Sunday, August 25, 2013

Yet again!

August 23, 2013. Yet another case. Yet another rape. Yet another outcry. Yet another reminder of what we've become as human beings.

This was a reminder for sure. Reminder of what happened last year. It's been barely 8 months when we had yet another brutal gang-rape. Police is out on search and has nabbed 5 of them already. They will be prosecuted. They may even be punished (hey, it's Indian judiciary system, we never know when the judgement's coming). But, question remains the same. Would that be enough? Can we get rid of these cases ever?

No law, no constitution can guarantee safety, and that is the truth. We have laws against rape, we have laws again murder. In fact, we have laws for and against every crime we can think of. But do they guarantee safety? They don't. Then what will. What can guarantee safety of women, and these kind of cases, the innocents (remember the male colleague who was beaten and tied up at the scene?). Can anything guarantee safety? 

Nothing can guarantee safety more than people's mind. Remember, people who commit these crimes are also part of the same society we live in. Our politicians, our citizens, our celebrities, all of them can only condemn the act. But none of that is going to stop this crime. The only way this crime can ever be curbed is by changing the mindset of the people. What am I talking about?

I was talking to one of our company drivers on our way to work when this news came on the radio. He commented, "This is all girl's fault. They wear all kind of clothes (read skimpy) and go out and then people blame it on the rapist." I wanted to retort in the most aggressive ways, but something stopped me. I do not agree with what he said and will never do. This is not any girl's fault. She has the right to wear what she likes. Everyone has. But it got me thinking about our society.

Our society is conservative by nature. We are in a transition phase. A lot of these changes in our daily lives are new to lot of people. Whether we live in a big metro city, or in a small town, the whole woman liberty concept is new. The 'liberal woman' concept is very new to our society. 

I mean I still hear people gossiping if a girl smokes. Smoking is bad for health, for everyone. But no one gossips when a male does that. However, when a girl does that, people take notice. Not only males, everyone. Same goes for so many other things. And in the same society, we have some of these beasts who cannot resist the temptation and commit such heinous crimes.

It's all in the mind. Our society needs to change. We talk about equality, but we still push for age old norms and look down upon anyone who is slightly different. We talk about liberal views and we still are conservatives. India is not the only country which has these psychopaths and sociopaths, they are everywhere. No country is completely safe. But the difference is the overall mindset here and in those western countries.

Everything would continue to be same. Rapes would continue to happen. Molestations will continue to happen. Girls would continue to be unsafe. Innocents would continue to be unsafe. We would continue to be unsafe. We'll condemn these acts, but would not be able to stop them. Nothing will change till the time we take the responsibility and change our mindset. Otherwise, we'll continue crying on the streets in vain. Crime against women and the weak, innocents would continue happening.

Let's bring some difference. It's all about tolerance and control. Let's educate people who can be. Let's respect women. In fact, let's respect every human being. Remember, live and let live.


Sunday, August 18, 2013

The dawn - August 15

At the stroke of midnight,
We saw a light
It was the ray of hope
It saw past our blight

We rejoiced,
We cherished
We forgot
the blemished

We recalled the sacrifices
We forgot the sorrows
We dreamed of a world
Free of all harrows

Everything seemed possible
on that day
The world was our playground
And we were here to stay

It was the beginning of the beginning
the dawn of a new morning,
the rise of hope
and we were ahead, storming

Let's fulfill our destiny
Let's move ahead together
Let's realize our goals
Let's dawn upon the world like a stormy weather.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda

Sir, do you know me?

Dear MP,

Hello! Sir, do you know me? Yes, me. No? I am common man. Does that ring any bells? You must've seen me somewhere. Yes, definitely.

You must've seen me in the daily local train. Yes, the same red one. I travel in it everyday. Haven't you heard about it? Sometimes bombs go off in them. But I travel in it anyway. What to do? My family needs a bowl of rice to eat everyday. 

Did you see me yesterday at the local vegetable vendor's place? Yes, I go there almost everyday. Yesterday, I went to buy some onions. But guess what. Apparently, I can't afford them. No worries. I'll adjust my daily diet to a 'no onion' diet. Just give me warning every time something becomes unaffordable. 

