Sunday, August 12, 2007

Independent and clueless

On 12 March 1930, Gandhiji walked the talk to the coastal village of Dandi. He was joined by many people who followed him to witness the first act of Civil Disobedience that extricated the powerful hold of the British Empire from India without bloodshed. (Dentists!! Please note this point)

He reached the village of Dandi on April 6th and took a lump of salty mud, boiled it in seawater and illegally produced Salt.

And since then we Indians have been producing many commodities illegally and committing many more acts of Civil Disobedience like evading taxes, violating laws, plagiarizing, violating Intellectual property rights and destroying public property!

Perhaps Gandhiji should have addressed the future generations with a disclaimer before he made the epoch making decision to taste the salt of the earth.

"Civil disobedience is the inherent right of a citizen to be civil, it implies discipline, thought, care, attention and sacrifice". But……

“Dear peoples, please remember this is a token protest. This does not mean that you can now start manufacturing salt at home and sell it using those horrible television commercials!”

“And dear peoples, this act of defiance by me does not mean that you can defy Intellectual Property Rights and make horrible movies like KANK.”

“ Or make horrible caricatures of Nusrath Fateh Ali Khan, Simon and Garfunkel, Boney M, MLTR, Pink Floyd, Abba, Michael Jackson, Sting, Dolly Parton….guess you get the drift.”

“This does not mean you can dump garbage in your neighbor’s house.”

“Or turn up the volume of your music systems.”

“Please do not interpret this as a license to spit on the road.”

“Burning buses is not a form of Satyagraha.”

“And neither is making illegal liquor at home!!!”

“Tasting of salt from the seashore is not the same as tapping Electricity illegally.”

“And c’mon this is not in the same league as beating up fellow drivers on the road!”

“Neither is evading taxes!!”

“I request all of you gathered here to read the Dictionary when you go home and understand the meaning of the word “Independence”.

And my last appeal to the next generation which has nothing to do with this incident is, please stop making those horrible remixes. And for those of you here, who don’t know what a remix is, never mind. You will not live to hear it anyways *sigh*.

Perhaps he should have been around a little longer to teach us the value of independence and our duties as responsible citizens of this great country.

Happy Independence Day to you all!


mathew said...

Infact this topic has much more depth than this..We are proud of our langugage...our religion..our culture..But we are pseudo proud of our country..I mean this may not go well with most of us..If you look the developed countries around like the Brits..americans..germans..they were proud of their country..When they do something there is a sense of national pride which they attach..That makes them feel that they should keep their country clean..follow the laws..etc..etc..

We unfortunately is proud of our cricket team..or overtly conscious of state identities..Neverthless there is a binding force that hold the country together..But we have to instil a national pride amongst each of us..and which should translate to be the ideal citizens..

Paresh Palicha said...

We abused every ideal he held dear to his heart. Look at queue outside the Civil Supplies Liquor Shop on the last day of the month, because next day is a Dry Day. We feel sorry when we a person whose monthly budget will go haywire if he spends something extra for his child's medicine, yet we'll see him drowned in Kallu on a holiday. The same will happen on 15th of August. A really Happy Independence Day.

titto said...

well said silverine and u chose an apt time for that....

Abhi said...

Good list of things which we take for granted! No1 actually cares about the old adage that with rights come duties too! All wanna enjoy their rights to the hilt, but no1 will want to do something abt some injustice happening in the society. Even for the so called civic protests, people will go in rallies and protest marches only if they're sure that ther's TV coverage, otherwise its the same old "Its not my prob, why shd i care attitude"

We take pride when India wins against England in a cricket series even go to the extent of celebrations on th streets, but will just shut our mouths and walk by when we see those same streets filled with garbage, or unwarranted action from the corrupt politicians and the like!

Wish u a Happy Independence day!

Anonymous said...

i say we call it 'in dependence' day.

Alexis said...

As usual very timely and relevant post and thought provoking too...

And all you have written is true and happening is the sad thing...

Well written post. Happy ID to you too.

Amey said...

I say, why bother with "civil" disobedience? Just gift the offending party entire collection of "The Nose", and break all the controls after cranking the volume to full.

Anonymous said...

And a Happy Independence Day to you too! am back after a while. and am i glad to be back. Amazing post. your words reflect more patriotism and love for the country than those who promote the dysfunctional, volatile, wear-your-patriotism-on-your sleeve mentality. if only our leaders, past and present, had the presence and the vision to put down into words and implement what you have expresses in such simple words, our country could achieve so much more.

as usual, its upto us ordinary folks to live by these words and take the country somewhere better...

