HUMAN RIGHTS

Lets us examine the question “Is Respect of human rights is an obligation every citizen irrespective of caste, color and religion in the society.?”

I will like to start with a quote from Nelson Mandela “To deny people of their human rights is to challenge their very humanity.”

Human rights are the very manifestation of humanity. Human rights, as we know are the universal set of rights that every citizen of the planet irrespective of his caste, color, religion, decent and nationality cherishes. These rights are not given to us by any government or law instead they are inculcate into our existence. They exist because we exist. They are transcendental in nature yet they inspire people from all political spectrum to come together and vouch for its violations. Unlike the constitutional fundamental rights they are not written somewhere but are born out of our survival, our aspirations to live and exist as we deem fit, our hopes and dreams to lead a dignified and meaningful life.

As UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka say “Our hopes for a more just, safe and peaceful world can only be achieved when there is universal respect for the inherent dignity and equal rights of all members of human family”, it becomes an obligation of every citizen irrespective of caste, color, creed, religion and all other basis of discrimination to respect the human rights. When people know, practice, abide, use and protect their rights without abusing, infringing, exploiting and violating them, they become responsible citizens.

The term ‘Human right’ was first used in 1766, but in the present century it has gained a new connotation. The freedom from unlawful imprisonment, torture or execution has become the genial meaning now. The widespread killings of people in different areas during the world wars and the cold war, the subjugation of various freedoms of the third world or aboriginal people by the imperial superpowers, the democratically plotted genocides of targeted communities or religious populations, the regional implications of war as in Somalia, Iran, Kashmir, Punjab etc all are considered gross human right violations by international media in particular and public in general.

How can one citizen not respect what he himself aspires for? John F Kennedy rightly says, “The rights of every man are diminished when the rights of one man are threatened”.  The world is a practically a give and take equation, you call it karma or you call it reaction, everyone reaps what he sows. Without respecting the rights of a fellow human you cannot and should not hope for your own rights to be respected.

There are forums and international communities, NGO’s and organisations working for human rights. The UNHRC is the apex body at the international level looking into the human rights and their violations. Amnesty international and several such NGO’s are playing a positive role in safeguarding the Human Rights. But the question is why we need such organisations in the first place? Why are the Rights violated? Who are the culprits? The answer lies in self introspection. If every citizen of the planet feel it is his obligation to respect the Human rights of the fellow human without any discrimination whatsoever, the world would be a better place.

I would like to sum it up with the words of UN Deputy Secretary General JAN ELIASSON, “ there can be no peace without development, no development without peace and no lasting peace or sustainable development without respect for Human rights and the rule of law”

Blood Honor and Partition

What I saw the next moment was most horrifying. My sister’s head fell. Her body fell on one side and her head on other. Fountains of blood colored the floor. My father’s face was all blood. So were his clothes.

I fainted. I was in shock. How can a father behead his daughter? How can all those people be spectators? How can a girl come to get slaughtered? How can her face portray pride in death? How? How? Tears were rolling down from my eyes. All these questions flashed in my mind. I was lying down, nearly comatose. The moment I woke up, I saw that I was soaked in blood. My sister’s blood had reached me

Read the complete tragic and horrifying story about Partition of India and its Goriness My write up at http://www.thebigroundtable.com/stories/blood-honor-partition-survivors-story/

(India) law for safety of women- a joke!

I would like to start with a quote from Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Law and order exist for the purpose of establishing justice and when they fail in this purpose they become the dangerously structured dams that block the flow of social progress.”

Strengthening legal provision will no doubt ensure safety of women in our country but it is not the only way to do so. Well, when we talk about the laws and constitution of our country, we all know how well-defined, well-framed and well-prosecuted they are.
In case of women safety, Article 375 and article 376 also known as the ‘rape laws’, has several loopholes. Talking about a few problematic things in the law, we first of all don’t have a well-defined definition of RAPE in it, secondly the law does not takes into account acts of forced oral sexual intercourse, sodomy and penetration by foreign objects, the third thing is that no defined penalty or punishment is mentioned in it.
The other laws are IPC section 498A, section 406 and section 304B which deal with martial abuse, dowry and other marriage related problems, and every now and then breaches are seen in these laws too.
Aristotle once said,

‘At his best, man is the noblest of all animals; separated from law and justice he is the worst’.

