I find it strange that people want me to maintain silence when even those who are miles away have been deciding the fate of us Indians.
Getting politicians to resign is the easiest thing; getting them to act is tough.
Have you seen the panel discussions on television? Even Nikhil Wagle and top cop M.N.Singh are nodding their heads at statements made by some socialite. Yeah. “Enough is enough”. I said that in 1993. Tell me what is enough and who is going to decide? I could not then. So, who will now? These people?
I was sent messages and ‘personally invited’ to a candle-light vigil. I refused to go. I said it in so many words. “Not interested.” I am not interested in standing there with melting wax to support victims. (I have never gone on such peacenik missions and never will, although some of the people involved in organising them are indeed genuine.) The victims are dead. They died because of failures at several levels.
Tragedy has been made into a joke – “I left my kids at home to be here”, “I am not having a party”, “I am wearing black”…so?
And people want me to be silent. Why?
I am sorry to bring this up, but the Sea Lounge has been mentioned again. Does anyone ever mention that of the people who are sitting in studios, 99 per cent have not ever done anything on the ground?
Does anyone know where I was during the 1993 riots? Were they even born then? Have they watched slums being bulldozed? Have they visited hospital wards and been confronted with pleas by ‘mental patients’ to take them out? Have they followed up on careless killings of ordinary people that were not due to terrorist attacks and sat with a rape victim as she showed her scars, or an old father as he waited for justice, and followed it up after a year, two years? Have they bothered to keep at the POW case of 1971 as I have, instead of capitalising on Sarabjeet Singh? Have they joined any NGO only because they feel they don’t want to merely use the people there for quotes?
You ask about my commitment?
Why? Because I am not barking into a mike? Because I am not saying with a flourish that the camera should not focus on some people shouting anti-Pak slogans (in the noise no one watching the TV would have even noticed until this was emphasised)? What for? To sound secular? Only because I am not holding a “Muslim man” by the shoulder as he, bearded, skull capped, says in English that he has come to the Gateway of India to tell people that Islam is not the religion of the terrorist and starts quoting chapter 5, surah something? Do they even realise that this looks like another kind of mockery where Muslim man comes to defend his religion?
This qualifies as an important statement?
Why not just distribute copies of the Quran and let people judge?
Why is no one complaining about this sort of media fascism where views are being forced down their throats?
I am not asking anyone to read any holy book. I am not quoting from any holy book. I am not justifying any religion. I am not abusing anyone. I am asking questions that I want to ask.
A friend told me I should not sound defensive. If it comes across as that, it is okay. I will have my say. It does reflect the views of at least some people who cannot express themselves. Or, even if they do, they feel a bond.
Someone even said I could afford not to be afraid. I am not sure how much fear costs, but those who wish to scare me will have to first become fearless themselves.