Sunday, December 26, 2010

Cynicism personified

Jai ramji ki readers,

I would like to first thank Mr Taureansandy for allowing me to express my views on the current state of problems being faced by farmers like me. I am a small farmer in the hinterlands of what you all know as one of the most corrupt states in India. I won't reveal which state I am from. How should that matter anyway when you have humongous scams in the two most prominent G's I have known this year(CW'G' and 2'G')? To begin with, I would first congratulate all those who achieved what they had set out for this year. I am sure the feeling of achieving your goals must be extremely satisfying; a feeling I have never known as I never get the price that I deserve for my crop in the market. There is exploitation everywhere and when it comes to the same, I don't know how different this country, as we know now was different from the nation before Independence.

I live in a small village where we never had access to Television till a few months back when our village landlord got one. I was happy that I could be aware of what's happening elsewhere. But that happiness was short lived when I realized I could only watch the details of how a celebrity's dog was being treated, in a channel ironically named INDIA TV. I congratulate those brains that pass out from the so called institutes of higher excellence and have dreams of doing something meaningful for the country. But then, Greed is such a powerful and pervasive force that I can't help but pity those brains that stoop down to extremely abhorrent levels for money and fame.

I am 'cynicism personified' and I don't have any qualms in admitting that. I was once an optimist but the conditions in which I have had to struggle have made me lose trust in people. This year, the unlikely rains destroyed my crops and so has been the case with many of my other farmer friends in other states. I recently learned that my dear farmer friend who later settled in the Andhra region and with whom I had spent the best days of my childhood, had committed suicide because his rice crop was totally destroyed just when he was getting ready to harvest it. He was already under a huge debt trap and was beaming about a good crop when the thunder struck a few days back. There are only two types of people who actually know what uncertainty is, one a soldier and then the farmer. The other day someone from an NGO came to our village and started lecturing me on why I should allow my child to study in a school. Why should I when teachers there spit on walls and read newspapers while the students sleep? Why should I when the only thing my child learns is how to use expletives and speak rudely? I would rather teach him how to plow the fields and earn some money for the family than allow him to go to the school where even Maa Saraswati would hate to exist!!

People don't touch me and neither am I allowed to touch them. The collector the other day came to our village and washed his hands after getting to know that he shook hands with me. The same day I attended the funeral of my friend's daughter who committed suicide shortly after delivering a cup of Tea to the room where the collector was staying put. Her father didn't raise a hue and cry as he received the due payment. Disgusting right. But I would prefer to be blunt than be diplomatic or politically correct. Grandmothers here are experts in killing off female infants. Luckily I don't have a daughter and I profusely thank God for saving me the wrath of the society around me, though I would have loved to have a daughter which I had always dreamt of. I still remember the day when Kiran Bedi had once come to our village, delivered an excellent inspiring speech and had shown us how to live amidst despair. Though short lived it was, she is one heck of a gritty woman. My wife has to sometime beg for potable water. We bathe not more than 6 times in a month. Monsoon is the only season when we manage to drink lots of water and bathe daily.

Bollywood is a luxury for us and we don't encourage our children watching romance and love in movies. Love is taboo for us and those who dare to venture in that territory meet nothing but death. The only thing that is efficient in our village is the 'Khap' that delivers the death sentence for lovers so efficiently that it could easily put all the legal courts in our country to shame. Cricket is the only game that children manage to play in my village.

'Ok, Ok bhai, I am just winding off!!'. The problems me and my community are facing are so many that I have already reached the word limit that Mr Taureansandy had set for me. So before I go back into oblivion, I sincerely thank the blogger for giving me this chance to put forth what I thought was best for all of you to know. Over these years, I have mastered the art of appealing and begging for it has helped me survive. So, its nothing new when I again appeal to all the bright minds of this country to not be sympathetic to our problems but instead show some empathy towards us. We don't expect any financial assistance from you all for we know EMPATHY is a force that would drive you to ACTION. On this parting note, I leave for my wife would be worried about my whereabouts. Well, we do have a cell phone at home but she doesn't know how to operate it :)

'aam aadmi'

Disclaimer: The views stated above are that of the author's and there is no intention whatsoever of hurting any sentiments.