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Are you in your 20’s? WAKE UP!

May 1, 2009

With the elections already halfway through, it saddens me to see that the voter turnout is not even over 50% in places like Mumbai. The Mumbaikars are known for their patriotism and I have always respected them and their views on most national issues. However, this recent development saddened me. The first phase of the polling has been the best, by far.

According to the newspapers, the youngsters of Mumbai have abstained from casting their votes because of “corrupt ministers.” This is the view got after the journalists interviewed several people on the streets.

I feel that Mumbaikars, among all the Indians, should be the last ones to give that as an excuse. Mumbai is the one city in which you have several independents who are clean as a white sheet. There are people in professions as noble as medicine who contested in the elections this time because they wanted to put an end to the “rule of the politicians who bribed voters.” I even noticed clips on TV in which some leading politicians were shown distributing currency notes to the people in their constituency. THAT is exactly what Mumbai stood against. And what did they do? They stayed away from the elections.

Now let us consider the scenario where more than half the people want to stay away from the elections as they are tired of everything that the government is doing. Let us say that out of 10,000 people, about 6,000 abstain from voting. Now what is the result? 4,000 people decide the fate of the constituency! Now what is worse? Voting for the best of all the evils(according to each person) or not voting at all and letting the bribed few decide the fate of the nation? Think about it.

Looking at the state of the politics in our country amuses me just a much as it pisses me off. The Congress is never up to any good. Let me briefly list out some of their notorious achievements over the past few decades.

* They caused the riots during the Indra Gandhi period and killed thousands of Sikhs. When things grew a bit too hot for them to handle, they conveniently declared an emergency and got away with it.

* Today, the main accused in the anti-Sikh riots has been given a clean chit.

* Rajiv Gandhi declared war on LTTE and supported the Sri Lankan government. It was only a matter of time before he was made to pay for it. But sadly, he was killed before he could be convicted in the Bofor’s case.

* Today, Quattrochi, the main accused in the Bofors case walks free with his name off the Red Corner Notice list.

* Mohammed Afzal (a.k.a. Afzal Guru), the main accused in the 2001 Parliament attack case, was sentenced to death in 2004. The sentence holds stayed, even today.

* Kasab, the lone surviving terrorists of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack is getting his “age verified” and is given a “fair trial.”

Does it not suffice that there are several photographic and some video-graphic evidences that he killed several people? Do we still need to give him a “trial” to prove his innocence?! My guess is that Afzal will walk free in a couple of years, and Kasab will follow suit in a few years after that. If they are not proven “not guilty” by then, they will be released during some terror strike in the future.

* The most shocking move of the Congress in recent times was the move to drop POTA. We will see several Afzals and Kasabs in the next few years if the Congress gets back to power this time around.

There are several other atrocities that the Congress is involved in, but I think I will save that for later.

The BJP has been up to some stupid stuff as well.

* It has not been as united, at times, as it should have been. It takes time for the party to make up its mind on certain key and sensitive issues.

* Promises of building a Ram temple in Ayodhya always top the list in all their campaigns. The way I look at it, not a single brick can be laid in that location.

* Though it is a secular party, it gives everyone a chance to label it as the cause of communalism in the country.

* It has never managed to please the Media, and it could seriously do with a few friends there.

* The Gujrat riots were a major blot on the BJP’s portfolio, and it could have been dealt with in a better way.

True that Modi is no saint, but neither are Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi, Antonia (Sonia), Raul (Rahul) and Bianca (Priyanka)!

The BJP is looked at as a party ruled by senior citizens. I feel that it seriously needs some young blood in it to change its image. But then again, it would not be BJP, if it did not have LKA, Modi, Vajpayee and the likes on top.

Coming closer home, let me talk about the state of politics in Tamil Nadu. It is politics at its worst, if you ask me. Karunanidhi, Stalin and Azhagiri have done more women than the number of women who watch soaps on TV! Jayalalitha has swindled more money that I can count in all my life. Yet, Karunanidhi is amazing when it comes to debates and can give anyone a run for his/her money. Jayalalitha is strong willed and it takes a lot for a woman to stand up against the likes of Karunanidhi and beat him at his own game of politics.

The ideologies of the DMK and the ADMK are exactly the same. Yet, they are sworn enemies. Karunanidhi is an atheist to the core and enjoys idol breaking (read: Hindu idols ONLY), while Jayalalitha does her bit to encourage religions. Karunanidhi even CHANGED the date of the Tamil New Year, much to everyone’s dismay. He openly supports the LTTE and calls Prabhakaran his “friend.” Surprisingly, he has such a strong effect on people that I know of college students who walk around with Prabhakaran’s photo in their wallets!

