Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Yes, we can... Or can we?

Baba Gyani Triviani said:
"I agree with Barack Obama when he said 'Yes, we can change' - But I am still waiting for Indians to understand that 'Yes, we can change, we need change, we will change' - For knowing that we can change isn't important, but the will to change is..."

"Honesty is the best policy" is an old adage. "Rules are meant to be broken" is another old adage. But somehow we see that people like to follow the latter, more than the former. A lot of patriotic Indians may disagree with me in this article. However, my aim is not to get anyone worked up - rather, we need to understand some home truth, and analyse it for our own good.

Rules are seldom followed in India. If you don't believe me, stand at any traffic junction, and watch. Especially when the traffic policemen aren't around. We can see how people continue driving despite the red signal. Everyone is in a hurry. When people see the green turn to amber from a distance, the speed instead of decreasing, shoots up - "Yes, I can just about make it" Why? What is going to happen if we wait for a little longer? If it is some kind of an emergency, perhaps it is understandable. 99.9% of the times, it is just because we don't want to wait. Then there are those who find themselves waiting at a red signal. But the road for which the light is green is almost sparse. So, they decide to drive past the red signal, for they see no point in them being made to wait... And those who think the same but are not at the front, honk - blaring sounds, forcing the person in front of them to start driving - "Who are you waiting for buddy? There is nobody on the other road... Go go go". And if you are a rule-follower and don't want to move, then some of these considerate rule breakers will ask you to move a little to the side so that at least they can drive along.

Us not following traffic rules is only an example - a case in point. We somehow see that people don't follow most of the rules. We always want the easy way out. We feel that rules are for the rest of them, not applicable for us. Rules are for losers... for the geeky lot. We are elite, and we don't need to follow rules. Another example is in Kiran Bedi's show - Aap ki kacheri, where a man sells tea on his push cart, bribes the Municipality guys every month for allowing him to do business there. When she asked him if he knew that he could avail a license which would allow him to legally run the business, he said that he knew about it. He still didn't do that. He continued to bribe the Municipal people, who later took away his cart and broke his articles for delaying the "payment". This would not have happened if he had taken a license.

Some people in Bangalore are complaining about the Bangalore police disallowing pubs to be open beyond a certain time, saying that their "night-life" is being curbed. They feel that their rights are being suffocated. They don't understand that it is being done for their own good. If you want to party beyond certain time, do so - without alcohol. Listen to music, and dance. But no! They want to drink, for that's the best part. And after the party, they drive home in an inebriated state. And the roads are empty at that time of the day and the inebriated drivers tend to drive rashly (rather than fast) and become a risk for themselves and for others. They may argue that the chances of meeting with an accident is not high. But when they do, it will be horrible. And let's be practical - drunken driving and over speeding are the biggest reasons for accidents. They even go to the extent of abusing the police saying that they are not doing their job properly, and keep focussing on petty issues like this. One, prevention is better than cure. It's better to disallow late night partying, than get yourself with bandages in a hospital. And two, I am sure you won't be talking so lightly about the police, when you see how they lay down their lives

We need to change. We should all, each one of us today, take a solemn oath that we shall change. We shall all agree to follow the rules, and respect law. We should follow the rules, not for the sake of the rules, but for the fact that following rules makes us more conscious. Instead of shooting dirty looks at the airport security personnel who insist on checking, we should co-operate. Lest, a terrorist may throw a dirty look and coolly carry a weapon onto the craft. When we do this, we can then have the moral right to blame people who are lax - blame the politicians or whoever for not doing their jobs properly. Only then can we have the moral rights... Otherwise people can keeep blaming one another. For none of us will be perfect, and others can find flaws. We need to change, instead of trying to change the system as many try to do. Yes we know we can change, yes we can change. But knowing that is not enough. We should change, and change we shall all.

1 comment:

anup said...

hmmmmm.... talking about following rules and coopperating with the security people huh...proud pesitian you must be.....
any how... nice one dude... we all should be principled and follow wat is right...