by Dr. Madhav Prabhu
Valentine’s day is like a wonderful day for everyone, for those in love, it’s an opportunity to express your feelings, for those who oppose this expression it’s a day out protesting it and for those opening their shops it brings great sales.
The pink, purple hearts which actually look nothing like a heart are readily seen in the nook and corner of the city. The guys and gals are dressed their best in the colleges and ours nice to see a small blush on their faces. Somehow the idea kid Valentine itself has caught on everyone’s imagination.
You can love it, you can protest it, you can hate it but you can ignore it anymore. What’s most pointed and can be seen by anyone not blinded by love is that, your feelings or rather the release of hormones are highly commercialized today.
For example today you can express your hormones as chocolate, teddy bears, roses and so on, I don’t exactly know which one indicates what and why it is only these objects. But certainly, we don’t mind these guys doing business unless to satisfy my Swadeshi friends it is not made in China.
But that’s not what’s bothering us and that’s not why Belagavi is searching for a Valentine. We need someone desperately, someone to take care of us.
I will tell you who needs a Valentine here, Let’s start with the Elderly in the city.
Economic disparities, health issues have marred the living elderly for a long time. It’s difficult to live a life on redundant shrinking budgets which depend on pensions. Living alone in the city has become dangerous with murders gaining angry now and then. A single health-related event and with no insurance there is nothing to pay. Every home has all NRI son who has plenty of money but can’t give time to his parents. Sadly the elderly are in no position to spend and all they need is time and attention. Forced to suffer or go to an overcrowded old age home life is not very romantic. Suicides in elderly couples this year shows exactly this. It’s these elderly of Belagavi who are dying to have Valentine in their life. Someone who will love them, care for them and comfort them in that phase of life when all they med is a little attention.
The second group I can think of is the future of the country the young college-goers. Growing up in a competitive world where you are judged not by your character or qualities but by the marks you obtain in your exams is not easy. Growing up to the expectation of your parents is not easy. Satisfying every unfulfilled dream of your parents is not easy. Growing up in nuclear families, sometimes with single parents is not easy. Measuring up to your peers, showing off your brands is not easy. The parents think all that the children need is a pouch full of pocket money but in reality, all that they need is some time and attention, someone to tell that its ok to fail, its ok to not wear a brand, it’s ok not to have a job. They desperately need a Valentine just to love them unconditionally, to understand them to give them time, to recognize their hidden talent, to stop them from hanging themselves and putting themselves under the rail tracks, they desperately need a Valentine.
Another group, the Women of Belagavi. Living as a single working lady is miserable nowadays. Targeted by goons, sometimes their own families and relatives and in many cases the law itself it’s horrible for a working mom. The ever-rising prices, shrinking salaries, lack of social support make raising your own kids impossible, literally pushing women to drown their kids and themselves. Growing violence against women, female foeticide there is no end to it. It is these sisters or can we say good friends who need a Valentine.
Someone to tell them that’s outs ok to not have a male partner, to tell them that it is ok to wear what they are comfortable in, to tell them that they can walk at any hour of the day and yet not be teased or molested. To tell them that society holds every mother in high regards, to give them the respect and the attention they deserve. They desperately need a Valentine.
The city as a whole needs a Valentine, an inspirational leader who is not a politician, who will recognize the growing needs of a smart city. A leader who will try to heal the ones suffering and not try to convert their suffering into an opportunity to pick easy votes. A leader who will bring prosperity to the city rather than his private coffers. The city desperately needs a Valentine to say that its ok to speak in any language, it’s ok to celebrate and preserve your right to think and speak freely. The city and its populace are desperately in search of one such Valentine.
About the Author: Dr. Madhav Prabhu M.B.B.S, M.D (General Medicine) is Consultant in KLE’s Dr. Prabhakar Kore Hospital, Belagavi