Of Martyrs, Mumbai and Me

It is been 78 years since 3 great men were sent to gallows for the billion existing today. We owe our freedom and the ability to breathe in open air to these and other countless others. But truly, do we value their sacrifice.

(Edit: I was trying to find a link to actually explain who those 3 men are to the clueless ones. Not one link available for 2009. Has everyone truly forgotten Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev? After the spurt of movies on them , has their commercial value waned or disappeared altogether?)

Today, when I look back, I wonder if these men regret their decision. Did they truly give up their lives for THIS apathy, this indifference?

What does freedom mean to you and me? What is the cost of one life? What is the value of that ONE vote? 

Close to nothing. Freedom means nothing because we were born with it! One life means nothing because we have seen countless lives end with one bomb. Not once but over and over again. That one vote means nothing because according to us, it has no power. 

We all recoil into our shells like tortoises. We all bury our heads into the sand like ostriches. We fail to realise that danger lurks irrespective of whether we see it or we hide. 

If we fail to remember, we fail to appreciate those who gave up their lives for us, I wonder what the life of that common man means? Of what value is it? 

I saw Mumbai Meri Jaan yesterday (finally) and realised one thing. We all have different reactions to violence, to terrorism. But with time it fades. Madhavan with his chronic fatigue syndrome, Soha fighting the loss of a dear one and the "news" (read: mockery) everyone is making of her pain, Kay Kay Menon with his prejudice , Paresh Rawal and Kadam (I think his name was in the movie) fighting with themselves about feelings of helplessness, EVERYONE moves on. Those who lost someone will remember it and then MOVE ON.

When will we learn persistence? This happens, but it SHOULDN'T.

This isn't a test of patience. We are losing lives here. When will this issue become of prime importance? 

Maybe, I'm reading too much into it. But, in the movie, when everyone stands still for 2 mins of silence and then moves on. That exactly what Mumbai does : gives itself 2 mins to bleed and mourn and then no more. One life, one thousand lives mean nothing when there are a billion people to cater to. A billion people to take their place.

(Btw, I love this one line from the movie where Paresh Rawal says, " Yeh log nahi peeyenge toh Mumbai mein spirit kahan se aayega." When he sees how rich folks are still drinking and enjoying even after the serial blasts)

These lyrics just seem so true now : 
Kahin building kahin traame, kahin motor kahin mill Milta hai yahan sab kuchh ik milta nahin dil


  Tushar Mangl

24 March 2009 at 00:47

I saw tht movie long time back and loved it. You are so write.
I wish to add more, but then you already have made such a profound statement

  Da Eternal Rebel

24 March 2009 at 13:29

Those who have never seen slavery do not know the meaning and value of freedom. That goes with us. The biggest problem is that we like to think that we are free, but in reality we are not. Its the case of Brown Sahebs replacing the Gora Shahebs. But its the case of either the slavery being too comfortable for us to stir or we have water in our veins instead of blood. I will not say given a chance we cannot rise to bring about a chance, I will just say that we are just not sensitive or sensible. Our patriotism, sensibility, compassion are too feeble to stand out.


24 March 2009 at 14:40

I love mumbai for its energy and enthusiasm. I like to be there on each and every vacation and I was deeply hurt when the terrorist attack happened..
but the only relevant question is what you can do?
As you can see, most of our youngsters are not at all interested in what is happening in our country.That mentality is our greatest enemy.. that lets our country down..