It was evening. A pleasant one. It was raining heavily and I had just returned from a nice drive. Going through the news feeds on Facebook, I was in for a pleasant surprise – serial bomb blasts in Mumbai. I shut the Facebook application on my Blackberry and called up friends in Mumbai. Once assured of their safety, I thought of having a mini celebration. And why shouldn’t I? None of my loved ones was hurt after all.
You may wonder why I wanted to celebrate. The fact is only the order of events is right, but not the emotions. I went through the updates, and realised that terror had struck Mumbai, yet again. Maybe, terror is here to stay, in this city that never sleeps. But then, with so much of fear, who would want to sleep anyway. If God were selfish, he would be happy though. With each passing second, an individual in Mumbai thanks Him for keeping him/her alive. For whatever reasons, God is being remembered more frequently now.
Discussing the Mumbai blasts, a few friends asked – Why are we being bombed? My immediate response was- Give me one good reason why we should not be bombed. Not that this is the first time we have seen what terror is. Mumbai, in fact, will have the distinction of facing terror attacks on most occasions. And how have we, as Indians, reacted to all this? We’ve cheered for the FIGHTING SPIRIT of Mumbaikars and moved on. Oh sorry, how forgetful of me… I forgot to mention all the candles we lit and the sympathies we expressed. For the families of the deceased and affected, it was a herculean challenge to cope with the loss. What would they do without those prayers? And if socialites didn’t exist, they would never know how much India cares for them and how it is joining them in their moment of sadness.
Coming to the terrorists, I think they have a reason to like India. They may be at home in Pakistan, but are treated no less than state guests in India. Though they come on a suicide mission, I wouldn’t be surprised if they wish to be caught alive. India is a country where peaceful protestors (read ‘Indian citizens’) are mercilessly beaten, without any provocation, in the middle of the night with not even a remote thought to human rights. But the likes of Kasab, Afzal Guru, etc. live a well-protected life. Crores of rupees are spent on their security, they are served food of their choice with the assurance that the Government of India wants them alive and in good health to elicit ‘vital’ clues from them. Once life and fair treatment is assured, I see no reason why terrorists should open their mouth. All this in a country where millions live below the poverty line, starve for food and have nobody but themselves to protect them and their families.
My blood boils. Everytime I hear the question ‘Why us?’, I ask - why not us? When was the last time we saw a movement where Indians fought as one? Even during the freedom struggle, Indians were divided between those who took up weapons and those who chose non-violence as their toll. Despite all this, a burning desire to see a free India and fierce Nationalism helped the country get freedom. However, after that, no single movement has united people. Centre right, Left, Right, Left of Centre and many other ideologies were born and India stands divided even today.
I don’t support the call to citizens to take up to arms. Else, we will have to support the Naxal movement as well. Terror has no religion, and thus, we should neither give it a religious colour nor a political one. Whether the terrorist is a Hindu, Muslim or Catholic, there should be no leniency. In a country, where an innocent PM supported a crackdown on peaceful Indian citizens, is it worth living at the mercy of such politicians? Alert citizens can be lethal for anti-nationals and a pressure group for those who rule us. The time has come to unite and join a movement. The time is long gone where symbolic gestures like a protest march or lighting candles to express solidarity were enough. In today’s date, it helps to be anti-national than a Nationalist. If this continues, we are surely heading towards becoming a country, whose existence will be in danger.
After every bomb blast we have felt agitated, irritated and frustrated. But none of us has noticed that we are back to our routine in no time. Those who suffer in the blasts are left to fend for themselves. The terrorists caught alive are taken care of. We often speak about doing something for the country. Contrary to the belief that only politicians and people in defence services can do that, we must take it upon ourselves to improve this country. Each one of us must be that robust soldier, fighting relentlessly day and night, till we take our country to the pinnacle. We can, we must. Arise Indian!