"The first step in blogging is not writing them but reading them." - Jeff Jarvis, BuzzMachine, 07-10-2006

Saturday, August 23, 2008

1 gold 2 bronze ... an Olympics to remember

... and of course the sportsmen who made it so. Abhinav Bindra. Sushil Kumar. Vijender Kumar. My heartiest congratulations to them for their dream achievement!

Also there are few more things to remember about India at Olympics 2008. We had a contingent of 56 athletes, and they had a support-staff of 42 officials. The athletics contingent was the largest, with 16 athletes. Still in very few events only we came close enough to think about medals and finally won 3 precious. No, I am not blaming the sportsmen/sportswomen. They would have worked really hard to be there and compete. Its the support structure which is weak. If you looks at the 3 medal winners they had their own personal support structure which supported them till they got those medals. Another thing which we should not forget is that India was not able to qualify for the hockey, our national sports. We should also remember these while thinking for London 2012 Games.

But now is a time to celebrate with Abhinav, Sushil and Vijender! Hip Hip Hurray!

bachna ae haseeno ... nice movie to watch!
By the way ... 'Why do girls always fall for the wrong guy?' - read this in some acticle about the movie

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Celebrating Independence

Today was the first day of the 62nd year of independent India and yesterday we celebrated the 62nd Independence Day. My best wishes to every Indian!

But each year, one thought does come to my mind. What does this day mean for me? Is is just a holiday which comes every year? Maybe. I have read about the great and hard struggles which our freedom fighters have fought. I am very proud of them and really cherish the free India they have given us. But that feeling is not for only this one day. As a child it took me many years to understand the difference between the Republic Day and the Independence Day. Republic Day is my favorite of the two. I love the parade on Republic Day! Coming back to the question - what does this day mean to me? I am not sure. I tried searching web to see what others feel on this ... feeling of pride, remembering the sacrifices. These were some of the answers but question seeks an answer beyond that. And the answer comes - holiday!

It's not something to be ashamed of because its a fact. In fact its much honest an answer than saying we feel proud and remember the sacrifices of the freedom fighters, because not just individually but as nation we have forgotten many of them. Surely 61 years after we are not celebrating the freedom from foreign powers, especially that now there is lot of inter-dependencies with the same and other foreign powers.

There is one more answer for the question. If I ask this same question to my parents and grand-parents, for them the day brings back the painful memories of partition. For them happiness of 15 August 1947 was lost entirely on 14 August 1947. This is something which I definitely remember each year, with them, on this day. I hope one day we might be able to do what happened with the Berlin Wall.

Independence - if you go by the dictionary meaning, is a very Utopian concept. Each entity in this world is inter-dependent. In present day socio-economic system, each country is vulnerable to events much beyond its physical borders. The recent slow-down of the world economies and rise in oil prices, due to a crisis (sub-prime) in one country, is the perfect example. Even if we come down to individual level, I do not think anyone can say he/she is independent irrespective of where they stand in the socio-economic ladder. Each day if you look at the events, you will find a lot that happens is beyond your control, but directly impacts you and sometimes you do not like the impact.

Just other day, there was a protest organized by the a section of society to get their demands addressed and in doing so they took the rest hostage. Now many of those who were made hostage of the protest, might not agree with the demands but their 'independence' was constrained by those who wanted to excercise their democratic 'independence'. This is subjugation, but whom can we struggle against this time? It is very difficult to define the subjugator, like we did for the foriegn powers. Due this the struggle itself is getting distorted and we are getting 'solutions' like reservation, demads for new states, etc. These solutions are again seeds to new problems.

Like this questions are many. Though the answers are still clouded. I am not sad, because in last 61 years India has definitely grown into a stong player in the international arena, both politically and economically! We all should be extremely proud for this. But somewhere there is thought that we had the potential of achieving much more, if we had done few things differently.

Nevertheless, wishing every Indian out there a very happy, successful and exciting 62nd independent year which unfolding ahead!