FREEDOM WHAT, WHERE AND HOW? Part I

 

Month of August is a holy and sacred month in a calendar year for our Motherland-India that is Bharath. Yes freedom struggle for decades under the most effective and efficient leadership of our Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi we got freedom at midnight of !5th August 1957. The country developed so fast under he dynamic Prime Minister-ship of  Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, that we occupied respectable and venerable position  in the comity of nations. It was much to the jealousy of neighboring countries.  Not withstanding several hurdles, nation is making strides  that any patriotic and national minded Indian can be legitimately proud of.

But of late, the people have started to feel suffocated at certain developments and here in our ENVIUS THOUGHTS as a Sunday story, we shall view a play in four parts. The first is published today and three more parts will be posted in the coming weeks. Kindly read and respond. Thanks.

 

 

Location:  A solitary place in a park.

Scene: A person in eighties broods and talks a little aloud to himself.

Mr. Prakash Nandha: What a beautiful country; I am indeed blessed to be born in my Bharath. What a great culture and civilization, antiquity and erudition, epics and enlightening scriptures.  A great host of Saints and seers, poets and philosophers, Scientists and Mathematicians! Exemplary governance, laws and rules, principles and practices, ennobling restrictions and regulations. The British came; several new thoughts and culture imported to the detriment of Indian way of life and living. Freedom was gone; slavery set in. and then Gandhi came and galvanized the Indian society; irrespective regions and religions, languages and culture people rallied behind the Father of the Nation and political freedom was achieved without bloodshed and wars. Of course even at that time we had differences in opinions and people were there to oppose Gandhiji’s thoughts and actions, methodology and movements. But the mighty Britishers had to quit the holy land of India handing over the reins of power to us. Freedom at midnight dawned at the cost of sacrifices of millions of patriotic citizens and able and efficient leaders, Gandhiji’s followers steered the country to great strides. The nation that had to depend on other nations for tiny safety pins and clips could enjoy self sufficiency all around. It was indeed a successful marathon and the nation could achieve great strides   in several, several areas of vital importance. I am indeed proud to have seen my India, my Bharath- growing India, glowing India.

 

Scene 2:A  patriotic song of Mahakavi Bharathiyar is heard from his

heavenly abode..

Song of the Nation:

Rich with lovely streams and luscious fruitage

Cool with the soft, peerless winds of the south,

And green with the crops of fields, are you, Mother.

  1. Your nights are argent with moon-rayed brightness;

You are thick with trees in efflorescence;

Bright is your smile and your speech nectarine;

You are free with your many boons of bliss.

  1. Your glory is sounded by thirty crore

Of throats, sixty crore of puissant shoulders

Are armed for you; who can ever call you weak?

Rare is your might; grace you grant us; praise be!

You rout and quell the armies of your foes.

  1. You are knowledge; you are dharma indeed;

You are our heart; you are our very soul;

You are also life in our body.

  1. You are the strength of our shoulder, Mother!

You are the Heart- the abode of Bhakthi!

In every temple is only installed

Your glorious form, ornate and divine.

  1. You are Uma with ten dread weapons!

You are lakshmi throned on lotus-petals!

You are Vani grantor of all lore!

  1. You are of endless wealth, pure and peerless;

You are rich with streams and luscious fruitage,

Blue-hued are you; candor is your nature;

Bright is your smile; your jewels – a glory;

Pray protect us, peerless Mother! Praise be!

 

Scene: III Location: the same park; a man in fifties deeply thinks and talks aloud to himself;

 

Mr. Atul Banergee: What has happened to my great country and my great people? It looks as if we are losing our moorings as we grow. It is indeed worrying that our values are getting eroded in our advancements in so many areas. We go abroad and establish our supremacy in many vital areas; but we are getting increasingly disgusted and disappointed within our society. What a paradox-unfortunate developments.

 

Scene IV A SONG from Mahakavi Bharathiyar is heard from his heavenly home.

 

Whither are they gone — smile and sweet music?

Troubles and tears own the country entire;

Men have women become; women cowards.

All majesty is gone; this land lacks luster.

It is no more wondrous land of Aryas!

It is now the country base, of mean men!

Are they dead and gone – valiant heroes?

Here are only the disappointed low!

Gone are Vedas, Upanishads, true scriptures!

They but blabber here idiotic tales!

Time was when women chanted old Vedic hymns;

Today they have become sweepers of streets.

In the sweet land where flowed milk and honey

Famine vile doth hold the sway.

In the land of seers whence wafted wisdom,

Lechers and thieves—slaves to falsehood, — abide.

In the land abounding in gold and gems

Very many starve and daily perish.

 

 

Scene V. Location

Residence of Shyam in his thirties and Ram just out of University education.

 

Shyam: Good morning Ram! How are you? Rarely seen nowadays.

How is your post student period?

 

Ram: Good morning sir. Fine but not so fine. I am indeed in search of a suitable job and I am a bit worried about it. I have to take care of my aged parents, young sisters and brothers at home.

