Off……This Record.


Off The Record

The Sahara India Pariwar wants to create a record for the most people singing the National Anthem simultaneously. Apparently to counter a record currently held by Pakistan. So” Bharat Bhawna Diwas” is on 6th May and at 10 AM they have made an “emotional” appeal to the masses to join in singing and thus creating that record.

Hmmm.  So cynical ol’ me thinks that the money they spent on the advertisement alone could possibly keep a family of 4 in rural UP for a year at least? Or set up enough tube-wells and sources of water in4-5 villages? As for the cameras they will be mounting…..hey….spend that on building some roads in UP….no? What about a world class hospital with free treatment for rural UP? Or a school? Or just some street lights on the roads?

No I am not inimical towards records-world or otherwise. And neither is this an attack on Sahara India. I am however not bursting with a fevered patriotic enthusiasm to do this. I am absolutely not interested in being part of a world record such as this for it is meaningless and an utter waste of money on a PR exercise and not much else.

I live in a city where the power outages last 12 hours at times and the water supply barely an hour. I pay a huge bill for a very elusive electricity supply and another one for power back up…our solution for those sweltering power cuts. I drive on bumpy, bone jangling roads. My location is poorly connected with public transport. The traffic I face is frazzling as a journey of 40 minutes usually takes double. All traffic is peak hour traffic. All traffic rules a bit of a joke. And as a woman, a day without being ogled at is like The Phantom…..just does not exist. I have maids with no access to inexpensive medical facilities. There is but one Government hospital and most people don’t even know where it is. Private medical facilities are businesses. You may survive the illness, but the resultant dip in finances may kill of you off in any case. If living in a “developed” city can be such a nightmare, then it pains me to think of life in villages and smaller towns and cities that are  less developed yet?

Yes I would love to sing the National Anthem every time we created a different world record… that the people in our country have access to clean drinking water through the year. That our crops reach the masses where they should and don’t lie rotting in go-downs.

That our roads are levelled and remain so and a corrupt contactor has not lined his pockets yet more with the hard earned money of the masses. That there are no power outages and we have electricity through the day through the country. That women are safe…womb onwards. That medical services cater to the poor and needy. That the poor and needy become less poor and less needy. That thives, rapists and murderers will be convicted not elected.

That I live in a scam free nation. That there is employment in villages and towns. That children have access to at least primary education and literacy levels rise each year. That health care, sanitation and hygiene needs of the people are met.

I know I know….idealistic list. But not an impossible one. Especially for large Corporate houses with henchmen, Lobby Groups, Ministers and extremely deep pockets at their disposal. I am not saying they aren’t already doing some of it. But hey….can they tom –tom about the good they do  and then appeal for world records in national anthem singing?

What say people?


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