Happy Independence Day to Ya All Ladies and Gentlemen.
Hope each of us did think about our forefathers who struggled for independence, sang a couple of patriotic songs, watched some patriotic stuff on TVs which compete for TRPs, attended flag hoisting ceremony and ate sweets!!!
I was going to my office the day before yesterday. At a traffic signal, a shabbily dressed, hairs ruffled, cute kid aged about 4 came to me. She was carrying a board with the about 20 tricolor brooches pinned to them and a bundle of plastic tricolor flags; coaxing me to buy. She was so young that she was not even able to talk properly. She told the flag just cost 3 Rs in her innocent baby talk. I started a conversation with her. I tried Hindi and then Kannada.
"Don't you go to school?"
"Yes, I do"
"Are you not going to school today?"
"Its a holiday" (It was Thursday and there were no school holidays. I doubt if she ever saw a school)
I searched for some coins in my bag and gave her 4 Rs and bought a flag. She didn't seem to know math good enough to know she has to return me a rupee. The auto rickshaw driver asked her how much was it? Was it not Rs 2? She told it was 3 Rs. He asked for the change. I said it was OK and let her have it. And asked her -
"Do you know what this flag is?"
She was clueless and kept looking at me. The signal was about to clear and I told her to go. The flag is adorning my cubicle at office.
The parents of that girl have sent her to sell the goodies on the heavily crowded road knowing the psychology of people well. They would of course buy from that cute little girl. The girl was tender, her speech not developed well enough for her to sell things!!
We have attained independence. But have we really?