The Civil Indian


We the common yet privileged people of this great country called India, often ask each other a pertinent question,

“We are ordinary citizens. What can we do for this country?”.

Well, before we ask each other this rather romantic question let us first introspect for a moment and ask ourselves the following much easier questions:

Are we segregating our house waste?

Do we break traffic signals and drive rashly?

Do we jaywalk on roads?

Do we throw waste onto public spaces?

Do we allow an ambulance to pass conveniently in peak traffic?

Do we park our cars in no parking zones?

This list could be endless.

Thus, a few more questions emerge:

Are we doing the above right?

Do we expect others to do the above right while not doing it ourselves?

If all of us do the above right, will it not solve many of the problems of this country?

Most importantly who or what is stopping us from doing the above things right?

Fact is, that the politicians, police and civil servants did not come out of thin air. They are one of us. Hence, before we exercise our right to criticize them for their “Chalta hain” (everything is okay) attitude, let us first delve deep within and ask ourselves, “Are we guilty of the same?”.

Funnily, the above questions do not demand an extreme sacrifice from our end. Just the need to be more civil. Is that a big ask?

Before we solve the much graver issues of the world, country and economy sitting in the comfort of our AC living rooms over a peg of whiskey or a cup of coffee, can we first deal with the much smaller issues directly concerning us.

Before we call upon the right, left or centre leaning concerned citizen within us, can we first call upon just the “citizen” and ask him to be accountable?

Finally, next time we are in a public space, can we be more observant of our own behavior and thereby help in making this country great?

Jai Hind! Vande Mataram!

Happy Independence Day!

Please note: I am not an outsider I am one of you. And yes, mistakes are mistakes unless done purposefully.

6 Thoughts

  1. There is so much written “between the lines” but living in a different culture I don’t understand it all. But I don’t think it is completely different here, perhaps different scales certainly. But there is inequality here, there are people here who think themselves above others also. But I have seen that all over the world – perhaps no matter where we are, we are not yet where we want to be – but we are all trying to do our best to keep improving not just ourselves but our communities.

  2. Part of me agrees and I follow most, if not all the rules. Not only that i ask others to do so as well. The question however is – Who is making us break these rules? Unfortunately, these questions apply only to the educated middle class taxpayers. People walk on the road because no footpath or they are encroached, in fact there are no roads. Poor infrastructure pushing people to break traffic rules…In fact everything around us is a result of poor governance. Taxpayer volunteer in multiple ways to make things better while the policy makers enjoys public money.

    1. I agree with you. In India, a lot of things are caught up in a vicious circle, because we are still struggling for basics. Corruption is rampant and it penetrates into every strata of society. It is a reality , that we cannot just discard and yes, we should raise our voice against all these malpractices. It is our duty as citizens.
      But my intent with sharing this thought, was to introspect. Mind you, if you are a dutiful citizen, then you are not part of this problem…😊. But i include myself within this realm, which is why i have used the word “we” because in the past, i too have been guilty of breaking rules. The question is, if i am part of the problem, then how can i be part of the solution, without first changing myself? How can i solve the bigger issues, if i don’t even make the effort to segregate my house waste? Am i being a hypocrite, by just talking and doing nothing?

  3. Well written Sid. Don’t thing anybody would disagree, yet we do things our way, and try to justify our wrong doings. I m hopeful ppl will learn. Jai Hind!

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