Of all the writing that Soliloquist does, so eloquently, I may add, this one stood out for me. The article was about the Indian apathy, and how it was tough to get someone in a crowd, that too a crowd claiming some commonality of purpose (like belonging to the same company), to come out helping out in a tight situation. The blog had concluded this is endemic and named it as a Great Indian Apathy.
I do believe there is apathy that prevails in our society and there is also an implicit acceptance of “fate” and “destiny” for even simpler failures; or attributing somebody else’s discomfort or misfortune to it; and hence no pointing in to getting into the situation or helping out. In spite of all that, I do think people have in them the innate need to help someone else out, when someone is in trouble. Yes, most of them would not put themselves in a situation when it threatens themselves or their loved ones security. Otherwise, I believe they tend to.
As there is an example in that article, here is another – an apt illustration of both ends of the spectrum. For passengers transiting between the international airport to the domestic airport, a bus facility is available to take them, with an hourly frequency or so. Prior to the departure, the passengers wait in a hall, with minimal facilities – but, of all the incongruities, a facility to charge their mobile phones – mirroring the explosive growth of that specific industry. A month ago, I was in one such bus. As the bus was leaving, one old gentleman hurried out asking the driver to wait. As we were waiting, we were treated to two gentlemen (gentlemen is really anomaly), who were loud, irritating and really irreverent to both the situation (middle of the night) and to the people around. The kind of topics they chose to talk to went on the lines of how they could make money of their jobs, how to outwit their management and how things in Mumbai were so bad etc, but safely taking refuge in speaking in their local language. As one of my relatives had said, they were the outstanding example of how IT industry in
Somehow I believe, the good neighbour’s name could be Avinash. Or Avinash Pathy. I’d have loved to say “Sol, Meet Avinash or the normal Indian, A. Pathy :-) ”.