Saturday, 3 September 2011

Life….after Anna

If you say that I am a bit late in posting this, I may agree with you. But it takes time for the dust to settle down, you will agree. The cacophony surrounding corruption has died a natural death. The incessant fluttering of the Tricolor is no more to be seen. Assortment of all kinds of men discussing  the Bill and its two versions(actually three) and their after-effects if implemented; in various channels across the visual media is no longer the order of the day. The print media going gaga with a couple of pages or more dedicated to the Man with a mission possible and the Lokpal bill have all returned to their daily business. Groups of people, all shapes, sizes and ages aggregating here and there shouting slogans or taking to the streets on a protest march or sometimes a solidarity march no more hold traffic at ransom. Students who had a field day bunking college, all in the name of participating in a movement of their lifetime have reluctantly returned to their classes. All of India was in a carnival-like state. The Bill and the ball both are now in the Parliament’s court. The August Kranti’s over. Life’s normal once again. Gone are the days when all roads led to Annapolis. You and me have returned to doing what we were doing before it all began.
The Ramlila Maidan in Delhi and the Freedom park in Bengaluru bore the look of garbage dumps, strewn with plastic bottles, covers, food packets, etc. While hurricane Irene swept US, India went through its Hurricane Anna days. Buzzword of the month August were – Anna, graft/corruption, Jan Lokpal, fasting, democracy.

Common people of Assam lighting candles and protesting against state corruption on the bank of the Dighalipukhuri in Guwahati, Assam, India 08/08/2010. Picture by AMANB from DEMOTIX.

This movement brought a few points to light. Fasting as a means to register one’s protest or to bring attention to a cause still holds good in India. If that’s comforting news or not I’m not sure but it is surely a non-violent means. What however is definitely a comforting thought is that the nation can come together for a cause, other than cricket. Gleams of hope that democracy is still a Govt. of the people could also be seen. But the question still remains as to why a nation of billions needed an Anna to raise its voice against something as commonplace as corruption. Why we said – Anna tum sangharsh karo, hum tumhare saath hai (Anna you struggle, we are with you)? Why couldn’t we stand up for ourselves in the first place and why did it take so many years for us to wake up? This country is as much his as much it is yours and mine, isn't it?


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