Moving on from politics to the state of the Media and the role of the youth in the future of the country, I feel that there is a lot to be done. The Media, for its part, should stop trying to “create” news instead of just covering it. Openly taking sides on sensitive issues, ridiculing people/parties just for the sake of it, not giving priority to language, politicizing every issue, etc. are extremely common these days. It is just plain sad to see Rajdeep Sardesai and Sagarika trying to politicize the Mumbai terror attack on the first day of the attack itself, by trying their best to get the BJP and the Congress spokespersons to fight against each other despite the fact that they make it very clear that they want to work hand in hand. It is a pity that the parties caved in after two days and started the blame game. Hats off to Rajdeep Sardesai and all the bosh that he talks. They got their TRP up and capitalised on the Mumbai terror strike. The Media gained more than the extremists themselves.

And what do we do? We watch all the trash that the Media dishes out and we start spewing venom as well. But my question is this: Has any of us tried to bring about a change by ourselves? Yes, we talk to people at home, we have debates with friends(some have such debates only while drunk, as they are too busy wanting to get drunk while not drunk) and we use the filthiest of abuses for each and every one of the politicians. But what have you done to change things? You are in your 20’s or your late teens and you have a massive mouth that can spew more venom than half the politicians of the land can spew, but what do you do with it? You either use it for your pointless pursuits or you talk trash with the people around you. How about you stand up and do something by yourself?

Now you ask how you can change the nation. You need not change the nation. Start small. Do your bit. Don’t like people smoking around you? Stop them. Or at least, as them to respect the sentiments of non-snokers. You go for a walk down the beach with a cup of corn in your hand, use the dustbin once you are done. Read the newspaper and watch the news. Keep yourself updated on the latest. Don’t let elders look at you as an immature kid who only talks trash. Today’s youth can be a LOT more mature than previous generation if they want to. It is up to us. Are you against terrorism? Make it clear. Are you against politicians who buy votes? Stand against them. There are always independents who are clean. If there are none, it is not difficult to talk to your friends from college/place of work and see if you can all make a difference together. But remember, we can make a difference ONLY if we are together.

The students of Delhi managed to elect a representative of theirs to contest in one of the seats. They all back their representative only. Thousands of students were a part of this movement. I feel that the rest of the nation needs to catch up too. We have had enough communal issues for ages now. We have had enough criminals turning politicians, and becoming even bigger criminals. We can’t let them thrive on our lost hopes. We can’t lose hope. It is not easy, but it sure is not impossible. We CAN make a difference. We NEED to make a difference.

But for that, we first need to vote now. It makes no sense if we stay away from the polling booths. So go out there. Stand in the que for hours, if that is what it takes. But make sure you have that blue ink on your index finger by 5:00 PM that day. Because the fate of the nation is decided by that index finger.

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20 Comments leave one →
  1. May 2, 2009 12:52 AM

    Good one! You can write in detail about each of these than combining them into a single lengthy post…

  2. ceaselesscriticism permalink*
    May 2, 2009 12:56 AM

    Oh! I sure will do that. Just had to get started first. Had been wanting to blog for ages, but did not. I know that the first post is far from perfect. I promise that things will improve with time.

    Thanks for sharing your view, by the way. πŸ™‚

  3. Dileep permalink
    May 3, 2009 4:31 PM

    It was really good remembering those days in hostel and so, really good work and the Jeppiar speech was really funny how did u remember all those lines?

  4. Adi permalink*
    May 3, 2009 4:34 PM

    I had them all written down. I did that from the very first day of college. Running notes in action. πŸ˜›

    Anyway, Dileep, thanks a LOT for the comment. Only, you commented on the wrong topic. Hehe! But that is cool. Thanks for the comment anyway. Much appreciated! πŸ™‚ Do keep coming back for more.

