16
Dec
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Padhāro Mārè Dès 2

“The real meditation is … the meditation on one’s identity. Ah, voilà une chose!! You try it. You try finding out why you’re you and not somebody else. And who in the blazes are you anyhow? Ah, voilà une chose!” – Ezra Pound

Never considered or intended a sequel and had secretly admired Fauzia’s ability to pen a remarkable continuation.

I deliberated for days and paid no attention to the lure but there was no way out. I have succumbed!

*

Ever wondered what it feels like when you are treated as a second-class citizen in your own country by your own countrymen in front of people of other nationalities?

It is worse than being in a durbar.

It is perhaps more humiliating than being tarred and paraded naked on the streets.

But then, I was in Rajasthan, where I was denied entry into an exclusive shop and even refused the use of the auto-rickshaws parked opposite a heritage hotel because I was an Indian – and told so – probably the only time when my cast, creed, religion and nativity were not asked for.

And here I was lamenting the lack of an Indian identity!

Now before I ruffle any more fine hair, as it were, I would like to assure the few discerning readers that I may have, that I am not talking about all Rajasthani’s – but the attitude that I saw, felt and suffered in Rajasthan – as an Indian.

*

“Indian hai…dooseray kamere mein daal do”…this is what was being planned for me at a hotel during the season.

But then, I was in Rajasthan, where the sight of a tourist (read foreigner) and the chance of an easy buck will make its denizen sell his own family!

To promote the history and culture of one’s State is fine, but to hawk it at the cost of one’s pride and self-esteem is despicable. But then, this was also Rajasthan where killers of Blackbuck were treated with honour inside police stations and still remain free and have political patronage.

The sad part is that children are growing-up with this belief.

Proud to be an Indian – but where?

 


1 Response to “Padhāro Mārè Dès 2”


  1. 1 meghana
    January 19, 2011 at 5:00 pm

    oh yes!! Rajasthan …the land of hospitality…and yes i have had really beautiful and memorable encounters myself…but then its that one stray incident that leaves you wondering…
    top floor of the city palace in udaipur…my bladder almost on the verge of bursting..looking around for a washroom i saw an old firang gentleman wiping his hands and looking relieved and asked him the way..he pointed behind him..where i saw to my astonishment the hindustani darbaan putting the royal lock back in place…and i requested him to let it be because i needed to use the washroom desperately…but NO…I was guided to the ground floor because the firang had an emergency…and we indians (specially women) are never supposed to experience any emergency?..we have been trained right from our youth to hold on…


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