Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Of Tacit Denouncement

Barkha Dutt is somebody I look up to, and this moving piece of hers asks some hard questions of us (link courtesy Uma of IndianWriting). Excerpts below, on why help to the quake-ridden Kashmir was dismal:

Disaster fatigue, said most...But was the truth just a little more akward ? Is it simply, because it was Kashmir ? ... First there's terrorism... But there's another unspoken reason...Many people privately argue that they just can't be bothered about a people whose loyalty to India they question...

This is, of course, true. The amount of help mounted by civilians and corporates for the tsunami - be it in labour, money or prayers - was immense. There is none of the same urgency for Kashmir. As the above article says, it is almost as if the earthquake happened in some other desolate part of the world.

I often wonder why people behave the way they do - I mean, is there some defective part in their brain or something, that makes people beat up their spouses, rape and rob, be racist, condone vicious acts like Sati, child marriage and female infanticide? I wonder...(especially on comments like these in response to Dilip's wonderful post)

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