The exhibition is on at the India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road, Delhi from 1st to 31st March 2015
Elections Delhi 2015 concluded yesterday, the results declared, swearing in, on the 14 of Feb, a year after Arvind Kejriwal resigned after 49 days of assuming power. AAP got 65 per cent of the vote of the urban poor according to CSDS post poll survey, BJP got 23%. This could well be the difference which led to the decimation of BJP and made AAP the winners. Last few weeks I have been visiting slums in Delhi, living conditions are pathetic. Unauthorised colonies are no better. Complete lack of infrastructure, no sewerage system, no water, young kids, mostly girls ferrying water from tankers parked near their colonies.These areas are very close to the posh colonies which have all the facilities one can think of in a developing Capital city. AAP has rekindled hope in the residents, somebody is finally talking about their issues. Long time back Indira Gandhi, raised the slogan “Garibi Hatao” electoral gains were massive for Congress, not much difference in the lives of the voters. Aam Admi Party talking about Bijli and pani for them now, they seem to be moving towards AAP, hope it works this time.
I don’t want to sound like a Leftist which seems to have become a bad word now but one has to strike a balance somewhere. The disparities are widening everyday, in a democratic society, on a voting day, all of us have the same power. I am deliberately not mentioning the minorities, Delhi has voted unitedly. The Hindu Godmen and Imams who tried to confuse us in the name of religion failed. The Ganga Jamuni tehzeeb of Delhi survives and thrives. Kuch baaat hai ki hasti mitati nahin humari ……
Copyright of Photographs, Prerna Jain All rights reserved worldwide
Children supporting the three main political parties in Delhi elections, AAP, BJP and Congress. None of these kids are eligible to vote, all under 18 years of age. The most excited were the AAP Party supporters, all of them came to me shook hands and sang 5 saal Kejriwal. The BJP supporters sounded happy, the kids supporting Congress seemed to have given up. I am sure all of them have seen the opinion polls.
This is what God is supposed to do-
Neel gagan par baithe, kab tak chaand-sitaaron se jhaankoge,
Parvat kee oonchee chotee se kab tak duniya ko dekhoge,
Aadarshon ke band granthon mein kab tak aaraam karoge,
Meraa chhappar tapak rahaa hai bankar sooraj isse sukhaao,
khaalee hai aate ke kanastar bankar gehoon ismein aao,
Maa ka chashmaa toot gayaa hai bankar sheeshaa isse banaao,
Chup-chup hain aangan mein bachche bankar geind inhein bahlaao,
Shaam hui hai chaand ugaao perh hilaao havaa chalaao,
Kaam bahut hain haath bataao Allah miyaan
mere ghar bhee aa hee jaao Alaah miyaan……..Nida Fazli
A faceless, voiceless Indian woman from an unknown village or city died in Singapore tonight. All we know about her is that her parents sold their land to finance her studies. Usually in murder cases the mystery to be solved is who killed her but in this case we need an answer for how many are responsible for her killing.
She escaped death in her mother’s womb – she could have easily been one of the thousands of girls killed because they are girls, no other reason needed. She survived death after seeing the light outside her mother’s womb, people call it female infanticide. As she grew up her mother kept an eye on her to save her from the evil eye of relatives and friends who could have harmed her emotionally and physically. She survived. He father sold land to finance her education, he wanted her to stand on her own two feet and live respectfully. She came to Delhi, she followed all norms forced on her by the society, she didn’t wear ” provocative”clothes, she was outside the house at a “civilized” hour, she was accompanied by a male friend and she was traveling in a public transport. Yet she was raped and killed brutally.
There is a long list of people who murdered not just her but also all the other girls who have died unknown deaths due to sexual assault and gender based discrimination. The doctor who performs foeticide; husbands and in laws who force mothers to kill their own babies; the soul keepers of the society who expect girls to make sure they don’t get raped instead of telling their sons to not rape; laws, lawyers and judges who provide loop holes to the rapists; politicians who accuse the victim instead of culprit.
ON one of the days last week, Parliament was about to be suspended yet again because the BJP had sent its members into the well of the house for another round of tumult and hullabaloo. They were protesting against the corruption scam, popularly known as “Coalgate”, I tuned into Lok Sabha TV.
Instead of the regular ” Baith Jaiye” in her high pitched voice, Lok Sabha speaker Ms Meera Kumar was saying, all those in favour say “Aye”, a few voices said “Aye” and she proclaimed, the “Ayes have it”, the “Ayes have it”. It happened a few times. All this while there was a very distinct background music going on, the lyrics were- ” Istifa do, Istifa do, Pradhanmantri Istifa do” and “Koyle ki dalali main, poori Congress kaali hai”. All these lines were in different tunes but it wasn’t unpleasant. After watching this for a few minutes, I changed the channel and went on to the next most interesting programme on the telly, news analysis on the 24×7 news channels. A very intelligent looking analyst was saying ‘Indian taxpayers lose Rs 2 crore a day when Parliament doesn’t work.
Nothing much has happened in the Parliament in the Monsoon session, it looks like a complete wastage of time and money of the taxpayer. We had seen a similar drama by Congress MPs during the NDA regime, the scam was then called “Coffingate”. This could very well be repeated in the next Lok Sabha and the one after that and the one after that by a different name.
The criteria for selecting candidates for elections are, potential for winning, money power and muscle power. After watching this drama, shouldn’t we focus on the strength of vocal cords and the sense of music as well? Candidates with a sense of music should be given preference over the ones who bore people with the same old tunes. The slogans used to disrupt the Houses of Parliament will be pleasant to the ears and popular. The help of writers should be taken to write new, interesting slogans everyday. People would look forward to disruptions so that they can enjoy good revolutionary music and poetry.
The halls of the Parliament houses are lying vacant, they could be used to conduct reality shows to select the best candidates for disrupting the houses of Parliament. Imagine some reality show like “Indian Idol”, could be renamed “Indian MP”. If Anu Malik would be judging the show one could have a writer for free, his “poor self made shers” could be hit with the public who have survived him for so many seasons of “Indian Idol”. CDs and DVDs of this show could be launched and Lok Sabha TV could generate some revenue by commercials and the loss of 2 crores a day would hurt less.
It is just a beginning, our temple of democracy could be used for much more, our politicians and bureaucrats can even demand commission in the prize money, some may demand reservations for the downtrodden and the minorities. Some brainstorming would be needed to make it viable but don’t think Parliament disruptions would be bad commerce.