The fight for freedom, one of the greatest movements mankind has ever seen. From the First War of Independence (1857) to the Final Satyagraha Struggle (1947), for 90 years, Indians fought relentlessly, never stopping, coming at the British in waves. It took such a huge movement, spanning so many lives, and so many deaths, for India to finally attain her freedom. How we have used/misused this freedom is another topic altogether and we shall talk about it. But not today. Today, is dedicated to introspection. To understanding why we no longer have that passion, that energy. To solving the big mystery—why we don’t win our battles any longer, even if fought in the same self-righteous manner, for similar “just” causes?
There can be two reasons why our movements no longer work:
- The Government isn’t as oppressive as the British, and the values we fight for are much too trivial.
- We no longer have that will-power which our ancestors were known for.
I do not believe the first reason has any truth in it. The government may not be as oppressive, as it is an “Indian” Government, but the values we fight for aren’t trivial, and the policies we fight against, are just as oppressive. That leaves us with the second option. Before you question my words on will-power of the Indian people, ask yourself this: how many protests have we seen in the past 2 years?
The one against reservations, the slut walk, the one against the drinking limit in Maharashtra, the one against moral policing. And now, the one against corruption. And yet, none of these made a difference. To our lives, yes, they did make a difference. We stayed home from work for a few days, shouted at the politicians who appeared on television, cursed the government, and in a few days, returned back to work. Nothing changed. Nothing ever does. We, as a country today, have become inert. Today, it doesn’t make a difference to a person if someone under him is oppressed, troubled, starving. Nothing. As long as I’m fine. While the fire is alive and burning, everyone does their part to add fuel in large quantities. And when the fire burns out, no one reignites the dying embers. You just take the heat remaining and walk away.
Passion has become such an “in-fashion” thing. We can observe it in everyday life. We have become fickle-minded, almost infidel. India wins the World Cup, and you sing their praises, proclaiming Dhoni to be the best captain ever. Passion. 4 months later, India sinks in Test series against England, and talks are on if Dhoni should even be part of the squad. Unpassion: the updated fashion.
Such a weak will-power will lead this country nowhere. Remember the anger that spread among people when the Mumbai blasts took place? Passion. Where are the people now, who swore they would clean up this country? Unpassion.
Five years ago, a movie came out on Republic Day, Rang De Basanti. The youthful joy and carefree nature of the youths, who led this country to realization, was so contagious, that people were talking of those actors starting a revolution of sorts, of cleaning up the corrupted system. Five years down the line, we still stand on the same spot, albeit with a few more arguments up our sleeve, but at the same darn place. Is there a point to all of this?
The problem with us nowadays is we give sleep too much importance. Any engineering student will tell you, the most work is done when you pull an all-nighter. The “Golden Bird” will only attempt to fly again, when its people uncage it. Pull in a passionate revolt, and watch it succeed. Coming generations will reward you forever with their blessings.
To my country, and my people, I pledge my devotion. India, my country, along with my countrymen, will never progress again, until the people of this country wake up. And stay awake.