Are you now able to recognize me? No? Haven't you seen me at one of those fuel stations? Yes, the big one. I go there everyday. You know what though? I receive lesser fuel for the same amount I pay everyday. What? Buy more? I sure will. However, my pay doesn't rise with every hike in fuel prices. But I'll adjust and make sure I don't drive my bike all the time. It is good to walk sometimes, isn't it?

Now you must've recognized me. Yes, the same common man? My neighbor's daughter was harassed on her way to home last night. But don't you worry. We've talked to her and we'll make sure she returns before dark now onwards. We wouldn't want to disturb your police, right? They have to protect more important people, and I understand that.

Is it that difficult to recognize me? Haven't you seen me at one of the bus stands waiting for bus? You must have seen at one of those road side vendors. I asked them what I could get for Rs.12. He answered, "Certainly not a dollar!"  

At least you should know that I pay you. No? I pay you your salary. I pay for your expensive cars. I pay for your big houses. No?

But I know you'd recognize me. Next year. When it'd be my time to vote. Next year you'll come to me. You'll beg in front of me. You'll plead and promise stars to me. You'd do everything to woo me. You'd even be ready to kneel down. You know what. I promise you that next year, you'd not want to face me. 

With love,
Common man


Thursday, August 15, 2013

The Independence day

First of all, happy Independence day. This marked our 67th independence day celebration. We've been free from any foreign rule for 66 years now. So, I'd like to take this moment and congratulate every Indian.

Now, I was thinking (yes, I think too much). What have we done in these 66 years? Where are we? Where would we be 20 years from today?

I do not intend to rant or vent my frustration about what's wrong. I definitely do not want to pose the question 'are we free?' or 'have our politicians ruined our freedom?' I just want to reflect what we've done.

For sure, we are one of those potential superpower countries. We have achieved great things in past 66 years. From being under British rule to being a nuclear power, we've done it all. We have some of the best minds. Our economy is the 9th largest in the world per GDP. Our IT infrastructure is one of the best across the world. Since 1991, when we opened our doors to world, we've grown manifolds. We are touted as one of the youngest countries as well (median age of 24.9) and we continue to attract more foreign investors. We are a popular outsourcing destination, with so many big corporates setting up shop here. We are way better connected than before (we are the third largest market after China and the US for cell phones). We are ready to break the glass ceiling.

Of course, not everything is rosy. While we've grown, we have not been able to solve some of our basic problems. Malnutrition is still high amongst our children. We still import more than we export. We are still a soft target for terrorists. We still can't decide what to do with our neighbors. Our currency is not strong enough. And we have definitely been not able to curb the parasite we call corruption.

Now, I can go on and on about what we've achieved and where the problems lie. But that's not the point. The point is what we are doing as individuals for our country. Are we socially and economically responsible? Are we doing our bit? Are we really utilising our freedom?

We ramble about inefficiency of our system and yet we do not help it. We do not respect our traffic signals. We'd rather pay something to get out of a situation than going through the procedures. We'd rather rant about a politicians stupid comments on social sites than go out and vote. We'd rather blame someone else for a situation than sharing the blame. We'd take every shortcut we can and still blame everything on system.

The system's not perfect, but neither are we. We cannot change our system overnight, but what we can do is change ourselves. We can break the cycle. We can all unite and help each other and ourselves. We are the people. We are the soul of this once glorious nation. It's difficult, but it's not impossible. We can start by doing little things right. It'd be slow, but even a small step in the right direction is good. We should stop underestimating our power and do something for our country and in the process, for ourselves. Remember, we can break that glass ceiling. All we need is that little push from ouselves. Together, we can bring it. We'll write our own destiny.

That's my oath. Happy Independence day!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Break away from myself

Stopped in my path when memories came back
Stopped to think where they've been stacked
Stopped to notice the difference in me
Stopped to understand what I see

I remembered the laughter
I recalled the smiles
I dug out the secrets
Buried under the proverbial files

I found that album
The memoirs of the lost
Where they've been?
Buried under permafrost?

I saw a smile,
Unadulterated, unaltered
The beauty of my past
My perseverance when I faltered

Where have they gone?
How did I let them go?
How I became this?
What has made me so?

I want to be that again
The child in that album
Who danced in the rain
And laughed at every problem

Bring me back to life
So that I can smile again
So that nothing troubles me
And I can dance in the rain

I don't want to be a hostage
Of my own self
I want to break free
And just be myself

Monday, August 12, 2013

B positive

My blood group. In fact, it is the blood group for a lot of people. Okay, no, I am not talkin about blood groups here though.

