Saturday, June 6, 2009

The ‘WE’ Day

“Time to act”. This was the caption for an article I read, recently in a news paper that talked about the bond between us and our environment. It started with a very clear message that there had been enough awareness programmes done and at least now, WE the people have to really start doing something for making ourselves and the next generations live.

So many decades passed by!
So many leaders the world has witnessed!
So many ‘varieties ‘of human beings the universe has supported!
So many bills, laws and rules have been executed!
Nonetheless, the individual contribution is very negligible comparatively.

I think for the past nearly half a century, the tide of eco-consciousness has struck the human brains gradually, so are the awareness programmes and are the growth of activists. But to a parallel, WE can see the growth of human population. It is obviously an individual’s effort on how to make things that cause harm to the environment, subtle down from its intensity or even to stop using or consuming them. I believe the extent of awareness, the severity of consciousness and integrity towards surroundings are still beyond what is required to ultimately say a very big bye to the damaging hazardous happenings.

Let me put it in this way.
On account of completion of 37 years after UN has decided to celebrate something for earth and environment on 5th June 1972 at Stockholm conference, I was thinking of this:
According to me, few things when WE consider, may probably lead to a better tomorrow, hmmm, sequencing some, which may make the nature, extinct soon.

‘the thing’ number one: cranky plastics
I saw it in a newspaper. An image of a group of activists, holding placards and badges to say ‘No to Plastics’ in the name of environment awareness. Ironically, the badges laminated in plastic pouches and the banners in acrylic or plastic sheets.
Another incident made me feel ashamed but with a humor. A scene from a tamil movie: A guy gets ‘prasadam’ from a temple entrance. The second guy who accompanies him finds the prasadam in a small plastic cup, sighs and says ‘garpappaiya thavira maththa ellam plasticthaan…’ (“except the uterus (bag) all other bags are plastic”) Very much to think, in that simple sentence.
At this early 30s, when I look back my childhood days, I could compare the containers available by then, from petty shops to all ‘shopkadai’s (big provisional / departmental stores). They actually have had paper folds to contain the anything you buy. If it’s some sticky stuff – like sweet halwa, go for banana leaves. Wow, the good olden days had really amazing and wonderful options. But the future of my childhood had - has these pathetic situations.

‘the thing’ number two: creepy temperature changes
Every year, for almost last fifteen years, there has been a very damn gradual noticeable change in the way the nature treats us. Sometimes it freezes us and sometimes it fries us. Living beings are dying. Oh my, do the people regret for what they have done to the Mother Nature. Water and Fire. Deer and Lion. Alaska and Sahara. X and Y. Everything were in a consummate balance in which the Homo sapiens were in and that is it!
Massive massacres executed by the so called intelligent intellectual beings that possess six senses, as WE proudly refer to. But today a bountiful of awareness from somewhere intruded(?) the sixth sense(s) after making very creative advents to the nature, which has already been made fragile, cracked and even shattered. Alas, go; do good, for something bad that have been done.

‘the thing’ number three: filthy garbage disposals
It is waste. But how good are WE, as care takers in terms of disposing them. A statistics of UN says that 75% of everyday solid waste of an average family can be recycled but actually it happens only for 25%. This 25% is only for countries those have an all-time; full-fledged recycling system for almost all sorts of materials WE use every day. That means, imagine the quantity that is actually becoming mass pile somewhere to pollute the land primarily and move on to more. Coming back to the same, WE need to have more worries on this as well, unlike how WE skip like anything else.
WE go out in a bus or train, WE do think that outside the window is a whole large big open trash where, whatever WE want to throw WE can and make it untidy. WE walk on the road, have some toffee and throw the wrapper on the road, because WE have a large open dust bin waiting for us everywhere. WE spit. WE piss. WE shit and what not WE do in our environment. End of the day, pay for MBBS / MS / MD / blah blah because WE now contain RNA or even H1N1.

‘the thing’ number four: freaky animal slaughters
The more the carbon emitted to the environment, the more the ozone depletion so is for more UV rays which, WE know, causes so many health disorders for WE who least bothered and have a ‘whatever happens to next door’ attitude. Animal slaughter houses not only grow the cruelty but also aggravate global warming by supplying the cadavers(?!!?) to animal food industries, which emit alarming amount of carbon. Highly cautious and of course perilous occurrences. How efficient if WE go for veg? Really WE can contribute a lot for eco. There is always a debate between the v’s and n.v’s when former saying I hate killing animals to eat and latter saying even you kill plants to eat. I usually wonder, what do WE really feel, when WE eat those carcasses? Again some recent researches have found that some vegetables like tomatoes really suffer a lot when WE cut them for cooking. But definitely not like what happens to poor KFC Chickens. Some report says there is little more than six percentage are vegetarians in the whole world. That means approx. 400 million are vegetarians. The remaining 6 billion are Non’s, who make the industry running for carbon hike and ozone dip.

