Posts Tagged ‘India’

How far does our knowledge of tigers in india go? I am sure none of us has ever asked ourselves this question…I am sure i hadn’t either…But how is it relevant, you may ask….to you or to me or to everyone else in the country. Why would it be of any significance to know anything beyond the answer to the question which we have responded to proudly for so many years – “Who is our national animal”…Answer – “Tiger”..and now let me do my work…

Unfortunately though, while we all were busy doing our work, the tigers for their part were begging to be given more attention…The number of tigers in India has reduced at such a fast pace in the past few years that it’s almost alarming to note that we are not bothered yet…The questions however also is, whether we should be bothered or not? The answer to this question is not as simple as answering a general knowledge query.

We are not bothered because we are not educated enough, not aware enough about the consequences of a diminishing tiger population, almost to the brink of extinction…Should we worry about losing this beautiful, magnificent animal for ever? Yes we should, and that too as soon as possible…because if we don’t the time is not far when your favourite general knowledge question would be rephrased to “Who was our national animal?”…and i wont sit back waiting for that to happen…

I had a very fruitful discussion with a friend yesterday on this topic, and on the new portal called “Saveourtigers.com” (do visit and pledge your support if you haven’t). This friend of mine has been involved in tiger census for sometime now and he did not sound very optimistic about the chances of the tiger’s survival in India for too long. In fact he said that the people involved in tiger conservation already feel that the battle is lost…

I am obviously not an expert at any of this…and to be very frank i have realized the importance of this issue only after visiting the site and reading about this initiative to save the tigers. But i would at the very least like to spread the word around…to make other people aware about the issue at hand and its seriousness.

I have also seen a few very speculative remarks about this initiative, about how the corporates are marketing their own interests in the name of conserving the tigers and so on…fair enough, and maybe true as well. We, the people, of this extremely democratic nation, are also extremely speculative by nature, and we just can’t help being that way, almost for everything. It’s almost a daily habit amongst most of us to assume that because someone has come out in support of something, there is a personal interest in it and hence why the hell should we bother.

Okay lets assume a small scenario – Assume that corporates, Bollywood stars and several other powerful people are getting involved in this initiative to further their own interests and also lets assume that none of them (extreme assumption), have any interest in the real cause. Should this in any way affect us?? Does this in any way mean that the cause is not important so lets not make ourselves aware about it, just because we “think” that the greedy people around us are out to take undue advantage of the scenario. I very humbly decline this thought process…Whether these people are out there to make a quick buck or gain popularity out of associating themselves with the tigers, the bottom line is that they made me aware, they made me think about the condition of tigers in the country, and they gave me a reason to blog about it, spread the word around and probably, just probably educate a few others about an important cause.

It’s important for all of us to stop complaining about things, to stop trying to find a fault with things around us, and to stop ignoring important issues in the name of pre conceived thoughts. Had we been more aware and taken a moment or two to study and realize the importance of saving tigers, i believe the situation wont have gone out of control.

Lastly, i would urge everyone to share the thought of being aware on the tigers issue at hand, and on all such issues that surround us, with as many people as you can. Sharing helps…and who knows…we may actually be able to make some difference. After all, every bit counts and it does not take much to care about something you feel strongly about!!

PS…Please visit the site http://www.saveourtigers.com to learn about ways to help the cause.

Swarg was feeling unusually bright today. Although there was never a problem with light in Swarg, but Surya devta was today trying hard to shine as much as possible, as if to prove a point to someone, as if he wanted something in return.

Swarg was also unusually chirpy today. Sardar Patel opened his eyes, reluctantly, as if wanting to go back to sleep. The unusual noise around him and the bright light was just not letting him stick to his bed. There were times when he thought to himself, whether there is even one corner in this area where he can sleep peacefully. Swarg, although the best place he had ever seen, was still a little too bright and shiny for him. The music in the air was peaceful, yet disturbing if you want to sleep.

Rubbing his eyes, he got up and peeked out of his window. There was quite a bit of activity happening around. He had not seen such a buzz before. In fact Chitragupt was seen running around, with a definite look of concern on his face. Sardar Patel wondered what the issue could be. Chitragupt was usually very balanced and not even the harshest of circumstances could make him flutter. Sardar Patel remembered, how professionally Chitragupt had handled the situation some years back when Hitler had launched a campaign, demanding an entry into Swarg on the grounds that people who have spent more than 20 years outside Swarg should be allowed a preferential entry. In-spite of the escalating situation around him, Chitragupt was able to diffuse it, and convince Hitler to return back.

