Skip to main content

Shame on Us!

And so the girl dies in a land far away. Perhaps that is what she would have wanted; to breathe her last in a land that is not polluted by a Billion Bigots.
Horror, shame and guilt overwhelm me; tears cloud my vision and emotion wrecks my heart. But I do not deserve these civilities. Emotion is for Human Beings not for beasts like me.

In a battle that lasted an agonizing thirteen days, the girl showed an exemplary courage, an iron-will to fight, to survive. But the crime was so heinous and the violence so brutal that she did not stand a chance. A billion prayers could not save her for there was neither conviction nor clarity in those prayers. Ours is a society that objectifies women, commodifies them and trades in them. It is we who killed her and our prayers carried no weight.

In her fight for life, the girl held up a mirror for all of us to see our reflection, to see what we have become. And what a ghastly sight it was; spittle ran down our faces, there was devil in our eyes and lust in our hearts. This is what we have become. 

And so the clamour for death penalty grows louder and shriller. Do not fool yourselves. There will be no redemption in that. If the guilty are to be punished, a billion need to be hanged. All our hands are tainted with blood. Let us not douse the flames of our conscience with the death of four other human beings.

She was christened India's daughter and it is apt. For this is how we treat our daughters. We beat them, we molest them, we rape and we kill.

And do you know what the biggest tragedy is? She is not alone. Every 22 minutes, a girl is raped. A girl is killed before she is born, the fetus destroyed and a life extinguished. There is female infanticide, child marriage, witch hunting, dowry killing, domestic violence, prostitution, eve teasing, sexual harassment, molestation, rape . . . and the morbid list goes on.

What ails us? Why have we become such beasts devoid of love and compassion, filled with hate and violence? It is not just our attitude towards women, despicable as that is; it is the hate and violence that engulfs us. Few years ago, in a cricket ground, I saw a servant being beaten with stumps for stealing a charger. People flocked to watch the ‘Tamasha’, my friends among them; not one tried to stop; rather they were enjoying the scene. I stood there mutely, ashamed at my helplessness. It remains to date my saddest memory. 

We as a nation have plunged to depths so low that no ray of light penetrates our hearts and minds. We have committed sins so ghastly and heinous that humanity has forsaken us and gods have abandoned us. A Billion prayers are not enough to wash away our sins, a Billion candles will not dispel the darkness that so engulfs this nation.

Is there no redemption? Are we doomed to eternity? Again the 23 year old girl holds the answer. Her courage is the talisman that can show us the path back to humanity. But be warned, we have slipped far; the path is long, the path is torturous. Candle light vigils and prayer services are not enough. Speeches and essays will only go so far.

The change has to come from within. Drive away hate and violence from your hearts. Respect the other person, male or female, young or old, rich or poor, Hindu or Muslim. Let us teach our children Love and compassion, empathy and humanity. Give love a chance.  Remember that this is also the land of Mahatma Gandhi and Mother Teressa. Remember the lessons they have taught us through their deeds and actions. And most of all do not forget the 23 year old girl, who showed us the mirror; let her be the conscience of this nation. If we do all these, we may have just started on the path to redemption and repentance, on the path back to humanity.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

The Ascent to Sandakphu

IndiaHikes - Sandakphu
Man originated somewhere deep in the jungles of Ethiopia. And then, he walked, and walked, and walked; to become, arguably, the most dominant species in the history of the planet. Walking then, is the most natural thing in the world, and as old as the hills themselves. And yet, today, walking is an archaism. We live in the era of Uber and Amazon, of the remote and the elevator; all designed to not just make walking unnecessary but also unfashionable.
Trekking then, inhabits this curious corner of contradiction, natural and unnatural at the very same time. For the first time trekker, this contradiction is all the more magnified; accustomed as he is, to the warm comforts of luxury travel, the lure and excitement of trekking is nonetheless elementary, almost primal even.
As the first timer treks, flat terrain is his friend, all so familiar and so very comforting; if at all, monotony is the only damper. The descent is a trickier beast, with dangers potentially lurk…

Just how much did Sachin mean to us?

Aspiration for success is the single most natural thing in the world. It is not a trait unique to human beings alone; it is the very fundament upon which nature exists. It is what gives rise to evolution and results in life as we know it. And yet there are times, when even before you begin, you not just suspect that you will not succeed, but know that you are doomed to, and, will fail. Nonetheless, you go ahead and do it anyway. Because it is not a choice, but a call to duty; like a mountaineer attempting to scale that one last impossible peak, a surgeon trying to perform the miracle that will not happen or even a letter of infatuation that you know will never be reciprocated. Failure is merely a meaningless by-product.

And so I attempt to put in words, the emotion that cannot be explained but only be felt, the phenomenon that cannot be understood but only be experienced and a love that cannot be rationalized but can only be succumbed and surrendered to. I attempt to both understand …

Mahendra Singh Dhoni - The Gladiatorial Monk

Published on Sports Cafe

A captain is only as good as his team; or so they say. Well, they are fools. Cricket, with its nuances and minute intricacies, with its subtleties and glorious uncertainties elevates Captaincy into an art form of the highest order. From Mike Brearley to Steve Waugh, from Imran Khan to Saurav Ganguly and from Richie Beanaud to Graeme Smith, Cricket is awash with examples of great captains inspiring their players to dredging the deepest of reserves and leading them to conquering the highest of peaks. A Cricket team is greater than the sum of its parts. The difference is the team’s captain. Little wonder then, that they say, in India, the Prime Minister’s job is the 2nd toughest job in the country, after that of the Country’s Cricket Captain; which brings us to MS Dhoni.

I had never been to Ranchi. But then again it is not the sort of place you will often find yourself needing to visit. By all accounts, it is a small city, inconsequential in the larger scheme of th…