Archive for December, 2009

BRUSH UP YOUR GENERAL KNOWLEDGE, GRANDPAS!

The other day, I was reading the day’s newspaper after lunch but dozed off soon. Copenhagen summit, price rise, food shortage, demands for bifurcation of states were the main items in the newspaper and, naturally, one is tempted to put aside the newspaper and dream of a world free from man – made problems. I was worried about certain unpleasant developments in India and obviously, my mind slipped into a world of wild imaginations. “Stop this videogame”, the grand father told his grandson. “Let me test your general knowledge.” The grandson was a bit frightened and switched off the T.V.

“Which is the capital of Andhra Pradesh?”

The boy kept mum

“O.K who is the chief minister of Kerala?” the grandpa continued. The boy burst into laughter

“Be serious”, the grandpa asserted and asked, “how many states are there in South India?” The boy closed his eyes and began to count, mentally, one, two, three………. The grand father got wild and shouted “Just four, you stupid” The boy, then ran out, saying “Grandpa has gone nuts……. He says there are only four states in South India…”. When grandpa stared at him, the boy told him: “There are as many as 15 states in South India…… Your G.K is a big zero, grandpa”.

Suddenly I woke up from my catnap when some noise shook me up!

Election promises give way to cash-for-vote

Gone are the days when voters in India, especially the poor and the downtrodden, had to wait indefinitely for the benefits promised by MLAs or MPs during their election campaigns. At the most, the voters could expect some benefit at the fag end of their five year term so that the legislators concerned could look forward to another five year term. But now the voters don’t have to wait indefinitely for the succors. The candidates or party workers would knock on the doors of the voters a week before the election-day and make it appear that it is just a door-to-door campaign. But the voter gets a good amount along with a slip of paper which carries information regarding your polling booth, date and symbol of the party. This system (though not permitted officially) is called cash-for-vote all over India! Of course, the candidate has to be careful about the informers.

There had been a period in the history of independent India when all national parties, irrespective of their ideological differences on socio-economic issues, stood united when the country’s unity was at stake. The regional parties, though few and far between in those days, did play the regional card now and then but could not make much headway because the national parties opposed tooth and nail anything that would undermine the unity of the country.

Not so, now. The national parties are at the mercy of the regional parties and would not do anything that would incur the wrath of the parochial elements. In those days, India looked so big and beautiful but now, the very same India is submerged in the rising floods of regionalism, indiscipline and violence. The so-called national parties have become so nervous and self-centered that the unity of the nation is less important to them than their own survival.

Every state in India has its own problems – some real and some exaggerated. There may be a few neglected areas in each state but some people jump into the conclusion that the remedy lies in carving out a new state out of the existing one. The latest example is the demand for a new state by dividing the present Andhra Pradesh in South India and when it appeared that the central government would accept the proposal, there have been demands from other states for such divisions. What follow on such occasions are not peaceful and orderly demonstrations but threatening ones, resulting in destruction of public properties and out-right violence.

What emboldens these narrow-minded parochial elements to do what they like is the submissive and care-a-damn approach of the national parties. On the other hand, if the national parties stood united against those elements who undermine the unity of the nation, they would think twice before embarking on such adventures.

Enough is enough, let there be no more divisions and no soft corner for separatists.

“You are that”

“Thou art that”

Now I know what it means

You are What?

I used to ask myself

“That” of course is that!

That which created all

And  ‘thou’ are sparks of that!

Indeed those sparks act differently

through different media

It could be scientific discoveries

Or classics in literature

Or those wonderful songs

Which held me spell-bound  the other day

Yes, “thou art that!”, I said

Sitting in front of our TV

Fancy Dress?

LET’S RISE ABOVE PETTINESS

Globalization transcends divisions

Maybe this concept is business-oriented

But it shortens the distance between homo sapiens

Black or brown or white

We are all offspring of the mother earth.

The White liquid that we squeeze out

From the udders of the cows

Could be milk or dhooth

But mixed with coffee or tea

The effect is the same!

Some thing is better than nothing

To be a citizen of the world

May be a distant dream

But just below the global concept

Lies innumerable independent nations

Be an Indian or an American or African

Or a Chinese or a European

Without ever dreaming further divisions.

But the narrow-minded beings

Would not listen to you

It’s always: My language, my culture

Or My-everything! The rest are their enemies

Oh, Politicians, do not divide your folks

But connect them!