Why I am ANGRY!

Over the last 48 hours, I have been glued to my television set. I have never watched so much news before. When you are living abroad, everything is much more painful.

When I first heard of the news of indiscriminate firing at the Taj, I did not bother to keep track of the sequence of events since I though it could be a crazy gunman. I only realised how serious the issue was once S was home and checked the news again. What started off as random firing soon turned out to be a full-fledged terrorist attack on the city of Mumbai.

After the blasts in Delhi and Assam a few months ago, I knew such news could not affect me anymore. I think Indians are tragically used to listening such news and have unfortunately made them part of their everyday lives. But what unwrapped in Mumbai was phenomenal. You saw terrorists who were not scared to show their faces, who came well prepared, who had the ammunition and food to survive for days and the most scariest part was how old the terrorists looked…they seemed so young but yet so fearless…hell-bent on bringing terror to the city.

I was deeply saddened when I learnt that the top cops of Mumbai, Mr. Hemanth Karkare, Mr Salaskar and Mr Kamte had tragically succumbed to terrorist bullets. It is such a loss! The BJP and it’s allies like who stated that Mr. Karkare was anti-national for his revelations on the Malegaon blasts paid the ultimate price trying to save people like you and me.

There were some heroic tales of hotel staff both at the Taj and the Trident and also of the Army Men, Commandos, RAF and the Police who tried to help the guests whilst stuck at the hotel. Some of them sadly lost their lives and I hope their sacrifice won’t go in vain.

There are so many things I’d like to mention in this post…I feel like pouring my heart out…but it is just so difficult…hard to find the words. Mr. Krishna Kumar, VC of Taj group of hotels told us of how the GM of Taj Palace hotel helped rescue the guests only to find out later that his wife and two sons who were situated in one of the suites of the Taj were burnt alive. How can anyone come to terms with such loss. His grief is unimaginable. This is just one of the horrific tales that has come out of the crisis..there are many more.

I do not trust our politicians to resolve the crisis. Infact, I’ve never trusted them in anything. It is only the will power of the common man of India that has brought us to where we are economically but it is he/she that suffers the most.

But how do we move forward from here? What can we do as the citizens of India. There is alot of anger. There could be anger towards a certain community or towards our neighbour. Personally, the only way I could see a better future for India is by introducing out-reach programmes for certain communities who feel alienated. There are few questions our politicos and Intelligence bureau need to answer. How did so many terrorists enter India? Why are our borders so porous? How did the terrorists know where to attack? How did they know every inch of the Taj Palace Hotel? If 9 terrorists have so far been killed and one has been held alive….where are the remaining? Are they still freely going around the city?

There are so many questions…but no answers from the authorities. Obviously, the ‘Mumbaiker’ (and also the ‘Indian’) is tired of listening to cliched terms like ‘the spirit of mumbai’ and the ‘resilience of the city’. Please don’t take us for granted. We don’t deserve this.

And if the MNS chief Mr. Raj Thackeray does happen to read my blog…Can I just clarify, that I am not a Mumbaiker…I am a Hyderabadi…but I feel the pain of the city…and pray for the affected. So please do not try to regionalise us. Mother India is already bleeding…Mother India deserves respect. If you can contribute positively…please do…otherwise keep out!

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A Woman Among Warlords

…..a Woman Among Warlords follows the campaign of a woman running in Afghanistan’s first democratic parliament election in more than 30 years. 27 year-old Malalai Joya, one of the country’s most famous (and controversial) women since 2003 challenged the power of warlords in national politics. Forced to live in hiding and surrounded by armed guards, Joya conducts her parliamentary campaign in the remote desert province of Farah, the heart of poverty in Afghanistan. Despite death threats and assassination attempts, Joya continues to meet with clan leaders, opium kings, and adolescent girls pressured to marry older men. Six years after a U.S.-led coalition overthrew the Taliban, WIDE ANGLE provides unique insight into the politics and culture of a nation almost ruined by war, still ruled by fear, but desperate for change. A Woman Among Warlords is the television version of the celebrated documentary Enemies of Happiness, a film by Danish director Eva Mulvad……

Pic Courtesy of http://www.telegraph.co.uk/arts/graphics

I watched this documentary on More4 couple of days ago and had been wanting to write about it. We came back after watching Mongol. It was 11 PM…our bedtime. I still had some last minute stuff to sort out when I switched on the tv. I put a reminder for this particular show and was glad I didn’t miss it. The documentary finished at 12.20 AM and both of us were wide awake and S usually dozes off by 10.

There were tears rolling down my eyes. We watched the documentary in awe of the woman, Malalai Joya. Often, we are not grateful for what we have and who we are and this documentary makes us realise just how blessed we are.

It’s true…when the going gets tough…only the tough get going and Malalai Joya is a fine example of this. She is all of 29 and dreams of a better future for her country. In a male-dominated society, she is fearless, strong and out-spoken. She is the voice of thousands of Afghani women who lead a life if desperation…in search of justice and hope. Inspite of innumerable death threats…she still fights for her and the rights of other Afghani women and children. 

I RECOMMEND EVERYONE TO WATCH THE DOCUMENTARY. NOT JUST WOMEN. IT’S AN INSPIRATIONAL STORY FOR ALL.