It was a 10 km race organized by a leading hospital in Trichy. My wife Savy who had been assiduously preparing for it was pumped up. She was sure of winning it.
The running began. As there were several age categories, the volunteers split them into different batches. Savy was in the age group of 35 to 49. To her surprise, this group consisted of 3 female runners. The announcer quipped that as there were only 3 runners, all of them were bound to get a prize. Savy put all her effort and ran as fast as she could. She beat the other 2 competitors by a big distance.
When she arrived at the finishing line, the organizers congratulated her for having come 5th. Surprised aren’t you? How could someone come 5th in a race in which only 3 ran? Obviously, the first four had an early start by camouflaging themselves in the earlier group of runners and thus winning the coveted prize. Yes, the first four cheated, but what happened next came as a bigger shock.
When Savy posted it this on the social media, none of them… none of them responded. The organizers turned a deaf ear, though videos could provide evidence. The participants turned a blind eye. Who would go against these winners, some of them well to do socialites. Some even commented ‘Just forget it. This is all a part and parcel of life’.
There is a quote that says – your neighbor is getting harassed and you keep watching, don’t worry your turn is next.
But aren’t we a society used to taking turns. We turn on the water taps oblivious to the water shortage in the city. We dump garbage mercilessly, unconcerned about the spread of dengue in the city. Our exporters mix brick powder with chilli powder hoping to make an extra buck and riders cut across lines unmindful of the suffering caused to others.
In flats, owners in the ground floor don’t want to pay for the lift and owners at the top are disregardful of the fact that the leakage from the tank is corroding the beams of the ground floor.
Savy is stupid. She could have planned a strategy of starting earlier with another group or running midway through the race, thanks to the excellent communication networks or she could have taken a transport for half the distance or just stood at the finishing line and effortlessly won the race.
Ultimately winning is what matters, who cares how you win?
And losers don’t cry, you did not have the sense to make it. Then we proudly stand on pedestals and proclaim that we belong to the land of Harishchandras and talk about Lord Rama’s integrity.
Hindi film director Guru Dutt, who incidentally committed suicide had rightly said – yeh duniya agar mil bhi jaye tho kya hai. What is the point in winning the world if you are going to lose the soul?
As parents and heads of families, what are the four winners teaching their children. And if we as parents when we don’t have the guts to speak up and say everything is chalta hai, what are we telling the next generation?
Are you going to let your soul speak or let the duniya take over?
This is Shiv signing off from S&S Family First urging the great Bharata race to speak up.