Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Free me...

For those who have heard Uriah Heep, the title of this post would bring some interesting memories perhaps. But this post is not about interesting memories. It’s about parts of a past worth forgetting.

For those who remember that we today completed 59 years of freedom, this day might be a day to rejoice. But this post is not about rejoicing. It’s about coming to terms with realities.

For those who have determined that we have successfully traversed a long distance, this day might be a day of heaving a sigh of relief. But this post is not about relief. It’s about an overwhelming anxiety that leaves one in a state of turmoil.

We have certainly come a long way, no doubt about that. India was shining. It still is. But what hurts is the dark spots on our shiny surface.
59 years and we still have the Babri Masjids and the Godhras to our credit. 59 years and we still have no justice for our Jessica Lals. 59 years and we are still destroying innocent lives with state level sex rackets involving high power ministers. 59 years and we are still trapped with Bofors and Telgis fooling with the tax payers’ money (of those few in a million who do care to pay taxes).

There is a something essential missing from our freedom. And it creates a strange nauseating feeling. The feeling you get when you are forced to eat a bowl full of curry, with no salt in it.
It didn’t have to be like this. Some people blame Nehru, others throw it all on the Mahatma. Some say Indira Gandhi made all the mistakes. But we, the people of India, were always right. Right?

So what does it take to be free? What does it entail? How long before we ultimately end up selling our country? Inch, by passing inch. Religion, by useless religion. Rupee, by wasted rupee. Independence Day, by live-telecasted Independence Day.
Or can we keep it safe? From ourselves?

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