Recently, an Australian radio host, Kyle Sandiland called India “shit hole” and Ganga a “junkyard” and Indian groups in Australia are seeking apology from the radio station. Indian community is quite angry with such remarks from the Australian media. I was reading this news online and there were hundreds of comments under the article and most of those comments were literally abuses hurled at Australians, Australian media, and most importantly on Australian cricket team! I was wondering what cricket has to do with the remarks of the radio host. Later on I figured out that it’s the cricket that brings Indo-Aus people together and then make them fight for nothing!
People who are opposing the same are either ignorant or don’t want to accept the reality. Its hard reality and Indians need to accept it that not only the Ganga, but also the other rivers (have you ever seen Yamuna River?) are turning into drainage, dumping spots for big industries. Have you ever visited the Allahabad and seen the condition of Ganga? This place is called the holiest place to take bath and shed all your sins committed in life time but I doubt if one has ever survived after taking a bath from such polluted water. A few years back “The Economist” reported that Hinduism’s scared river (Ganga) contains 60,000 faecal coli-form bacteria per 100 millilitres, 120 times more than what is considered safe for bathing. Ganga has eventually become the “junkyard of corpses” and there shouldn’t be any doubt.
We have naturally developed the habit of resisting the change, even it is for good. Almost daily everyone can see people littering, urinating, defecating on the road sides; spitting in trains, buses. You can see dark red spots of paan-masala everywhere on the railway stations, bus stands or almost at the every public place. Have you ever tried to go near railway tracks on railway station? You are welcomed by the strong smell of excreta and within seconds your head will start spinning and you may go unconscious or go into coma for rest of your life. Elsewhere in world, when you visit a railway station its pleasant experience and you are welcomed with different lavender perfumes or air fresheners going directly into your brain. I wonder if someone replaces lavender spray with excreta spray in India. Is this what we call our culture?
I met with one of my friends from Sri Lanka in Gurgaon a few months ago and while discussing how she liked India she told me what she saw one day at red light stop – a person was defecating at the bridge in the broad daylight – and though I felt embarrassed at the fact but I couldn’t deny the stark reality. After that she told me that it never happens in Sri Lanka. Is this what we call our culture? Or is this what we Indians are proud of? I also remember from my last Budapest’s visit (on the invitation of Jai Bhim Network) that no-one, yes not even an uneducated person ever throws anything rubbish on the roads or public places, no-one urinate, defecate on public places but seek dustbins or toilets or even carry the garbage to the home if he/she don’t find one. Our cities look like extended slums, towns are filthy dumps and villages often smell strongly like excreta. It’s interesting to note that Hindus consider cleanliness important but task of cleanliness is considered lower and is reserved for Dalits!
In the book “Area of Darkness” (written in 1964) V.S. Naipaul explores an extremely dark account of India and details how dirty the country is. Naipaul in his books writes that elsewhere in world approach to villages through countryside is a pleasant experience but not in India where visitor to villages is welcomed by smell of human excreta. He observed it in decades of 70s but it is still true in most of villages in India.
Many of the comments that I read online were describing Australians as “criminals dumped by British”. Now, think if criminals can do such a better job and become in the list of developed nations then what’s holding great Indian minds back? Rather than abusing Kyle Sandiland, we should be thankful to him that he pointed out our weakness and now it’s our turn to follow the righteous path. My advice would be to stop bashing, whining Australian radio host, Kyle Sandiland, take lesson and start cleaning your backyard. Only then we can show the world that we have “best culture” in the world.
P.S. Check out the top 10 ugly rivers of the world from here. Ganga and Yamuna Rivers are both in the list!!
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