Oh My Beloved India, Where Are You?

Dear India,
 
Where are you?
 
I know its not like I look for you everyday. In my defense I am pretty busy looking for my survival till tomorrow. But tomorrow is one of those two days in the year when I do try and look for you.
 
Oh My Beloved India, Where are you?
 
I looked around me but I couldnt find you, you couldnt possibly be in one of those potholes on the street or one of those garbage bins overflowing where small kids were trying to find some food in it. No, we wouldnt keep you there. We have too much respect for you.
 
Oh my Beloved India, Where are you?
 
So I decided to get out and look for you elsewhere. Surely in such a large place, I would find you somewhere. The Capital of India, thats where I would find you, I thought. But with the amount of pollution, smog and smoke it was hard to see you. We wouldnt want you to be in a place where your lungs are destroyed with every breath you take. Worry about your health, we surely do.
 
Oh My Beloved India, Where are you?
 
Maybe you are sitting somewhere in the Northern States of Haryana or Uttar Pradesh. Enjoying the peace and tranquility that our Temples and Gods provide. But when I looked there all I could see was women being raped on the streets and stones being thrown at school going kids, as the people painted their religions over each others. Ofcourse, thats not a place which would provide a solace to you.
 
Oh My Beloved India, Where are you?
 
Perhaps you are in the North Eastern States. They are known for their culture and diversity. But someone told me the people there dont look like me. They speak different than me and they eat things which I, maybe, wont. A place which we ourselves dont think of as our own, is not a place where I could even imagine to find you.
 
Oh My Beloved India, Where are you?
 
Kashmir !!! Thats where you would be. After all it is a heaven on earth. A God created paradise. Who wouldnt want to be there. But the pellet scarred faces of young children and women, with the youth throwing stones at the uniformed officers was such a terrifying visual. Nah, I think such an image would have scared even you.
 
Oh My Beloved India, Where are you?
 
I decided to look towards the west. Gujarat, Maharashtra and Rajasthan have always been on the crest. But I just saw malls being set on fire even as Farmers kept dying due to lack of food they themselves are supposed to grow for us. Surely this false sense of pride does not befit a place for you.
 
Oh My Beloved India, Where are you?
 
The south has always been beautiful. They have got Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and the God’s own country too. But all I could find there, was famine and mayhem with people fighting with each other, over the rivers that flow. If you were there they would have fought for claim over you too.
 
Oh My Beloved India, Where are you?
 
Tired, I came back. Exhausted I sat down. I had lost all my energy without moving a single mile. The vivid pictures of chaos, hunger and poverty made me feel depressed and cold. Are you feeling depressed and cold too?
 
Oh My Beloved India, Where are you?
 
A frail old woman, hunched with her age, wrapped in a torn saree approached me. She figured I was hungry and offered me some food. “Eat it Beta”, she told me, giving me what she had kept for herself. I told her I was not hungry, but that I was looking for you.
 
Oh My Beloved India, Where are you?
 
She insisted that I ate the food. I have many miles to go before I find you, she said. I offered her my jacket in return, to make her feel warm. She refused, saying, someone will snatch that away from her too. I looked deep into her eyes as she smiled back at me. And in her compassionate, loving eyes…..I saw you.
 
Oh My Beloved India, I finally found you.
 
Tomorrow will be the day when we will show everyone our might. We will lay down a red carpet for the world and cheer and clap. While women weep, children cry and the carpet stains with the blood of our own, we will put up a strong face of pretense and farce. You will lie there on some lonely street with your clothes tattered, your soul that we ourselves have ripped apart. But for the world we will have just one thing to say….
 
Oh My Beloved India, I am proud of you.
 
Yours Sincerely,
 
An Indian Still Looking for his India
 
Disclaimer: This letter is an attempt by me to find India, amongst its people, amongst its masses. If someone finds her, can you please let me know. I would love to meet her someday. #HappyRepublicDay

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