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Demand More: Stand Up For Your Social Responsibilities

Demand

A couple of weeks back, a jewellery company named Gitanjali published a full page ad in a major English daily, featuring Sanjay Dutt. This was during the days when Sanjay Dutt topic was hot in the media - a court had found him guilty on charges of possessing weapons illegally and powerful politicians were advocating pardoning him.

Assuming that this company has no political or social interest and is only concerned with selling its jewellery in the market, it’s clear that marketing managers of this company think that using Sanjay Dutt, in spite of him being found guilty by a court recently, will increase the sales of their products. It speaks volumes about the perception of ordinary citizens about terrorism and overall political and judicial system.

If the analysis of marketing managers of Gitanjali is right, we Indians don’t give much regard to our judicial system, be it in a positive or negative sense. For high profile cases, either we know in advance who is right, who is not - even before court announces it or we know that whatever court concludes doesn’t have to be right. After twenty years of deliberations,

if a court announces a celebrity guilty, it could be a landmark day. In the past twenty years, if an investigating officer or a judge pondered about Sanjay Dutt’s case for just one hour in a month, 240 hours of serious analysis has gone into declaring him a guilty. The person is guilty, he has done something wrong, something against the law and he should be punished – that should be the first reaction of a normal citizen. If someone believes that the trial was not fair, it must have been in favor of Sanjay, for the simple reason that his family has been a congress loyalist for more than fifty years.

On the contrary, Gitanjali management thinks that Sanjay Dutt will get sympathy of ordinary citizens after being announced guilty, leading to increased sales of their jewellery. Compare this case to that of Lance Armstrong. As soon as it became clear that he had been taking performance enhancing drugs, not only did the sponsors terminate their contracts with Armstrong immediately, some of them are filing lawsuits against him to recover the money they paid him. This is when Armstrong has done nothing against the national interests of America. And here we have a guy who barely escaped being adjudged a conspirator in serial blasts that killed 250 people, is a good friend of people who are openly waging a war against India and when it’s proved that he kept weapons illegally, people are showing sympathy for him. What about the sorrows of hundreds of those who lost their loves ones? Just because they are not powerful enough to have some space in newspapers and TVs, their emotions don’t count?

Does it not mean that our national interests are nowhere in our priority list? Instead, emotions of one convicted criminal who happens to be a celebrity are more important for majority of Indian citizens. As Mahatma Gandhi said – ‘A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.’ Extending this to the collective thoughts of a nation, a nation becomes what majority of its citizens think about their country. If a substantial number of people in a country think about a strong nation, it will become a strong nation. If a substantial number of people in a country think about small things, rather than thinking about happiness of majority of citizens, it becomes like that. We get what we deserve, we get what we think about, we get what our priorities are. Science is proving by numerous experiments in last few decades that our thoughts are very powerful that can produce tangible results. Imagine a billion thoughts lured into Poor-Guy-will-have-to-spend-3-years-in-jail Vs a billion thoughts demanding strong loyalty towards national interests from everyone who is related to our nation. Imagine a billion ‘Chalta hai’ thoughts Vs a billion thoughts asking for a system where everyone gets opportunities to progress. Image a billion Vote-for-him-because-his-mother-died-recently Vs Vote-for-him-because-he-wants-good-for-the-nation. It could lead to a billion sufferings because of terrorism, poverty and frustrations of a sick system or a billion smiles.

Even if one doesn’t believe in power of thoughts, one has to believe in the power of free market. The world the fairly an open market. If there is demand for something in the market, there emerges a product that caters to that demand. If there is demand for politicians who don’t act like owners of this country, but facilitators whose job is to channelize the resources of this country in best possible way, there will emerge a group that will to cater to this demand. If there is demand for a system where anti-national elements get punished and those who do good get name and fame, there will emerge a system that will start differentiating between real villains and heroes. Demand more !!

Author: Arun Kumar

Published: May 31, 2013

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