My Dear Child,
Do you recognize me? I guess not. You, who left me behind and went far beyond the seas in search of distant lands, might have forgotten me in the course of time and culture. But even if you locked yourself in glass palaces, I may have taken a little place in your rotten memories. Or you might have thought about me when you read the newspaper while you sat on your comfortable couch.
I see you craving to find crispy headlines and atrocities that are taking place in your homeland, India. Then you say with a sneer that we Indians should learn from the developed countries. At least for that moment, a thought about me might have driven past your mind. Yes, it is me, who witnessed each step and each breath that you have ever taken, your own mother, ‘India’.
Have you ever thought about the deep wounds aching inside me? Do you know the bitterness of the unbearable pain I had to suffer when my own children betrayed me? Do you know who is responsible for all these? I am writing this letter to let you know about the untold pain inside my heart. Please don’t consider this as a complaint letter. It is just to open your eyes towards reality.
‘Independence,’ which was gained by the bloodshed and sufferings of many people, has become a mere toy in the hands of everyone, including you! Week in, week out, I see violent parties in different colors, holding weapons and trying to kill their own brothers. Have you heard about the horrifying incidents of rape, child labour, theft, and murder that occur in India every single day? You may have been a part of all these directly or indirectly.
When you bribe others you see the great name of India and the picture of Mahatma Gandhi in the currency. Doesn’t it hurt your conscience even a tiny little bit? Or has your heart become stone cold? When you cut and pierce me through in the name of industrialization, and build huge buildings that touch the sky, have you ever tried to hear the mourning of millions of downtrodden people in the slums? You, who once boasted about the richness of Indian culture and heritage, are now moving in the path of fast food culture and westernization! Now, the art forms of India seem like a clownish act to you that are only constricted to idiot boxes.
You may be bored by the usual tales but let me say this with conviction…When you were born, when you wrote the first letter in my soil when you wore the attires of freedom fighters and sang patriotic songs out loud on August 15, when you talked a lot about the greatness of India in speech competitions when you assured the interview panel about your dream to contribute for India’s development, I was looking at you with happiness and beamed with pride.
I had an ardent faith that you were capable of healing my wounds. But one day, you flew away, trampling your parents to the darkness of old age home. You did come back after long years, not as an Indian, but as a complete foreigner. You blamed the crowd, heat, and the slums in India. You, who now use an amazing array of perfumes, cannot withstand the dirt and the soil of your mother land. I see you presenting your experiences in foreign countries with an air of pride to others here. But when you are in a foreign country, you are ashamed to say that you are an Indian. Ironically, you never miss a chance to grab the considerations and subsidies given to Indian citizens. After getting all the benefits from your motherland, you prepare yourself to fly back again to an alien land.
Even in these hours of darkness, I expect a new morning. A new morning filled with light and hope. I can’t stop myself from loving you. It will always be like this. I strongly believe that you can save me. I am waiting for your return.