Wednesday, June 20, 2007

NOTICE: A Village is My World

Anyone who hopes to do any good for this nation, and has not lived in- I mean, really lived as opposed to merely visited- villages, is a hypocrite: I too am one. How dare could I presume to speak of things I have not myself experienced; for a people whose pain I have not myself felt? All my notions of rural empowerment are, therefore, hollow: in the end, they amount to nothing. Indeed, not having lived in a village is my single biggest handicap.

The Mahatma is right even today: India does live in her villages; but more to the point, she also dies in them. Everyday. The reason, in my opinion, is this: the world occupied by India’s decision-makers isn’t quite the same as the one in which those they decide for live. Even worse, there is absolutely no 'dialogue' between these two worlds; it seems the one doesn't know of- or atleast, is quite content to ignore- the other's existence.

I saw this other world- the world that lies beyond conference halls and powerpoint presentations- during the one year I was jailed; I lived in it, and witnessed life, naked and raw, bereft of color, in black & white. But that is not enough. It can never be.

For the next thirty days, I intend, therefore, to live in a village. Not as an Observer, mind you, but as a full and active Participant of village-life: much like my forefathers. Hopefully, I will begin to learn something about who I am; about the lifeblood that runs in my veins and connects me- binds me- not only to my venerable ancestors but also to the more than twenty-million people who dwell in Chhattisgarh.

It’s sowing season now. A time, aptly, for new beginnings.



AJ

6 comments (टिप्पणी):

amit tiwari said...

Bravo! Its the making of a leader or rather a better human being. Undoubtedly, empathy takes over sympathy, for village is the place where our roots belong. This voyage of finding oneself will be fruitful, I am sure.
All the best.

The Ragpicker said...

The open fields of a village would for sure reveal some of the aspects of life which the closed walls of the prison did(though not in black and white as you say because villages are filled with colors of nature). And I think those aspects would be very different from the one which, too often, you and I see in the humdrum of urban existence

chaya said...

amit ye aapka ek achchha prayas hai. vo kahate hai na ki "jinake panvon ki bavaiyan na fatin ho, vo fati huyi bavaiyon ka dard kya jane". gavon ki samasyaon ko samjhane ke liye or ganvn ke jivan ke aaghad prem v apantv ko mahasus karane ke liye, gonv ke jivan ka anubhav hona bhi jaruri hai.aapake liye ek vinmar sujhav hai chunki aapki mitron ki suchi me uttar bharat ke log adhiktam hai. atah aapke dvara itani kathin angrengi bhasha ka istemal karane se adhikansh logon ko aapke sundar vicharon ko samajhane me kathinayi hoti hogi. atah aap thori saral angaregi basha ka istemal karenge to aapake vicharon ko sabhi ko jaanane samajhane me aasani hogi.
ek bar punah aapko shubhakamaye. ganv ka pravas aapke vyaktitva me naye aayam jore.

Clive said...

Bravo indeed. I can recommend living in a village for one's own benefit anyway, as well as the value to the body politic of your having done so.

Whether 30 days is long enough, I don't know - and it's of significance whose house in the village you share. Try to share a humble house if you can.

I know this might sound strange coming from Cambridge in England - but I've lived in my parents-in-law's kachha house in a remote tribal village in Chhattisgarh for a total of almost two years in the last 23, once for six months continuously. It's the place I love more than anywhere else in the world.

samrat said...

hi..i want to know what is politics???

Anonymous said...

शानदार निर्णय!! एक महीने के लिए गांव जाकर रहने के इस निर्णय का मैं तालियां बजाकर समर्थन करना चाहूंगा!! सच मे यह एक बहुत ही अच्छा निर्णय है! बहुत ही खुशी हुई मुझे! सो किस गांव को चुना है आपने!

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Amit Aishwarya Jogi
Anugrah, Civil Lines
Raipur- 492001
Chhattisgarh, INDIA
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