Wednesday, December 31, 2008

I am Proud of India Today. Not India of Yesteryears.

I have heard about our glorious past, but I find it too full of coups d'etat, bickering, violence, ignorance, intolerance, cruelty, divides and discrimination.
I am happy I am born today, not then.

We are told those were perfect times, but I know even in the best of those times women have had it tough.

I prefer India, and the world TODAY. Terrorism notwithstanding.

Whatever else the British did, they united our bickering Princely States, Jagirs and Presidencies - in a single Nation (three actually).

They also left us a unifying Language and some modern (Western!) concepts, both much hated, much debated, but embraced with pride by most Indians.
Our Democracy, takes our hypocrisy in it's stride ;)

I was proud when this powerful Democracy turned up in huge numbers in Kashmir, ignoring the boycott called by the separatist movement ... A 60.5% voter turnout!

I am proud of the fact that we can vote for a Dynasty IF we so choose.
And we can vote back fundamentalists with blood on their hands, IF we choose.
We can also vote out corruption when we've had enough.
I love it that we have it in our hands to do that!

We can openly wish our politicians dead, and we can burn their effigies and if they go too far, we can take them to court. We can make caricatures of them and we can discuss their misconduct in our blogs.
For the first time in Indian History we, the aam aadmi, matter.

Never before in History have we been declared EQUAL in the eyes of the law, until this Constitution I am so proud of was drafted.

So I am not going to look back longingly, and wish for those good (?) old, glorious (?) days, I will look ahead and be proud of what India is today.

Yes we have problems, but we are empowered, for the first time in human history, to choose who solves them for us.
True we might make wrong choices, but we have the power to correct ourselves too!

As the year 2008 comes to an end in a few hours, I know more than anything, this year has proved (once again) that slowly (very slowly) we are all learning not to take our freedom for granted ...
I know every little drop counts and my contribution is to be a more vigilant citizen. I will Vote. I will talk about Peace and I will speak against Violence.

Does it count?


Usha Pisharody said...

It does. You can bet on that!

And the voices, each single one will come together, and make heard that yes AAM AADMI is here to stay, and be acknowledged!

Loved this one!

Best wishes for the New Year!

Hoping that the new year will see you continue to keep us all informed, alert, educated and wanting to be a better Indian:)

God Bless you and yours!

Goofy Mumma said...

Its so true that in all the mess, we forget to see the good bits. There is no point in sitting and counting the past laurels, we live 'today', and we have to make 'today' good.

Meso said...

Thoughtful post! Today's India is much better in many ways. Still a lot more to go.

Wish you and your family a peaceful 2009.

hitch writer said...

Remember Rang De Basanti !! ???

Koi bhi desh Perfect nahi hota, use perfect banana padta hai !!

At times we think and expect too much. Every country is beseiged with its own problems...

I promise to be a law abiding good citizen of this country and if every one of us can do that we would create a perfect nation !!!

So if you are not proud of your ownself you cannot be proud of your country.

I am proud of my country because I know we are good !!!! We will get better ... I am not hopeful I am sure !!!

The Comic Project said...

Good one. We allow ourselves to be stuck in history for too long. Happy new year

Ajit said...

good one IHM,
As usual, you come up with the very best....

Monika said...

happy new year... i have something for u at my blog... please come over

1conoclast said...




Just when I thought your best was written last fortnight, you come up with this!


PS: All of the above obviously means that I agree wholeheartedly! :-D

Z@ki-R said...

I am happy I am today's Indian but I am proud of yesterday's India too. Surely everything was not great about India's past but I see a great potential to be a great nation with lessons from past ( AND present ).

Enjoyed reading this...Wish everyone there a happy new year.May all of you and your near and dear ones live healthier & happier. May you all move closer to your full potential!

May you all spare a little of your thought for underprivileged and for India's peace and progress!

varunavi said...

Wonderful post IHM and good write up to end the year.
I quote from buddha's quotations
“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.”

Wish u a happy new year.

Phoenixritu said...

Awesome! I am proud of you - really, and am proud to be on your bloglist. This is a fantastic post IHM

Desiheart said...

Gud one IHM..
Yes am proud of today's India as much as I love yesteryears India. I love this journey of India. and am very very optimistic and hopeful that we can make it better and better day by day year after year..
cheers to 'US' the aam aadmi of India.
Let's come together and vow to strive this a better place in whichever small ways we can 'coz WE CAN DO IT.

I wish a Happy , safe and joyous 2009 to ALL.

Nimmy said...

Happy New Year IHM ..May you be able to enlighten people like me thru your writing..

J P Joshi said...

