It is hard trying to find a traditional person nowadays. Everyone, especially teenagers, have their staple clothes as shirts, jeans, and crops(except for weddings), all prefer their hair loose, most of them adopt an accent(even if they don’t hail from a foreign country); Its all too common. It is a surprising element to see that in a culture and heritage as rich as a country like India, people who are ‘westernized’ are more popular. Everyone finds it cooler to look like foreign aliens. I simply cannot understand why!
My own life story is a good example of this increasing ‘westernization’. For approximately 10 years, I lived in various parts of the U.S.A and every place I went, I was unique. I was an Indian. Indians were given great regard due to their intellectual abilities. Every place I went to, I carried pride. I was Indian by blood and heart. Although I enjoyed the company of my American and Mexican friends, I yearned to be in my motherland. A place where I would not be an alien. A place where I could talk freely in my mother tongue, Tamil. I thought that I could love that place. As I was young, it felt good. Now I know that my move from the U.S to India was one of the milestones of unluckiness in my life. I entered my school in 5th grade. Thanks to my thick accent, I found a few people who found it fancy to have a foreign friend. Soon, Hell broke loose. I was exposed to the darker side of the story – partial, cryptographic meanings in words, ‘bad words’. Being the sensitive person I was (and still am), I didn’t want to open up about my feelings for fear of them getting hurt nor could I beget the injustice happening. I carried it along with me.
The very next academic year, thanks to my lucky stars (or so I thought) I finally shifted me to a school in Airoli, Navi Mumbai. Looking back now, I can’t believe I survived through that phase of life. Mumbai was mainly dependent on Hindi for communication. So, as part of our curriculum, Hindi was a mandatory subject. I, however, had a disadvantage- I didn’t comprehend Hindi while everyone was quite fluent in it. Due to this very reason, I continuously received taunts (I have many Hindi-speaking friends in Chennai, not once have they been teased for not knowing Tamil).
Same way, I returned to Chennai, with the hopes that my joy will increase. Now, three years later, I am hopeless. Fed-up. This time, I met many jerks I still couldn’t understand.
Many of my own present classmates love listening to American and English musicians. To be honest, I do too. What mystifies me is that nobody now listens to ‘ Indian music’! They easily classify it as ‘boring’! The talents of our singers are going unheard! The intensity of the music is unsurpassed, then why? Why do they make Indians feel like foreigners in their own country?
Is it wrong to be an Indian? Or should you be an American or English singer to showcase your talents?
A single person like me, can’t change the whole nation. I can only bring out the true story. Tell you the pros and cons. But the rest is in your hands. India should be India. We should be Trend-setters, not followers.