Now the thing is will strengthening laws and defining punishments lead to women safety. Aren’t there strict and implementable laws against murder, but do they keep people from murdering? Can laws change the mental and psychological build-up of somebody?
We all are aware of the rising crime rate of India, and of our state. The involvement of law-makers in breaking the law, the religious preacher like Aasaram Bapu and Gulzar peer, the ever-increasing frustration and depression of youth leading to drug abuse and then to crimes, all serve the example of how law and order is ensuring safety. The un-timely and biased law implementation, the loopholes of IPC and constitutions only ensure the safeguard of such criminals and nothing more.
What we need is sound mentality, empowered and employed youth. After an analysis of the youth of India and by interacting with the students of several colleges what was found is that, “unemployed educated people, low-earning husbands and drug addicted rich people seem to be at the heart of the crimes against women.”
The root cause is unemployment and drug abuse, which leads to utter depression and in-turn crimes, both in general and against women.
So what we have to do is instead of strengthening laws or better to say in addition to strengthening laws, we have to eliminate the reasons to do crime, the root causes of crime.
At last I would just like to quote, Hunter S. Thompson

“In a closed society where everybody’s guilty, the only crime is getting caught. In a world of thieves the only final sin is stupidity.”

Disability in India.

“They gave me admission, but not the ramp to walk-in to my class.”

Disabled’s have always been treated apart from society instead of a part of society. In our state they have an altogether different plight. They comprise of the neglected section of the society, pitied and sympathized but not treated with respect.

Indian government and the state government have given a 2% quota in government jobs to disabled people, particularly the physically disabled ones. There are also seats in all the college and university courses for them. The government has provided these persons with a relief of Rs 400 per month.  Kudos! Realising the actual situation one feels like a TV without any cable connection has been given to them. They can turn it on but watch nothing.

Even though it is essential for government offices to be disabled friendly, but almost all of them sparing a few are not. How is it possible for a person on crutches or wheel-chair to reach the office he works in if it does not has a ramp? How is a student with a wheel-chair supposed to climb 12 steps to reach his classroom? Our schools, our universities, courts, secretariats and all other public places, none are disabled friendly.

Talking to a SSA (Sarv Sikhsha Abhiyan) personal about the necessary infrastructure and building requirements for Schools it came to light that for every new building it is mandatory to have a ramp and for the construction of same SSA provides a separate budget of 6000 rupees. Visiting a number of Middle, High and Higher Secondary Schools one is amazed to say that only one out of 20 schools have a ramp. Most of the schools and classes are inaccessible for the disabled, be it Government or be it Private School.

In-case if a school does have a ramp it won’t have any other facility for a disabled person like Disable friendly bathroom or classes. Almost all the Government schools especially Middle Schools don’t have benches or chairs to sit on, they just have mattings. Same is with the private schools, where benches are not feasible for the disabled students.

Every morning wearing a prosthetic leg and then starting the journey to her school, she has to hire an auto-rickshaw to her school, the matadors are too high to get into without any support, and the conductors too impolite to help her out. Private vehicle is their only way out.

Even the Universities are not disabled friendly. Education Institutions aside, the employers, the offices have the same sardonic story for the disabled. Almost all the Government offices, sparing a few, don’t have any ramps or any kind of aid for disabled employees (if any) to reach the premises or their place of work.

An employee suffering from polio and walking on sticks has to climb on to the first floor to reach his office; his only aides are his colleagues and his stick. Similarly an employee has to walk-in to his office without any ramps and a small door that even normal people find hard to enter.

“Yes, I do have a good job, but it is very hard to enter my office and sometimes I have to seek the help of other. But now I am used to it and it is a lot easier with my Scooter(Tri-wheeled) to travel and live my life normally” says the post-office employee.

Socially deprived and neglected, they themselves have now accepted this condition of theirs as a God-given problem without any solution. Most of the disabled people are depressed and have lost the spark mandatory to live a good and sound life. They live in recluse, away from the normal world. They are “others”

“Don’t show them pity and sympathy, they need encouragement and empathy instead” says Prof Bali, Chairman of a Special School for Disabled. “Most of them are willing and capable of working, but most of us are neither willing nor capable of employing them” he added. The lack of proper work environment and infrastructure create a physical barrier for them, on top of it the mentality and narrow-mindedness of non-disabled people in sharing their work-space or class-room seat with them creates a bigger and grimmer psychological barrier.

“People are insensitive towards us. We just want to be treated normal and accepted as we are.”

Apart from physical disabilities the mental disabilities are a graver matter of concern. These people are treated with a sense of disdain and alien-ness. Even-though there are several rehabilitation centers in our country

The plight is really miserable in the rural areas, where there are no rehabilitation or care centers for disabled people. The people unaware of their medical conditions just term them ‘pagal’(mad/mental), and maintain a distance from them. These ill-fated children are not allowed to join the normal schools. Despite the Indian government’s slogan of Inclusive Education, almost all the schools in the valley don’t have any such provision. All of our work-spaces, public or private, all our psychics and mind-setup go against these people.

