Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Sab Bandh...

On 5th July, the opposition called for a Nationwide Bandh (Bharat Bandh) to protest against the soaring price rise of fuel and commodities. We also got off from our offices. But our companies were not shut down because they (or we) were supporting the protest but for security reasons. I have not seen any such protest going peaceful. Every time there has to be violence, and the blame game by top party people in some news room. Ruling party supporting its move and opposition party crying out against the violence by police on the "silent" protesters.

We, the sufferers, on behalf of whom these parties call nationwide bandhs and other protests, never asked them to torch public buses, abuse anyone on road, throw stones on public buildings, harass the shopkeepers and dismantle their shops, which they might have set up after pumping in their investments of life time. But we are always the part of these successful bandhs. Read in today's newspaper that wedding of a girl was attended by only handful of people in Pune because they chose to remain indoors instead of attending the wedding and facing any untoward incident which might take place. It must have been the dream of both the families that the wedding should be attended by all their near and dear ones and they might have put in lot of money but thanks to this forced protest, all the arrangements looked like a sheer wastage of money.

I am not supporting the price rise. I am not saying that opposition should not protest. I am not saying that I am okay with this price rise. I am not sad that I got a day off from the office. But the protest could have been peaceful. Let the corporates come forward and close their operations in support of the cause rather than citing the security reasons. I am looking for one valid reason for torching the buses and other vehicles. They threw stones on the government offices. Fine, currently these offices are held by those against whom you are protesting but the same offices would be used by this opposition once they get the power. Even if they do not use the same offices, but it was not built for personal use by personal money. The money used to build those buildings came from us. And I cannot find any participation from the civilians. Those who comes out on road are attacked either by the police or the protesters, who are the party workers. If the bandh/protest is held for our benefit, then why are we attacked? Why do we fear to go out on the road during that time?

First let the politicians decide over who is going to get the ultimate benefit out of such protests- their party or us, the civilians of India? Next, decide if the protests have to be peaceful or violent. If peaceful, then make sure that you pass strict orders to your own party workers that anyone involved in violent activity would be punished (and actually punish them), rather than, announcing a peaceful protest in front of media and at the same time instructing their own workers to initiate violence and then take sympathy in newsroom discussions that their workers were peaceful but the police dragged them like dogs. Dear ministers, we also know who was dragging whom and why. But whatever anyone says, the bandhs and protests are held not in our interest but as a deep rooted conspiracy by the opposition parties against the ruling parties. We are and we will always be at loss.

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