  5. gopal permalink
    May 3, 2009 10:20 PM

    well u r right abt da media , de r more interested in appearing as judges rather than anything els, just watch da newshour nd u ‘ll know wat i mean.but dis whole voting thing , – i dont care- v as a ppl r 2 immature as a democracy, heck our state elected a leader whose main promise was 2 hand out free T.V da same ppl r gonna contest till dey die nd even after dat , dere sons nd daughters take over. da truth is no matter how man y graduates are churnes out every yr by our beyond lousy colleges, 2 many ppl r still uneducated nd da rest hav or appear 2 hav amnesia. a politician insults the religious beliefs of the damn majority nd still manages 2 project his party as secular , v r apparently taking a tough stance on terror after da bombay attacks but , da whole meanin of da ipl being held in SA rather than in india , is i feel , an open declaration by da gov dat they cannot provide adequate security 2 any1 nd dis whole country da , think abt da number of terrorisdt attacks in da last 3 yrs since bombay rail blasts, wow – Safe country huh. Democracy is one big fat lie – a pol who getss a handful of seats can decide da fate of the gov. LEFT , SP etc etc etcLet me not even get in to bogus votes nd elction booths being taken over by goondas . it hapened in my dads time nd it happens now still . either v need 2 go for a 2 party sys dis whole democracy thing cuz dat is da biggest lie being perpetrated by our politicians who r da biggst liars anyway

  6. Adi permalink*
    May 4, 2009 1:25 AM

    Gopal, thanks a LOT for your comment. Though I agree with almost everything that you said, there is one thing that I feel strongly about. I feel that it is VERY tough to change this country, but it is NOT impossible. And if we want a change, the change must come from within. I am willing to work towards that change. I will vote. Some might say that I am doing the right thing, some might disagree. But I will vote. I am doing my bit there. There is no point in complaining about everything when you don’t even play your role. Forget about working towards making a change, one should at least do the basic things that are expected of people, right? So I feel that one should not complain about the state of the country if one does not vote.

    Yes, this country is screwed. But we CAN make a difference. I believe in that. I always will.

  7. domi fredrick permalink
    May 5, 2009 12:54 PM

    mac it is possible to say “we can make a difference” but until the politicians depend on vote banks we are nothing infront of them…….most of the politicians in rural part of India have their stronghold either in the name of religion or caste……so nothing would be possible practically until our people realize that their sentiments have been exploited

  8. Adi permalink*
    May 5, 2009 1:57 PM

    Exactly my point, Domi. We people need to realise things. We need to wake up to the fact that the politicians are doing the country no good. Buying votes should be stopped. The people in rural areas and the poorer sections of the urban areas should be more sensible. But for that, some of us have to wake up to all this and try to educate the rest. If we try and bring about a change, it might work. Like I said, the youth play a massive role in this. We form the biggest chunk of the population and so there is a lot that lies in our hands. All the more reason for us to act more sensible. As for the issue of the caste and religion-based division, the Media is doing everything that it should not be doing. The parties which are supportive of everyone are being branded as the communal ones, and the parties which are dividing people on every ground possible are being called as the real national parties which are working for the people. So another area which needs to be tackled is the Media.

    There is a lot to be done, but it is not impossible. We need to take the initiative and do our bit all the time. Only then can we expect others to change.

    And Domi, thanks for your comment. πŸ™‚

  9. Nandini permalink
    May 5, 2009 7:05 PM

    Hmmmm.. what have YOU done? and they painted the middle finger this time 😦
    now i cant say that i will do anything, because more often than not, i DONT do anything.. and i dont care either, so i dont complain. forgiven?

  10. Adi permalink*
    May 5, 2009 7:21 PM

    Hahaha! Well, I do my bit. I talk to people. Try to convince them that they need to wake up to their responsibilities and make this country a better place. I have a set of principles and I follow them religiously.

    And no, you are not forgiven just because you decide not to complain. You still are not doing anything towards improving things, right? πŸ˜› But you are forgiven because you are still a kinda young. However, it pays to have a good set of principles. You sure can do that.

    • Anonymous permalink
      May 6, 2009 12:48 PM

      Hmmm. I do have principles, but none concerning the well being of the country.. i have never felt patriotic except on Independence Day and Republic Day, that is if i went to school.. i do mind if someone says something insulting about India, but i dont mind if what they say is true.
      I never said i wanted to improve things, but i respect people who do.
      Poor people increase their population and die of hunger, so it gets balanced out, so i dont care if poverty exists. I’m cruel.

  11. Adi permalink*
    May 6, 2009 2:32 PM

    “I do have principles, but none concerning the well being of the country..”

    Well, how about you start now? Look at things this way: if the country improves, certain things that you complain about improve too. So why not give the country some priority as well? The country has something to gain. YOU have something to gain. And what have you to lose? Nothing! So why not do something about it?

    “i have never felt patriotic except on Independence Day and Republic Day, that is if i went to school.”

    There is not need to FEEL patriotic before you work on improving things around you. You do it for the system to improve. Do it for the people around you. Do it for yourself. Patriotism is different. You can choose not to be patriotic, but please do something to make things better around you.

