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India’s Daughter, India’s RAPIST

Hey, did u read today’s newspaper? Asks a 17-year old inmate to the convicted juvenile.

Yes, I did, juvenile replies.

You are all over the news again, says inmate smiling.

Yes, I know, juvenile says whiningly.

By the way it’s been months, you haven’t told me hitherto what actually happened that all your partners in crime have been sentenced to death that too just for a rape. I mean rape are so common in our country along with the murders. You know, one girl was burned alive after being gang raped recently in Uttar Pradesh and it’s not like rape rarely happens. In India, a rape happens every 20 minute and you know something interesting, Number of rapes in America are far more than in India, says the inmate.

What?? Seriously!! In America, rape happens more often than in India, Juvenile asks surprisingly.

Yes, my friend, it’s true, says the inmate.

So, what’s your story my friend? Asks the inmate this time more firmly. And juvenile too after months of silence wanted to share his heroics with someone. OK, but promise me that you won’t tell anyone else until I’m out of this prison, says the juvenile.

Sure, inmate nods in agreement.

Actually what happened is my friends brought a new porn movie DVD along with a bottle of Desi Daaru (alcohol). We all drank a lot that night and finally decided to head towards GB road in New Delhi. GB road has the largest brothel of New Delhi so we decided to have some fun, says the juvenile.

Yes, I know GB road. Even I have been there many times. It was my second home until I ended up in jail, says the inmate and both starts laughing.

Well, now continue, says inmate again.

Yeah, so we headed towards GB road in our bus of which my friend was a driver.

Oh! The one who committed suicide? Asks inmate interrupting.

Yes, juvenile nods in affirmation

And then it all happened as you have read in the newspapers, juvenile says in continuation.

But, there was also written in newspapers that u inserted an iron rod inside her vagina, says the inmate.

No, it wasn’t a rod. It was actually my hand that I inserted inside her vagina out of curiosity and took out something white and soft from it. I think it was her intestine that I pulled, juvenile says casually.

And what did u do of it? Asks inmate astonishingly.

I actually got frightened seeing what I pulled from her vagina. So, after that we threw both of them nude out of the bus. I threw that thing which I pulled on the road after covering it in a cloth, Says the Juvenile heavily.

Oh! And then u all were arrested by police one after another, says the inmate.

Yeah, I never thought that they will be able to catch us. Nor did I thought that we might get a punishment so severe for our act, after all it was not this big a crime that we did. You know problem is in the system, there is no equality, says the juvenile showing his displeasure over the judiciary.

But shouldn’t u thank this inequality, It is because of this inequality that all your mates will be hanged till death but you will be living freely after eight more months, that too when you were the one who inserted your hand inside her vagina and are as much responsible for her death as are others or even more than them, says the inmate.

Yeah, I agree with what you are saying but it was all that girl’s fault. When being raped, she shouldn’t fight back. If she would have just allowed the rape silently, she would have been alive today. But she confronted dreaming as if she can match the power of a male, Juvenile giggles.

Yes, u are right. It was all her fault. You know even some politicians supported your act. One former chief minister rightly said that, ‘we are boys, we are bound to make some mistakes’, Says the inmate confidently

Yes, exactly, that’s what I want to say. It was not at all my fault and then too I am facing a severe punishment of 3 years in prison, says juvenile sadly.

Oh! Come on buddy cheer up. It’s just a matter of some months now and then u will be free, says the inmate.

Oh yes! Just waiting for that day, says the juvenile.

So, what are your plans after going out of the prison, asks inmate.

I will go to Mumbai and try my luck in acting. You know, there are many people who will want to make a story on my life and if they can cast a porn star in their movie then why can’t me? After all I am the RAPIST of India, says juvenile laughing heavily.

Yes, you are, says the inmate smiling and wishing his best wishes.

By the way why are you here in this prison? Asks the juvenile.

Oh, I am here for a year because of a murder that I did and will be out in some months, says the inmate and left.

