Sep 29, 2008
A Leaf From The Book of Fates
They say that just before you die your whole life flashes past by you in a moment. I wonder if that’s what happened to Santosh, the 9 year old boy who ran with the ill fated bag that ended his short life and caused mayhem yet again in this city that is already scarred with wounds that are scarcely two weeks old. I can’t imagine how it is to be actually to be affected by these blasts except that when I read about this child running behind the misdoers with the very weapon of his own death it was heartbreaking. Is this how God had decided his end would be like? Or did he choose it for himself some other lifetime? Last evening while walking through Green Park Market Batty Woman and I decided that in his next lifetime this little boy will get all the happiness and riches of the world to make up for the life he has been deprived of in the most cruel manner. I couldn’t find any other way to justify the killing of this innocent little boy and the innocent victims of these blasts. We tried reasoning about the greater cause the so called messengers keep talking about. Apparently this punishment for being non believers, for living the unholy life we live.
And no we are not more civilised or humane and that I see disparity everywhere and that members of my community have given a cold shoulder to the Muslims and we cannot deny that but then who is to be blamed for it? I read this article in the newspaper about a professor who had to shift her house from Gulmohur Park to Jamia Nagar cos she taught in Jamia Islamia University. A torturous 10 month old house hunt proved to be futile as no land lord was willing to rent out the house to her and those who agreed to it would get out of the deal on the pretext of some excuse or the other the most ridiculous of them being that they only wanted vegetarian tenants. She was a muslim and there was precious little she could say to an explanation of such kind. Finally she had to move into Jamia Nagar that has a population of 98 % muslims and even then the basic amenities in the area are below average and there is a marked difference between the state of the roads and administration there and its neighbouring localities. The Muslim locality is shabbier, crowded, has this forlorn look while New Friends Colony relatively newer and bigger.
Now tell me if this is what one is subjected to after having being a loyal and proud citizen of the country after having spent 5 decades in the country then what would come about in a child who has been born and brought in such an environment and seen the difference in treatment since he attained consciousness. I don’t believe that this is a recent happening, these feelings haven’t cropped up all of a sudden after 9/11. I feel they have always co existed and we choose to be blind to it living in happy oblivion in our own almost make believe worlds. We can’t ever pin point exactly what went wrong but clearly we have gone wrong, all of us belonging to different religions and communities, all these teachings are erroneous somewhere cos all of us are bleeding. Wonder where such hatred came into us that we don’t think twice about killing our own kith and kin.
I read about the lynching about the CEO by the factory workers of his own company, I hear about Khairlanji killings where a whole family is wiped out because they belonged to the Backward Castes and dared to dream about a better life. I read about incidents in Pakistan where women are stoned to death cos they dared to commit adultery, or women being sentenced to rape cos their younger brother stole apples from the village headman’s house. I see reports on TV about couples in Israel and Palestine being murdered by their families cos they dared to fall in love with each other belonging to different religions. I wonder what is this world I am born in. I wonder about the Book of Fates and what it has written in it. They say we make our own destiny but now I am increasingly believing that no maybe we don’t, its all in the stars, in the cursed or blessed Book of Fates. How else could one be having the happiest moment of their lives while others are being shredded into bits not very far away. Here someone is planning their lavish wedding while there a young bride to be is blown away, never to be seen again, the henna in her hands still dark orange from the festivities of the evening before. A husband goes out to buy vegetables from the vendor in the neighbourhood market and never returns home. Your daughter is going out with your grandchildren for a walk down the road and you don’t even know that when she hugs you before leaving is the last time you’ll ever see her alive.
It is fate, isn’t it? It was their fate. They never wrote it themselves and I am not writing my own fate either , nor is God. Its is one of us who is writing my fate and I am terrified cos I am not infallible, how can he be so? I am at his mercy and there is nothing I can do. One of these days someone will decide to play god with my life just like he did with the others and this time it’ll be you or me that’ll be the victim. What then?