Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Anna and spontaneous protest

At my neighbourhood market in Delhi:
 The protest against the denial of the right to protest builds up. It began when a group of persons holding candles and shouting pro-Anna and anti-corruption slogans came in a procession and entered the market square.
PS: Notice the 'Citizen First' board. Ironical?
Quickly, the group swelled. The late evening shoppers, the momo munchers, the pani-puri poppers joined them. There was the aunty, the uncle, the dude, the dudette, the bhaiya and the bhenji. One aunty stepped on to a cement platform and urged the gathering to come out in support for Anna. "Act NOW!"  she urged. A dude took over. There was some slogan shouting. 
They lit the candles. The little platform was soon ablaze. It was a fire of protest againt a system that was throttling free expression.  The last time I had seen candles on the platform was during Diwali, put up by the shopkeepers in celebration. But today, the candles were an Indian's expression that all was not right with her/his world.  The news of the government deciding to release Anna came in. But the people did not go away. Instead they decided to gather there every day at the same time and continue their struggle.
And the little flames that flickered seemed to be saying: "Let there be light. Let us lift the darkness, the cover of corruption from Indian life..."
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