Saturday, October 20, 2007

"Bihar 2007" - The REAL News!

Came across this topic, "Mob Violence in Bihar", in the discussion board of 4IW.com where I am a member... http://discussion.4indianwoman.com/user/Discussion.aspx?id=53421. Being a Bihari and residing in Patna currently, I couldn't remain mum on it! :D However, what I wanted to say about it didn't fit in the "2000-character-restriction" on the forum posts. So I decided to speak on their blog portal instead. My entry just got posted there (it is a moderated blog portal)... but then I realized my personal blog readers here will probably not get to read the post on that site. So I am copying the entire post here as well...

One of the members on the forum mentioned that "no good news ever comes out of that state; the news only keeps getting worse." Well that's 'coz for the past 15 years, nothing good was being done in Bihar to report about, and now when things have started changing for the better, it looks like apparently the media has been "paid" [or more likely "threatened"] to keep all the good news "hushed up" from the rest of the country, so as to give the new government a bad image!

But I live here, in Patna... been here since early 2000... and I have seen with my own eyes the rapid development in the city since NK took over the reins. I have been wanting to write about it for several months now, but was just too lazy I guess. Well, as they say... "Better late than never"! So here I am finally!

In the LPY era, my dad wouldn't dare drive with us 2 sisters (even in a car) later than 9.30-10.00 at night. So you can seriously forget about men taking their wives/sisters/daughters on *2-wheelers* after dark! And these days... you'll see ice-cream vendors out on the streets till 12 midnight! I never once saw a female ride a scooty out in the main traffic till LPY was around! Now, these girls are everywhere... claiming their right to the roads of the city!

Back in those LPY days, there hardly used to be any private vehicles on the roads! We used to take just about 7 minutes to reach my uncle's place by car. And now, there are so many cars on the roads that at times we have to wait for THREE green signals in a row, before we are finally able to pass through one of the busiest crossings in the city! Needless to say, that 7-minute-smooth-sailing is just a long lost dream now! (At times I wonder if things weren't really better in the LPY era!)

In just a little over a year, more than a dozen departmental stores and shopping malls have come up. You know… those centrally air-conditioned multi-storeyed complexes like the Vishal Mega Mart! And many more are still under construction! Seems like there is one being built at every main market! There must be at least 50 of them! There is even a multiplex coming up... like the PVR cinemas in Delhi!

The underground drainage systems have been cleared at several places of the city and the roads have been patched up... that is, where there were any roads at all! But in most of the areas of the city, the roads had totally given away to a never-ending series of pot-holes in the 15 years before NK took stock of things! So it's taking a little more time than NK originally estimated and promised the people.

And the rains aren't helping either. The amount of rainfall we have had here this year has broken all records for the past 100 years! Needless to say, the government is totally unequipped to manage such an unprecedented situation! I mean what could the Maharashtra government do when Mumbai was flooded? The news channels keep reiterating about lack of government aid in flooded areas of the state! But they all fail to mention that such a situation has never ever happened here before! Infact, I dread to think of the plight of the people if such heavy rainfall had happened during LPY's rule!

But I totally agree with this statement, "The main problem with Bihar is the typical Bihari attitude. The moment you enter Bihar you are struck by the feeling of apathy, and laziness that is all pervasive. People don't want to change." This is what is wrong here. It's not the government anymore... as the news channels keep pointing out! It's the mindset of the people here. They have become so used to inactivity and lethargy-ness and hopelessness that they just aren't able to appreciate anybody's efforts towards bringing about a change in the state!

Despite all these setbacks, Bihar is still headed towards reclaiming its past glory. Recently, one of my acquaintances came for a visit here from Mumbai. He had left Patna for good several years ago, along with many other well-to-do business families whose right to democracy had been threatened by the then-prevailing-authorities here! He said he couldn't believe his eyes when he landed here! The place looked so completely different!

And not just the capital city! He even took a tour to the neighboring rural and sub-urban places and said those places were actually connected by ROADS finally! Proper roads! And the connecting highway between Varanasi and Patna is finally as smooth as “Hema Malini’s cheeks (Ha! Ha! Wink! Wink!)… so that it takes just 5.5 hours to commute between the 2 places now, as against the almost 12 hours it took us back in 2000 when my family shifted here from Kanpur!

Strange really… the news channels haven’t found out any of this!

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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Love Hurts...

Just read DD's blog... she has recently written something on Love & Broken Heart. While I was going through her post, it kinda got me thinking. Like she says... if anyone has ever loved and lost, they will most certainly be able to associate with the hurt that comes with a "broken heart"! ... "The feeling, the pain, the throbbing", that is "almost unbearable at times"!

Yes, it's true. I totally agree with her. It really is painful... this feeling of being ripped apart... the sudden void in your life... the hollow ache...! But does it hurt only when we love someone and that someone doesn't reciprocate the same feelings? What about the way a mother feels when she watches her kid leave home for his first day at playgroup? And what about those tears in a father's eyes when he watches his son score the winning goal in a soccer match?

In the movie Terminator 2, when Arnold Schwarzenegger was about to destroy himself, and saw that John was crying for him, he said that was the one thing he wished he could do... LOVE!

Love HURTS. Period.
It doesn't matter whether you are heart-broken or not...
if you love someone, it just... hurts.

It hurts when you are away from him, it hurts when you are with him!
It hurts when you see him in joy, it hurts to feel his pain!
It hurts when he holds you in his arms, it hurts when his eyes say he cares!

No matter whether you are together or separated,
whether he's with you or with someone else,
every time you think of him, your heart is flooded with emotion.

Every time you remember the moments spent with him,
it brings a smile on your lips...
and yet your heart weeps...

Not because you can't be with him anymore...
but because you are so thankful to God,
for the memories of those few precious moments you shared with him...

The very fact that it hurts means you are not a machine,
for machines cannot love!
And if it doesn't hurt, it ain't love at all...

It hurts because you love someone so much...
that you just cannot contain it inside your heart anymore...
and it flows out from your eyes as tears!

And yet there are people who are so unfortunate that they are never able to feel the pangs of real love... for anyone! They are never able to surrender themselves so completely in love... not because they are selfish... but because they are scared. They don't trust life... and they don't consider themselves worthy of LOVE.

A person who is unable to love needs it the most... for his heart is like an iceberg... which only the warmth of love can melt into tears...

. . .

Here's more in Poetry!

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