 

Shyam: No doubt our country is progressing nice thanks to which employment potential and opportunities are on the constant increase yet it is not keeping pace with the demands of the society.

 

Ram: That is true uncle but what avail it is to the unemployed? Not to mention about underemployment. My father’s friend used to describe a known case to him of an Engineering graduate from Trichy district of Tamilnadu was serving as a pizza delivery boy in Chennai!

 

Shyam: That is indeed unfortunate; but there is nothing wrong and no dignity of labor is involved so long as one is sincere and loyal, devoted and dedicated, honest and truthful to the work one does.

OK ; since you completed college, we did not meet at all. How were your college days?

 

Ram: Very pleasant, useful, enjoyable every day. I enjoyed thoroughly and my sole objective was to complete the course successfully and score high marks that will equip my mind better and I can show my improved talents and skills for the benefit of my employer and the society. I didn’t fritter away my time all these years.

 

Shyam:  That is great. You are bound to be successful and patriotic citizen.

 

Ram: True there were a lot of distractions; there were students indulging in right and wrong activities unconnected with studies and curriculum.

In these days of education, one has to be careful about several traps.

 

Scene VI A song is heard from a distance………….

 

This is our Motherland, Bharath!

It’s here our parents dear loved and lived.

In joyous wedlock pure.

Our forbears too in ages past

Had lived for centuries, ere they died.

A myriad noble thoughts they had

To enrich the land and make it great

Shan’t I enthrone you in my heart,

While my grateful tongue doth sing thy praise;

“Salutations to thee!”. Mother! Salutations!

 

This our land gave us life

And sustenance, and blessed us too.;

This is the land of our mothers dear;

It fostered them in their infancy

When as babes they lisped their words;

It saw them grow into tender maids

And sports and dance in the moonlit night;

Their golden limbs gladdened the waters

As they swam and bathed in pure delight,

Ere they returned to quiet of their homes,

I shall sing thy praise in grateful tunes,

“Salutations to thee!” Mother! Salutations!

 

In time they loved and wives became

And learn to manage households’ great;

They fondled and fed their golden babes

And raised and fostered righteous homes;

Here all around temples tall

That soared aloft to bless the lands;

When our forefathers died, their flow’ry dust

Became part of the country’s rich humus;

Shan’t I sing thy praise in grateful tunes,

“Salutation to thee!” Mother! Salutations!

 

Scene 7 Location:  A park

 

Vinay and Vijay. Students of two different colleges but good friends meet in a pleasant evening.

 

Vinay: hai, how are you; not to be seen. Not to be heard for quite a few days.

 

Vijay: hai, good evening. Yes; I was quite busy with preparation for semester exams. That concluded just a week back.

 

Vinay: Ours also over.

 

Vijay: Nowadays we hear a lot of sound about nationalism, patriotism, freedom and so on in the college campuses. How about in your college?

 

Vinay: I am amused at these things. Our country is known for its great culture, very decent culture. Treating every one as our family member. We respect all religions, we love all people, we follow our own faith and religion handed down to us from our forefathers for generations. I am a Hindu, you are a Christian- we love each other, we respect each other; that is what my Vedas and your Bible have taught us. This is not of recent origin. We have been following these noble principles for generations. Why all on a sudden big hue and cry about it?

 

Vijay: yeah! Well said Vinay; we love all, serve all. We help ever and hurt never. Patriotism and nationalism of our hoary past and Gandhian era run through our blood and we are in no need to be explained a new meaning of nationalism or patriotism by pseudo patriots and nationalists of these days!

 

Vinay: Let us continue our noble traditions and practices. Very happy to have met and spoken to you for some time. We shall meet again.

 

Vijay: bye!

 

Scene 8. Location: A public garden.

 

Dramatic personae: Shyam and Ram.

 

Ram: Good morning!

 

Shyam: Very good morning! How are you Ram. How re your people at home. How about your hunt for a job; you were very much worried when we met last time about your commitments, unemployment etc.

 

Ram: Yes sir; I have a great and happy news to share with you sir.

 

Shyam: Nice; tell me fast. I am very eager to hear because I love you.

 

Ram: Last week I had a call from a private employer for a decent job on a decent salary. I prepared well to my knowledge. I was worried; but was confident God will be kind and graceful to me. Interview was held with a serious intent and I could do well. Probably I should have done better. To my great delight, thanks to HIS kindness I got the order and I am joining in an auspicious day very shortly.

 

Shyam: That is indeed very happy news. Congratulations. I wish you all the best. Give your best to the Institution and you are bound to get the best from the Institution. Be loyal and grateful, dedicated and dutiful. God will be with you.

 

Ram: Sure sir, I need your blessings.

 

Shyam: It is great you had a decent job and you deserve it. It is becoming increasingly difficult to get decent job in this corruption ridden job market without greasing the palm of some body or other. In the Government organizations it is all the more worse as one has to suitably take care of concerned Minister down!

 

Ram: What do you think is the malady and what can be a remedy?

 

Shyam: A nation, known for its transparency, honesty and straightforwardness has degenerated so much that  even normal happenings have become difficult and looks as if achievement.

