(This post is second in series to what one may refer to as a cliffhanger to the Goa Thinkfest being organized by Tehelka)
Treading along in life in almost somnambulate state does transform us into zombies who have a cocoon, alias la-la land of their own. Events, some being pleasant ones others belonging to the catastrophic category and still others contentious enough to cause fissures do keep recurring and we do keep shrugging and thinking, “Eh! How does that affect my life?” If an individual hasn’t been at the epicenter of a hurricane, doesn’t mean that his nest would never be ruffled, if you weren’t beside the seaside doesn’t imply that ripples shall never reach you……
So goes the mystical lines of song sung by Rabbi Shergill:
Jugni dekhan chali desh
Jide janmay si kadi ved
Jidon kadyaa si angrez
Ki banyaa usdaa
Ki banyaa usdaa haal
Kede kite usne kamaal…
(Philosophical sage-cum-observer Jugni, a girl is strolling just to see what has become of the country, land where Vedas were transcribed, from where the British were hounded away, to see what the country has landed itself into in present times…)
Just like the graffiti these days in most of the dailies is being dedicated to the Rs. 32 per capita per day poverty line, the overall collage both in the national as well as international arena gives a distorted picture. If the State’s turf has just overcome the jolts given by Anna and his team, brouhaha is being raised against the ongoing Operation Greenhunt, not to forget the much criticized raid on PUCL General Secretary Kavita Srivastava’s house. We might be languishing somewhere near the bottom when it’s about the Human Development Index but when it’s about corrupt practices we certainly do fair better, take a look at the Global Integrity Financial Report if you still suspect my contention! ‘N’ number of scams being unearthed has become a sort of routine, you see ‘I proud to be Indian for any man out there earning a meager Rs. 34/day is not poor and those with bloated bellies sitting at enviable positions continue to splurge and fill their coffers which by default is known to the public by the name of Swiss Bank Accounts!’; the latest in this series being the alleged LIC loan scam worth Rs. 12,000 crores.
Perhaps Pratap Bhanu Mehta is the best person to turn to at this juncture and seek answers to raging questions, if India can ever do something worthwhile for those being relegated to the bottom of the pyramid, if the vertical strata of society be turned into a horizontal one making it a truly egalitarian sect in all respects; if Aam Aadmi can ever muster the courage to wear knuckles against the inequities of sorts being evident in their milieu! (Disclaimer: This certainly doesn’t imply that men with ‘mera baap chor hai’ embossed on their hands take to roads instead of heading towards offices, guess we already had enough of drama on similar lines at Ramlila Grounds)
Let’s take a break and venture across the Indian Ocean and hey! What do we behold here? The Arab Spring might have subsided to an extent but another intifada seems to be on the brink with the Occupy Wall Street movement against financial inequality becoming fiercer with every passing day! Perhaps the world has truly become flatter than ever before and Thomas Friedman is the right person to turn to and seek some answers in this context! After all he did explain the phenomenon that established an instant relationship between the fall of the Berlin Wall and its pervading effect in terms of diffusion of the PC and dotcom wonder!
So here lies the answer to the million dollar question, why do we need to think – the medulla oblongata needs to be jerked a bit here and there randomly instead of shacking it all up so that enhanced sensitivity yields to better reactions from the end of citizens who otherwise land up being sequestered in the lot of grumblers by birth! With the upcoming Goa Thinkfest a cauldron seems to be brewing on simmering flame, this gourmet of thoughts, views and counter-views shall bring forth ideas that would facilitate substantive answers to surging queries, help understand the changing milieu better and most importantly would transcend our very perspective towards myriad issues.