Enrage, this Independence Day.
Two things happened last week, and both left me enraged.
When Vice President Venkaiah Naidu, gave his speech condemning the breaking of sanctity of the house by few members of the parliament, his eyes welled up and he almost broke down. Naidu said, the Chair and the area around the parliamentary reporters and Secretary-General chair is considered Sanctum sanctorum of the House, and “the all sacredness of this House was destroyed yesterday when some members sat on the tables and some climbed on the tables in the House”, when you see it and how can one not get enraged?
The other enraging news, the release of Shershah, a movie Tracing the life journey of Param Vir Chakra awardee and army captain Vikram Batra, who martyred in Kargil. Backed by the usual suspects and star powers in Bollywood.
While both seem unrelated, there is one connection, maybe even a small one, but definitely an emotional one
If one reads Captain Vikram Batra’s story and his final letter (Linked below), one can only imagine the kind of sacrifice a family makes when they send their kids to the border to fight for the country and to protect the country & when one knows the sacrifices they make, it is natural to get enraged when you see the kind of happening in the parliament, or the movies being made. One wonders how would the families feel ?
One would question what point does someone make with this action in parliament ? Would it show defiance? Will it help them get re — elected? Will it help them brownie points somewhere?
Speaking of points, no one milks our patriotic spirit like Bollywood, be it SRK, trying to score quick points while congratulating our Women’s team, or AK making biopics about our war heroes, or other period movies which either distort history or glamourize it, but never reveal it. The problem is not that they milk money out of it, the problem is that people lose the identity of the real heroes to the reel heroes & that pinches. It irritated the hell out of things when people identify Ajay Devgun as Bhagat Singh.
And to come back to our connection, Winston Churchill said — A nation that forgets its past, has no future.
Not only are we completely obliterating the sacrifices in the past, by tolerating such action in the parliament and continuously sending such representatives on our behalf, but we are also seeing it from the myopic vision of Bollywood and reducing their tales of valour and sacrifice to artificial celluloid. So what can be done ? Can anything be done ? –
Dylan suggested — Do not go gentle into that good night, Rage, rage against the dying of the light
Maybe we should, maybe we should not just turn over and sleep, maybe we should rage, not just rage, enrage.
We should be able to enrage, when people can break the signboard of the airport
We should want to enrage, when a group of people / farmers can hold a highway to hostage for months
We should be enraged, when a village had to wait 75 years to get electricity
We should enrage, when political parties can switch sides, alliances and governments after elections
We should enrage, when courts fail to give justice for years together
We should enrage, when a common man feels unsafe at a police station
Maybe if we enrage, we will awaken and maybe we will understand the sacrifice and value of this freedom. Maybe then will we understand the pain of a soldier’s family, maybe then only will we understand Vikram Batra’s sacrifice and Venkaiah Naidu’s words.
To end with Tagore –
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way
Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit
Where the mind is led forward by thee
Into ever-widening thought and action
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.