DailyPost 1691

Fatalism has always been pretty deep seated in imagining the quality of human life and in visualising what a human being can aspire to achieve and actually  do it.  Steeped in religion, mythology and supported by ecosystem which we have created, the best way to explain our existence lay in fatalism, the rationale and logic of it seemed very clear. Education and health never came handy to the vast majority of Indians, mainly in the rural hinterland, cannot be a breaking news for anybody, who has even had remotest connect with the villages. Without getting into any detail on their quality of life on the basis of scientific parameters,  just the physical look and a peep into their eyes is enough to tell you the story of their lives. How can they believe in anything but fatalism.

The ruling class or the elite also found it be convenient to follow this well-defined and perfected route, not be held responsible for things they don’t do and deliver. There is always some unknown entity that could be blamed. The squalor kept on aggregating all over, more so in the countryside, which election after election, cast the maximum votes, performed their sacred democratic duty and facilitated political parties to come to power, and enjoy it while they remained at the receiving end. Getting fooled has been their real destiny. While this fatalism – fooling drama went on, the rulers took  a paternalistic stand, the mai-baap syndrome. The less developed and feudal the place, the greater was the respect for the government and its functionaries.

This sort of an exercise breeds behavioral traits and lack of expertise which are antithetical to modern existence, leave aside governance. The complexity of governance has generally not been understood by the vast majority of governments for decades. Adhocism, lip service, use easily available facts and data for their gain and flaring emotions to their advantage. Elections were made an art unconnected with governance and a game which had its own rules, which the electorate even today is trying to fathom out.  While they were always there for their rulers, election or no election, for barely any returns, they turned out to be the permanent losers. Life had moved way beyond fatalism and in the process even a more dangerous behavior was born out of it.

This is the trait which eats the system and it’s resources like a termite. The trait which  escapes even our most discerning eyes is  Escapism. The political and bureaucratic class is seriously afflicted by it for decades. It was under the carpet earlier, but slowly over a period to time it has come out in the open. Decision making on whims and fancies and bureaucratic apathy became the order of the day. Hard work and delivery lost circulation completely. Escapism in its next stage was put into the garb of success, achievement and well-being. And then progress and development. Escapism of this nature has come out any number of times, mostly in times of crisis. The final stage is when you deride reality and move deeper into the crisis. Till the time escapism is fully unmasked, you are the winner.


Sanjay Sahay


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