Our world is more gray than we care to admit. We cannot paint it black and white as we would want, and we know it. And it's okay. We cannot classify everything as good or bad. But what worries me more than anything is we have become so cynical.

I have a small task for everyone (or whoever can do it). Open your local newspaper (or whichever newspaper you read). Then count all the positive and negative stories in that paper. What do you find? Right. Positive stories are far outnumbered by negative stories. Do we really live in a world where poitives are outweighed by negatives so heavily? Why have we become so negative?

Turn to anyone around you. You'll find good and bad in them. But somehow, we only see the bad things. We complain. We outright dismiss ideas. Why? We have problem with everything. Introspect. When was the last time you shared something positive with your peers? Why has it become so difficult for us to be positive?

Answer is within us. These days we are stressed. From our work to our home, everything stresses us out. Positivity is difficult to be found in such stressed environment. And that rubs off on everyone around us. Take a moment out and think. From youth to elderly, everyone's complaining about what's going wrong.

Take a moment and ponder. Look at little children who laugh. Everything's positive and rosy to them. Then what happened to us? When did we become so rigid and headstrong? Questions would always be there. Answers lie within.

Take a moment out of your busy schedule. Smile back at someone who smiles at you. Stop looking for underlying messages. Take people on face value for once. Make things simple for yourself. Thank anyone and everyone who does even a very small thing for you. Connect with nature. Laugh like a child. Stop being cynical. Stop being sarcastic. Joke, and laugh on jokes. Stop being know-it-all for a moment.

Just stop for a moment and be positive. It'll not only make you happy, you may become reason for someone else's smile as well.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

(We) Rise and (You) Fall

You live because I die,

You laugh while our families cry,

You mumble through your speech;

I bleed here while you act a leech

My crimson paints the ground

My body fights through each of their fired round.

They strike without any repercussion

We die without any retribution

The blood we spill goes to waste every time

You stay silent; we don’t worth a dime?

But Mr. Leader, you hear me out

You’re nothing without us, neither is your clout

Don’t bother our dead bodies

We are not alone in this;

Millions stand for us all over,

That’s what we call bliss

We do not need you to stand up for us

Let our bones be buried with respect

And we’ll rise when you fall

Then we’ll have it all perfect

This post is a part of Write Over The Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Those were the days!

Do you remember college? I do. My friends do. Everyone in my circle does. Why do we remember them. Why? What was there?

It might seem cliche but it's really difficult to top your time as student. You might've hated your school or college but you'll never forget those days. For me, those days are fond memories. Those days can't be forgotten. Those days remain close to heart.

Back in the day, we were seen as mischievous crew. And we were. No denying that. We did everything we shouldn't have. We raised hell for our lecturers. We bunked. We flunked. We failed. We passed. We did everything there was to be done. But the best thing that we did at that time, and which was something not everyone liked, was we dreamed.

We dreamed of better future. We dreamed of cool girlfriends. We dreamed of being superheroes. We were unrealistic. We dreamed of time machines. We dreamed rebellion. We dreamed saving the world. We dreamed damsel in distress situations. We dreamed what nobody wanted us to.  How dare we dreamed? But we did it anyway.

We were unorthodox. We made lives hell for others (not in a dangerous way). We created havoc day in, day out. We went to college and hit on girls, and for some weird reason, we all would hit on the same girl. We played cards. We placed bets. We lost some, we won some. We stood together in troubles (mostly created by us). We celebrated together. We cherished moments together. And we dreamed together.

We look back at those moments and smile. We realize now that those days are not coming back. Some of those dreams have fulfilled, some still remain. But the best part is no one can take those days away from us. May be it's nostalgia, but it doesn't change the fact that those were the days! Those were the best days of my life!

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda

Saturday, August 3, 2013

The Pieces

I screamed and shouted
I thought you care
I was scared and routed
I simply watched in dispair
Nothing seemed possible
Everything seemed hollow
What you did to me
was a bitter pill to swallow

You left me in pieces
you left me in tatters
you left me a shadow
But it still matters

It matters that I let you know
All the pieces I have got
are out there to show
You meant something a long time ago
What I have now
is what you'll never know

The pieces are back together
you'll never break me down
Because what I did with those pieces
is what'll never go down