July 09, 2006

Romping on rampage-diesel

I watched the film 'Rang De Basanti' almost completely today. I've always liked the songs in the movie, and I knew of the theme too.

In the movie, a group of youngsters, disillusioned with the lackadaisical and corrupt political scene, takes things into its own hands and uses some pretty extreme means to bring out the corruption among politicians. While watching the part where a politician blames an honest pilot for a planecrash, I had a strong sense of deja vu. So many times, innocent people get the brickbats. For every Medha Patkar who rallies for the people, we have hundreds of unsung heroes who may be doing much more, whose voices get buried in the shifty, sands of time, that are so tinged with evil that they begin to personify evil.

In an uncanny coincidence, the Shiv Sena anounced a bandh here in Bombay. The reason - Late Meena Thackeray 's statue was smeared with mud. With due respect to Meena Thackeray and the rest of the Shiv Sena, why didn't they go on strike when people's lives and houses were not only smeared, but washed away by mud during the July 26 deluge ? Also, the people who could justifiably rant and rave against the government's grave inadequacies chose to do it in a more peaceful and dignified manner. They didn't go around torching buses and forcibly choking the life out of a vibrant city like Bombay BECAUSE they were victims of negligence and the consequence-bearers of some serious fallacies.

Yes, they have an ideology like everyone else, and have every right to have one, as long as innocent lives and a city's heartbeat are not at stake when they begin to interpret it.

But, they don't want to listen. Do they ?

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