Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.-Barack Obama
‘Slumdog Millionaire’ got rave reviews since it hit the headlines a few years back. As always, people of India thronged the dilapidated tenements of the child artists from the slums of Mumbai, our enlightened Ministers decided to be the protector of one of the child artiste who was reportedly slapped by his father, for refusing to give interviews due to exhaustion. Why is it that our latent concern for the underprivileged only awakens, when some foreigner somewhere captures their plight in books, movies or documentaries? Why is that we realize the potential of a movie, an actor, a director, a player only when they are honored in countries other than ours? We managed to grab our freedom from the British in 1947, but we have not managed to change our mindset even in 2015, we are still lured by that elusive white skin and bask in glory, only when they throw bits & pieces at our end in form of an award or some monetary reward. Are we not capable of realizing our mettle on our own? Why do we need sanction or approval of our efforts from people of foreign origin?
Nobel Laureate Prof. Amartya Sen had given an insightful speech on the impact of the recession worldwide that, “No amount of financial stimulus into the global economy is going to rid the world of recession. We have to get rid of this mindset…the mindset of recession”.
I am taking the liberty to modify this statement to fit into my current write-up, “No amount of psychological stimulus into this Asian Country is going to rid this country of centuries old ‘Inferiority Complex’. We have to get rid of this mindset………the mindset of serfdom”.
What was so different in the movie ‘Slumdog Millionaire’, from the scores of other movies of the same genre that could not manage to bag an Oscar till now? In the first place the hype that was generated, that, it was an achievement of India was misplaced, barring A.R.Rahman and few artistes from India, this movie is an out and out American movie, if we peel off the slums portrayal. This movie depicts the aspirations of every Americans to hit it big by fighting against all odds. This movie managed to get such rave reviews in India , only when it proved to be a big crowd puller in USA, where every American bearing the brunt of economic downturn could picture themselves in the place of the impoverished kid.
We also have our very own ‘dark horses’ who have managed to triumph over odds based on their zest and zeal to excel. We have our ‘DESI’ fighter pilots, brave men in olive green, blue and white, Nano, Dhoni, Saina, Sania, Chandrayan Mission. We also need to generate the much needed media frenzy and hype for our ‘DESI’ brands like our European counterparts; and proclaim to the world that we do not need stamp of approval from the ‘White Skinned’ to prove our worth and mettle in the World Stage. Our Brand “Made in India’ is enough to declare to all that we have already arrived.
“Hark! Citizens of the world, here we come ‘Desi Indians’ who have the talent to light up your world with the glow of our indomitable spirit, intelligence, humility and faith in mankind. We are proud of our past, comfortable in our own skin and we would be the toast of the future generations”.
YES WE ALWAYS COULD AND ALWAYS CAN!!!!!!
© Paromita Mukherjee Ojha