‘the thing’ number five: stinky Pollutions
Being part of above four, still it plays its own dignified roles in various forms. WE raise our accelerator of our vehicles or enjoy loud music or WE dig and dump something as unwanted, WE show a very exclusive contribution from us to this. When WE wash our hands with soap or clean our clothes or utensils, the water goes unnoticed – I mean unrecycled.
If WE can’t find innovative ideas that help us in implementing whatever WE learnt about pollution, still, with what WE have, WE can eventually bring ourselves to some point where WE can actually contribute a lot good towards this. Some examples: Vehicle pooling, replacing unnoticed leaky water taps, reduce / avoid the use of CFC refrigerators, replacing tungsten with CFLs and more. Failing with which WE see resulting in contaminated water, toxicated breathing air, untidy garbage crowded path to walk, sound surround to live with, unbearable atmosphere.

What I mentioned above are just a little sampled thoughts of whatever has been prevailing around my mind which am very sure that is there with every individual who may not be giving priority to so many things that really cause our present world sinking and a future world, hoping to exist, to witness a banana or a cow, only as extinct creations by nature or by 'god' for the believers.


Monday, June 1, 2009

Angels and Demons

Nope, never and surely not the Tom hanks’ stuff!
Eight months plus- a period, perhaps during when I was halted to swing in to burst out things for which I can never do anything alone but with support, to see a 100% positive and pleasing results.. No, this doesn’t mean that my anterior pituitary is malfunctioning, neither non-functioning. It’s all just because the priorities I have given were not so self-invoking to explode in this uniform resource location.

The days went on after the last September. Like what happens with us, when somebody whom we know leaves this real world… happened to me as well. The thoughts about the core of my previous blog, gradually moved on to a phase ‘not-so-frequent’ and probably will go even more diluted as the incumbent moves to top and usually we do not regret for that and that is what is called ‘nature’ in this context. Nevertheless, something else that keeps on striking my mind ever since I realized the immense suffering of which is part of the so called developing nations.

I think it was a decade and a half ago, when I started understanding the probable trauma a child could undergo and trying to withstand when he/she has to work for the family at a very young age. Yes, the popular term ‘child-labour’ was not so obvious for me before and by then, but as I grew up, thanks to the news, articles etc., on the happenings and effects, the ignorance of such sufferings got uprooted from my inside.

I should acknowledge my family, relatives and friends primarily, probably, to develop a very intimate affection towards children since I was a child (?!!) I think that might be a reason to start analyzing the above mentioned. One of my friends used to say “The very big, worst and only problem a child has is… it cannot be a child always and it will grow up”. That’s the very feel-bad-factor, indeed?! An absolute true thing is that a child cannot be as a child ever. So why people look for labourers in the form of children?

The answer may lead to ‘poverty and illiteracy’ for a country like India. It is true that it is not only the contribution by the people who employ children but also by the children themselves and their families too. Understanding this bottom line, the Indian government has setup a system that starts from Gurupadswamy committee and moving on through Child Labour (Prohibition & Regulation) Act and adding with a National Policy on Child Labour, all of which contain the usual and standard government format of information delivery, as we can read and understand.

But, how effectively it has been implemented? It may sound like, perhaps once again, blaming the government. Notwithstanding the implementation of laws and acts, as the government’s research and analysis explains or states that it is very difficult to eradicate it completely because of the basic reasons, but how effectively various alternatives can be made, for example building schools for providing education, in the regions where the problem is in extreme condition. The papers add on with a list of hazardous occupations and processes in which a child’s entry as a labourer is completely banned (more on Child Labour, Child Labour in India). I think we can even add for the kids who are used for Fashion show ramp walk too in this list. Read this: Lakme Fashion Week

We may ask; So what? As common men, what else we can do to protect a child from such conditions? At times it is very difficult to skip ‘Social darwinism’ but may be altered as ‘artificial-selection’.

Couple of considerations I could think of:
1. Why don’t we avoid buying things from such children? (if everybody does it - we may indirectly develop an intention to steal things if it cannot be legally obtained)
2. Why don’t we stop going to hotels/ restaurants/ shops, where children are employed? (if everybody does it - we may end up in aggravating poverty, because of loss of job).

