On 15 August 2020, India celebrates its 73rd Independence Day. Well, that’s an equivalent of one average human life for our times. So, what’s the growth story and what does the future offer. Let’s look at a few issues.
Perhaps, there is enough freedom this Covid season for all to realise the bondage of a lockdown, a self quarantined life or the restriction on travel to malls, beaches, mountains or near and dear ones. Perhaps, an oppurtune time to reflect on what it means to be really free. A closer peep into the run up to Covid highlights the way we have surrendered our freedom and independence over time.
Stepping into my son’s genr’s boots may well be the right way to understand the import of all the trending hastags…
#metoo #blacklifematters #mainbhichowkidaar #saffron #MakeAmericaGreatAgain #YesWeCan #IceBucketChallenge #BreakTheInternet #ImWithHer #teaparty #ArabSpring #AnnaHazare #chanakya #japanesetsunami #recession #depression #corruption #rightwing #obama2012 #resist #impeachtrump #chowkidaarchorhai #brexit #jesuischarlie #bluewhale #chinesevirus #makeinindia #migration #unemployment #atmanirbharbharat #cbi4ssr 3savethe planet #gogreen #globalwarming
As we may well see that there is an underlying theme of freedom or independence in most of these hastags. The focus on individuality and individual value comes out strongly through most of these. In a sense, many get together to voice their feelings for an individual/an individual movement. All the under the carpet stench is finally coming on the streets through protests, opinions, voices and movements. Digital reach and transparency has permitted each individual to be empowered. The highlight was the Me Too movement wherein, decades old suppression of gender was given a voice through a world wide movement through social media platforms and street protests.
The resurgence of this definition of freedom over the last decade is significant. Today’s meaning of freedom incompasses transparency, right to be, right to free speech and the freedom to be comfortable in one’s own skin. This geneartion is more involved in national issues by actual work rather than pushing down concepts or definition of freedom or nationalism or life. Its not surprising that many of them have left the American Dream and returned back home to throw themselves into the small town startups. It is heartening to see this generation rise up in resistence all over against the old ways of ideologocal, Economic Or Social concepts which are fast being trampled over in the streets of Delhi, Beirut, New York, London, Berlin, HK, Taiwan etc.
If one is to scroll through the list of protests in the 21st century then it will be clear in which direction all this is moving( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_protests_in_the_21st_centur). The salients are like so,
- 1Revolutions and uprisings
- 2Specific issues
- 3Student protests
- 4Other protests by country
So, what is there to cheer this Independence day? Well, I’ll say a lot. My faith and trust in this generation is profound. They are better equipped to handle global issues as they exist today. It will not be wrong to say that our generation and the previous ones kept talking of the generations to come and to make our planet a better place for them to live. Whether, that was possible or not will be decided by them. But for now, its time for the old way to retire and rest under the tree or by the beach. The baton must be handed over now. It will be refreshing for all. A new post covid world infused with fresh ideas. I think, this itself will be a win win for everyone.