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Little did i Know

Today I was very happy, it was last day of our school and from tomorrow winter vacations were on their way. All my friends had a selfie session, I clicked a selfie of my own, uploaded it on Facebook and within seconds likes, and comments, complimenting me started flooding 🙂 . We all gossiped, I told them about a guy who proposed me some days back again and I declined to which all of them started chiding me. We all shared a good laugh. Sonali bragging how her boyfriend surprised her by sending a heart full of chocolates on her birthday, Prachi sobbing for her recent breakup, Ayesha exaggerating her dream to become a teacher and Sarika of her crush on our new biology teacher.

Finally the last bell rung and I started running like a tiger, not because their population has increased (of course) but because my mom and I have to go shopping today to bring new clothes for me. My brother is getting married coming week and how can I not look like a princess on his marriage, wait of 6 months was finally coming to an end. We all cousins have planned to do a lot of hubbub on his wedding. But little did I know of what was coming and how it will change my life.

As usual this guy who proposed me was standing with some of his friends outside our school door. I just took a glimpse of him and hurried my walk. On my way I was missing Mansi, my partner in crime a lot. We both are buddies, best buddies, neighbors and childhood friends. It’s been a week and this journey of 15 minutes from my school to home feels like an hour without our blabs. Plus to handle cheap comments and vulgar eyes of these roadside Romeos without her was really tough. But little did I know that these same eyes which are staring me to their level best will get frightened, next time they will watch me.

Five minutes were gone with just ten more to go to reach my home. With each step excitement and shopping plans were babbling in my head. And as just some more minutes passed a bike overtook me with 2 boys sitting on it, both of them masked. It was like as if they are going to rob someone. But instead of a gun or a knife as I have seen in movies their hands were having a bottle, a bottle with its cover open. I stepped back but till then a white liquid was all over my face and hands which came to my rescue in reflex.

Within seconds my mind went from all busy to dumb, not knowing what just happened or what is happening. It was a cooling sensation at first as if someone has poured mint on my body but soon from being cool, burning sensation started. People gathered but I was unable to ask for anyone’s help, Other than screaming it was tough to utter a word. Skin which was few minutes before glowing was now melting as if I have been put alive on a funeral pyre. It was dripping off like the wax of a candle which someone has just lit. People who encircled me were both amazed and shocked, some called police, some started whispering how it all happened and those who were present on the spot became their story tellers. Passersby were taking their way as soon as they were getting a glimpse. It was as if I was on an exhibition in a showroom, everyone looking, staring but no one took the onus of buying and in my case taking me to a hospital.

‘But little did I know, from being a girl whose beauty once everyone adored has now been converted into a new person seeing whom everyone gets terrified’, and soon I closed my eyes.

Sahil Varshney

When will my Santa come??

It was another common day. I was shivering with cold but I had to go. I looked at the sky but sun was angry and fog frowning. I picked my tools and headed for my destiny.

While going there were many fat people wearing red dress, all encircled by children accompanied by their parents or may be their well-wishers. This scene amazed me and I stopped. I was getting late for my work but I stopped. All of them were asking him what they want and this red person was fulfilling their wishes. Some were getting toys, other chocolates or toffees. Many others who were watching him were shouting Santa-Santa.

I too wanted to go to that red magician but I was afraid to. Because I was not well dressed like others surrounding him. But I wanted to fulfil my wishes as well. Time was passing and so was he. I was shy but finally I tried. I went to him and said my wish in his ear. He smiled and gave me a toffee and said ho-ho-ho…

But I did not ask for that. I did not ask for any toffee. I did not ask for any ho-ho-ho. Why did he do that? Why did he not give me what I asked from him? If he can fulfill everyone else’s demands, can’t he fulfill mine? Was he really unable to fulfill my wishes or he just ignored me!!! And if he was unable, is there no magician who can fulfill my dream?

For all that I asked was to give me a life like every other kid whose wishes he was fulfilling. I want to go to school. I want to learn. I want to look decent. I want to read books. I want to play, I want to be a doctor, I want to be an engineer, I want to be like TENDULKAR, I want to be next MADHURI, I want to be like KALAM.

Was it wrong to ask him for this? Are my wishes too unrealistic? And if they are… why my friends are getting it but I am not. If they can read books, why can’t I? If this red magician can fulfill their dreams why can’t he fulfill mine??

