11 July, 2006

Ghettos in our Minds

I was at college. I had kept my cell on silent, so didn't get the calls warning me about the blasts. None of us knew.

Our principal rushed in and asked the class to be dismissed immediately and sent all of us home. Just then it had started pouring. I took with me three students who lived in my area, and found a cab and left for Chembur. It is a debatable point as to who took care of whom but we felt better just by being together.

Calls within Bombay were not going through, but a cousin called from Pune. I sent message home through him. I knew family must have been trying to contact me franctically.

By avoiding the main roads, bygoing through the lanes of Hindu Colony, we all reached Chembur within an hour. There was a relief about having coped with one more crisis that seems to be a frequent scenario in Bombay.

The unnecessary and totally preplanned and staged riots on sunday, the attempts of the same group to impose Bombay bandh in a few areas on Monday, the blasts on tuesday...Bombay keeps coping with crises.

Bombay has always coped with almost everything. Rains, floods, total breaking of law and order, bomb blasts and still keeps going. But for how long? Common man has no choice but to keep going. Even with seven blasts in the trains today, tomorrow morning, women and men will be at the station waiting for their train, to reach office on time. They have to. They can not afford to not trust the trains.

But they will start distrusting the neighbours a bit more. Start looking suspiciously at any one a little different than them, start getting paranoid about languages they dont understand. The US and THEM thinking which never was part of Bombay till the communal riots on 1993, We are all dividing Bombay into ghettos. This is not my city. Not the Bombay I know


Blogger Jugal said...

I disagree, Suniti. Rather all of us now know, it's none of us, not you, not me, not our neighbours.

These things bring us together, not tear us apart.

12/7/06 19:32  
Blogger suniti said...

I hope so too Jugal, I hope so too.

12/7/06 19:46  

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