This post warmed the cockles of my heart. Thank you IHM for giving us such a positive message to end the year 2008 on. LOVED IT. Yes, we need to look at all the good that India is all about. This really comes as a breath of fresh air after all the negativity that we saw and heard.

Happy New Year IHM and may you continue to give out positive messages to keep us on track. Thank you once again.

@lankr1ta said...

Hear Hear.

pink dogwood said...

Of course it counts - great post. Happy New Year.

vimmuuu said...

I had a late realisation about what I actually feel towards our nation; better late than never, rt?

I second your opinion, our country is a lot better now. we had more caste divide in India in the olden days. Women were ill treated, unemployment, starvation, no health awareness (polio, AIDS, etc.) and ya, to end this comment lightly, no TV too !

Wish you the happiest year ahead !

Gauri Gharpure said...

yes, all tht bickering anf frustrations have a vent and of late, our voices reach far more than they did in the past decade or two.. new media, technology is proving a useful tool to further the cause of democracy. the challenge now is to make technology more accessible, the benefits reach in the lanes and by-lanes littered with over-flowing bins and open drains...

I wish you a wonderful year ahead and look fwd to such energy-loaded, passionate posts on your blog.

naperville mom said...

Reminiscing is good... but ol' times were not always good, def not for everyone, glad to hear that...we don't hear that too often!

Unpretentious Diva said...

There is a very common forward mail among Indians. There are various versions of that mail with different facts and interpretations but the basic gist of them all is to make you feel proud to be an Indian. Such emails emphasizes on some successful Indians. While ignoring the Individual efforts behind these success stories and actually analyzing the facts on rational grounds such messages try to invoke the false-euphoria of collectivism.

I used to feel proud at them too, but not any more.
Let me break down one such mail for you — 

I am Proud to be An Indian, Or am I?

Anonymous said...

Hmmm... good points to remember when I feel tempted to go down the 'our parents had it so easy' path again!

Happy New Year IHM!!

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year IHM. May God bless India :)

Imp's Mom said...

Amen! You took the words right out of my mouth...

Here's wishing you and your family a happy, prosperous safe and a peaceful new year!

Iya said...

Yes it does, Aam admi is not that aam any more..we have a say, and we count.. we rejoice and we sulk and we are proud of who we are...

Happy new year IHM..

Gopinath's "Artickles" said...

IHM, yes we should be happy with India of today, but the India of today owes much to the hardships of the people and the hard work in nation building. Our schools, colleges, financial and banking institutions, manufacturing industries set up over 50 years today have grown to become world players. It is like enjoying the fruits and the shelter of the trees that our previous generation sowed for us to partake of. What are we building today for our future generation? In what state will we leave the planet to them? I do hope we live responsibly, sensibly in respect of environmental issues so that future generations also remember us for our wisdom and sensible choices in life!

hitch writer said...

Happy new year to you and your family. May 2009 be a safe and a prosperous year !!!!

Nita said...

Always nice to hear words of optimism and looking forwards, not backwards!
A very happy new year to you and your family IHM.

Balvinder Singh said...

Hi IHM, you have hit every nail on the head. Yes if we go back into our history or for that matter even mythology, our country was never a Ramrajya. There were strifes, deceits, treachery and concpiracies in every era. The British rule gave India it's modern map, though also its divisions. But yes in today's India we sometimes feel cheated by our powers that be because our countrymen are more awakened. Enjoyed reading your post. Keep it up

And wish you a very happy new year.

D said...

I love your convictions IHM, and I love your blogger activism too! I hope your spirit is infectious.

Mampi said...

Wish you a happy new year, an equally forceful and passionate one as 2008.
And for the country, we wish a peaceful and positive year.

Kislay said...

Happy new year to you too , and hopefully different one as well . Main asha karta hoon ki aapke liye nav varsha mangalmay ho . :)

Smitha said...

Happy New year to you IHM! Wonderful post! You are right when you point out everything that we have to be proud of in today's India. We do take too much for granted! While the 'India of yore' defintely had its problems, I do think, a lot of what we have today, is thanks to what we have learnt from the past. And voices like yours, matter a great deal - they make us all think! Thank you for that!

Indian Home Maker said...

Usha Pisharody Yes finally AAM AADMI is being heard :)

Goofy Mama And the today, if you really see, is the best :)

Meso I agree :)

Hitchwriter And we are pretty good! That we the aam addmi can seriously think of making a difference, says so much!

The Comic Project Yes but now we can, we are looking ahead, not backwards :)

Ajit Thanks! And a very enlightened year to you :)

Monika Thanks ...came and accepted and will be displaying & passing on asap :)

1conoclast Thanks! And a very Happy New Year to you :)

Z@kir Our History is fine, but we are much better off today, never in History has aam admi ever had any power. I just feel good we are born today.

