Maybe a disclaimer is necessary for this post. I don’t have anything against the Pledge. I love my country, I do. This is not about the National Pledge, it’s about the pledge YOU take, the pledge WE take. I am not committing treason by commenting exactly how I observe things. The worst of it. Do NOT generalize. But it’s not specific either. No, I’m not scared of your wrath. Yes, your retorts will disgust me.
We all learn the INP in school. We used to recite it every single day. We break it every single second. The following, is what I see happening to our sacred words, promises, that we, as kids, made in school. The blatant disobedience to our own promises, to our own stamp-papers within our hearts, if they still exist, deepens my pain. A good friend told me, “This world is coming to an end. Nothing can be done about it. We are beyond repair.” I was scared to accept that he was right. But I can’t prove him wrong. Unfortunate, but true.
India is my country.
I own it. I own the public parks. I own the public property. I can steal bulbs from the train, destroy bus-stops and statues as I please. I can mutilate monuments, scribble on caves, trash anywhere I want. I can spit, litter and drive on the roads like my dad owns them. Yes, India is MY country.
All Indians are my brothers and sisters.
That’s why I’m rude to every one of them. I lecherously look at girls like I want to undress and rape them in my thoughts. I memorise their every aspect. I have no respect for women. If I’m drunk, I beat the hell out of my wife and kids. I disgustingly pass comments on girls young enough to be my daughters. I care no more. If I have to destroy someone’s life to improve mine, why should I hesitate?
I love my country and I am proud of its rich and varied heritage.
I love my country. It gives me enough education to go abroad and earn dollars. My varied heritage teaches me secularism. I love to promote my own religion. To glorify the varied heritage of my country, I require various states. It is necessary for me to fight for causes I don’t understand.
I shall always strive to be worthy of it.
I won’t want to vote. What difference does it make? Corrupt politicians, anyway. SO, what’s the point of voting? My government doesn’t even deserve my taxes, much less my service.
I shall give my parents, teachers and all elders respect and treat everyone with courtesy.
I leave my parents stranded when they are old, while they slaved away their life to fund my education. I don’t wait for elders to cross the road, I just elbow them aside while I rush for my all-important meeting. I swear at people while they block me on roads. I steal in small ways, not criminally, but just wrongly.
To my country and my people, I pledge my devotion. In their well-being and prosperity alone, lies my happiness.
My happiness depends on the neighbour’s agony. My happiness depends on how hot my lover is, what status I have in society, and whether or not I made love last weekend. My happiness depends on whether it was I who topped my exam or that other guy. My happiness depends upon how many people the bomb planted by me, killed. Nothing else.
Bitter pill? I’ll tell you what you will do. You’ll either:
- Close the window, wondering how sad I am as a person.
- Close the window, not giving a second thought to the words screaming at you to wake up.
- Write distasteful comments and destroy my writing career, gaining happiness that you managed to sabotage my dreams.
- Wake up.
For India’s sake, and yours, I hope you choose the fourth one.