Rightly you want to know what can be the malady! It is very simple: people are becoming lazy, selfish and desire for what they don’t deserve. Those who are in a position and power, equally selfish and avaricious exploit the situation and the people suffer.

Remedy……………!!!. It is all in the hands of you and me…..Yes; if common people are very firm and like you to question what the malady is and remedy should think and act in a positive way setting examples to others.

 

Ram: Yes; uncle. An awareness among the young ones-students at all levels to be created and trained by the parents, teachers and public service organizations towards this end.

 

Shyam: Let us do our bit. Thanks. All the best in your new job and enjoy whatever the work entrusted to you, do with a positive attitude and dedication. Take it as an opportunity to serve the Indian society. Bye.

Ram: Bye.

 

Scene 9. Location: A public garden:

 

Dramatic personae: Prakash Nandha  and Atul Banergee.

 

Prakash Nandha:  Good evening I am Prakash Nandha from Surya Nagar. I very often see you in the same place spending quite some time in the evenings; you look as if you think of something very seriously.

 

Atul Banergee: Good evening, thanks. I am Atul- residing in your neighborhood Chandra Nagar.  I am pleased to have met you. You are right I am very much concerned with the happenings – more wrong than right- of late, which no patriotic and nationalistic citizen can easily digest.

 

Nandha:hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm…….! Yes I also think in those lines but control myself by thinking of the golden days of those great years. I am in my mid eighties now.

 

Atul: Future indeed appears to be bleak for the society if remedial measures are not taken on time. Every citizen- big or small, rich or poor, educated or uneducated, man or woman, boy or girl, employed or not has a big role to play in arresting this trend. People are becoming more and more self centered, not knowing or caring for his own neighbor. A wretched life we lead.

Externally the people brag of their patriotism; inwardly …..a big question

 

A distance voice is heard from Bharathiyar’s abode in heaven:

 

  1. Neither stoutness of heart

Nor honest skill have they;

Oh parrot, these are cheats

And verbal heroes all.

  1. They join the crowd and add

To its noise; nothing great,

Oh parrot, perceive they,

Those willful forgetters.

  1. can the blind hope to have

Autonomy? Comforts?

Greatness? Oh parrot!

Can the sexless dream of joy?

  1. Eye they have, but cannot see;

They are a bunch of girls,

Oh parrot! Of what use

Are words which are avail not?

  1. “Our textile mills, our own

Garments” they would loud cry.

Oh parrot, did ever

Manthras produce mangoes?

  1. “Salt, sugar and saris

Home-spun”, loud will they vaunt,

Oh parrot, and vanish;

They know not how these are wrought.

  1. “Women’s honor, bhakthi

To God”: thus blab their tongues

Oh parrot, they are all

The utterly faithless.

  1. When women were raped

And endangered evil

Oh parrot, like cowards

They clung to their life.

  1. In the Mother’s temple

When others wrought evil

Oh parrot, fear-ridden

They deemed life more precious.

  1. Fear and sheer impotence

And petty vassal-mind

Oh parrot, were lofty

To them, the dead and dumb.

  1. Do these beasts, oh parrot

Deserve to live at all

With no passion for truth

Vigor and inner strength?

  1. Can one be, oh parrot

Amidst the heinous  gang

Who think life sullied

Is greater than  honor?

  1. Their heart is after wine,

Their lips chant the Lord’s name,

“Hail Mother” they loud shout,

All mindless, oh parrot!

  1. “Ancient past” blabber they,

The hypocrites; what do

The ignoramuses

Know of it, oh parrot?

  1. National infamy,

Shameless itch for base wealth

Mark these cads, oh parrot,

Who are in , meanness steeped.

  1. Their own brothers perish

In misery; yet are they

Without scruple, oh parrot!

Of goodness are these reft.

  1. Sons of Bharath die like worms

In famine and disease;

They eye this, oh parrot.

Sunk in unfeeling sloth.

  1. They essay not to fend

The famine that preys not

Mother, but shout aloud

“Hail Mother” oh parrot!

 

Prakash: Though appears to be bleak, we need to take the situation as a challenge and go out to meet the challenge, meet squarely. If our age and wisdom have any role to play, the most appropriate time is here and now.             Let us make an honest attempt to create a positive attitude and approach to the challenges. Collect the like minded people- talk, talk go on talking to all and it will have a magnetic effect on others and society will be far better than what appears to be now.

 

Atul: Yes; I do agree. Let us make an attempt with the people who visit this garden regularly as we do.

 

Thanks; bye for the present!

 

Prakash: Bye!

 

FATHER OF OUR  NATION and the architect of modern India. 

 

 

 

(TO BE CONTINUED)

(1)Please visit  Person of the Week at Indian Periodical Glad to share with you all my dear viewers  that this interview has been viewed by more than 1000 readers since it was posted on 31/7/16 and occupies the second slot in the most viewed articles in the Indian Periodicals established in April 2004.It has got 36 comments beneath the article itself. Thanks for your support. 

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