    “i do mind if someone says something insulting about India, but i dont mind if what they say is true.”

    Isn’t that being patriotic to an extent? Blind support for the country? πŸ˜›

    “I never said i wanted to improve things, but i respect people who do.”

    You might never have said it, but DO you want to improve things? I hope you do.

    “Poor people increase their population and die of hunger, so it gets balanced out, so i dont care if poverty exists.”

    Poor people can’t stop themselves from having sex just because they don’t have the cash to buy condoms or have the access to the “freebies” that the government is supposed to hand out. Yes, the population goes up. And yes, they die. But they die a miserable death. And most don’t just die. They live for a good 30 or 40 years and they have to go through a lot of hardships in that time. They are easily mislead by the politicians and missionaries who promise to give them a few hundred or thousands in cash and/or kind. The situation CAN be improved. Only, one or two people can’t make a difference if they are all in various parts of the country. It is much easier if we are all together in our efforts and work as a team.

    “I’m cruel.”

    You know you aren’t. You just want to seem like you are. There is no use sounding like a rebel or an ultra cool person while handling this issue. Each one of us MUST step down from the pedestal(if there is one) and work towards the change that we need. And trust me, it IS possible to bring about that change.

  12. Nandini permalink
    May 6, 2009 3:14 PM

    Opps! anonymous again. i forgot.

    LOL. i’m convinced. but that still doesnt mean i’ll find the patience to do anything!!
    and as for insulting india, i WILL mind if anyone says anything insulting/wrong about about country! So its not very patriotic.

    About the poor, even if they dont die, they still dont use any of the resources except for land.. so theres not much of a problem there.. as long as they dont eat or use up other resources, its okay! (i told you i’m cruel!!)

    What’s bad is that a small part of the population owns most of the country’s wealth.. there is no need for each bungalow to have a swimming pool AND playground AND garden etc.

    i have to go, but i’m not done yet!!

  13. Nandini permalink
    May 6, 2009 4:48 PM

    Yeah i think i’m done.

  14. Adi permalink*
    May 7, 2009 12:47 AM

    Hahaha! Another anonymous post!

    Anyway, stop acting like you are not going to do anything. I am sure that you will. When you decide to take up a cause and work on it, it makes you feel good about it. Trust me. And I really do think that YOU can and should start thinking about such stuff seriously. It is always better to get an early start.

    I don’t agree with what you said about the poor, though. I guess you will realise things in a few years. Actually, I am sure that you will. You make it seem like you are cruel now. I would call it ignorance. Or maybe lack of exposure. Like I said, that will change soon. πŸ™‚

    As for the economic divide, that is what capitalism is all about. And seeing that communism just WON’T work in India, I guess there is not much that one can do about that. At the end of the day, you can’t stop the rich from getting richer as they have the money to get them even more money(that will make sense if you think about it). But in order to prevent the poor from getting poorer, we need a change in the system. Meaning, we need a change in the government first. And for that, people need to be educated to think before they vote. And they must all vote no matter what.

  15. Nandini permalink
    May 7, 2009 12:12 PM

    I know it feels good o do somehing good for the counry!
    It feels good to do something GOOD!
    Lets see if i change πŸ˜€

  16. Adi permalink*
    May 7, 2009 12:20 PM

    Hahaha! I am sure you will. I just hope that happens sometime soon. REAL soon. πŸ™‚

  17. Nandini permalink
    May 7, 2009 12:56 PM

    πŸ˜€ i dont know where i’m gonna find the patience though!! maybe if someone bribes me with pizza.

  18. October 30, 2010 5:29 PM

    Well i certainly will speak for my self as i don’t want to go into labelling my self as independent/right wing etc…
    I have always felt that if one wants good for the society it cannot be achieved through democracy. For it takes into account of every one’s liking.

    Like say i feel spending more on rural development and it doesn’t mean build a reliance shopping mall, a real investment in terms of pro-agro tax evasions for the farmers etc is MORE important than a CWG.

    There are a million reasons how a politicans hands are tied as he is forced to stay true to the party and sect of people who got him his job. See congress, cannot boldly convict a murderer. BJP the same thing cannot even apologize to the muslim for the blood shed in gujrat.

    I feel just because your parents failed to use contraceptive doesn’t mean that you can vote. There must be some qualified people who should be honest and forward thinkers. The same applies with the leaders.

    You may call it utopia, but when come to think of it A democracy which works for people and nations growth isn’t far away from utopia either.

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