Friday, January 27, 2012

2 The wait for the real Republic day

Baiyion aur Behnon,

Happy Republic Day. Let us all pay respect by standing still when singing Jana gana mana, hoisting the flag and distributing sweets. Let us remember that our constitution came alive on this very day in 1950 with the notion of equality, liberty and fairness to all Indian citizens.

The rules are 61 years old and we still follow them. We are the generation that sings 'hum hain naye andaaz kyon ho purana?". Shame that they are outdated and need to change. Here are the reasons.

No one seems to remember what each of those words stand for - Equality, Liberty and Fairness? In the survey conducted across India with our un-filtered population these were the top-of-the-mind recall for these words.
Equality - Kwality icecreams.
Fairness - Fair & Lovely
Liberty - Statue of Liberty. Liberty shoes.

Second, where are the Indian citizens?
Born on the Indian land, women have aped and have fallen in the clutches of the western culture. Women going to pubs, attending parties, not being a 'cultured' bahu (cultured in a lab similar to rats and amoeba) should be left out. Men who speak for these insipid women and tagged as 'joru-ka-ghulam' are not eligible because they no longer dis-respect their wives - another criteria for Indian-ness. These men are confused about equality. You are supposed to act like the king and 'let' your wife go to work, 'let' her watch TV and go out. It is 'let' and not help or support.There goes 50% of the population.

Sophisticated and rich are those who allow their DILs, daughters, wives to be independent. Rebellious are women who live alone and have a mind of their own. Non-adjusting is that neighbor's wife on whom there is incessant complain from her MIL. Again, none of them behave like Indians. Another 10% reduction.

We are a rapidly dwindling race.. Gulp! Be alert that we might become extinct soon unless there are modifications and stringent conditions laid down for our survival.

A ray of hope comes from  the honor killings and their uphold of Indian values by killing your own kin. A noble deed done exactly for glorification of the constitutional principles. To eliminate fake and calamine-masked faces disguised as Indians but not fitting in that mold. After all its fair, isn't it, to protect our race.

Our census data must be entirely wrong. We should make another caste;sub-caste census.This will accumulate only 20% of the existing citizens who have stood up to their Indianness - the filtered elite lot. Laws and rules can be better drafted keeping this niche group's interest's in mind - promoting Indian culture; respect for elders without dwelling on capable/incapable decisions ; forceful continuation of all rules set by politicians and khap panchayats. And the satisfaction will be borne out of the fact that the constitution is finally serving its purpose. Drive the non-deserving lot out of India and live in peace.

Our constitution has hardly served all of our population - people who have experienced real equality, liberty and fairness. For it to be applicable and useful widely we need to first define what we mean by equality and fairness in the Indian context. We are still not free but held captive by our own minds.

Quote from John Start Mill thoughts on Philosophy and society.
 "No society in which these liberties are not, on the whole, respected, is free, whatever may be its form of government; and none is completely free in which they do not exist absolute and unqualified. The only freedom which deserves the name is that of pursuing our own good in our own way, so long as we do not attempt to deprive others of theirs, or impede their efforts to obtain it. Each is the proper guardian of his own health, whether bodily, or mental and spiritual. Mankind are greater gainers by suffering each other to live as seems good to themselves, than by compelling each to live as seems good to the rest"

Please note: All percentages are a hypothetical figure which emanated from my mind at that precise moment. You got it right - they portray the dwindling intelligence in every person who reads this;-)

Thursday, January 19, 2012

9 Blood, Sweat & Tears

Economic times carried an article on an entrepreneur who has invented a machine for producing sanitary napkins. His pain, that propelled this invention, came out of abject poverty and unhygienic methods used by his lady family members during periods. Only 12% of Indian women use sanitary napkins and the market is dominated only by two players - J&J and P&G. And corporates are motivated towards profits (almost 1000% from each napkin) and a part of the profit dollars converts to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

It is refreshing to see a man talking on the subject in an uninhibited manner - a guy belonging to the below-the-poverty line(he calls himself that) trying to understand the complexities and the taboo around the subject.
He observes that napkins are covered in black plastics at shops as if we are smugglers. The fact that even his wife is averse to broach this topic with him made it more difficult for his research methods to succeed. He had to use medical-college women and himself as specimens to test out his techniques.

Where is the need for education and money to be empathetic towards women and understand unfair social norms and customs that are against women? 

Watch him in this video - a truly inspiring one. To quote him - "No one dies because of poverty. It happens because of ignorance"

How many of us educated individuals are still living in ignorance? In fact, many men choose to live in ignorance on menstrual issues. Men choose not to learn or be empathetic towards women. 

Related Posts: Being untouchable during periods

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

2 To belief and belonging

I have avoided writing on some topics because they are too close to the heart and also unclear. They are groping in a state of confusion.

I know that I dont believe in organized religion - making you go to places of worship on a regular basis, praying without understanding, performing rituals because you are asked to.

When you step out, there are all sorts of people who will create chaos - when their core, which has blindly tottered, is made to stop and think. People who actually understand so little about their own choice. People who would not have been in a such a situation. People who cannot understand because they have followed it in their own manner and not against their beliefs.People who think their belief is prescribed in books. People who have never looked within themselves. People who think children are a branch of the parent. People who followed the path and are scared that your thinking challenges their notion of life. Their notion of success, happiness and stability.

I have come to believe in this. Anything that you follow by rote is not what you believe. You cannot defend it because you actually do not know if you beleive in it.

Accusers say I am deserting my religion. My public act is definitely a powerful statement to say that if God exists, then he is one. But in the process, I have explored and tried to understand what it is that I want from religion. Or whether I want one at all. In the process, I have discovered convincing arguments for certain rituals and symbols.The problem is why cloak practices under something called a "Religion"? I want to say that I have adopted certain ways after experimenting with them. Even if the ways were initially propagated by some group, they dont belong there. Neither do I belong there because I chose to beleive in them -  not because it is advocated by that group but since I beleive in it as an individual.

Do the accusers know me - do they know what I believe in or not? What meets the eye are the public events that take place ten days a year. The other 355 days I live with my belief and the practices that I truly stand for. It is an impounding reality that my beliefs will be challenged. But I am willing to defend them because I know that my brain has logical chemicals to solve this equation. As an outcome, if logical conclusion was negative my belief would need to change.

It is not a comfortable place to be. Sometimes you wish you had followed that crowd. But I guess I have a brain that believes more in myself than others. Whoever or whatever this other is.

Friday, January 6, 2012

5 Polka-dotted Cup - 1

This is my first blog Cup and I guess this deserves a separate post :). Thanks IHM.
The name of the post indicates that I hope to win many more cups in the future.

I remembered the peaks because before the journey I casually mentioned to a friend that I am visiting Loan-vala. And everybody had a good laugh at my expense.

I won this cup gracefully (with grace marks) and, as usual, an obsessively proud owner now.

It resembles my real Office coffee cup except this one has red polka dots ;-).

And in the background you can actually see a pink-covered book!

My Coffee Mug

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