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26.11 We can hear a buzzer. Finally!

Seems like everyone and anyone – with a desktop – is talking about it. Everyone is irked and disgruntled with the sad turn of events. Why shouldn’t they be? After all, they’ve been hit, where it hurts the most. Their pockets – that is.

All this while, terror as well as terrorists seemed to be something that belonged to the lower strata of life. Only the poor feared them and the rest lived their lives as they pleased.

I guess, unlike the western part of the world, where the approach is plan and do. We in India still continue with a far unique and rudimentary – now that it’s done, let’s plan – approach.

How did the world not learn that terrorist have finally gotten their acts together and started doing worthy work, for their cause? They seemed to have gotten it right with The Twin Towers in New York and even the violent London bombings; creating terror and hitting the dictators under their belts – financial belts.

Some did roll-up their sleeves and laid out a pyramid like plan – on a huge white board – in their pentagon looking structures. Did everyone learn from the mistakes of the leaders? Well, certainly – NO. Why should we care about what those western folks are doing? We are safe here; the only threats out here are, making the rush hour or finding the right man to bribe – to get the job done, leaving the terror attacks to a lower and more helpless class.

Leaving out what happened during the days of terror in Mumbai, which would only make it rhetoric, we will shine upon the angst and sardonic threat awaiting. But, before that, let’s understand a bigger picture.

A few palpable observations, which were reminiscent of the attacks on the west, are as follows:

a. The head-to-toe approach of the terrorists. By this, with a certain amount of vexation, I would like to point towards the loop-holes in our system and how they – the terrorists – used this, to their advantage.

b. How every channel – television – prays on the fragility of human emotions, for the sake of information or rather caustic financial gains.

c. The audacity of the entire episode.

d. Finally, how we chose to tackle this menace – our fight.

The Head-To-Toe Approach

From the information that has come to my notice, I see a certain intellect and confidence amongst the planners of this modus-operandi. They must have been sitting in their caves and said to each other, ‘why are we killing the poor and wasting our efforts. Let’s hit the decision-making set.’

Let’s train young bloods, with educational backgrounds, fluent in English. This way, no one will know, what hit them. Training from ex ISI and other LET agents as well as pre-attack local study, make this assault not only well planned but also logistically perfect.

Right from the boys, who had been in the city, for the past few months, quietly scrutinizing every nook and corner of south Mumbai to the men with the mastermind – bigger picture – of global terrorism, no leaf, was left unturned.

Television

Without a doubt, this terror attack has seen an incessant coverage, from Nariman house, Trident and The Taj Palace. It is the duty of media to provide the public with information but what eventually aired live was not only disgusting but downright infuriating.

Every channel, as a social responsibility, could have conveyed the entire – terror struck – episode, as humane as possible. If this had been the driving force, our news wouldn’t have seemed like clips from a Bollywood movie.

Nevertheless, a few channels did manage to pull off a rather sympathetic and emotional episode, which was needed. But, if I had seen this as one big picture, it seemed to be more about TRPs, rather then NEWS.

Audacity

Like me, many were an audience to the rage of high-society and elite, spanning across media. In one particular incident, which caught my eye was, when this influential socialite came in-front of the camera and vented her angst. She talked about ‘audacity’ and a whole bunch of irk – baloney, I say.

When all these terror attacks have happened in the vying eye of the same people, in vicinity of same borders, but in different locations, on different class of people, then… No one seems to be talking about ‘audacity’.

The one thing I would like to understand is, by audacity are we suggesting that high class have been terrorized or because it was south Mumbai’s prime locales, which have made it an ‘audacity’ label.

If the above statement is true, then, we are also suggesting the fact that, any terror attack on our soil which doesn’t hit the rich lacks ‘audacity’.

Our Fight

As the mighty Indian force – to fight terror – descended upon the shores of Mumbai, from the NORTH (I hope all Marathi’s are listening), we saw a sign of hope. Since, the Marathi’s have shown their true strengths, I feel discussing them further would only waste time.

Now, this fight can be debated on several, logical and illogical means. A few believe that the NSG should have taken control over the situation. Others believe otherwise.

Despite our forces fighting a politically-corrected battle, managing to crack the terror plot, didn’t take one phone-call. The death toll, which seems under-stated, could have been averted only if the process had been dictator-leadership followed. But, this would only be one-more-opinion.

In conclusion, the bigger fight, in the bigger picture, is the main cause of worry, for our future. If this wasn’t a good enough lesson, I’m sure nothing will be.

The people in dhotis must put aside their petty politics and roll-up their sleeves; it’s time to draw a pyramid on a huge white board.

Now what?

Like the most of us, who have been irked and infuriated by the terror attacks, blaming someone else seems to be the only relief. The corrupt officials are responsible, the system is lucid, and it’s his fault and so on.

I guess, it’s but natural for us to put the blame on someone else, when at the end, we all are collectively responsible.

Paying traffic officials to lay us off on jumping a signal or over speeding, having our CA file excessive receipts to avoid taxes and the list goes on. If we are the ones fueling the corruption blaze, then, only we can put an end to it as well.

We all have to start from ourselves. To propagate a better country, we all must unite and take the right steps forward.

Evading tax, paying bribes would be out the door and taking collective decisions in.

Right down from having all the well educated vote and question the system for its accountability; we can make the change.

So lets start doing, rather than just nodding.

By Paul Syng

PSD is a multi-disciplinary design practice based in Toronto. The studio focuses on a problem-solving approach that can take any form or function.