Bangalore, Dec 20: The Christams tree is set, the gifts wrapped and the guest list ready, the entire world has geared up to celebrate the most colourful winter festival of Christmas next week.
But the Christmas Carol would not be the same this year, at least in India. With innumerable calamities, deaths and destruction, Indians may celebrate a more solemn festival this year, but the enthuse and the grandeur would be the same. True, there are fond memories too, but more important are the lessons learnt from the past.
Uttarakhand calamity: The government of India may do good to ensure that no such calamities occur due to human negligence. There have been ecological reports regarding the precariousness of the ecosystem in the region, but things are yet to sink in the Government mind. We are not saying that it has done nothing, but a lot more needs to be done; after all we have paid a heavy price for our own mistakes.
Cyclone Phailin: Count the number of victims of the cyclone that hit Odisha and the border areas of Andhra Pradesh. Ask yourself where we went wrong. True, it was a natural calamity and beyond our control, but it is worth understanding that we could have been of more help. Speedy rehabilitation and rescue operations could have added value to the prayers across the world.
Muzaffarnagar riots: A nation ridden with divisive politics, India has been torn apart by us. Be it communal riots of state division, we did not show any mercy to a nation that was popular for its strength, diversity and harmony.
Some call it politics, we call it power politics. However, in both the cases, we fail to see that people suffer and they continue to suffer. Women raped, families rendered homeless and the children murdered, communal riots are a window to a sick society that values its ego more than people's lives.
Telengana division: Yes, few have fought for it with their lives, but what have we got as a result? A nation that has one more state and hoards of opinion mismatch. Do we really want a country like that? Are we happy now? Has the suffering gone? Perhaps not, everything still remains the same, only the demand for more increases.
Delhi rape case verdict: Do we still call it an eye-opener? Yes and No. Yes, because women today know that they have to fight back, even if they have to lose their lives and No because the case has not been able to ring a bell among the people. Rapes still continue, claiming even more lives.
We do not have any intentions to marr your Christmas mood, but take it as a gentle reminder for what we have left behind and what needs to be left behind forever.
Underprivileged children celebrating Christmas in Kolkata on Thursday.
Differently abled children celebrating Christmas in Mumbai on Thursday.
School children dressed as Santa Claus make a star during Christmas celebrations in Kochi on Wednesday.
In New Delhi
Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde, MPs Francisco Sardinha, Md. Azharuddin and other during the Parliamentarians Christmas celebration in New Delhi on Tuesday.
In New Delhi
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh speaks during Christmas celebration by Parliamentarians in New Delhi on Tuesday.