It is 15th August, 67th Independence Day of India. It was a keenly awaited event mostly by marketers promising amazing Thailand on the long weekend day, which extends into Raksha Bandhan next week.
There is nothing much happy about this independence day as we are sorely made aware of how fickle this independence is. Last fortnight has been particularly bad for the country, with the soldiers losing their heads, in real term in border skirmishes and the political leadership running around, somersaulting like headless chicken. The country which perpetrated these skirmishes went ahead and passed a resolution condemning India, while Indian leadership keen to earn a legacy, dithered and then shame-faced shouted- Same to same from our side, like two kids thumbing the noses. The loss of human life in the middle of these two juvenile leadership, celebrating independence day one after another has become another statistics. The two nations having lost any sense of self-respect are contending for the place of best slave to the interest of large nations which have no concern for the human like in either of these to two countries. Jean -Paul Sartre defined Freedom is what you do with what's been done to you, in our case, we seemingly at loss about this. We move in circles till the time we absolutely lose the sense of direction and are caught in the web of circles.
Roosevelt said, "The Only sure bulwark of continuing liberty is a government strong enough to protect the interest of the people and the people strong enough and well enough informed to maintain its sovereign control over the government." The hollow of the words rises like a murderous crime which seems to be running through the entire conscience of the country as on date. We fail on this test of liberty on both counts. The government is not strong and committed enough to protect the interest of the people. This is not only when we look outward, but stand true when we look inward. The way the government deals with the world is as worse as the way it deals with its citizen. The public outrage of December and the one before it was crushed mercilessly. Only thing that the leadership can count on for a repeat stint at power is fractured citizen voice and petty selfish interests which guides our votes. The state government in Bihar stays in denial about kids who died on account of eating poisonous food in Mid-day meal in schools provided by the government while its ministers speak shamelessly on the martyrdom of the soldiers. In the neighboring state of UP, a state administrator is sacked for implementing Supreme Court guidelines and the politicians who effect that roam around blatant and confident with conspiratorial smug smiles, knowing well that they will win votes from the population which believes that faith can substitute for governance.
The government has failed the citizens who have in turn failed the nation.
The News report of the bad shape of memorials of martyrs like Ramprasad Bismil in MP and Ashfaqulla Khan in UP ( the same state in which people supposedly rose up in arms on account of demolition of an illegally constructed mosque wall causing the suspension of the effecting government officer, IAS Durga Shakti Nagpal) and public and government apathy, complete the indefinite gloom of the day. It is only solace that the men of the men are dead, and we can only mutter voicelessly Faiz's couplet..
ये दाग़-दाग़ उज़ाला, ये शब गज़ीदा सहर
वो इन्तज़ार था जिसका, ये वो सहर तो नहीं
वो इन्तज़ार था जिसका, ये वो सहर तो नहीं
This spotted white light, this night -infected dawn,
What we waited for such long, this isn't that dawn
Will we ever rise above petty interests of individuals, castes, region and religion? But than the whole world this year is overturned, as India is almost apologetic against aggressive neighbors and the United states, long positioned itself as protector of individual freedom chases down Snowden who exposed the privacy intrusion and the man gets refuge in the land of the oppressed Russia..We can have a hearty laugh of the situation of day, if only it were not so disgusting. Aren't we the same nation which Chinese politician Hu Shih claimed ruled and dominated China without sending a single soldier and today we are facing humiliating incursions of China? The best we can do is hang our head in shame and hope, only hope silently for a better future. It isn't a hope which looks upwards towards leadership, it lives in the lone soldier on the border and the simplicity and aspirations of the last man in the line. Something whispers into my ears on this day and tells me that I will not be disappointed by that lonely soldier and the last man. From their being rose the martyrs whose memorials are today lying dilapidated and like a phoenix they will rise again, lion-hearted men of high principles singing patriotic songs who would break the chains of narrow individual interests and help us float above the horizons, like eagles, close to the Sun. Let us hope, with so much of intent that it expands in our hearts to the limits of breathlessness with all its purity.