is a slight demarcation between love and lust and at times may trigger a debate. But why are those being punished whose feelings are logical and fall within the norms of a civilised society. Love in itself is a feeling of intense affection, attraction and emotion, and it is due to its psychological relevance that love is one of the most common themes in art and music. Then how could one say that expression of love is illogical?
However, despite protests and violent demonstrations, restaurants, up market hotels and retailers have been as usual selling love souvenirs ranging from red balloons and velvet pillows tailor and other stuffs that are made for the occasion. At the same time, there have been counter attacks on these so called moral brigades as well. Union Minister for Women and Child Development, Renuka Chaudhary, has already said that women have the right to celebrate any day the way they want and the state government should protect their independence.
If the moral brigade groups think they will have a field day harassing couples on Valentine’s Day, then this year they may be tackled head on by certain government bodies and other organisations. Delhi police is ready for stern action against troublemakers on V-Day, as are some other groups to neutralise the sabotage of moral police.

There are other issues of national importance rather than going all out after the love birds. Why don’t these moral brigades fight for the cause against poverty, hunger, sanitation, terrorism, etc, which require more attention and perseverance? These groups feel that they have made their country rich and proud after beating up poor fellows. It is really very frustrating to see such images in India, which is deemed as a superpower in the coming years. There is lack of will and determination on the part of administration as well which falters to save the basic human rights and freedom of our citizens. Now, the question arises, is our Indian culture so week that it could be threatened and pulverised by an expression of love?