United we stand!


It has been a very hectic schedule at work and I felt so bad being away from the blogging world for 10 days!! I am back for good, however and will try to be more regular 🙂 And here I come with some of my thoughts that have been pondering my mind since many days!!

28 states, 7 union territories, 29 major languages, third largest Military force, Most populous democracy, Seventh largest by geography, Second fastest growing large economy, fourth largest in purchasing power, Asia’s oldest stock exchange…this list only goes on!

If someone outside India asks me about my country, do I remember all this? Not at all! I remember the much used phrase that I read in my Social studies text book years ago – “Unity in Diversity”!!

It does not need a genius of sorts to say how diverse India is. But how united are we? River water sharing, Religious riots, Cultural intolerance,land rows, civic and social indifference and supernumerary jingoism. What should I relate myself to?

A particular group of people is so protective about its state and culture. So far so good! But what is its agenda? Create insecurities among the people belonging to a different state, demolish the properties, that they think, represent an “alien” culture, ban all the social advances that do not promote its own language or culture.

So what does all this mean? Should a group resort to vituperative advances to preserve the provenance of its culture? Just check out any widely read online news website! Read about the Nuke deal, read about a politician-turned-actor, read about a gory bomb blast, read about a freaking train accident, read about a trivial entertainment news, read about a culinary cuisine, read about an opening of a shopping mall, read about the launch of an electronic gadget. I bet, you will find something common in all this! Wondering what it could be? The comments’ section in all these news articles will have the most lambasting and scathing remarks against each one’s culture and statehood. No matter what the point of subject is, the arguement always goes wayward and ends up standing as a “virtual” wall of division we are creating for ourselves. The North and the South divide, The Hindi and the non-Hindi divide, The Hindu and the Muslim divide and worst, The North eastern India and the rest of India divide! Considering that Internet is mainly used by educated Indians, are all these people educated illiterates?

Are we not missing something? Don’t we need a common representation? Does the language I speak or the kind of dress I wear matter at all? Am I not supposed to be an Indian at the end? We have to slam our faces against our noses for want of a true National Spirit! For want of a common thread that binds us together! For want of an identity that represents us!

Finally, I respect the phrase “Unity in Diversity”, if only we give some sense to it!

PS: Some piece of the general information about India in the second paragraph has been taken from Wiki.

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17 Comments

  1. cinnmint said,

    August 26, 2008 at 11:56 pm

    The diversity is to celebrated… but we all seem to be waiting for some sort of undefined unity. Till we identify these qualities and rejoice the differences we won’t ever know the treasure we possess

  2. Sakhi said,

    August 27, 2008 at 1:29 am

    what i feel is, we, Indians are not mature enough to handle the democracy… we should have a dictator who can unite India. We actually Rape out motherland and take pride in talking about it!!! I know this is a strong statement but true nonetheless.

    hope we can be as united one day as we are devided today! And that can be done only when the present generation is more tolerate and more respectful to the other human being, to his/her neighbour, to the neighbouring state, the other religion.. the list can go on!

    i hope one day we can live in India we wish it to be! But some how we just wish, don’t work on it… if everybody worked on their own little bits India would be really shining!

  3. Sameera said,

    August 27, 2008 at 4:50 am

    Most Indians feel their chest swell with pride on I-Day or R-Day,but the rest of the year they only crib about how bad our country is.This attitude is the one which retards our country’s growth any day,or else it would have been a fully developed nation by now!

    Great post 🙂

  4. vishesh said,

    August 27, 2008 at 7:30 am

    well i know what you mean 😀 you know why the divide arises?it is because people mock others…simple…even though i am in Chennai,except a few south Indians all our the “north” so the language they speak is hindi …now i have nothing against it…but if they make fun of my language tamil…and make me feel alien naturally i will(no i don’t…it is just a situation….my class is one of the best and ya i manage with the thoda thoda hindi of mine 😉 …in fact there are more issues between me and a lot other people…in other classes.. ) …unless people learn not to be too proud,then i think we will be alright…

  5. Sekhar said,

    August 27, 2008 at 8:33 am

    Thanks Manoj for writing the exact things that were disturbing my mind for some time (may be years). I think today India is getting more diverse than unite 😦

    I truly agree with all the comments above.

    Truly a thought-provoking post. Keep it up. And nice to see you back 🙂

  6. Nita said,

    August 27, 2008 at 9:05 am

    good thoughts. even I lament the fact that everything is looked at from this point of view. and unfortunately even if one makes an innocent remark people interpret it wrongly. for example if i criticize say delhi people feel i am doing it because i am a mumbaikar! it’s so ridiculous, this narrow way of looking at ourselves and at others.

  7. arvind said,

    August 27, 2008 at 10:42 am

    wow …u just read my mind ..i always wanted to post something like this..
    i guess the main problem lies in the mindset of the older generation ..they think different which is quite self centered. Every issue that comes in India has politics in its base..
    they play politics with the lives of people..
    I am sure social issues would become less in about 50 years..
    yes thats lot of time .. our generation is much more practical than over older generation so i feel “unity in diversity” would be prevalent india soon

  8. Reema said,

    August 27, 2008 at 1:00 pm

    Ur post strongly reminds me of someone’s blog’s comments section. My motto is live and let live. How much time people have to argue endlessly on such topics. I say do what u like and believe what u want but do not force someone else to follow ur beliefs or agree with ur views if they dont.

