Friday, October 23, 2009

2 States just don’t love each other!

In 2009, two Indian states (Punjab & Tamil Nadu) Chief Ministers raised their sons to the level of Deputy Chief Minister. It is not a surprise one, of course the people of these states have hugely wounded. Father marries his sons (no matter how old they are!). Son married none, at least yet. The people of these two states marry their votes once in five years to marry politicians each other!

It is utterly true to borrow Sauvik’s famous often saying of (now days) the ‘Chacha State’, of course he refers in quite different context.

Here the story goes something different. 2 States the story of my marriage is the new book by youth icon author Chetan Bhagat in India. A beautifully narrative (albeit imperfectly: in media he said it’s a true story but in the book it is written as fiction may be for personal reasons) of his love marriage, the key takeaway from this book is many but to be precise. He encourages intercommunity marriage by all means, of course the interstate marriages without any barrier like or a Free Trade Marriage (FTM). He asks the reader to ‘love India’ before loving their state or union territories where they are born. “…these stupid biases and discrimination are the reason our country is so screwed up. It’s Tamil first, Indian later. Punjabi first, Indian later...” He continues, we all marry “National anthem, national currency, etc..still won’t marry our children outside our state. How can this intolerance be good for our country?’

It is not just the parents moody restriction on their children but the mindset that square it doubly with a vested interest and foggy ideas of own-state, tradition, culture, this language or that language is rude, this states or that states is more superior or inferior etc which actually nobody produces out of a centralized planning.

The technology made huge breakthrough in human life in the last century, at last. It was possible to pursue these ideas with freedom to think beyond the earlier generation. Similarly, the change of crude mindset could unleash in huge way in a dynamic economy that dog is underway now in any case! Whether, it is ‘The State’ mindset or the citizen’s mindset. Alas, the former still believe that the population is a burden rather than ‘resource’ and the later has huge cultural nexus which has long way to go. But the price is already huge.

First when I came out of my village (from south India) and travelled for my study as well as to work in central and North India (even went Srinagar) wondered how vast this country is. Chetan concern is as genuine as any one can think “this country, cutting through the states…….these states make up our nation. These states also divide our nation. And in some cases, these states play havoc in our love lives.”

Chetan writes about the change in Indian society in way that is also an order which nobody intended like a centralized planning to make like this or that or forward or backward, left or right. It is quite revealing book. Impact of this book may be seen in the decades to come.

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