“Let’s wake up,” read the email subject. It was a call to Indians to rally against the recent horror in Mumbai.
About 200 Delhiites did wake up on Wednesday, gathering at Jantar Mantar to express their solidarity. Candles were burned, slogans shouted, songs sung.
While frenzied cries of “we want action” rang in the air, someone began singing the National Anthem. Chests puffed up instantly, some even blowing out the candles in their hands to stand in attention. It was a great sight to see, and at that moment, standing there with my friends, I was proud to be part of the moment.
There was a lot of anger, mainly towards politicians, with people shouting “up with citizens, down with politicians.”
“Remove ‘Z’ security from leaders who do not need it,” “We want honest leaders, not corrupt ones,” read some of the banners.
Amid all the rage, and even hatred, towards the country’s decision makers, a teenager knew just where the blame lay. “We are the voice of India, it is us who need to rise. We can’t blame others, we are the culprits. We need to change, make a difference,” said Abhinav Gulhar, a 19-year-old student from Jaypee University in Shimla.
This government, this horror can only be stopped when youngsters stand up, agreed Hemant Trivedi, 26.
The people who arranged this meeting were not part of any organisation, just a bunch of citizens with good intentions. “We are just a couple of friends who got together for this. When we saw people dying, the pain was here,” said 30-year-old Sudhakar Sharan, stabbing at his heart.
Faces, mostly young ones, glowed, all listening attentively to one of the organisers who asked the gathering to take the ‘movement’ forward.
Then the crowd started asking how future meetings could be organised. There were suggestions of exchanging emails, phone numbers, even meeting at the same spot every Saturday. A voice was heard saying, “Please log in to www.yuwa.in it stands for Youth for United World Action.” “As long as it doesn’t become affiliated with a political party,” quipped a young woman.
“I think the authorities, politicians have stretched out patience, they have mistaken our resilience for weakness and that is intolerable. I feel offended that things have fallen to such a level that we are unsafe in our own country,” said Deepak Kapoor, Managing Director of a biotech company.
Like the email read, let us become the beginning of Change for India. And let us start by making a personal commitment for this Change.