A lot of them work and are far better than the so called normal people. Nick Vujicic, a Quadra-amputee(without arms and legs), who is one among the world’s foremost motivational and inspirational speaker says, “I don’t have arms, I don’t have legs, but I have a will that makes me live, and in fact live better than those who have what I lack.” He speaks to bring people out of depression and motivates them to lead a happy depression-free life.

India needs to develop keeping in mind the requirement of these people also so that ours can be one society with equal rights and opportunities for them also, and not only opportunities but also disabled friendly buildings, work-spaces and schools for them.

©fidoic 2012-13

The Indian Comedy.

Indians are very good at developing and adapting new things. Now a days they have developed a new capability, the capability to laugh on those things on which usually one should cry. The time has changed but the scene is still. India has emerged as one of the biggest global powers. It has developed a good physique but on the same time developed many diseases, unknown, undiagnosed, although curable, but still undetected by the doctor. The symptoms have surfaced but we are such ignorant lot, that we don’t care about them. If left untreated, the day will soon come when these diseases will enter the last stage, and then we in-addition to be ignorant will also be helpless.

The country with the largest youth pool is under the rule of the age group, which by now should sit and enjoy the benefits of Senior Citizenship. Ever now and then, the headlines of the newspaper or the highlights of the news channels talk about Corruption and swindles. The only thing common in them is their political back and link. The other thing common is the spectators, who never change, sit back and watch, have a light laugh, then get back to what they were doing.

From last two years, there is a lot of fuss about corruption and scams. They have become a part of our daily life. From the morning bed tea, to the good nigh kiss, we either get corrupted or corrupt somebody. Being unaware from all this is the height of our ignorance. A citizen has lost Rs 5000 as a result of scam. Yeah, that sounds very small, but when multiplied with the 1.21 billion population of our country its sums up to “only 3 scams.”

It is indeed high time for youth to rise and get counted. Although, Mahatma Gandhi once said, that students should not involve in politics, but it was back then, when 2G and Coal scam were not known. But, first we have to redefine ‘youth’, because a person in mid forties having two children, is considered youth, and then we have a young CM.

We have been laughing all the while enjoying movies in which political people are portrayed criminals and villains. We like such movies and comedy channels who critic the politicians. But when it come out of reel life into our real life, we sit back and clap, waiting for a superman, or better Shaktiman to come, with laser in his eyes and punish the bad. The power we have, the power of vote, we underestimate it, being slapped in the face by the person and then again electing him to slap us, is the misuse of this power.

We have discussed all such problems repeatedly, but never come to a suitable solution. Its high time that, we revise our civics books and consider a chapter on the powers, eligibility and the process of choosing a MLA, a MP, A Minister and all such politicians. The older criteria for the politician was being criminal, or trying to be one. But jokes apart, we need a change, which we ourselves have to bring around.

The great Indian question is…. “agey kuan pichey khai.. vote kisko dein bhai”

Directionless society.

“Papa see there, an accident happened to them. Shut up and move, we have to go home, I am tired.”This is the type of reaction most of us have, we do not care or we pretend to be over smart. Either we are afraid to handle such things or we are selfish.

Social is the only word that separates us from animals and this is the only responsibility that we are abstaining from. We are civilized yet uncivic, concerned yet careless, calm yet violent, community yet individual.

It is hard to define society but according to dictionary meaning society is the sum of human conditions and activity regarded as a whole functioning interdependently. Or in simple words living in organised community. But being in an organised community does not mean being interdependent for physical needs only. It is a complex mixture of emotions, psychology, mentality spirituality and then physically. The complexity arises when we have to define the terms emotions, psychology and spirituality and that too in context to a society. When we are attached to the whole of the society and not only to our friends and to relatives in a way such that their grief is our grief and their gratitude is our gratitude, we become emotionally and mentally and psychology attached to the whole of the society. Spirituality, in reference to society means selflessness in selfishness. The means of acquiring structured goods in exchange to it or money is trade not interdependence of society.

In practice these days we are confined to trade with others and depend only for physical needs. All other aspects are confined to our family and friends. We won’t care for any other being, we don’t help the needful unknown to us, we are not bothered if there is an accident or somebody is fighting with somebody or if an underprivileged is in need. We have become extremely selfish.