What then could have made Chitragupt look so worried, Sardar Patel wondered. Having woken up completely, Sardar Patel switched his laptop on, wanting to check his Facebook page. The first thing he noticed was obviously a sad smiley on Chitragupt’s profile..”he must really be worried”. Moving down his profile, he noticed a few very suprising status updates. There were at least 9 to 10 status updates from various “devtaas” and “rakshasas” about demanding their own share of land in “Swarg” and “Nark”. “Where is all this coming from”, Sardar Patel thought to himself. Some of them had even resorted to fasting or “Aamaran anshan” as it reflected in their facebook statuses. A few of the “Rakshasas” has warned of grave consequences if they don’t get their share of “NarkLand”. Sardar Patel had never seen such an up surge in Facebook messages for a very long time. The last time it happened was when a poor old soul from the state of Uttar Pradesh was beaten up badly as he tried to enter a particular “un named”  zone in “Swarg Land”.

This was different though. People had been living in “Swarg Land” for millions of years, with peace and calm, and the “Swarg Land” administration had spent a considerable amount of time and effort in keeping it that way. This was new for them.

Sardar Patel saw Chitragupt approach him slowly; the worried look on his face was concerning. He came inside and sat beside the iron man. Chitragupt said “Sir, we need your help. You have been recommended as a consultant to handle this issue of separate lands because of your previous experience in uniting states into a solid, robust nation.” Sardal Patel looked amused, yet the pride in his eyes at the mention of a united India was evident. Years ago, he, along with some very capable administrators had been able to unite a fragmented country into one of the largest democracies on earth, and he was very proud of this.

CG: “Sir, would you be kind enough to help us through this…you must have seen the problem…on facebook”
SP: “Yes ofcourse..but i don’t fully understand..you will have to explain”
CG: ” Well sir, it all started with the great state of Andhra Pradesh…”
SP: “What…this started from India???”, he said…visibility dissapointed now.
CG: “Yes sir…unfortunately yes…”

Sardar Patel listened patiently as Chitragupt explained how some people in AP had created a lot of fuss about a separate state, and resorted to fasting and other means so that the government of India gives into their demands. Unfortunately for him, the government had eventually decided to look into the matter and this was enough incentive for everyone in Swarg and Nark to demand their own pieces of land.

Just as they started discussing the possible solutions to this issue, there was some activity on Chitragupt’s Facebook page. They noticed a wall to wall conversation between the prime minister of India and the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh.
CM: Are bhai sahab, sasriakal…humen bhi batwaara chahiye
PM: Hain behen ji…kya matlab?
CM: kam se kam 3 to honi chahiye…itna bada pradesh…nahi sambhalta
PM: wo to sabko pata hai…
CM: oye kya bola??
PM: nahi nahi behen ji….aise kaise…abhi ek problem to solve kar lein
CM: nonsense….yahan vote bank khatam ho raha hai…mera haathi delhi kaise pahunchega..jaldi kariye
PM: (sad smiley) dekhte hain behen ji…

This conversation got CG and SP extremely worried. The demand for separate states was spreading faster than H1N1…Sardar Patel was worried that his beloved country that was so beautifully united would be divided based on whimsical attitudes of a few people..while CG was worried about the consequences of not being able to satisfy everyone…he, afterall was considered the perfect administrator around this area.

Before CG could say a word, Sardar Patel got up and sought an immediate appointment with Lord Vishnu. “Chitragupt Ji”, Sardar Patel said, “I am sorry i wont be able to help you in this matter right now. I have to submit an application for re-birth. I have to go back and resolve this situation. They are going to divide my country back into small pieces. All the work that I and my team had put in would be wasted. I can’t see this mess. I have to go. I will come back and help you out.”

In the blink of an eye, Sardar Patel was in front of Lord Vishnu’s gates. To his immense surpise the queue out there was bigger than what he had expected. Apparently, people who were demanding their own pieces of land were already there, submitting applications at the rate of lightning. Lord Vishnu’s secretary gave him the re-birth application form and a token number. Looking at the token number, Sardar Patel realized that it would take quite a bit of time before he can get back to his country and resolve the situation…also there was no way he could leave the queue and go back to help Chitragupt in resolving his issue.  So he decided to stand there, in the queue, waiting to be re-born and to re-unite the country where every one seemed to want their own share of land…

While he stands, awaiting his turn, India will also have to wait…it will have to wait for someone who can push the concept of unification rather than of dis-oriented splitting of states. I can only hope that the day is not too far off, because if it is, the scenario is not a pretty one. Afterall, it does not take too much time for “Swarg” to turn into “Nark”…