Once you fool me, shame on you
Twice you fool me, shame on me
In a way 26/11 was some kind of a rude awakening for us in India. We realized that we could not rely on people we had elected to lead us. We do not have true leaders. We also realized that we grossly neglect people who are actually going to protect us.
This is a lesson we should keep revising, otherwise we are going to be in trouble.
I think 26/11 hammered the final nail in the coffin of the Raj Thackeray types. There is no taker for the Marathi Manoos kind of philosophy. Our forces are secular and they are the guys who are going to be our armor against terrorism. We have a person from Chennai or Rajasthan who will protect us in Mumbai …. some one from Maharashtra who will protect us in deep south.
Another thing that I feel has happened is that we grew up a bit. Its rather like kids squabbling in the yard for a bigger share of candy, and they suddenly find that a bully is attacking the yard itself! We can no longer take comfort in the fact that we are a huge country. We have internal divides so deep – they need to be patched up. Cynical politics will ensure that the rift remains.
With China breathing down our necks right now, and the fact that we have never made friends with our other neighbors, we are isolated!
Another lesson we learnt was that the leadership failed miserably. We do not have adequate systems in place. Our democratic system ensures that the lowest common denominator is the winner ….. and we have bad leaders, chosen on a whim or a populist basis.
We had years, nay, we had centuries of apathy in us. Not our fault. We’ve been ruled by foreigners for a long long time. So we have never been participatory in the running of our country.
We need to be participatory. We need to question, to demand accountability. People join the politics for certain reasons you know. Of course self improvement and money is a biggg factor. But somewhere in their minds is also a desire to do something for the country. Unless we raise our voices, give them our feedback, how do they know that they work they are doing is adequate or not? That they measures they take are reaching us or not? We should not wait for the polls to give our silent and often shocking feedback.
I think the change has started …. it remains to be seen how effective it is. Ours is a vast and overpopulated country. But 26/11 left hardly any one untouched ……
The ripples started, and they should not be allowed to die down ….
Edited to add ….
Harish Krishnan of Blogadda wanted my views on 26/11, so I (never at a loss for words) send my two cents. He published them. I get to share space with Shobha De (!!!!) and committed social bloggers like IHM. Oh wow! I am truly impressed
Do check it out