Varunavi Thank you, I agree with, Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.

Phoenixritu Aww thanks :) Do you know how much that means to me!!!!

Desiheart Thanks and I also loved your comment on Mr MM Singh post, I am doing a post to explain that I favour no political party, whoever let's us live in peace has my vote. I really appreciate your frank suggestions :)
A very Happy New Year to you :)

Nimmy And you us Nimmy. I love your posts against narrow minded interpretations (misinterpretations) of religion.

Mr JP Joshi Thanks :)

@lankrita :)

Pink Dogwood Thank You!!!

Anser Azim said...

I miss my India that I grew up with. I wish some one can bring those green fields around my school and house. I wish some one can resurrect that neem tree that is part of many my dreams. I knew that tree branch by branch leaf by leaf. I wish some one can bring the flow back to the river (kiwano) and bring back the same glory to Ganga-Yamuna-Gomti. These rivers have been raped and abused beyond imagination for the dirty laundry work of the west. I wish some one
can bring back that air quality that was there not very long ago. I wish some one can bring back those hand shakes between maulvisaheb and Punditgee that i used to witness in the morning hours after prayer. They all have gone in the ugly name of religion and nationalism. Ganga pavitra thee ganga kai uper bahne wali pawan pavitra thee. we are burning more wood and hydrocarbon than before and ahve ruined the two basics oflife: air and water. I am worried for the generations yet to come and what will ahppen to that part of the world when one billions indians will move into that beautiful-ugly nano!!!
we ahve made some progress to give some basic rights to our brothers and sisters of dalit origin but still we have many miles to go..
i wish our hearts and minds can all be as pure as the water that tricles down in gangotri and be pollution free to make India strong and just..



Indian Home Maker said...

@Vimmuuu No internet, no blogs and no medical treatment for many diseases :)

@Gauri Gharpure Thank You :)

@Naperville mom No they weren't :) Not for Moms.

@Unpretentious Diva Welcome to this space :) I have also received such forwards and I wonder if people who need to keep talking about how great we are actually are trying to assure themselves ... don't they just take it as understood that we are good? Why do we need to prove we are better than someone else?
Have blogrolled you :)

@jottingsnmusings LOL I thought it was only people like us who talked about how good things were in our times!! :) Actually this post is in response to some rants I heard about how great India was in the glorious ancient past and how bad it is today :)

@Philip :) Same to you!

@Imp's Mom Thanks, Same to you! :)

@Iya True! Well said!! :)

@Gopinath's *Artickles* Hey I totally agree, today's India here is post-Independence India, I totally appreciate and am in awe of our forefathers who drafted this Constitution and who taught us about non-violence. Yes we must leave a livable planet for them! I even wrote about it in an earlier post :)

@Hitchwriter Same to you :)Thank You!

@Nita Yes, Thanks, same to you :)

@Mr Balvinder Singh Thank you, I totally agree with 'yes in today's India we sometimes feel cheated by our powers that be because our countrymen are more awakened'

@D No activism D!! This post came as a reaction to a confused post that spoke against the English language (written in English), the bad, bad modern times, and those good old glorious days, I also get comments saying the same thing. I think we are doing equally good today in fact much better. Specially the aam aadmi ... and even more the aam aurat :)

Indian Home Maker said...

@Mampi Thank You Ma'am :) Coming over to wish you ...

@Kislay Aapko Bhi :)

@Smitha Your brilliant and timely write up on Kashmir elections has been linked here, I hope you noticed :) That is one proof that these times of Democracy and Equality are much better than any in the past.

Chirag said...

I am Proud of Being and Indian and I never hide it with fake American English Accent with my Superior in US and UK :) and Yes, today is the best.

apu said...

I don't comment often on your blog, but this was a good post. I too am against the mindless deification of the past. Certainly, there will be some good things lost, but I think we need to realise that there was never a golden age

kaffir said...

"but I think we need to realise that there was never a golden age"

Apu, you need to read your history then. If the past history wasn't golden, then there was no reason for invaders to come and attack us.
I am not the one to glorify our past, but such denial of one's past is as shameful as glorifying it.

Indian Home Maker said...

And here's what is NOT Patriotism.

Priyanka said...

A very cool post IHM, you have said so much more than I could. I am happy to be born TODAY too, except for the terrorism part.

Quirky Indian said...

IHM, pertinent post, as usual. We cling to past 'glories' and forget that it is today and tomorrow that we need to make better.

I would also like to make the point that there are too many of us, even today, who are in denial; too many of us who see the positives we have as compensating for all the negatives. And as long as we do that, we will never fix the negatives. To all of them, my request is: WAKE UP!

Quirky Indian