Can I Make You Think?

indiff.jpgEight o’clock in the morning, I am standing on the terrace of my house, sipping my morning tea. Looking at the rising sun – symbolic of a new day, new zeal, new energy and new life. The morning breeze is gently touching my face and the flick of hair on my cheek. I feel the warmth of my tea mug, so comforting. I feel content seeing the state of things around me. My father comes with a newspaper in his hand and reads out that the accused in the Jessica Lal murder case has been acquitted by the court. That comes as a shock and is a complete contrast to the serene and rosy picture I had just envisioned. A criminal like that, acquitted?

A cold blooded murderer allowed to go scot-free. Unrest engulfs my mind. Various disturbing thoughts battle with the pleasant ones I had just felt. I look at the sun. It’s quite up in the sky now. No more do the rays seem soothing. The pleasant morning breeze has also stopped blowing. The comforting warmth of the tea mug has gone. Now the rays hit me hard, piercing through my body as if searching for traces of some hard solid intensity and humanitarian soul. The rising temperature raises the temperature of my thoughts and I am filled with an unknown force, an unseen intensity. With tightened nerves and clinched fists, I contemplate deeply on what I had just heard. Am I that helpless, that a murderer will be let loose on the society in which I live and I won’t be able to prevent it?

With these thoughts in mind, I come to my college, feeling like a boiling pot of water. I seek a way to release myself of the burden on my conscience by speaking to my friends. I presume that if an incident as gruesome as this can render my whole interlocutor unrest, it will do the same to my friends and then, combining the energies of my friends and mine, I can start a collective revolution. I tell them about the brutal murder and the unjust verdict. And then wait for an energized and intensified reaction. But what do I hear? They brush away the need for some action by simply stating that this is what happens and we can’t do anything about it. In contrast to my reaction and contrary to my expectations, it comes as a surprise. But I tell them that there is a lot we can do if only we rise, awaken and unite However, these statements coming from a radicalized person that I am, just receive a smile, sympathy for my amateur and impractical thoughts. And then they move on, unnerved, unperturbed. This gives impetus to a more powerful gush of thoughts in my mind.

A greater perturbance, a greater disturbance. What difference can I make without the support of my own people? What kind of a revolution do I plan to start without even affecting the seriously disinterested youth? And then I realize that my first step should be radicalizing friends of my own generation who have gone into a deep sleep. My friends brush away the issues related to politics and bureaucracy, because it is are dirty and corrupt. But they fail to realize that it is they who constitute the system and they for whom the bureaucracy works. If they form the base walls and bricks of the building of their own country’s political structure, then the loopholes, the voids, the corruption, the dirt is also a by-product of their actions. The working of the system very much affects them. It exerts an impact on either our humanitarian instincts, that force us to stand up against injustice done, or to our aware self, that stops us from waiting for an injustice to happen and makes us rational enough to realize the immediate concern of things and spread awareness about it.

The passive youth needs to recognize their strength and power that can overcome each impediment, each problem and each tension. We can break through the shackles of the bureaucratic setup, the patriarchal society, the gender biases and all such hindrances once we realize that it is our thoughts that matter. It is that volcano which is lying dormant in our minds that needs to become active. The youth is like a frozen river. A sheet of ice has formed over and benumbed their sensitivities. But someone needs to break it to make their thoughts active once again. I want to make the youth realize that instead of remaining ignorant and quiet, and taking the affairs to a precarious stage, we should arise and speak up so that we can make a positive difference. The need is to ignite their minds to start thinking and realizing the seriousness of things. To provide that spark which is needed to make them think.

Vibhuti Rathore