Beyond this if we still look more, we may get doubts like - How do we know for all products we use in everyday life does not involve child labour for which we can again easily point to government as is the case : a legal measure / law / rule should be implemented to print that info on the pack after verification.

Then what? Probable suggestions:
1. Primarily try to have empathy more than the natural sympathy and try to trigger the same in others too
2. General awareness through word of mouth - spread the message to near and dear
3. More intensive awareness programmes either self-initiative or through service organizations
4. Violation of rules (the rule base says: employee’s minimum age 14)may be informed to the government officials (dial toll free : 1098)
a. Info by Times of India
b. Info by Karmayog
5. If solely possible, adopt the alternatives (it is very clear, not adoption of the child) for the child like providing education, food, clothes etc.; else join hands with more people, again through existing NGO services or form a group of people through which things can happen legally and smoothly - of course lots of efforts to be initiated for the latter

Though our independent India’s first prime minister officially and publically made his birthday as children’s day, still we are witnessing child abuses and ill treatments in random

Though the laws have been legally floated for three decades, it is only a very meager improvement in terms of what government ‘expects’ and what the children want

Though sometimes we adults act as demons for the cute little angels, the angels are always angels.

Whatever we could do, will ultimately be made possible in India, only through the couple of ministries - Ministry of Labour and employment; Women and Child Development. Let us wait to see, how the new Cabinet Minister and MoS are going to react and respond to this issue.
Mallikarjun Kharge - Cabinet Minister: Ministry of Labour and Employment

Harish Rawat - Minister of State: Ministry of Labour and Employment

Krishna Tirath - Minister of State: Ministry of Women and Child Development

Let us look forward positively.

At this juncture, I remember a quote by Rabindranath Tagore
“Every child comes with the message that God is not yet discouraged of humanity.”

Monday, September 22, 2008

Stress, strain and slaughter?

Yes, I have had lot of things to burst out in my blog at so many occasions which ultimately I did not, for almost a year and of course still the things haven’t been settled down. But finally have decided and drove in to key in, just because of all that made the last weekend very sad. It was a very unfortunate weekend for all of us in our work place that we had lost one of our children.

The loss is because of depression? stress? nervous breakdown? I know the child for more than a year now. She was in her second year of her course, but since she joined our place in 2007, she used to share a lot of things with some of us, which made me to think about the way how children like her are being brought up in a speed and mechanical world with nobody to take-care and most importantly no body to listen to.

I am not able to figure out one thing in this society that is it so mandatory that one has to always run behind something that lay golden eggs, something that generates wealth and money? It was a very shock for me when I came to experience this for the first time in my life, years back. But after moving to this capital metro-city, I started facing more and more people of the category and I am still not able to keep them under the human(e) beings.

Where are we now?
What are we doing?
Do we really know what happens around us?
Do we really think about others around us?
Do we, at least, have a room to listen to others?

I have been reading and hearing and listening for so many years that any human being’s, any individual’s nature and characters, start and develop as she/he grow up with her/her parents and then the society. But how many parents do remember that they have kids at home? It has become no uncommon that majority of metro parents and non-metros as well, started focusing their interests towards the five-letter mantra ‘money’, but at the cost of their kids’ lives.

This never sounds pleasing for me, neither for many of the people whom I know, because we all have had the care during our childhood. But the kid, whom I was mentioning in the beginning, was not lucky enough to have the same. As a person who knows her, I can say that she was very much creative, punctual, active, dedicated, enthusiastic and involved. Always with a peppy smile, shaking head very strongly responding for discussions and matured gestures , like how any other who knows her, feel, she is still roaming around somewhere here, I feel.

“What’s the big deal in not having food for the whole day.. I have lots of works to do, so let me skip food…”, and the day ended up, sweeping off her life. Yes, the saturday was a not a usual Saturday for her. She had works to do, had she skipped her breakfast and lunch and evening had a kind of dizzy and then food. It seems in her granny’s house, she went inside the kitchen and had the panic-attack, as how she usually refers, bit more severely but could come out and what they say, she got fits.
Her granny took her to a clinic nearby and the doctor initially guessed that it was something could be cured, but when she had difficulty in breathing the doctor set up the ventilator, but still her condition worsened. The kid was then taken to another hospital where she was declared, brought dead. The saturday evening was the last evening she was alive. The reason said was, too much of stress or depression caused the nervous breakdown in turn the tensed mind and body which was in a big hype that caused the fits, then etcetera!

