I will share an incident with you today. I went to this restaurant for my lunch(Date – 5th Oct,2012 Place : Bangalore. ) The nice airy restaurant was all dark and dull today. The front glass windows of the place were all covered with tarpaulin and net, leaving no space for light to sneak in. I could not resist my curiosity and I asked the restaurant manager for the reason of all this covering, I was shocked by what I was told, more importantly I felt sad for us all (common man). I will tell you what he said and then lets discuss what needs to be done and what can be done.
He told me, this is a precautionary measure they have taken to avoid stone pelting on the front glass windows ahead of tomorrow’s bandh. This is a common scenario, breaking glasses of vehicles and business centres which remain open inspite of a bandh being called by some particular anti-social group (anti-social because more often than not bandh hurts people not participating in the bandh, which generally is the majority) Though,this does help in making the bandh more effective as others get scared and follow suit with the bandh promoter. But, how do you justify this in a democracy ? A person or organisation should be in a position to take a call on whether they want to support a particular bandh or not. (I will wait for your responses , on what do you think of a bandh? how does a bandh help? Please do oblige me by sharing some knowledge :p)
On the other hand calling a bandh and going on strike is yet another important democratic right. *Confused !! */ Well, its as simple as this, calling a bandh is all well and good but forcing a bandh is not acceptable , not at all, even if its for the welfare of the common man.Bandhs and strikes have today become means to showcase people power of the political parties calling it. And hence this forcefulness.
Something very sad yet interesting happened in Bihar today, you too might have read this, its everywhere on news. A certain news article said this “The schoolboy, who was assumed dead triggering a large scale violence that claimed two lives in Madhubani district and prompted a ‘Bihar Bandh’ by the opposition parties on Monday, was found in New Delhi along with a girl with whom he had eloped. ” The opposition parties called a bandh just to malign the image of ruling party there which later turned out to be a blooper.
Give it a thought, a tea stall wallah, who makes just enough money to have his daily bread might have to go without food a day just because he had no business for one complete day. An auto rickshaw driver might not have fed his children the other day because the strike which was enforced did not let him carry passengers. Large businesses lose millions of dollars ( dollars because most of them serve USA).
All said and done, we need to come up with an alternative way to protest, something where the losses are not so significant and impactful. Maybe, protests without forcing people to comply can be one possible solution. Peaceful processions and dharnas can be other alternative.Creative ways can be applied to make bandh more effective without causing harm to anybody. But, most importantly, we need to choose a people’s government, a ruling body which thinks and acts for the welfare of people.