Love Freedom, Respect Nation!
Once again we smell the manure of freedom. 15 August, 2009. Another addition to our independent existence. A long and eventful journey of 62 years. And still, the tryst with destiny continues. We marvel and mourn, grow and groan, wander and wonder, crib and yet live. Mired in controversies, yet rarely tired. That’s
What is that keeps us going, often in most difficult of the situations? A spirited approach or a reckless living? Perhaps, both. Let me try to explain. We have been traumatized by those two dreaded words – Swine Flu. The rising number of casualties and medical helplessness in curbing it presents a bleak picture for the near future. You walk into any public place and the fear of catching the flu is writ large on the faces. Sneezing, in recent memory, never invited so much public ire as it does these days. And if you exercise caution then it’s wisdom and not a foolish act. For the scare, to a large extent, is valid.
Yet, it failed to dampen our spirits on Janmashtami (which fell on August 14). The sea of people overflowed almost from nowhere on the streets of Mumbai and festivity exploded. The drooping
This is no easy art of living, especially with tags like “emotional country” or a “soft nation”. We suffer yet know how to forgive. Even if someone decimates our population with an AK-47, we ensure that he gets a fair trial. How many nations in the world would appreciate it, leave alone emulating. But, it is somewhere in this weakness lies our strength. We value freedom – ours as well as those of others. Indian democracy has loopholes, but it’s not a failure. Freedom is misused in the country, but it still exists. We hate the khadi-clad but know can’t also live without them.
In short, we know how to live in contradictions. Oxymoron is
It is also beyond my comprehension how we manage to survive it all. However, like many I too complain and regale about such things. Fret and fume, muse and amuse. Still, I love the breath of freedom and also my country. Its patriotic fervour surely has a unique aroma. We tangibly feel it on 26 January and 15 August, but almost invariably breathe it round the year.
To each one of you, therefore, I urge – Love Freedom, Respect Nation. Even in a billion population, we derive our individual existence and identity from these two words.