Republic in Retrospect
Editorial

Republic in Retrospect

Taking stock of the perspective being talked and written about by the country’s diaspora across the wide cross section of society as they visualise the current goings on in the land can both be fascinating and disturbing for different reasons, depending on knowledge and understanding of the diverse factors causing and contributing to the scenario. However, the image of the land, given its hoary past, has been described in glorious terms by both chroniclers of the past and scholars of our times,  highlighting a) The philosophical writings of the luminaries of their times; b) Refined culture nurtured through literary works, music, sculpture, art, dance, yoga, ayurveda, simple lifestyle and delicacies that have sustained even to this day; c) Rich stock of diamond, gold, silver, copper and also spices; d) Highly-rated institutions of learning luring students surging from far off lands, e) Monarchs who ruled over large tracts of the land and warriors, including women, who guarded their territory from marauding invaders before getting overpowered (thanks to intrigues by local elements).

The image of the land in retrospect against its perspective obtained in post-independent India prompts one to ponder over the entire gamut of circumstances leading to the situation that the country and its people find themselves in. The nearly three centuries of rule first by Moghuls and later by the British colonialists, being often blamed for the country’s downward fortune tells a long story in which the Indian character of inability to see eye-to-eye on all matters stands out, more so at present times.

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Juxtaposing the country’s glorious past covering several centuries and the happenings in a comparatively short span of seven decades being reported in the media generates euphoric feelings of pride and also a sense of depression that successive generations ungrudgingly let go of the great opportunity to endure the multitude of ingredients of that past glory gifted by the people of earlier generations. Further, to expect the land’s  masses to give up their current lifestyle marked by the pace dictated by modern gadgetry as well as advances in science-derived knowledge and emulate the people of the bygone era doesn’t hold water. The trees guarded by our ancestors in the forests for ages as well as those raised in their living spaces including roadsides and avenues of cities have gone into pages of history.

The land’s social history and the chroniclers of its past economy and administration provides unquestionable testimony to its enviable global rating as the best country, a verdict hard to believe considering its present perspective. If the ongoing slide from the now-extinct past norms of life zealously adhered by the nation’s diaspora until the dawn of 20th century to chaotic state of the Republic being witnessed nowadays, taking its view in retrospect shatters one’s mind.

May 23, 2018

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