by Sameer Majli
We are a strange community. Pregnant with complaints and expectations but reluctant to be part of the change that we seek for ourselves. Ask anyone to opine and a ceaseless flow of thoughts and grievances ensues. We just have so much to say and so much that we hope for.
The past few years have been teeming with individuals and organizations trying to reach out to people to seek their participation in the improvements in life as we know it in Belgaum. The appeals and efforts have been sincere and super genuine but the responses are not exactly something that we can be proud of. The “Clean Belgaum” campaign has been attempted by several NGOs and at times, even individuals but most of the rest have opted to be mute spectators rather than participants in the said indulgence.
In a city that has lakhs of residents and a noteworthy populace of the so called “Educated” and the “Intellectuals”, it is sad to see the frugal numbers at such rallies; all of which have been done for the good of the community as a whole. When one steps out to invite people to join, it is out of sheer concern for fellow Belgaumites but the response almost embraces the colloquial statement “Whose father, what goes”. Why is trash never considered a real nuisance until it really falls at my doorstep? Why is everything a matter of convenience rather than commitment?
The interesting response during these rallies is that of people standing around, seemingly almost bewildered and in stray instances even applauding the little deed but none ventures to join and pick up a couple of bits of trash. Everything just seems like another show that needs a few spectators and that’s all that seems to be accomplished.
In a city so full of people that it almost seems to be overflowing with pedestrians and vehicle riders, why do we just have about 20-30 individuals walking on a purposeful march. Why do we never muster enough strength and experience enough motivation to stretch beyond our routine and join hands for a cause?
The common logic would be that it has always been thus but then, isn’t this the cause for why it has always been thus? How long can be continue to while away our lives, surrendering to the comforts of a daily routine?
Civic sense, civic concern and civic discipline are paramount aspects and tell-tale signs of a progressive society that has intrinsic values and a culture to be proud of. We call ourselves a nation of great culture and tradition. While tradition is evident in the largesse of our festive indulgences, it is this mythical culture that seems to be lacking or even absent.
What we are and what we have accommodated as life, along with its anomalies is primarily an outcome of the same colloquial truth that has been stated for maybe decades if not centuries.
Whose father, what goes???!!!