Wednesday, July 17, 2013


This is the video by Mittal Patel that re-affirmed my faith and trust in educated people's mettle and indomitable spirit to make a difference in the lives of downtrodden and underprivileged. I myself, fall into deep anguish and dismay when I hear stories of mothers dying after conceiving babies on roads due to excessive bleeding, of children dying after consuming poison in mid-day meals, of women being forced into prostitution and becoming a strumpet due to abject penury. 

And then in schools we grow up learning , however little, if we can do for somebody, is a action - holy, sacred and true. But how many of us actually bother to tell a kid chewing tobacco that its harmful for him, or give clothes to a girl who needs them, or provide an umbrella to a construction worker going on the site with baby on her back battling the scorching heat of sun? It needs a compassionate heart to feel the pain in people around us. These are the very people who are not as fortunate as we are, who have not got the access to basic amenities of life, forget about luxury. Mittal Patel in her 8 minute video has demonstrated how her actions have made a difference, brought hopes to nomadic people and their lives, brought a smile on their dry faces. Not only that , she has spread awareness about the apathies of these people, the struggles they go through and how their worth and identity seems to be depleting in the India seemingly racing fast on to economic track losing track of economic growth. Honestly speaking, I did not know this manifestation of struggle in poor nomadic people's lives. Largely because, no one actually cares to portray the secluded section of the Indian subcontinent or to say if the media is free from adding spice into NaMo and Congress tussle or peeking into Mannat's new guest, then we can know and bring to the larger picture the bickering of our brothers and sisters. 

Forced prostitution to earn money is the last thing that I could ever imagine being alive, but that happens, and happens too often. Because when in riots, the homes are ransacked, the family comes on road, and after staying hungry and homeless for three days, the elder of the family dies of myocardial infarction and then someone comes walking around suggesting, "Why don't you work in a dance bar?". The family has to agree reluctantly to have square meal a day and then that dance bar actually comes out to be a brothel ! This is not a made up story but a true account of a harsh reality. 

I cannot thank Mittal Patel for making me know of the lives of nomadic people. The way she has carried out reforms however little in measure, be it teaching children, getting girls married so that they do not become  victim, providing election cards to the residents and much more than that; providing the residence address makes my heart happy. Imagine if she got a friendly and a staunch support from the policymakers, the impact would have been much greater. But what she has done is not small in any measure. Cannot be. 

People strive to become an IAS to make a difference, to become an MLA to improve situation in a constituency, to become a Sarpanch to improve the justice system and seek every kind of position to actually bring about empowerment and reform but after watching this video one thing I have learnt - A WILL IS THE ONLY THING THAT IS NEEDED NOT A POSITION. If we have the will , we will set out of our plush homes to spread love and support. Thank you Mittal Patel, and  Thank you for being such a philanthropist. I have indeed learnt a lot from your video.

Traditional India is fast depleting with India striving to become a hi-fi country emulating China or Japan. We must learn to preserve and value our heritage. And as for respect of women in society is concerned, it is in an inexplicably sorry state. How can God reside in a place where women are not respected ? Nomads must be assisted by the government of India, there are a plethora of do's and dont's that I can list, but that would be futile. There is a need of spreading awareness. If the problem is not known , its solution will not be known. Mittal Patel is certainly  a heck of a lady ! 

I am proud that now I know a "Mittal Patel", and she must be beautiful for her action is.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Curious Case of NaMo

The hype over NaMo becoming a strong contender for PMO is wide and riveting at the same time. NaMo has a flood of people who support him , most of them belonging to Gujarat area and then there are people of the ilk who do not like an iota of what NaMo supposes to be or pretends to be. They dub him as communal, dominating, Hitler type and the one who plays games based on religion. Godhra is attributed to him, noteably because he was the one who asked Police not to take any action when Gujarat riots were plundering the Muslim population. To retaliate, the most sad incidence in India happened - Godhra ! No one has ever been able to forget it and now and then it keeps on emerging on political front. Ishrat Jahan's fake encounter case is making rounds in vernacular newspapers daily. Ishrat and 3 other people suspected to be LeT operatives were executed in the wee hours of July 2004 for being allegedly involved in secret operation of assassinating the then CM of Gujarat , NaMo. History has it that such a condemned act was done to gain promotions, and biggies such as Superintendent are known to be involved. The reason they were cold-bloodedly murdered was that they were conspiring to kill NaMo and L.K.Advani.  But that never happened. And the case has been reopened on the petitions filed by Ishrat's family who deny any defamation caused to late Ishrat and who are adamant about the fact that their daughter had no nexus with any LeT operative. Is this giving the chief sleepless nights and dimming the prospect of him fighting the 2014 Lok Sabha Elections? I doubt.