  9. Amit said,

    August 29, 2008 at 10:49 am

    When someone says “Jai Maharashtra” on television, it just boils my blood. And to add injury to insult, they follow it by “Jai Hind”. Can it get worse?
    Why do we have to make such show-off for regional superiority?
    What after that? Districts? Colonies?
    Are we always looking for a reason to kill and degrade others? Is it in our nature?

  10. Nita said,

    August 29, 2008 at 11:22 am

    Its the younger generation who is regional minded. the older people were more nationalistic if you want to use that word. just go to rediff or any even my site where I have tried to say that one region is not superior to another, all young people come there and say their region is superior. sure, fewer older people use the net, but I feel older people are more religious and caste oriented while the younger generation is regional minded. I hate it, because having been brought up in an army atmosphere I am unable to look at people from where they come from. For me India always comes first, and what I detest is when people say their region or city is superior. I am not talking of light talk ofcourse, but real fights which break out. Even in Maharashtra, its the young people who are regional minded.

  11. Nita said,

    August 30, 2008 at 12:31 am

    Just wanted to clarify one thing.
    Amit, those with the “jai maharashtra” jingosim are usually those from the extreme right parties like raj thackeray etc. These political parties tend to target poor illiterate youth who are given financial benefits. Never mistake political party jingoism for the general feeling amongst any group they claim to represent.
    Overall I think the average maharashtrian is pretty apologetic about his being maharashtrian and hesitates to speak his language, even in his home place.

  12. Manasa said,

    August 31, 2008 at 1:55 am

    Actually we learn that whatever was written in those textbooks were crap only after we get into corporate life.

    WE learn how selfish the people are and people give preference to only those whose who are from their region/language/community.

  13. Suda said,

    September 1, 2008 at 7:51 am

    @Amit
    Man, I think you are angry on Shivsena and MNS people. But let me tell you that, from childhood, I am ending my speeches by sayin “Jay Hind Jay Maharashtra”. Do you think everyone is from Shivsena here?
    Simply look at us, look at me. And then tell me if you feel your blood boiling.
    Ok control…

    @Nita
    You stated a real point about which I feel very bad. Many of my friends who had their education in English medium feel ashamed of being born here and feel much more ashamed to admit that they are one of locals. Its nothing to do with any political issue, its just a bloody mindset. Less educated and illiterates have other issues for language.
    I don’t blame Amit actually. Not only Jay Maharashtra but Jay Bhavani and Jay Shivaji are also misused. I have seen many people don’t like Raje Shivaji just because they saw him on Shivsena’s boards and slogans.

    @Manoj
    Sorry for going little off topic and drolling on you post 😀
    Nearly half the population will simply agree with you after reading your post. But after that, you just let slip that you are *mallu* and Northies will Duh and ignore you OR just say you are Northie and no southi will take you seriously. (This is just an example and it applies to everyone who is not mentioned).
    Thats India’s problem from years. People tend to ignore things depending on Person’s religion, region, caste, political party etc. If one party tries to make a good change somewhere, other party opposes without any competent reason. And their followers just follow them and refuse to take any facility just because its from opposite party.

    I can give many real life examples here, but I know readers are wise and they can pick up from here.

    Cheers for such a strong post. I wish, at least few people who read this will change a little.

    🙂
    Suda

  14. Arun P said,

    September 2, 2008 at 5:00 am

    I think that some songs on National Integration,some quotes from Kabir and other poets,should be aired compulsorily in all National & Private Channels,at Prime time

    The importance of National Integration should be taught right from child hood.

    Laws should be made stricter and be enforced correctly.

    Politics should be free from Greed .Thats all.

  15. Xylene said,

    September 2, 2008 at 5:02 am

    Strong words. But since people who tend to use the comment section on blogs such as mutiny.in etc just want to spread the hatred, these words would go to deaf ears.

    Such people are infact agreeing with the author of the posts while targetting certain communities. I am sure they belong to the educated class.

    India, the country we see now was a cluster of small kingdoms. The fights, anger, arrogance was all there when we united. Althought the term is just in the books, I think the anger, hatred against communities are still in our blood.
    This would change for sure, when people migrate all over and when people can’t distingush each other by their state or language.
    Its strange feeling to be alienated in our own land.

  16. Amit said,

    September 6, 2008 at 11:55 pm

    @Nita, @Suda : Thanks for clarifying. I sometimes get really upset by these regional connotations. I am not angry at anyone. 🙂 What alarms me is that its very easy to brainwash people.

  17. Manoj said,

    September 13, 2008 at 11:26 pm

    cinnmint – True..we have lots to learn!

    Sakhi – Uh oh..cool down 🙂 hmm..well, letz hope to be united in future.

    Sameera – True, we have to have the right kind of spirit to march into future. and thanks 🙂

    Vishesh, Amit – I think regionalim should vanish and a sense of oneness as a nation is required. Unfortunately it is very difficult with a country like us, owing to varied cultures

    Sekhar – Thanks 🙂 good to see like-minded people.

    Nita – I agree with you! Mumbaikars and Delhites have a war too! 🙂 Wondfer what the solution for this problem would be!

    Manasa- Well said! true! 🙂

    Suda-Thanks! That is exactly what I meant 🙂

    Arvind – Lets hope we will have a better future.

    Arun – Yup! Even I feel the same.

    Xylene – The cluster of small kingdoms – True! This issue was always there in India 😦

    Thanks to everyone for your strong comments. Good to see people sharing same thoughts.


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