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‘Independence? I think not.’ by Durva Bhatt

August 6, 2014

‘Independence? I think not.’

Bald Eagle

 Independence. This mere word holds a whole lot of weight. Constitutionally, independence means a condition of a nation, country, or state in which its residents and population, or some portion thereof, exercise self-government. In layman’s terms, it is freedom. With nothing bounding you and holding you from groveling, you are free to soar high up in the sky.

A country cannot be independent till it can freely express its opinion and act based on its national and strategic interests. Constitutionally, we are independent. But let us a give a second thought to it and ask ourselves that after 67 years of independence, are we really independent?

Well, I don’t think so. And many people may even agree with this fact. Instead of the British bounding us, we are tied up by the multi-national organizations. Why do we prefer clothes from Nike instead of our own industries? Why do we prefer English pop songs instead of the songs made in our own countries? Why do we prefer watching Hollywood movies rather than Bollywood movies?

The answer is quite simple. We are so blinded by the western culture, that we forget our cultures, our traditions and our values. We want to be at par with them. We don’t care if it is affecting our cottage industries just like it did a century back. We don’t care if our traditions are ruined by western traditions.

In India, a person is loved if he speaks English. We wouldn’t even care if he can’t speak our national language. And we condemn him if his English is poor. We must be a self-sustaining nation with least dependence on foreign culture, money, power and influence.

Let us start with culture – are we not eager to shed our “Ego and Parampara” and embrace Americanism for money and status symbol? Let us take power – did we not withdraw from Kashmir border on insistence of America? Did we not settle in Kargil and not cross the LOC because of what the super powers will do in United Nation? Are we not compromising with China to keep America and Pakistan in check? 

Let us take money – isn’t our national reserve dependent on how much foreign money comes through foreign institutional investments? The most astonishing thing was the fact that to earn a Ph.D. in Sanskrit, an Indian language, we have to go to Chicago. When a foreign country can love our Indian culture and language, why can’t we be proud of it?

If our country is so keen on changing itself just like the western countries, why is homophobia still prevalent in the country? Why do we avoid the LGBT community like plague?

If we want to personalize the western culture, why don’t we start with opening our narrow minds? Why don’t we put ourselves in their shoes and realize how pressurized they feel?

More than a century ago, India was being ruined by force. But now, we are ruining India by our own will.

We proudly claim that we are independent from a foreign rule but we are still not free from jealousy, intolerance and hatred towards our fellow countrymen. We are full of bitterness towards other religions, traditions and always try to suppress the growth of the other. We are tied in shackles of terrorism, false ideologies, corruption, communal violence, and class – caste distinctions and so on. We tend to forget that independence is not only living freely but also allowing others to live freely.

We always think about changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself. I think it’s about time we learn to appreciate and redeem our glorious past.

Copyright 2014 Durva Bhatt

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  1. Best part of this post- “We proudly claim that we are independent from a foreign rule but we are still not free from jealousy, intolerance and hatred towards our fellow countrymen…..till conclusion.
    Kudos to you for this.
    ” Be the change that you wish to see in the world”.
    Good Wishes.

  2. Reblogged this on Have We Had Help? and commented:
    A frank view of India today, through the eyes of one Indian citizen.

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