Hey Shekhar, its not as simple as that !

I am glued to the TV watching images of the South Asia Earthquake. The suffering of the people of Kashmir. Azad Kashmir, Pakistan Occupied Kashmir. Whatever. Divided by nothing but a line drawn on a piece of paper called a map.


Which line now divides brother from brother. Nation from Co- Nation. People from people. Hindu from Muslim. A division so great that thousands dies every year in worship of that line. Drawn on a paper map.
And yet when I see TV. I hear the anguish of the man that carries his dead child in a language that I speak. And in my mind the line disappears. I see an old woman wail in despair and she reminds me of my grandmother who died many years ago. And the line dissapears. I see a little girl, eyes wide with fear. Uncomprehending of the grief and tragedy that surrounds her. I think immediately of my 5 year old daughter and the line dissapears.
This line across which once my parents lived. This line across which I was born. This line which divides the statistics of Death. 40,000 on that side of the line and less than a thousand on this side of the line. Just one line. Drawn across a piece of paper. Which defines the identity of those that died.
Is this not the time to obliterate the line ? Even for a brief moment of outpouring of grief? For a brief moment of embracing ?
For we know the line will come back. There will be more wars. There will be “those Muslims” and ‘those Hindu’s”. There will be those that exact their political power from the power of the line. There will be
those that will exact their intellectual power from “Hey Shekhar, you dont understand, it’s not quite as simple as that”.
But for one brief moment, why not just make it as simple of that. Why not rise up and overwhelm that line. Let us, the citizens of Mumbai unite in one moment of grief with those that have suffered equally on both sides of that line.
Knowing that the line will be back. For, as my friends so eloquently say to me,
“Hey Shekhar, it’s not as simple as that”.

8 Responses to “Hey Shekhar, its not as simple as that !”

  1. piyali says:

    To feel grieved, to understand the pain, to feel attached, to comment , to criticize, to discuss, to curse, to draw attention , to preach , to beg , to… and to… all this is not that tough. It takes a heart on one’s part , a soul on another’s and maybe a brain on third one’s. Great people , great voices. The body that suffers doesn’t need comforting words. Even while people like us write all these words , a few eyes must have seen their last.

  2. fragile025 says:

    An apt title …
    eloquency , diplomacy are blood relatives if hipocracy …
    Its so good to be straight and honest … there’s no regret or hurt if u fall down, coz self respect and dignity always makes u get up and get going for the best…
    People don’t know for themselves, where they are heading to…
    People take out time for parties and other ways to entertain themselves…but its so sad they have no time neither realization to take out time for themselves…
    God makes people realize who don’t realize for themselves…

  3. marek dariusz podsiadlo says:

    Hey Shekhar, it’s simpler than that!
    There will be “those Muslims” and ‘those Hindu’s
    There will be “those interests” and ‘that intrests’
    There will be “those egos” and ‘that egos’
    There will be “that fear” and ‘those feared’
    There will be “that indoctrination” and ‘those indoctrinated`
    There will be “that conditioned bundles of reflexes ” and ‘those reflexes’
    There will be “that budget” and ‘those bullets’
    There will be “that medic” and ‘those kids’
    There will be “that history” and ‘those stories’
    There will be “that neverending story”
    The answer? in a global village? webs of economicaly woven interdependency and so,
    economical and diplomatic blackmail, damned if ya BOTH dont and sweets if you do..
    But, Im sure, it’s not as simple as that,
    Love, (com)passion, 😉

  4. neil bisarya says:

    Lines on a map
    are like the thoughts in our head
    they divide and separate
    me from you
    life from itself.
    Is there a solution?
    i see the leaves on the trees
    autumn dawning.
    Nature doesn’t know any lines.
    Man seems to know only lies.
    But perhaps if we try
    i mean really try
    to love one another
    more than our lies
    and erase the divisions
    that divide our lives;
    then perhaps our children
    will know a different kind of map
    one without lines
    nor land mines.
    Just golden-green leaves
    on the autumn trees
    falling gently
    in the morning breeze
    It is as simple as that.

  5. piyali says:

    I think, when it comes to reporting national disasters and calamities, our print media, especially the national dailies, deserve a mention for reporting the J&K earthquake. The media has matured considerably. Earlier, whenever any such calamity struck the nation, the newspapers would be full of pictures of death, suffering and destruction. This time round, the pictures are still there but the portrayal is not so disgusting as it was when the media had reported the Gujrat earthquake or the Latur earthquake.

  6. chaitali says:

    dear shekharji
    what about making a movie of a bengali novel – which is historical and romantic – i can suggest u a name –

  7. Asim Khan says:

    I hope people do realize that after all its just a line on the map, but as you said people who don’t share your opinion will always have the argument that if it was just a line then why did we ended up goin for almost 4 wars in a span of 50 years. Funny they never realize how much role or approval of ours was required for that, perhaps if only they knew how many politically influenced motives were fulfilled at the cost of almost a million people. Another thing that surprises me, why is it that this so called line gets thinner as we move away from our homeland, why is it that once outside we all become synonomous to this one term ‘desi’, is it because there is that we realize that after all we are the same.
    Anyways, start soon the uploading of visuals on your site, have some fairly interesting pictues would like to share.
    Nail ur next movie.
    Asim

  8. yeah ! agreed!! too painful a sight.
    and i remember the 26th dec tsunami hit areas…and i wondered way back in 1984 when Mrs Indira gandhi died – we had to hear sitar vadan for 12 long days – at that point of time we just had 2 channels – and we all only heard of the ruckus created for the death of the PM.
    but when several died in Tsunami – except for 2 -3 channels covering it Live – rest of the channels continued showing Item Girls gyrating semi nude on the pole !!
    On second thoughts – if this the psychology of people – then whats the use of this ANimal like existance? i think human beings are irrational animals…what say you?

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