So everything is back to the oft-dreaded perfect normalcy. The commandos have returned to their barracks. The politicians in their party offices scheming on new political offensives. The smugglers have resumed their shipments. The hawala is running in top shape. The babus are back in their municipal offices making space under their tables. The police are back to.. whatever Mumbai policemen usually do. The bereaved families are mourning in silence. And the City swings back to where it left off on 26th November.
And last but not least the everlasting sign of our nations progress: Thousands of masala TV channels and so-called news channels dishing out a combination of bullshit and sad excuses for entertainment to the masses. The people are satisfied. The sponsors are satisfied. The agencies are satisfied. The rating looks better than ever. Nothing can stop them, not even the death of a few hundred. Aaaaaah its just brilliant.
Some half backed 'geniuses' on the News Channels have equated this calamity with the one the Americans endured not so long ago. They call it "9/11". It wouldn't make much sense if we start calling it 26/11 since our months appear after the date. (Those crazy Americans change everything!). So to sound a bit cool our news anchors call the Mumbai attacks "India's 9/11". I know it's a sinister attempt to connect the two attacks to the same source.
Oh, and a reminder about that analogy to 9/11:. Right after 9/11, almost all American sitcoms and cable channels delayed new programming for weeks, to mourn their dead and to re-think the direction their nation needs to take. Such was their shock and their reaction to the events. They did not "bounce back" the next day. They did not show "resilience". And later they bounced back so hard that they landed in Afghanistan and kicked every butt in sight. For better or for worse they landed in Iraq and did some more butt kicking.
I should not be comparing our nation to the west.
But, this is not the time for us to sit before the idiot box and watch boob-shakers and bum-movers. I would urge our ardent television audience to voice your protest to them. And keep this terrible event fresh in the nations hear. If not for a year at least for a month.
So far most of the entertainment television channels have not disrupted regular programing. I can understand how this will affect those valuable ratings and sponsorships. But these are extra-ordinary times which call for extra-ordinary measures. Its natural for humans to try and forget unpleasant events and replace them with pleasant ones. This should not be the case here. The objective should not be to forget and forge ahead. We should forge ahead fueled by our spirit for change. And these memories should remain fresh in our minds. The media should keep the fire burning. Our people need constant reminding of these events in order to affect that change.
We cannot expect governments to do the right thing at their pace. Its time to question the delays and the failings of this operations. Its time to question why our intelligence and logistics failed. We cannot be satisfied with excuses as to why it took almost three days to neutralize 8 terrorists. We should not be satisfied with the resignations of a few ministers. Unfortunately we lack leaders who can inspire and lead. So let me quote Obama here. We need Change we can believe in.
There are minds in our nation that sympathize with these men who took our nation hostage for three days. Lets realize that this is the new reality we have to live with. Unless we are ready to acknowledge the real enemy there will be no solution to this menace. We have been consumed, to the point of no return, with extreme secularism that has numbed our minds into hopeless pacifism.
Unless we find the resolve and courage to stop religious extremism in our cities, villages, homes and minds, this will forever remain an escalating threat to our sovereignty.
p.s: Raj Thakkarey, Its safe man, you can come out now. Mumbai has been saved by brave Indians which also includes Biharis, Malayalees, Gujrathis, Rajasthanis and everyone else.
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