ArpitGarg's Weblog

An opinion of the world around me

Posts Tagged ‘nation

Majboori Ka Naam Mahatma Gandhi: Why?

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“Kyon bhai sahab, aaj car ki jagah bus se travel?” “Kya karein, Mazboori ka naam Mahatma Gandhi.”

We use this phrase all the time. Don’t we? If I ask you, “What does Majboori have to do with Mahatma Gandhi?” Most of you would be stumped. Come to think of it, don’t you feel odd that we have coined our Father of the Nation, Mazboori.

In English, Mazboori means obligations, compulsions, and constraints emerging out of sheer helplessness. I asked many people in my office about the origin of the phrase. Noone came close. They were amazed when pointed out that indeed we are calling out father of our nation, helpless.

This brings me to the question, Why? In absence of any concrete definition, there are several explanations floating around. Let’s take them one by one:

Partition Blame

Partition Gandhi looked helplessly and let the nation get divided. His Mazboori was the worst kept secret. All the decisions he took were under pressure and portrayed sheer helplessness.

 

Last Resort

Partition This is one explanation that paints Gandhi in good light. When all options are over, try Gandhi. When all else failed, he practiced hunger strike, which shook the foundations of an empire. When one is out of money, there is no option but to eat less expensive food and live frugally.

 

Overcome

Partition Gandhi overcame all the Mazboori’s (difficulties) in his life and led India to independence. Thus whenever there is Mazboori, remember Gandhi, you will find the solution.

 

Non Violence

Partition Non Violence is taken to be sign of weakness and helplessness. Gandhi preached and followed non violence, hence the phrase.

 

Currency

Partition Indian currency started having imprint of Mahatma Gandhi. To a poor India, Majboori emanates from money (or lack of it). Thus Mazboori ka naam Paisa aka Mahatma Gandhi.

 

Gandhi was Majboori

Partition To rely on Gandhi was Majboori of all Indians who wanted independence. As there was no one else who could have fought with Britishers and deliver Azaadi.

 

Self Destruction

Partition With the world in shambles and on the verge of self destruction, we have no options but to follow steps of Gandhi to save the world. That’s what Anna Hazaare has shown.

 

Expect the Unexpected

Partition When cornered, people tend to behave unexpectedly. When Gandhi was helpless, with no independence in sight, he turned to innovation. His turned prevalent hunger into a potential Anshan. We all find ways to struggle when turned into a corner. “Necessity is the mother of invention”.

 

Just for Kicks

Partition Since we were kids, we have been asked to name, Father of Our Nation so many times, that it has become our Mazboori to memorize it.
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Racism: Reverse and Progressive

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A lot has kept us busy as a nation last couple of weeks. CWG, Mohali win and most recently some serious allegations of racism against a few officials from down under.

If I am right, Ministry of External Affairs, India summoned High Commissioners of respective countries and lodged protests. Last I heard the said individuals either resigned or were ousted and rightly so. Such behavior has no place in civilized societies.

Okay, tell me one thing. Has racism sprung up all of a sudden during recent times? The answer would be a no. Racism is a perception which a society or a race developes about contemporary society or race overtime. It’s just that with the advent of Globalization, these days we get to know of it real time. Earlier Lord Ganesha on Chappals was mere fashion for a society that doesn’t know anything about him, Today it is offensive.

Tell me frankly, how many of us think Bhajji did indeed utter “Maa Ki” and not the racist slur. Why then were we as a nation hell bent on seeing Bhajji free of the allegations? Now come ‘on, it had nothing to do with lack of evidence or anything thereof. If such had been the case then all our politicians were saints.

To be frank it’s about who is leveling the allegations. Had the opposite team been Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, West Indies or for that matter South Africa, we as a nation might not have backed our player to that extent. Why? Coz we have seen long periods of unabashed Aussie sledging as a reminder of the days of the Raj perhaps.

When a society which has perception of being shamelessly racist, throws up allegations of such sort, it seems rubbing salt in the wound. You gotta handle what you dish out. Right?

But what worries me more is a developing phenomenon, Reverse Racism. In our part of world racism is generally related to prejudice that developed white nations have against us about them being superior. The aspect of racism under which emerging societies like us berate, taunt or create a certain perception about developed nations is what I call Reverse Racism.

When white girls are considered nothing but free meat. Whole society is said to lack values. If it’s not racism, what is it? I was shocked to see in a recent episode of Bigg Boss, a dozen white models in skimpy dresses made to dance with the ousted contestant. Just as his inaam. When the whole crowd enjoys it, it’s not just racism, it’s sadness.

Equally frightening is Progressive Racism. Progressive racism is when slightly more developed race is prejudiced against slightly lesser developed race.

When an African student in Delhi University is called Kaalu. A person from the same region is called Habshi on national TV. When CWG teams from African countries are given step motherly treatment. On daily basis do we see jokes being made on color of skin on TV. “Abey door hat, tu rang chodta hai”. Sab log fair and lovely lagate hain, yeh cherry blossom lagata hai. Abe langoor ke bhai.

I am not trying to be apologetic here, I hate that frankly. But if such progressive and reverse racism continues in our society, we too would lose our moral right to complain. We would just be another hypocrite in the bunch. Do we really want that? It’s bit scary to answer, isn’t it?

True citizens of the Nation: Baniyas

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It’s an old thing. I had almost forgotten it. Yesterday, we were having a discussion when a friend of mine popped out, “I am a true citizen of the country”. When asked why, he stated coz he is a baniya by caste. I am a baniya too. So when he said that Baniyas are the true citizen of the nation. I couldn’t but spare a laugh.

During my 11th std, there was a teacher of mine who used to tease the baniya students among the lot with the same line. It went like, “Bete aap baniya ho? Are aap to desh ke saache nagrik ho” Dumbstruck when the student looked at him, he explained it further. Everyone would just roll with laughter.

A lot many of us might have read “Desh ke sabse aache nagrik baniye“, painted on the walls, baners, road sides etc. “देश के सच्चे नागरिक बनिए”. Offcially it means, become a true citizen of the nation but just for fun of it we read it like, “देश के सच्चे नागरिक, बनिए”. It’s the game of how u read it (with a pause after nagrik) so it becomes, baniyas are the true citizen of the nation.

So all you baniyas out there, remember, We are the true citizens of the country.

Written by arpitgarg

December 1, 2008 at 11:52 am

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