Monday, March 17, 2008

The mute spectators

Edward Luce in his book In spite of the Gods described India as country trying to find its footing. A country progressing on the path of development, but still dealing with problems unique only to itself.
We Indians fancy ourself as being the next super power. The country of the 21st century. But still whenever anything goes wrong we are the first to turn our head away. A girl - a tourist - a guest is raped and murdered in our country and we keep quiet. We give refuge to people fighting for their freedom but when the same people are slaughtered for fighting for their cause, we turn our heads away. We choose to maintain our high moral ground but in reality we act like cowards who are afraid to stand up to a bully. Sitting on our high pedestal we pass judgments and comments, not caring about others!
Scarlett Johnson a 15 year old teenager was raped and murdered in Goa last week. She was drugged, assaulted and then left to die on the beach. At first we brushed aside the case as another Phirangi spoiling our culture and getting what she deserved by drowning. Nobody even cared to investigate. Finally when the mother of the victim ran from pillar to post did we wake up. Even then the blame went to GOA - the rave parties , the drug temple etc etc. Nobody cared to go in depth and find the criminal or actually solve the case. Just take out the editorials of any newspaper and you will find it goes from everything abut foreigners spoiling goa to its land mafia but wont speak about the case. I have been studying in BITS goa for 3 years and nobody i know in college is a druggy or has gone out and become one. It is not the state , not the place but the criminal sociology which is the culprit here. Do you think such a crime wouldn't have happened anywhere else in the country? No but we want to play the blame game..

Coming to the second issue. We have granted political asylum to Tibetians. But today when there are riots in lhasa , when there is oppression, manslaughter, we have kept mum. Not saying anything to anger the bigg brother China.More than 80 people have been killed and several hundred injured, and protests are spreading to other parts of Tibet.Schools and monasteries are sealed off, and there are heavy restrictions on people's movements with security forces stepping up their hunt for rioters in house-to-house searches.Around 400-500 people who received gunshot wounds are without medical assistance and are scared of being arrested if they go to hospital.

How long will we hide behind this veil of hippocracy? How long can we afford to keep mum? Our neighbour country is worn torn, martial law imposed, no democracy and we couldn't care less. If we truly want to become a super power we should take a stand. Punish the culprit . Own to our own follies. Raise our voice against the opression.
Our neighbours view us as the big bully. Nepal has maoist who are against India. God what happens to pakistan. Bangladesh is falling to hardlined mullahs and sri lanka is grappling with LTTE. WE are making castles in thin air. How can we progress with such an unstabilty in region? How can we progress when we dont know how to protect the foreigners in our country, worse still bring culprits to justice?

Its time we act , raise our voice make ourself heard. Or we would forever remain a country trying to come to terms with its own destiny, trying to find its footing.

Protests have started in Tibet for autonomy and chinese government is crushing it with all its might. Nobody knows the full extent of damage. Now the ball is in your court either remain quiet or raise your voice for a cause!!!
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