Tuesday, 16 August 2016

India: The Nation That Isn’t

This is probably the first Independence Day in my life I spend crying in my room. I feel disillusioned, and broken at the same time. I guess, I am just a very simple person by nature. Maybe I am to be blamed indeed, for I never believed love and respect for the Nation are optional.

I am not coming down. My kurti does not fit me properly’, said my friend. I looked at her to see if it was a joke but saw she was serious.

That is all fine. At least come down for a while. If nothing else, just come down for 5 minutes to pay your respects to the Flag’, I replied, still hoping she is just fooling around.

I am sorry. But I really do not believe in that kind of thing’, she said.

I am sorry if it offends you, but I just don’t have any such feeling’, she said, as she saw the disbelief and shock in my life.

No, it’s fine. I’ll see you later’, I said and walked back into the front lawn of the hostel where the Independence Cultural Programme was going on.

Now, as my fellow college mates dance away to Bollywood songs as part of the mandatory DJ session, I sit here, in my room, weeping after picking up more than a dozen flags that have fallen on the ground.

Don’t get me wrong. I love dancing; I am one of those people who dance from the beginning to the very end. But today, the disdain I felt was just too much for me to endure. This is the Future OF INDIA. The Workforce That Will Propel India to Greatness. The Demographic Dividend. These are the people.

Now, I am no politician; nor I am a preacher. I have no right to force people to respect their Mother Nation. Neither do I have the right to dictate peoples’ feelings and preferences. Everyone is free to have their own choices and opinions, after all. THE INDIAN CONSTITUTION guarantees it. But it just saddens me greatly to be a part of a generation that feels nothing for their nation. As I see some of the brightest minds in the country proudly profess their feelings through words and actions, I don’t know what else to do, but cry away the pain I feel inside me.

We, as a country, just don’t care. We don’t give a f*@k about the nation. Being selfish is not wrong, it is often even rational. But this is not selfishness. I don’t have a word to describe this. Indifference? Nonchalance? The sense of Entitlement? The non-realisation of how the nation impact their every breath on Earth? Look at the Palestinians and the other refugees. The poor people forced to leave everything behind to live. This nation gives you that life. Granted it is not perfect, but which country is? It is work in progress.

A nation is built by the people. A country is a geographic terrain. A nation is a feeling in the minds of all the people. This is the fabric. The soul. This is why I feel intense fear as I see this in front of me. We are no longer a nation. We are a country. We are slowly becoming a soul-less landmass of people, who have no feeling of belongingness or concern for the country. The feeling ‘Indian’ is lost. I am just glad India got her Independence in 1947. If it were to be in 2016, then it would never happen, for people just don’t have time for that kind of ‘sh*t’. Rustom just released, after all.

Written by Shreya Srinivasan
A person of varied interests, with a possible ADHD that went unnoticed as a child. A gypsy philosopher looking for her place and space in the world. Admittedly a little odd at first, but then, you have to be odd to be number one.

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