“You got mud on your face
You big disgrace
Somebody better put you back in your place
We will we will rock you
We will we will rock you” – Queen
July 25, 2008
Its been a year but I still remember the day it was just another I was busy with my deadlines, schedules and trying to finish my work early as it was TGIF. When my friend called me out of the seat and in hushed voice said “hey do you know there has been several bomb blasts in the city call your home find out if everyone’s safe”. I was surprised serial blasts in Bangalore and called back home but couldn’t get through as network was jammed. Then I saw flurry of activity around with people receiving and making frantic calls and soon every screen in office was trying to reach news websites for the news. So many area names were cropping up as possibles blasts site and one such area made me worry as my dad was supposed to go there. I frantically made calls to his mobile and finally got through and was relieved to know that he still was at home unaware of anything I told him to switch on the TV and relay the latest news.
I was relieved but then thought of friends well being came to fore but couldn’t contact most of them and by now entire office was out with their phones trying to reach their near dear ones. Somebody’s spouse was in the blast area or somebody’s kids were in school and they could not reach the school to know their well being. There was panic and chaos no one knew whats happening. Some rumors of a riot also started flowing. A “peaceful” & indifferent city like Bangalore was inexperienced to handle a crisis such as this. The commissioner sent a mass SMS appealing not to panic and situation was ‘under control’ and not to believe the rumors. One of my friends sister was supposed to return from college through the bus stand were one of major
bomb went off and he was not able to get in touch with her. So we suggested that he should go home maybe she would have already reached home safe & sound but we didn’t know which was the ‘safest’ route. Soon office declared a leave and everybody rushed home.
I stayed back as I was staying closely to office and knew that I could reach as there was no problems between my office and my house. I had received the news of all my acquaintances well being including friend’s sister. By now the news was clear that there were 8 ‘low-intensity’ blasts which didnot rip apart the city but certainly ‘rocked’ it and left 1 person dead and some not very serious injuries to ‘some’ people. That evening while returning home I saw life was ‘almost’ normal in my part of the city which was ‘fortunate’ to not have any blasts. But everyone was talking about the ‘blasts’ and so many theories as to how could it happen or who was behind this or this was waiting to happen and people were thanking that the ‘blasts’ were not damaging enough.
Standing at the empty auto stand I was feeling strange that how bomb blasts which were a thing of TV and news had become a reality in the city where I lived and worked. Was I scared, angry not really but definitely confused and was trying to accept ‘it’ as a way of life and saluting the people of cities which had faced deadlier blasts for their resilience. Yes in last few years bomb blasts and terrorist attacks have become a way of life in this country. Its 1 year and the conspirators of the bombings are still at large and story is continuing.
I feel how true was the words of the protagonist of the film ‘A Wednesday’ when he said that a blast happens we panic and worry about our near and dear ones if we live or have anyone living in the affected city and when we are assured that everything is fine go home and change channels to catch the ‘inside story’ or casualty figures and get back to work next day thanking god. I had done exactly that on July 25, 2008 and on many other such dates when cities were ripped apart or rocked.
That day I felt that its always the ‘common’ man who bears the brunt of this terror acts and none of politicians/VVIPS or their kin ever blew up in smoke so we are in this state but then someone from inside knocked and said hello who were Rajiv Gandhi & Indira Gandhi were they not VVIPs?
So friends, the aam and khas(after 26/11) citizens of this ‘Asian Tiger’ should Thank God and neighboring country for the daal roti/chawal on their plates and the fact that they are alive to see the sunset and pay taxes so that the ‘brave’ soldiers and policemen get their salaries to lose their lives in the ‘line’ of duty.(BTW I just filed my tax return. So am I a “Good” Citizen?)
This weeks events and dates be it the joint statement by our PM and Mr. Gilani or Kasab’s chilling confession or 1st anniversary of Bangalore blasts have brought the ‘terrorism’ to fore front to be faded away till the next act happens, which God forbid should never happen on this soil.
Image Credit : http://bellurramki18.wordpress.com/2008/11/