A 14 year old girl’s life was splattered on to the television screen as everything about her was questioned. Her character, her friends, everything. The thought itself is horrifying. May such travesties never befall your close ones, but for moments just imagine it to be one of your sisters or your mother or any female friend in Aarushi’s place. Now experience the pain. Chauvinistic males discussing how a ruptured hymen described sexual activity before the murder( a highly pertinent point to be noted is that the original forensic report filed a few days after the murder read that the vaginal area was “NAD”(sic) yet a report filled latter suddenly manifested anomalies), high-headed conservatives deeming pyjama bottoms and cell phones to be sexually provocative, disgusting cheap reporters who are not fit to report even a stupid traffic jam abashedly claiming her murder to be caused by a sexual affair. There have been purists claiming she sent messages to her boyfriend which possibly prove her supposed promiscuous behaviour and justify her murder as an “honour killing”. To all of you cringing in disgust, this is what the Talwar’s are going through.
The nauseating lack of prudence by the media at reporting this case, coupled with their sensationalised depiction of each and every step in the judicial and investigative process has led to a common phenomenon which is known as “trial by medial”. Virtually, the nation has sentenced the Talwar’s already for murdering their only daughter and their servant Hemraj because of two reasons: the knowledge the two possessed about Dr.Rajesh Talwar’s affair and the sexual activities of the two.
Here’s the shocking truth. The previous sentence, in no part has been proven. There has been no evidence, not even circumstantial evidence or a hint or a clue which supports the hypothesis that Dr.Rajesh Talwar was having an extra-marital affair. The entire theory was based on a sole statement by Krishna, his assistant at his clinic and Hemraj’s friend. Ironically, Krishna was originally one of the named accused and was also arrested but later let off on bail. The police recovered from his room, a bloodied kukri (Nepali weapon) and a bloodied pillow. Yet, no action was taken after his release. As of now, he is untraceable and reportedly in Nepal. Moving on, the clashing evidence with regard to Aarushi’s private parts and the long decay and decomposition of Hemraj’s body before being found points at one thing- the theory maybe correct, but as of now, nothing proves it. Lastly, the Talwar’s are merely named suspects, but no evidence, no court of law; no investigation has backed this suggestion by proof. Wild expeditions by the media has distorted reality and painted a world which has already sentenced certain people based on nothing but theories which drive TRPs to their channel.
I do not claim to be an expert at anything and pronounce judgements. The criminal could have been anyone, maybe the Talwar’s themselves. But maybe not, and that’s what makes all the difference. The entire case has exposed India. A archaic police with nearly dysfunctional logistics, a flawed Judiciary with improper communication, a detrimental and disgusting media which has clearly stepped beyond its mandate and taken advantage of a tragic moment for their own personal good. Equally are to be blamed are us. We, as a populace have matured but the monotony with which we are doing so, with a complete “today this tomorrow that” attitude, is astounding. Not one person has questioned the blatant violation of ethics and freedom by today’s media. Vehemently the media has argued for its right to free speech. But does free speech include wild incitement? Does it include the right to pronounce people guilty? Does it give them the right to discuss a girl’s private life, even though she’s dead? We have been sucked in by the mantra today’s media follows- “Flash something. Flash it big. Flash it many times. That’s the truth. Everything else is false.” I confess I too am a late entrant with regard to certain facts about the situation and I have no excuses to offer. But today, we have failed. As people, as citizens, as humans and definitely as a country.
It has been 5 years since the horrific double murder. Scams, development, news, results, weddings, deaths, all have come and gone. But we await justice. Justice for Aarushi, whose life was snatched away. A life that may have been anything. She may have been the next Prime Minister, a dentist or a common thief, anything. But she won’t. For most of us, life shall move on, and actually is moving on. But we carry on our shoulders, the burden of humanity, and as people, we owe it to truth and justice.
I leave you all with a small thought. God forbid such a happening, but in Aarushi’s place, it could have been you or your sister or daughter or anyone of your female relatives. Would your careless attitude still reign?
As a seventeen year old teen, I can confidently say I’m an Indian who is astonished by India daily. With the second highest population in the world, the only way of describing us is “we’re everywhere”. Some rejoice by this unique factorial, claiming it to be a bright prospect for the country’s future. But what I, and most of today’s youth sees, is a situation of identity crisis. A situation that doesn’t look good at all.
Today, every child, by the sole act of his birth, acquires multiple tags, which already define him before he or she can logically think. When a foreign dignitary visits India, the first lesson they learn is of our cultural integrity, but they never learn of our inhumane and excruciatingly complex divide. May it be on the geographical distribution of states, or of the language rolled off their tongues, we have a nasty little intuition to immediately separate each other out. It’s interesting to note that most of the geographical and language issues are simply banal. Consider this: at the time of our independence, we had 15 odd states which today stand at 28. Looking at certain separatist movements, we may see an increase in the number. But the point that stands out is that over time, fragmentation, re-merging of areas, division etc stops mattering because over the years, the only common link geographically between people has remained that of belonging to a common nation- India.
Moving on to the touchy issue, caste based discrimination. It’s not that we are not trying to move past it. With each passing generation, the emerging youth of India has slowly worked towards making it a figment of history. Unfortunately, our social stigmas and laws haven’t caught up. As a child when my mother taught me equality, I often thought “How can I say XYZ is equal to me when he gets a reservation in educational institutes, government jobs and many other such similar offerings while I don’t?”
