“This is not my conventional humor blog, it’s my opinion on an issue that’s been lingering in my head for too long now. Please pardon the sudden change in mood.
A year after the Indian independence- in 1948, the linguistic reorganization of states started. Dr.Rajendra Prasad setup the Dar Commission under the leadership of SK Dar, a retired high court judge. His report, known as Dar report stated clearly – “the formation of provinces on exclusively linguistic considerations is not in the larger interests of the Indian nation“. The people of the nation were in a desperate need for state division at the time, thus protested and forced Prime Minister Pandit J Nehru to set up the JVP commission, comprising Jawaharlal Nehru and Vallabhbhai Patel and Pattabhi Sitaramayya. Violence broke out in the Telugu speaking regions as a sign of protest in demand for a state. Driven by political pressure, Sitaramayya being from a Telugu family decided to declare only Andhra Pradesh as the first Indian state.It was supposed to be a “test state” to see how things work out. This lead to violence in the other regions of the nation who also felt the need of a state. Nehru and Ambedkar both did not support the division of the nation on the basis of language. Ambedkar stated “One state, One language” but not “One language, One state“. Finally, with their hands folded, under the Fazal Ali commission, the great nation was divided into states. Clearly knowing that this could not be the right thing to do. They remained optimistic and thought that with time the Indian population will realize that we are not a nation divided by borders.
Now, ‘Why the history lesson?’ you must be thinking! Well, it’s been 70 years since India got its states and we are still f*cking divided by states and not united as a nation!!
Those who have been following my work will know, my dad worked for the Indian Air Force and we moved from city to city because of work, within the country – for the county! I stayed at many defense bases growing up, all a cluster of cultures. People from all over the country, living inside four very large walls, working to protect the people of the nation. When dad retired, we decided to settle down in Bangalore, Karnataka. We now call this city ‘home’. But to many people, we are still “outsiders”.
Close to a year back, I saw an article on a “Cause page”, give Bangalore the title of “City of Migrants”. It had a description that read “Migrants made this city into what it is today” I’m sorry. But I’m not a migrant. I’ve always found that word offensive, this is my country. If you think people from other states are “migrants”, you are taking a wrong approach. Stop reinforcing state borders, would you?!
Since partition, India has been in a state of war with Pakistan on the western and northern fronts. On the east, China has been trying to eat into our borders and cutting out water sources. To the south, we have the vast ocean open to naval threats. Not to forget other international social & economic disagreements. Amongst all this, as Indians… we are too busy playing “state-state”. Internal conflicts over water, land, racial profiling and much more towards the people we call “Bhai aur behan”.
In light of recent unfortunate events on new year’s eve in Bangalore, I came across ‘internet trolls’ posting messages like “Bangalore is not safe, all immigrants are requested to go back to their native and never come back” and “The attackers from the night were not locals, all these outsiders are coming in and shaming our city”. I’m sure there are many more of these negative-piece-of shit-mindset posts on the internet somewhere.
For people with such mindsets, I want to say – Thank You! Thanks for making some of us feel like outsiders inside the borders of our own country. The Indian constitution lets me stay/live/earn anywhere in the country and calling these people “outsiders” or migrants” is no less of a crime than racism. Also, An unfortunate incident happened, by proving that the criminal is not a local, does not change the gravity of the situation just divides people into classes and creates more unwanted conflicts. At the end of the day; for over 10 years in school, we all said “All Indians are my brothers and sisters” not “all Kannadigas”. In the most patriotic song I know, we say “Sare Jahan Se Accha Hindustan Hamara” not sare Jahan Se Accha, Maharashtra Hamara”. So let’s stop!
Some of you are upset that state patriotism does not mean jack-shit to me. Your anger is valid. But sorry, that’s not the case. I do respect your patriotism towards your state, your homeland. But what I can’t understand is how your love for the people from other parts of the country is not as strong as your love for your state-men. State borders are 100% needed. For keeping a check on governance, the collection of taxes, have a good spirited football match. But not to sketch people into classes and destroy our already-shaken unity towards our nation in the name of states.