To some extent I can understand the feeling of her friends of the same age-group who are just in their late teens, who were crying, weeping, sobbing and some howling and what else could have been done? Her very intimate friends were even badly experiencing the situation. The final rites were done and the kid was taken to the crematorium.

I could find her friends were the most affected. Perhaps like,
“It’s my friend out there lying down dead, with whom I was chatting yesterday morning.”
“I am not able to believe this unexpected sudden demise”
“I feel like she is sleeping”
“Will you, m...... dear, wake up with that same peppy smile again”
and more that can’t be expressed with just few words.

The loneliness has surrounded her for more than 15 years? It looks like that's what claimed her life for nothing but only leaving the grieving friends around. Who else are making their kids to suffer the same? Must be everywhere around.. is it just because of and by the society? Why aren’t we thinking from a baby's perspective / a teenager’s perspective or others so? Are all the parents satisfied and happy enough after gaining the five-letter mantra? Never, because the greed never dies, but people will. This is what the generators want, doesn’t it? But dear parents, you are creating just the depression in children’s minds in turn the stress and this is not what your children want from you but only love, care and affection.

Money at the cost of life! Nobody can justify this forever because that’s the fact, and parents and whoever, please do not let others to undergo any sort of mental turmoil because our mind and body are so precious, made ready naturally in such a way that only a peaceful living can keep both good. For the believers, god has given us these and we need to take care of ourselves, so the others as well and that’s why the human(e) race is made up for.

The question still lies beneath, how many budding young and creative brains are we going to lose while in search of the same five-letter?

At this point I remember, in a recent television interview, a psychiatrist was pointing out something very important to all parents - "Its very very important to listen to your children rather than you talk to them!!". Of course, it's very fact that, IT WILL ALWAYS BE GOOD IF WE ARE, THE BEST LISTENERS!

Let us pray the almighty, for her soul to rest in peace.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Love, Live : Society

Long Time No Key.
I did, at first, want to have an excuse from myself, for this ‘no entry’ in the blog but have decided to key in rather than getting an excuse.
I am a regular reader of ‘O’ Pakkangal, ‘Arinthum Ariyamalum’ (both by Mr.Gnani -pron. ‘ngyani’) and ‘Konjam amutham konjam visham’ (by Jakki Vasudev) in the weekly magazine Ananda vikatan. A couple of weeks back, coincidentally, the articles talked about the rare natural system of human being with neither of sexes or may be both. We have terms like 'transgender' or ‘eunuch’ to refer, but the text showed, little more in to reality, from the time of conception in the womb - to birth - to growing up in the society. I came to know and realize more on the way the physical and mental development, understanding of self and the society, understanding by the society etc.,

I have seen many such people, in bazaars, trains etc., with a typical style of asking for money. Never had it moved deeply in my mind, neither terrified. But, believe it, I did have sympathy at times when people around me made fun on them or comparing someone look-alike with such people in some negative context. Even in many movies, for comedy track, the so-called ‘creators’ take these people, as a chance to project the 'creators creativity' in movies (eg., a popular tamil movie song ‘kodona kozhi koovura velae… raasathi rasan vaarandi pulla…)

What kind of feel do we have on them, when they are part of ourselves?
Why do we separately categorize them and secluding them from the big mass?
What would have made the big mass to have a move towards something where they are now?

I am absolutely helpless on finding answers for all above but I can understand the fact that the categorized are not to be like, but to be understood as ourselves, as what Mr.Gnani has written, that every person has both the sexes in him/her. As medically proved, the natural process need to worry about only deciding between XX or XY and to increase testosterone or progesterone, as Gnani writes, but sometimes when the worry is not sorted out before the stipulated period ends, the result will not have any one specific sex.

What I read is very fact which is clearly and comfortably forgotten by us or probably do not want to get exposed to such facts, instead, we do spend time in searching terms like ‘Ali’ or ‘Ombothu’ to make fun on them and continue doing so many possible things against them. Struggling in such a big society, very few people, positively achieved peaks in their life (for which the society let them to get so) like the Madhya Pradeshi MLA Shabnam Mausi.

The most hurting thing about the way they are treated, according to me, is making them to spend the life very unnaturally by having few of them in our society as SEX WORKERS. I expect ourselves, to recognize them – to treat them – to make them part of ourselves in each and every activity we have, in all legal, natural and possible ways.