For those hoping that India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi would more perceptibly shift towards the development plank rather than the religio-doctrinal 'Hindutva' plank, the New Year came with an encouragement. With the five states including Uttar Pradesh (UP), the most populous one in the country, going to provincial polls, the analysts were eagerly watching for any sign of such a shift.
Recently I had an opportunity to be present at a program in Israel where seasoned female diplomats from Israel and abroad were the key speakers. Drawing on their experiences, they spoke about the challenges of being a professional in the field historically classified as a man’s job.
I still remember my initial days when my husband and daughter used to discourage me. They let me feel that what I was doing was a low profile job. I had clearly told them that I was proud of my job as I have to deal with educated people.
As far back as I can remember, whenever my semester report card came out, I would always proudly show it to my dad. He would smile lightly, congratulate me on a job well done and then warn me that I would need to study even more next semester to keep progressing. While he was certainly correct, I definitely felt that I coasted through most of high school.
We fought the system, the governance, challenged the system by putting self-made amateur cricket careers on the line and still nothing has changed. Everyone appears to know the cure here yet no one even vaguely attempts to address the disease.
I might sound insane but I cherished those blinking seconds of past 12 hours observing the state which was nearly divided by the political and religious earthquakes had now united against the natural earthquake.
Behind that shiny glass of a Volkswagen, a handsome face popped out. Seconds later a can of Coke was hurled out of the car’s window down to a nearby footpath. The man must have been quite rich, obviously because he drives a Volkswagen, and from what I could notice, he looked educated as well. And my imaginative head took him up as the kind of rich and educated man who keeps complaining about our government and lashes out on Nepali leaders for ruining the nation.
As Bihar becomes the fifth state in India after Kerala, Manipur, Nagaland and Gujarat to implement total prohibition on drinking, there is a daily hide and seek being played out in the bordering districts between those used to drinking and authorities who are up to the task to ensure that they don’t.