Bringing in the gender divide, I slightly start feeling disgusted. For a nation which claims to believe and worship in a goddess, we are simple brutes. As a staunch advocate of equality among women, I simply find myself in dearth of a true identity, because associating myself with any of them highlighted here, causes a revulsion in me.
Identity. The word itself resonates a feeling of unity, of oneness and in true essence, describes the individual persona of each person. Sadly, as an Indian who is still in his growing years, I’ve discovered that I have multiple facades, multiple descriptions associated with me. Why, is a question I’m yet to answer, because the search goes on. In India, you never have a single identity. It’s always a concoction of many different ones. But whatever the potion may be and whoever may be the brewer, one thing is apparent and crystal-clear. Something is wrong, and we must change. I hope we change. Soon, Fast and Now
“Alaric Moras is a 17 year old writer who has interned at Youth Incorporated Magazine and The Times of India. He is the owner of the blog:http://observantlefty.wordpress.com/ and is presently completing his Second Year of Junior College, (SYJC- ARTS) in Saint Xavier’s College, Mumbai. He is most known for his writing, and lack of any other talents thereof. When he isn’t glued to his computer screen, he spends his time reading and studying, (the last activity performed three days or fewer before upcoming examinations).
Alaric chooses to speak in a dialect of his own creation, consisting of Hindi, English and Konkani melded together, with the suffix, ‘ness’ added to most verbs. He also writes for The Xavier’s College Xpress. His highest aspiration is to an editor at a world renowned magazine. He presently resides in Santacruz, Mumbai, India.”
You can find his blog here . Also,here’s his Twitter handle @alaricmoras (https://twitter.com/alaricmoras)
I was pleasantly surprised when I was asked to write for The Standing Coin’s one year anniversary and that SidG would think of me as one of the writers he knew who could perform this task in the first place. The Standing Coin has won numerous blogger awards, been mentioned in countless magazines and newspapers and is probably one of the most viewed blogs in Mumbai today. To me, it has become a sort of entity in itself, even managing to capture my rabbit like attention span and wielding an enormous following. Therefore, having my thoughts set against the shadow of such a giant is a hard task, but I will try my best.
Since I was told that I could write about anything that suited me, I choose to write about things that I feel I’ve learnt over the course of my teenage life. Here are some of the insights I’ve gained that I want to share with you all.
THINGS PUBERTY TEACH YOU:-
1.) Kissing does not make babies. It can, however, lead to chapped and sore lips and a variety of blemishes across your face. None of which I’ve experienced. Forever Alone is fun.
2.) Saying “yo” every three seconds will get you laughed at. Inventing your own words and using them freely however, doesn’t. “Me-ness” and being yourself is always fully and completely appreciated. Plus, it’s fun to be crazy.
3.)Being treated like a child by your parents never gets old. Relish the moment and know that for those two people, whatever you do will never make them hate you. Unless, ofcourse, you don’t clean your room and wash behind your ears.
4.) Relationships are like glass. When you break them, they… Well, they break. And someone will get hurt. Chocolate and peanut butter, however aren’t glass-like at all. Indulge and let yourself go. And most importantly, they will always love you in return.
5.) Touching members of the opposite sex is permitted. Not a lot. In moderation, of course. Like alcohol. Try keeping it at once or twice every 30 minutes or so. Safe zones are the non smooth areas. Just saying.
6.) Fitting in with the crowd makes you fade into the background. Always try and be yourself. Unless you like tasting human flesh. Then, try and be something a bit more normal.
7.) It’s called an ’embarrassing itch’ for a reason. But that’s where powder comes in. Jai ho, Johnson’s Baby Powder! No, seriously. Don’t leave without it.
8.) Don’t idealize things, relationships and people. Take everything as it comes and realize that life doesn’t always have to be structured and defined. Everything can just BE.
THINGS YOU THINK PUBERTY TEACHES YOU BUT REALLY DOESN’T:-
1.) Tying your shoe laces. I kid you not. When you’re twelve, this seems like some great new insight that turning thirteen will automatically impart to you. You learn it like everything else.
2.) Resisting bubble wrap. Face it, people: You are, and you always will be addicted to the goodness of bursting that little air pocket.
3.) How to say “no” when aunties bring out the sweets. When faced with gulab jamuns, rasgullas and jalebis, do not EVER think maturity will set in. In the face of oily loveliness, all of us are reduced to children.
4.) How to eat chips decently. Lays, Pringles, banana chips, whatever they maybe, we will always be animals when we consume them.
5.) How to wink cheekily without looking like a rapist. You thing growing a bit taller and having fuzz on your upper lip gives you swag? Sorry to burst your bubble; it really doesn’t. You will still look like you are a wild sex offender if you wink randomly at the ladies. Unless you are George Clooney.
6.) Grow the parts of yourself you want to and in the right order. No matter how hard you stare in the mirror, screw up your face and try to grow the parts of you that you want to grow in the right order, it will not happen. Trust me. I speak through lots of experience.
7.) Get rid of the imaginary talking voices. You kids out there who’ve watched Foster’s Home and lived with Imaginary Friends, don’t worry. They’ll never leave you, mainly because they fade into a host of annoying and whiny annoying voices in the back of your mind. And they have names. Shut UP, Charlie, I’m trying to concentrate here, God!
8.) Be the star of everything, always. No matter how cliched this sounds, you will always be popular among your own friends and you never need to work to be a people pleaser. You’re a great person, just the crazy, insane way you are.