Sunday, January 25, 2009

60 years and waiting?

Justice, Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity. Those are the assurances made to every citizen of India by our forefathers and founders of the nation, people who fought and gave their lives for us. But as we celebrate the 60th Republic Day, it is also time for introspection. How far (or farther) away are we from the above founding principles this day?

While the spirit of being Indian and nationalistic pride is very high within our bloods, it very often takes great calamity, grief, and death to unite us (apart from the occasional cricket matches, perhaps!). But most other times we are a complacent lot, waiting to be shred apart and pitted against each other by our own selfish political lot, who care for nothing but their power and might. Religion, caste, communal thoughts are all played at will by these vultures who are the enemies within our nation.

Unfortunately, we are increasingly seeing how we are failing as a state to uphold the constitution and the spirit of the preamble, as we call it as patriotic Indians. Strong words to use, but that is exactly where we stand when we do not protect our citizens, their rights and property. We are forgetting to "preserve, protect, and uphold" the constitution of India.

Whether it is a 1000 wrongdoers on one side and one single citizen with the law on his side, the state, its servants, judiciary, and the people collectively have to protect and uphold the rights of the latter, leaving no stone unturned or might unused to ensure justice. That is the very basic fabric of holding together a nation and its people.

This is where cunning politicians and evil religious leaders play their cards with a single focused goal of, shall we call it, "Divide and Loot". Lakhs of political workers, irrespective of the party, or religious followers, irrespective of the faith, may be influenced (or even misguided) by the divisive forces who have their own agenda. But the judiciary, elected government, and the government machinery (that includes the police, secretariat, and every official) must work free from this influence and uphold the constitution and the right of every citizen. Whether it is the Congress, Communist, Samajwadi, Janatha Party, or Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Jain, and Buddhist, we are all bound together by the constitution and the sense of being part of a nation.

For our leaders and party workers, many of whom will not even know (or may have forgotten) about the preamble, here is a reminder:

“ WE, THE PEOPLE OF INDIA, having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a SOVEREIGN, SOCIALIST, SECULAR, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC and to secure to all its citizens:

JUSTICE, social, economic and political;

LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship;

EQUALITY of status and of opportunity;

and to promote among them all

FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of the Nation;

IN OUR CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY this twenty-sixth day of November, 1949, do HEREBY

When will we understand that Democracy does not give the right to the majority to mete out injustice to the minority, even if its a hundred people versus a single person. Socialist does not mean that an irresponsible lazy group who refuse to work for a living can loot or rob the person who works and earns for himself and his family. Secular means every man has the right and freedom to believe, or not believe, in any faith or God of his choice. Republic means that any person who stands for election must realize he or she is meant to work for the people and build the nation, and not the self or party.

We need leaders that understand that a thousand party workers do not have the right to destroy government or private property, irrespective of the cause and emotion. The police and government are maintained by the tax-payer to protect and serve the people, and not as an instrument for the elected representatives. We need judiciary that appreciates that lakhs of supporters do not absolve or justify the wrongdoings or crimes of a political leader. We need armies and police that know millions of believers behind a religious leader does not give anyone the right to attack another faith, even if it is just one man.

Let us vow in pride of being an Indian first, and isolate and shun everything and everybody who undermines this sense of unity and partiotism.

Indian First!

Happy Republic Day!

Read more!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

In Kerala, its Better Jobless Than Ever!

A guy friend told me something very interesting recently. If you live in Kerala, its better to be one of the following, if not all: fat, dark, ugly faced or wearing a permanent scowl, shabbily dressed (or in a mundu folded up above your knees), have a criminal look, or most preferably, be jobless. Although I found it funny at that moment, over a period of time, I realized what made him come up with such a harshly truthful statement.

A couple of months ago, while I was waiting at a traffic signal, which clearly had the red light on it, two guys approached my car from behind and started honking and asking me to go (probably since there was not much traffic at the junction in any case). When I refused and pointed to the red light on the signal, the guys started abusing me. Although I didnt bother and instead told them to buzz off, it was clear how the goonda looking guys with their blonde-streaked hair, with golden bracelets along with saffron and black ties on their wrists, who apparently form the "poor and downtrodden" of Kerala, would have intimidated most of the rich and selfish people (since they own cars) in Kerala.

Around a month ago, a KSRTC bus rushing towards my car from behind, with no intention of slowing down despite it being a junction, scraped a good portion of my car's right doors. And when he had no intention of stopping, I overtook and made him stop very close to the junction. The cop who was standing there and witnessing the whole scene came and shouted at me for obstructing traffic and asked me to "take my car and go". The seemingly inebriated driver (I could sense the stink of alcohol around him, but wait, he is the poor common man of Kerala, lets salute him first) just looked at me below from his seat in the bus, with an evil look and a bit of pity. The passengers and the people who joined around started murmuring "onnum patteellello" "kondu poda" and other expressions of mallu concern, hinting at me to get lost. Probably they would have been a little more sensitive had I died or had a broken arm and was bleeding profusely, I hope.

A friend who runs a hotel (dont worry, not a star hotel, but just an ordinary restaurant serving "meals") was complaining about how he was harassed every day by different authorities (all affiliated to the mighty poor-man's group), right from the corporation health inspectors, to pollution board, and water authority, who would not go away unless they were bribed. Interestingly, bang opposite him was a petty shop serving food who flouted every law and was even obstructing the traffic, but was not bothered by any officer. He also mentioned that the petty shopwala was also a strong political supporter of a certain party, whereas he had no particular political affiliation, but started this hotel from the money he saved as a worker, along with a bank loan.

I have heard mallu men, and even some women, openly proclaim that women should not walk around in anything other than clothing that covers their entire body (probably would have been better off with a burkah). Otherwise dont blame the men if they get groped or molested or raped, since those women "asked for it". Women on the other hand are scared to dress up or wear clothes that they like, lest they displease the malayali macho man with stinking armpits and folded lungis (from the mighty, powerful common-man's group), waiting for them. I wonder if our women are pushed to the extreme of even overeating and slothing with an intention of getting ugly and fat thinking that they will be safer. Ofcourse, they are mistaken.

If you are dressed properly and step outside, you are looked down upon, usually by another mallu who probably earns more than you, but purely out of jealousy. At the clubs and so called social gatherings, if you are a christian, the trick is to incite the people around by dividing them as hindus and muslims, and to pass snideful comments. If you are a so-called ezhava, then its the nair and varma tag that is played to isolate you. Yes, this is also done so that the common man's rights and privileges can be protected!

But most importantly, if you have a job and work hard to earn your living, you will likely be isolated by the unemployed and jobless complaining that you snatched their opportunity (no matter that there is still plenty of opportunity, but they prefer to remain jobless and take the privileges that come with it). The thieves and criminals will rob you and harass you. The politicians and their party workers will fleece and threaten you till you contribute to their "fight for the poor". The government will definitely make sure all the rules are laid down (only for you) to make you suffer unless you "oil the system" generously, to the extent that you end up running away from the state when you realize its not worth risking your life and health.

Alright, lets not discuss all this publicly, but instead call for investments and talk about mega projects, and ofcourse, hold up our 100% literacy tag. Shhh..lets hide that god-darn report that says Pondichery overtook us on the education index (but not on 100% literacy, haha!!). Lets join the powerful and mighty group of the poor and downtrodden of Kerala, and then we also wont have to worry about our work and livelihood.

Read more!

Terms of Use and Disclaimer