By: Vivek Mohan
“We are a small, tiny, cute state…blah, blah, blah…Help us!” Thus keep speaking the powers that be time and again since times immemorial! “The sun never sets in the British Empire!”
I could never understand this piece of history taught in schools, while in the very next geography class they told you otherwise! I was confused…I still am…” Honesty is the best policy” (Ask me ?!) blah…blah…blah…
As I grew up and entered the school of ‘hard life’ the whole perspective started getting clearer or should I say murkier (W. Somerset Maugham says in ‘The Razor’s Edge’ – “I climbed the mountain in hope of the sunshine and all I found was the mist!”)
My wasted youth…’what they don’t teach you at the Harvard Business School’?! So finally the sun indeed set in on British India on 15/8/1947… of which Shimla was the summer capital! But the Commonwealth today is the reminiscent of that past.
Great! Great Britain…of Ireland, Scotland and the last but not the least England – the one ‘small, tiny, cute’ country with a small population ruled the world!
Their rulers, kings and queens had a BIG vision…to explore…to conquer…to branch out…to expand…to look beyond…to go out and seek…to cross the boundaries…to get out of the confines…blah…blah…blah…
One of the reminders of that legacy in today’s India is our corporate world, still wearing neck ties in the hot and humid Mumbai!
Let’s come closer home…Japan.
‘The small, tiny, cute’ country with a small population ruled the economy of the world (though things are bad for every one right now). After the Pearl Harbor US port attack, the Japanese were flattened by getting atom-bombed, which ended the WW-II.
But they rose like a Phoenix.
The Emperor became the new constitution’s monarch… people showed enterprise, guts and character and gathered the shattered pieces of their remaining lives. They were small in size and stature but grew bigger and bigger day by day by producing small gadgets and ruled the entertainment industry too!
Now coming closer home, in fact coming home…
Our own ‘small, tiny, cute’ state with a small population…
Do we ‘think BIG’?! Do we’ve visionaries in positions of power who think beyond party/regional/factional lines?! Do we only have protestors raising the red alarm and offering nothing else?! Every time we rush to Delhi with a ‘begging-bowl’ to get our fair share of booty, which mostly goes into ‘maintaining’ the state by way of salaries to people with no accountability, let CAG keep crying hoarse! Their vision is limited to getting postings near their homes, whether plum/responsible or not, and most MLAs, MPs and ministers are happy offering them just that and do nothing else for the people…no, no, no, votes. Some detest the ‘small, tiny, cute’ Punjab, but will follow all their official rulings to be at par. Yes, we are a ‘small, tiny, cute’ state with s small population and will remain so even if we keep entering many ‘Junes’ sooon!
We are like that only. What to do?! Blah…Blah…Blah…
Please correct me if i’m wrong. Please forgive me if i’m ill-informed…love is blind, you see…can you?!
(The writer is a award-winning film maker based in Mumbai)