Is there no Santa who can fulfill my wishes and if there is…

When will my Santa come??

But I think there is no Santa for me. No one can help me because unlike you I have many destinies. I have many works. I am a bread earner for my family. I reflect child laborers of my society.

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Mangalyaan (MOM): a dream of billions

As soon as the clock stroked 7:45am IST, 24 September registered itself in the history. Celebrations started all over the country. Netizens started coming up with their humor. News channels were buzzed with their TRP drama, Congratulations were on everyone’s tongue. But above all, there was something else and this something else was the mélange of proud. A proud of being first, a proud of being advanced, a proud of creating history, a proud for which millions dreamt and above all proud of being an ‘Indian’.

But this journey was not as smooth as it is looking now. A whole lot of scientists worked day and night. The expectations were very high. A simple mistake and the whole world would have laughed on us. Skeptics of the world were already debating that being a poor country should India invest in these big missions. But their mouth has been shut by ISRO now. Everyone amazed on its success. Previously, the stone palters are now the flower bearers.

This mission has showed us that success is of those who never bends in front of failures, impediment. The more technology was denied to India, the more determined it became to master these technologies and the result is in front of all of us. We are ready for our first manned crew to space and to the moon. India’s second mission to moon Chandrayaan-2 which will have an Indian lander, will soon be walking on the surface of the moon along with a rover. And according to ISRO, the first astronaut could be a woman (cheer up girls you will now have another inspiration).

The mangalyaan has proved undoubtedly that India is now a space power to reckon with. Many developed countries are now coming to ISRO for their satellite launches. We are now a commercial hub for the world and this image has been further strengthened by MOM.

But the journey has just started and it will not be fruitful until every Indian is eating a bread daily and smiles to every Indian face is restored.

 

 

 

 

Slums: A ray of HOPE

What is a slum?

Slum in simple term is a settlement of poor people mostly migrants in urban cities where people starts living in search of shelter. Slums are considered synonym to poverty, misery, malnutrition, unhygienic conditions.

 

The reason of establishment..

a) Shortage of developed land for housing

When a city expands, it sucks in the villages surrounding it. In the process, the segregated colonies of fishermen, herdsmen, etc., are also sucked in the city. The agricultural land of the village is put to urban land use, whereas the inhabited area of the village is left intact without the infrastructure facilities. In comparison to other areas, the rent and cost of living in these areas would remain low, resulting in overcrowding. Due to the lack of municipal services, slum conditions prevail and over the time, colonies of fishermen, herdsmen and such others become slums.

 

b) The high prices of land beyond the reach of urban poor

The slums developed in one area of the city, where the poor live get deteriorated in course of time. The area gets congested and overcrowded and in the absence of adequate municipal services, slum conditions increase. For example, in some cities during the 19th century, particularly in the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat, large industrial units tried to attract and retain their workers by providing small tenements or multi-storied row houses in the pattern of army barracks.

These row houses, called chawls, came up without any co-ordinated planning and were deficient in the basic amenities. The industrial workers who lived there found the residences comfort­able enough, but that increased their dependence on their employer. Over time, however, due to the lack of upkeep, dilapidation and so on, most of the chawls have become extremely poor in terms of quality of life.

 

c) A large influx of rural migrants to the cities in search of jobs

A slum develops as a result of the squatting of poor migrants. Majority of the migrants that come to the city are unskilled workers, who come to the city in search of better living conditions. Their dream usually will not work out and they end up in some low-paid jobs.

As these low paid workers are too poor to rent a house and pay for the urban infrastructure and facilities, such as water, sewerage and drainage, they squat on the vacant public land near the places of work, erect huts and use public facilities. Added to that, the city municipal corporation considers such settlement as illegal and does not provide any municipal services adding to the woes of the settlers and also paving the way for the growth of slums.

In whatever way the slum grows, slum dwellers form part of the urban economy. The slums are known by different names in different regions of India such as ‘Katras’ or ‘Jhuggi-Jhonpari’ in Delhi, ‘Jhopadpatti’ or ‘Chawls’ in Mumbai, ‘Bustees’ in Kolkata, ‘Cheris’ in Chennai and ‘Keris’ in Bangalore. Most of these slum dwellers are either employed in the category of unskilled workers or in the informal sector of the economy as self-employed persons in petty trade, repairs and transport.