Being in a democratic, secular, civilized form of government, we are non-secular and non-democratic. The society is wholly solely divided of the basis on caste, creed, region language, sex. And a new division of rich and poor is blooming up. We are practicing the ancient traditions of untouchibility, female foeticide, low morale and living standards of girl child if allowed to live. Crime is at all time high. Murders, robbery, drug peddling, rapes and several other make it to headlines daily. Nudity and sexuality have become the new trends in our society. Adolescence and teenage criminals are increasing. Media and press are making mocks on society. The youth is directionless, griped in drugs and erotica. The parents are busy in their lives. Everyone is selfish wanting more for himself at the cost of others. Universal brotherhood has shrunken to words. Terrorism and militancy are at its peak. Corruption is a parasite. Illiteracy adding in, poverty joining hands and inhumanity boosting up. It is a state of complete haphazardness.

Moral boosting is a must. Religious and educated people are the backbone of our society. They are the one due to whom this word exists. Every religion teaches us oneness and tells us to perform service to humanity. The society is too be a social, civic, law abiding, rights following, humanity seeking, morally upright, secular and a single unit. These elements are missing from our society. There are several taboos that are to be followed. Our children are exposed to nudity at the birth itself with TV, movies, banners all flooding with ambassadors wearing as much less clothes as possible. Usage of drugs by movie actors in pictures has a great effect on our youth, who have them as their role models.

It is a high time to invent ideas to deal with the moral problems of society. All other issues are a offshoots of moral disorder. The administrators are to play an important role. The sensor board should think with brains and not money. The commoners are to participate in all these enactments and use the right acts to macerate such evils of society.

 

Iblis-e-Corruption

“Hey, son do your homework and I will buy you a chocolate and if you get more than 90% marks you will get a brand new bike”. Therefore, the corruption starts from our homes itself. Teaching our lads to do work in exchange to something develops their taste for corruption. Moreover, as said “Bad Habits Die hard” corruption is rooted in our veins.

It is not easy to define corruption. But in a narrow sense, corruption is mostly concerned with bribery and it takes several forms. Corruption is a global phenomenon and it is omnipresent. Corruption has progressively increased and is now rampant in our society.

These days the word corruption has become of household use and so has become its practice. Starting from our bed tea to our good night kiss we either become corrupt or make corrupt. But jokes apart, it is a disease created by us eating us.

Present scenarios of our country show more than 18% people are involved in firsthand corruption, according a report. But it seems that this report too is corrupt. The revealing of the 2-G Spectrum Scam, the Common Wealth Games Scam, the Adarsh Society Scam and The S-Band Spectrum Scam etc are few to name supports this. These multi crore swindles account 2 lakh rupees to every Indian family. These have created a vacuum of transparency and a big question mark on the functioning of democracy in India.

The authorities involved are hi-end administrators, ministers and businesspersons. It’s hard to know that the law creators are the law breakers. People find it hard to find where and whom to complain for such miscreants. The vigilance department has been found corrupt numbers of times, the anti corruption teams take bribes, and the people are happy paying it. The processes are so complicated or rather made complicated that the commoners find it hard to complete them. They take the easy way around, pay the cost and get the work done.

The recent day protests by Mr Anna hazare, Baba Ramdev and Mr Arvind Kejriwal have mutated the commoners from slumbers of ignorance to gestures of activity. The people are getting angrier day by day, equipping themselves by means they never had and then starting a rampage against corruption, without knowing that they are the sole cause of corruption.

Media has to provide credible information, play a positive role of investigative and analytical institution, and play an educational role too.The press and the news television, despite their tendency to hype and sensationalise had exposed a number of scams. The government had acquired a habit of covering up scams, something even the founder of the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks, Jullian Assange, had pointed out and this must be broken.

The need of the hour is not to reveal assets by government employs or Civil Servants or protesters but to nip this evil in the bud. It is said, “If everyone cleans the road outside his house the whole of the world will get cleaner.”

Foolproof laws should be made so that there is no room for discretion for politicians and bureaucrats. The role of the politician should be minimized. Application of the evolved policies should be left in the hands of independent commission or authority in each area of public interest. Decision of the commission or authority should be challengeable only in the courts. Cooperation of the people has to be obtained for successfully containing corruption. People should have a right to recall the elected representatives if they see them becoming indifferent.
Responsiveness, accountability and transparency are a must for a clean system. Bureaucracy, the backbone of good governance, should be made more citizen friendly, accountable, ethical and transparent. More and more courts should be opened for speedy & inexpensive justice so that cases don’t linger in courts for years and justice is delivered on time.
Local bodies, Independent of the government, like Lokpals, Lokadalats, CVCs and Vigilance Commissions should be formed to provide speedy justice with low expenses.

The working together of activists, protesters like Anna hazare, Ramdev, governments and commoners can and will lead to a minimal corrupt India. Corruption is a global problem that all countries of the world have to confront, solutions, however, can only be home grown. We have tolerated corruption for so long. The time has now come to root it out from its roots.