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London Dreams of Anna Hazare

Travelling by London's vast and efficient network of underground trains may be a comfortable experience, but it's not a natural thing to do. So says the American-born artist Daria Martin.

world Updated: Aug 30, 2011 23:17 IST

Travelling by London's vast and efficient network of underground trains may be a comfortable experience, but it's not a natural thing to do. So says the American-born artist Daria Martin.

Most commuters tend to let their minds slip into other states in order not to think about what they are doing - i.e. travelling in a very long and dark underground tunnel. And they daydream. What are their daydreams about? Martin has partnered the Jubilee line - one of the dozen-odd lines serving the London underground system - to find out. The Daydream Survey - the result of forms filled in by commuters in Jubilee Line stations - shows that most people dream about being in a happier place (overground naturally).

As the train hurtles from station to station, Londoners are dreaming about the mountains of New Zealand, a warm bed somewhere, getting married, Spain, butterflies, bicycles, birds, girls, men ("I love them and they make me happy"), being Roger Federer, playing with Barbie dolls, lying in a big garden filled with white lilies, dancing in unison, playing the guitar with Brian May, and the extremely odd "me and my dad hanging out with 50 Cent."

And then there's the one that caught my eye at Bond Street station. It was on a black-and-white Daydream poster: "I dream about being back in India. I miss my home country."

Last week, some 200 Indian supporters of Anna Hazare marched from the British parliament to the Indian High Commission in central London. Most of them are either studying in London or working as 'highly-skilled' migrants.

I asked them what their dreams were of India. And this is what they said:

"People's freedom" - Bipin Kurian.

"Change. We've had enough. Otherwise why are we marching here? Give ordinary Indians the help to start up small businesses" - Somasekhar R. Gowda.

"A clean government. We honour the Constitution, but does the Constitution permit corruption?" - Naveen Sankighatta.

"Anyone who is corrupt should be put behind the bars" - Chandra Parihar (who wore a handcuff).

"A corruption-free India on the world stage" - Ravi Jakhodia.

"Opportunities: I had the opportunity to come to London. But what about the millions of Indians who don't? - Anshuman Mor.