ToOothlEss WOndeR! said...

likewise, fundamental rights do not involve :
1. the right to free pan squirting from one's mouth
2. the right to the tax share of the lazy
3. the right to urinate on your neighbor's wall
4. the right to take a left from the right most lane.
(one moron did that just the other day, scratched my car bad, and actually said it was his fundamental right to do that.)

for a people's country like ours, i think it's time our truck bumpers read outperform, and let outperform.
happy independance!

FX said...

That was a good blog.very thought provoking.As mathew said we are not patriotic...unless we have our identity of self respect we will never reach any where.We are "in Dependence" for ever.the gene of inferiority has to be genetically manipulated.

Bullshee said...

Gandhi probably didn't want to sub clause these things at that point of time, but he sure has to now!

I've written a small thing about India and what its about...check it out....

the rain tree said...

great post and really thought provoking .

happy independence day.

Strider said...

nice one!
its 60 yrs and its high time we stop saying "we are like this wonly"

happy independence day u 2! :)

meenakshi said...

happy independence day:)

a thought provocating post. and a good list of taken for granted things.

Anonymous said...

This was a super post Anju! Got me thinking real hard and that is something not many people can do :-) Great job girl!


Adorable Pancreas said...

Oooh, well said. Gandhi's 10 commandments.

silverine said...

Mathew:Unfortunately we have the historical baggage of infighting and we needed a leader like Gandhi to make us even aware that we were slaves. We need a leader of that stature now.

Paresh: Sad but what you pointed out is so true.

titto: Thank you :)

Abhi: We are still ruled by people who divide us on the lines of language, religion, caste....etc. We are still to have a national identity.

sreejith: Very apt!

Alexis: thank you :)

Fleiger: :)

espiritnoir: Thanks buddy. Nice to see you after such a long time :)

toothless wonder: The list is endless..

Francier: Thank you :)

Bullshee: Awesome post!

the rain tree; Thank you :)

strider: Very true, we need to move our carcasses and start doing something instead of grumbling.

fundoome: Thank you :)

MP: Thanks dude!! Nice to see you commenting! :)

adorable pancreas: :))

Anonymous said...

that was a brilliant post.

Jiby said...

Looks like Gandhi's names and his symbolic gestures for the movements in the freedom struggle rubbed off, too well on our countrymen.

Our independence has become nothing more than convenience. We do what is convenient for us - that seems to be the true essence of freedom for our people.

Surely our people will fight fiercely the next aggressor on India's sovereignity, even a change from inside, just in case our Indian Army fails, primarily because it will mean giving up the convenience we took for granted.

It is going to be hard to change all these things you would be wishful to hope schools and colleges can play a role, but then the teachers there are another one of us.

sjgregory said...

I became an occassional visitor to your blog after your post on Delhi.

To be honest I quite liked this post. An interesting take on these - Why do we bribe? Why do we break laws? etc etc etc is given by V. Raghunathan in his book "Games Indians Play: Why We Are the Way We Are" Glance through it if you see it somewhere (But not worth buying)

Venkatesh A.R. said...

Independence day - what's that got to do with Gandhi and salt production?!! I thought it was another day for our TV channels to show the blockbuster movies, a day where we get to meet Vimala Raman or Sneha or Mamooty, and find their contributions to their own lives.. am I mistaken??!!!!! ;-p

രാജ് said...

“And neither is making illegal liquor at home!!!”

ഒക്കെ സമ്മതിച്ചു, ഇതുമാത്രം സമ്മതിക്കൂല്ലാ. വാറ്റാനുള്ള അവകാശം ഒരു മനുഷ്യന്റെ ജന്മാവകാശമാണ്. കൊന്നാല്‍ പാപം തിന്നാല്‍ തീരും, വാറ്റിയ പാപം കുടിച്ച് വറ്റിച്ചാല്‍ തീരും. അപ്പൊ ഹാപ്പി ഇന്‍ഡിപ്പന്‍ഡന്‍സ് ഡേ :)

Sh'shank said...

but isnt the main criteria understanding what freedom entails and not independence?
Independence leant us the freedom and hence its that which we need to ponder about and hence find a meaning for...

Anonymous said...

Saw your posts in Bangalore Mirror. Real good reads. Keep us laughing :-)

Girl With Big Eyes said...

That was a good read. Good to be back here after a long time. Felt right at home!