 

Ray of hope…. Really!!?

As already said slums are considered synonym to all the miseries, then how are they a ray of hope? Well you will know that now…

 

a) Survival skills in the urban cities

Slums represent a survival strategy in the face of insufficient affordable housing and lack of tenure security, often blending production and distribution spaces along with living quarters. They demonstrate innovative shelters and efficient livelihood strategies, which form an important part of the urban ecosystem.

 

b) Secularism

Seeing the recent incidents of communal tensions in various parts of India, like in Muzaffarnagar, Saharanpur. People can learn a lot from slums. Here, people from different ethnic groups and different communities live together. They show us how harmony can be maintained irrespective of caste, class and community. So, if you want to see secularism, wander through the streets of slums and you will find people are following their religion and paying homage to other religions as well.

 

c) Class conversion

In India, where class gap between lower, middle and upper class is widening to a large extent. Many residents of these slums are now trying to level up their class by working and saving their hard earned money. Children are now attending public schools instead of some dilapidated classroom. Previously, a ricshaw puller has now bought 4 more rickshaws and giving employment to several others like him.

 

d) New TOURIST destinations

Yes, you read it right. Slums are now the new tourist destinations of India and there are various tourist companies which gives you a complete ‘SLUM PACKAGE’, to have an insight of slums. This trend has picked up after the Oscar winning movie ‘Slumdog Millionaire’. Since then, the slums of Mumbai like Dharavi where this movie was shot and delhi are hot tourist destinations.

 

e) Non-Government Organizations (NGOs)

Well, many will find this abrupt but whatever way you take it, it’s the truth. Slums are the reason for employment of many in NGOs. Still confused? Don’t be. Let me tell you how.

A large number of NGOs are solely dedicated to problems faced by people in slums. They fight for their justice, for the basic amenities that these slum citizens should get, to uplift the condition of these people (many just make false claims and are namesake NGO) and so on. So in short, many NGOs are earning their livelihood because of these slums.

 

f) Politicians

And in last, how can we forget our beloved ‘Netaji’ who recently won his elections by making all sort of false promises, false dreams and of course by bribing them. For whom, slums are nothing more than a wonderland, where he settles one month prior to election to do all sorts of adventures to swing the moods of poor migrants in their favor.

 Conclusion

So, slums are a ray of hope not only for the people living but also to those who are alien to these slums… 🙂

Narendra Modi : Man or Myth

With the elections ending and exit polls showing clear majority of national democratic alliance the picture is quiet clear now that who will be our next prime minister. Narendra Modi, the man of Gujarat will now be the man of India after defeating all the odds, mess and complications. Though the results are still 3 day long but now a days you can believe post poll survey because of their exhaustive research and better machinery.

I still remember the day when I was in my 7th standard or to be more specific in the year 2005 and my tutor who recently came from Gujarat (Bhuj) tour was all praising Gujarat’s cm for all the development in Gujarat and nowhere there were the signs that this city has seen one of the world’s most disastrous earthquakes taking the lives of around 20000 people. This was the first time I heard the name ‘Narendra Modi’ and wished he should govern Uttar Pradesh too but these were all childhood desires.

Now that he will soon be our prime minister with a clear majority that we have given him with so much optimism and aspirations, let’s see how he triggers them. Share markets are on record highs after exit poll results, economists are now reciting the old talk that economy will get strong if we get a stable government at Centre. Youth are now of thought “acche din aane waale hain” but elders who are more experienced just smiles on this thought.

Topics such as article 370, Bangladeshi infiltration, black money or lack of good governance from which India is suffering from last 10 years are a real worry. But one thing that everyone is sure will happen in modi’s india are that there will be industries all over, employment will boom up, rupee will be all time high in comparison with dollar and much more.

So, it would be an amazing to watch how our beloved ‘chaiwala’ tackles with all these problems and fulfill his manifesto.