Bear has a few rules in our house concerning me.
- If I go out on the scooter, I need to call him so he knows when I’m leaving and where I’m going.
- When I wash my hair, I either have to blow dry it right away or not go outside/sit under a fan/sit in AC.
- If I’m already in a bad mood, I am not allowed to read any Indian News paper as it will put me in a worse mood.
Number three is the one I have a problem with. Mostly because even if I’m in a good mood, I generally will almost always find something that either upsets me, sickens me or just plain makes me mad.
Today I found one that just made me incredulous. For all of 5 seconds and then I answered all my own questions of disbelief.
What was the article you ask?
Digging Deeper into his “road rage” in today’s Pune Mirror. You can find it here.
The break down is this.
Mr. Anna Shinde says that he owns two gunthas of land on or near the Upper Crest housing scheme which was built near the Corinthian’s Club in Pune.
Mr. Shinde further stipulates that he has never been compensated for this land by the builder or the PMC when they built a road leading to the homes. Mr. Shinde says that he has approached both on many occasions in trying to gain his compensation.
When none was provided, Mr. Shinde hired a JCB machine, went to the site and dug up a ditch at the entrance to the Upper Crest homes making it impossible for the residents to enter by car or two-wheeler.
When the residents tried to stop and complain to Mr. Shinde, he told them to take it up with the builder and the PMC for not paying him for the land use.
Even when confronted with retired and elderly people who need to be driven to their door practically, he did not relent.
PMC and the Builder both stipulate that Mr. Shinde never approached them over the ten years it took for this project to complete and that he only recently approached them without enough and proper documentation proving his ownership. Nor did Mr. Shinde have demarcation documents for his plot.
Hmmm…the plot thickens. It also, in true India news style, ends there. No information for what will be done for the poor residents. No information on the laws about this. No references to previous such occasions and their repercussions. I would love it if the Indian news would start giving that kind of information in their reports…making the public aware of the laws could go a long way in curbing this kind of behavior…but I digress, that’s an entirely different blog post I think.
Either way, my first thought was this… “What was Mr. Shinde thinking?” (Here’s where you can insert the credulous voice).
If you’ll remember from a earlier post of mine “Wipro and Educational Initiatives Study shows troubling trend.” I had quoted this piece from the article…
Most troubling was that 67% of students feel that it is OK not to consider another persons inconvenience if it’s not done often, if the other person does not complain or if no perceived laws are broken.
This particular quote is telling. Especially when a parent in the article was quoted with this…
Parents cannot be blamed for everything going wrong in society. It is the friends’ circle and those are who committing violence who are disturbing children.
My argument has and will always be that children learn from what they see, hear and read.
Quite obviously Mr. Shinde is no longer a child, however his behavior exactly mimics those espoused by the 67% of children who believe that even if their actions inconvenience another person it’s of no consequence to them. As long as they don’t’ do it often.
Here’s where this logic fails. Go to Reliance on any busy shopping day. Try to keep your place in line. One person butts in front of you and you say nothing. That person is now done butting so it was a onetime occurrence for THEM. Now four more people butt in front of you. Once for them as well. Now five more butt in front of you. Also, once for them. They all had one experience while you had 10 experiences of inconvenience.
If everyone thought this way, we would all be in a world of hurt. It’s not sound logic and it shouldn’t be espoused as an excuse or reason or even something that’s allowed ONCE for anyone.
My second thought was this… “Why didn’t Mr. Shinde take his case to court? Or appeal to the public? Put up a hoarding? Call the local paper or news media?”
Indeed…why didn’t Mr. Shinde try to find ways other than inconveniencing the people living there? Why didn’t he think to himself “Why to punish these people who had nothing at all to do with it?”
And if I had been fresh in my stay of India, my thoughts and frustrations would have ended there.
However, living here now for three years I can now answer these questions with ease.
- Because he would have been inconvenienced (see number two).
- Because the court system here is atrocious and sluggish, taking years to give him any justice.
- Because the public might not have cared to help, they would have been unconcerned…it’s not their problem so why should they bother?
- Because harassing other’s gets better and faster results.
- Because one person yelling is insignificant next to many yelling.
- Because the rules of engagement in India are different then what I grew up with.
And really, I hate that each and every one of these answers is true.
Mr. Shinde or anyone for that matter, should be able to get due diligence here. They should be able to get the public concerned when it could be them in his shoes, the community should work together for the betterment of all.
But most times, that just isn’t the case. Mostly, people are more concerned with their own sphere of life and the only time they have for looking out for other’s is when it’s taking an interest in whatever society stigma they may be involved with.
It may be a long time coming till anyone can get the swift justice that they deserve. Good or bad.
In the mean time, we’ll open up the paper in the morning to read about some new action someone has taken to get their own brand of justice.
And soon…Bear is going to start a new rule
- No reading Indian Papers. Full stop.
©2012 Gori Rajkumari