There is no doubt that Narendra Modi has been at the helm of controversies. The recent one was the one in Uttarakhand where he was alleged playing role of a "Rambo" rescuing supposedly Gujarat people (that actually makes me wonder how was he able to identify the people of Gujarat in that devasted piece of land crying havoc). One can listen to Ms. Bannerjee lashing out at the CM for being conscious about his state people and in her words, "The person who dreams of being PM cannot be and should not be centric to welfare of particular set of people". Little do people know but it actually took meticulous efforts for NaMo to reach where he is, as he worked assiduously for 10 years without calling off a single day. From being a tea vendor to RSS sevak and then a CM is no easy nut to crack. He has his own set of trials and tribulations. He has been given the best CM award, Gujarat under him has prospered (though people say that comparatively Bihar under Nitish Kumar has developed more, for Gujarat was in a better condition when NaMo took over as its CM). The name of Nitish Kumar reminds me of his withdrawal from BJP following escalation of NaMo in BJP. Narendra Modi is largely seen as an incompetent team worker, he likes to be consulted for literally every small thing, which is a dominating demeanour. He did nothing to appease walking away Nitish. Is he thinking of going solo? 

And the most funny thing I read at is this piece of image. 

Somehow I fail to comprehend why parties are so focused on casting aspersions on other parties, every move, yes every single move  a party makes is tossed like a rag doll in air and torn until all we can see is cotton flying in the sky. (I know I could have used a better metaphor). But seriously, I mean NaMo talks about ideals of Swami Vivekananda (the name itself gives so much peace) but he never advocated such  a philosophy and personally his actions surprise me. 

While I do not want to comment upon him particularly, but the reason he has suddenly assumed the big stage is because of the recent happenings , some natural and some created by men. Surely prophecy won't work for LS Elections but lets just hope the leader is diligent and not the one who keeps an eye on what other parties are doing and ready to throw willow at them from ambush. India needs a visionary. 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Becoming Parent to Parents

The recent news about a law announced in China was intriguing enough for me to write about it and then the weekend special of The Hindu had an entire page dedicated to the topic of Elderly people and their lifestyle, beliefs, tribulations and how they cope up, they and their children collectively. Both these independent yet connected and meaningful discussions form the fount of this post. 

For those who know little about the law I am talking about, it says that it is imperative for children to visit their parents otherwise they should get ready to be sued. China issued this law taking into account its rapidly aging and poorly looked after population. And the article in The Hindu with lucid profundity talked about the insalubrious culture that is fastly becoming a part of the Indian society. Though it cannot be called as deplorable but it transpired about the pros and cons of the community homes that elderly people resort to in their twilight years. Some on their own volition some by persuasion and some out of helplessness join such homes. 

With youth becoming more and more conscious about their own lives, careers, salary and the love of life, the parents find it hard to imagine that the ones whom they crooned to sleep in the midst of summer night without power have become oblivious of their hopes, aspirations and things that make them happy and valued. In such  a scenario, some elderly say that  even if their children invite them to live with them, they are reluctant for it means that for every little thing they become dependent on their children (as recalled by an elderly in the Special issue of The Hindu) and hence join community homes where with people of their own age living and spending time becomes easier and interactive. However, some say that looking  around at debilitated people having some or other kind of infirmity instills in them the fear of their own health.The man believes that no one can take care of his wife better than him and so he and the wife prefer to live alone while the money keeps on coming from the children and the caretaker ensures that they are not hungry, unless of course he is not the kind who kills the owners and flees with everything he can collect in the lull of the dark night.

Taking care of one's own parents in old age is increasingly becoming a serious concern. Rather than a duty people perceive it as an obligation. There are real incidences that speak the stories of rebuffed parents floundering in the streets begging. This time when I was at NDLS station , me and my younger brother , an elderly woman came asking for alms. when she left, I just asked my brother, "How can children even think of letting their parents beg", but at the next moment I heard myself saying, "They are a group of goons, who take alms and drink with the money received (most of them) and when they get enough money they board the Metro and play the game of pick-pocketing (one such gang was busted by DP)".

We all our indebted to our parents. Remember how lovingly they catered to our every need when we suffered from some serious ailment, when we got our leg or hand fractured, when we had Chicken Pox (the time when it itched the most but even then the mother never flinched to give a loving hug), when we got our hand stitched due to our own naughty acts? I know, deep in every heart lies a gratitude, a silent extol because parents are the ones who can provide succour to our hearts when we feel weak and feeble. 

Sure, there will be tussles in times to come regarding the same issue, compromises will have to be made but treat them like children in their years of twilight, because elderly complete a family. I do not find myself mature enough to understand the emotional side of the elderly parent and married child relationship but  I can say this with a strong conviction, "Where there is a will and gratitude, there cannot be an excuse whatsoever".

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