Saturday, February 18, 2006

Jallianwallah bagh

I just watched the movie Rang De Basanti. It was an amazing movie which awoke several emotions within me. Of course, there is always this feeling of patriotism on watching a movie like this one. There are also several other different emotions attached. Only a very few movies come along which make you think about several things. Almost every dialogue in the movie made me think about about something or the other and try to reason out and relate to the situations. I just wanted to highlight one particular thought that crossed my mind....

Jallianwallah bagh incident... I learnt about it for the first time when I was in 8th std. Our entire history text book was about India's struggle for independence. This particular event caught my attention. Why? The reason seems so obvious. What General Dyer did was just too cruel for words. For those of you who are not very familiar with the history of this incident, here is a quick gist of it.

In April 1919, several Indians had assembled at Jallianwallah bagh, a place in north India to peacefully protest against British Imperialism in India. While this peaceful demonstration was going on, General Dyer brought soldiers to the place, closed all the gates of the place, thus leaving no way for the people gathered to escape, and ordered his men to open fire. Several died in the incident. They were helpless. They had nowhere to run. You can very well imagine what went on there. A bunch of men shooting at you and you have absolutely no means of protecting yourself. You don't even stand a chance. That was downright cruelty. And from what I heard from my history teacher, General Dyer was later on awarded with a medal!!! I guess that whole thing set my blood boiling, even though India has been free for more than half a century. Just reading about this incident of the past should be enough to make anybody's blood boil.

The movie had scenes re-enacted from the jallianwallah bagh incident, and I found the same emotion, as the one when I first read about this, coursing through me. Surprisingly, that was not the only emotion. Something else was there too. And I was not able to put my finger on it till I entered my room, when it finally struck me...

I was able to relate to the incident on a different level. And the way I related to it was quite different from how the teenage boys in the movie related to it. Theirs was more patriotic. Mine is more personal and emotional.

I realized that there is a mini Jallianwallah Bagh within me. And I am General Dyer in my Jallianwallah bagh. This Jallianwallah bagh is my mind and my heart, and the helpless entities that I kill (who gather to protest against some of my actions) are my emotions, feelings and anything else that bothers me. I don't kill them on a daily basis. I do open the gates quite often and release the prisoners from my mind. But every once in a while, I seal every exit and open fire. I guess what I am driving at is that sometimes, you feel utterly helpless about some of your feelings and emotions. It feels like you would never be able to express them to anyone or that nobody would understand. You lock it up deep within you, shoot them and try to kill them, and walk around as though nothing happened. Of course, just like the real Jallianwallah bagh incident, the survivors and the other witnesses rise against you and try to shoot you back. Your emotions revolt and try to strike you down. That feeling is one of the most horrible feelings ever. It is like a huge explosion of emotions deep within.

What to do in such cases? The obvious answer seems to be "keep the gates open and let the prisoners out". But I have a problem with that. Everytime I open the gates, all my emotions rush out so fast, that someone or the other, who means a lot to me, gets trampled in the stampede. What I mean is that I end up giving unnecessary tension, worries and depression to the people I love. I would never want to do that. I never want to hurt the people who mean so much to me with a stampede of emotions from me. But keeping the gates closed is such a difficult option! What do I do?

While I sort out this conflict within me, let me apologize to those who got thoroughly confused with this post. I guess this post is a typical example of what happens when you let strong feelings and thoughts from within you break loose. And Most importantly, let me apologize to all those victims who got trampled whenever I opened the gates. I know I have no rights to put you in the middle of the stampede when thats the last place you want to be. But I end up doing such things because I care about you, I trust you and I cannot help but to confide in you. I am sorry about the stampede and thank you for putting up with it (in other words: being there for me) when you had the choice to escape. I'll pay for the hospital bills!!! :)

A final question to all......

Am I the only one with a Jallianwallah bagh of emotions within me? Or do most people have it?


The Girl Who Sold The World said...

Whoa...what a way to relate feelings and emotions with something that's seemingly different!
It feels like you would never be able to express them to anyone or that nobody would understand.
YEAH, exactly. It does feel so many times and that's when helplessness also creeps in.

Well, I think you're not alone with that Jallianwallah Bagh emotions. Count me in too. I guess many others can relate to it as well.
Nice post.

Clueless said...

Well, well, well!! The Girl beat me to it this time!! Ah..doesn't she ever get tired of being first??? :P

And oh, she said it before me, but I'll say it again. Great managed to turn something as simple as watching a scene in a movie into trying to explain the torrent of emotions that run through you from time to time. Great work :)

And well, its really difficult to arrive at a conclusion in situations like this. Gates open : stampede. Gates closed : no escape for the prisoners. Its a no win situation. But then again, something has to be done, right? Sometimes, its better to sit back and let things take their own course, but sometimes u gotta take matters into your own hands. Its upto u to decide when u gotta do what...depending on the situation.

But I guess more often than not, its better to leave the gates open. There'll be a stampede, yes, but at least you're allowing an escape route, right? It's never good to bottle up time, it'll lead to an explosion (and often, its worse than the stampede that could've happened).

It's ok to be moody sometimes...that's what friends are there to get you through. Just as long as you realize that as long as you're depressed, they're gonna be too. And when you cheer up, they will too. Release those emotions once in a while, but do remember that friends just want you to be happy.

So the best thing is to try and remain cheerful as much as possible. Its not easy, but its not impossible either, right? We're all here for you, sweetie. Just be sure to remember that. :)

And oh, sorry about the looong rant. Lotsa people might not get what I've written here, but you know what? I know you will. :D

WV: qxwaghn. How appropriate to describe the muddled up mess that is my post!! :P

Macho Girl said...

#The girl
Nice to know someone can relate to my post! I was worried if people wud be able to relate to this! Welcome to the jallianwallah bagh of the heart! I just hope we don't have to visit it that often :)

i have just two things to say to u. thanks and sorry. I hope u know what i mean

I know what you mean, just the way u know what i mean!

You know what!!!!!!! :D:D:D

AnN@ said...

hi :) don't worry dear. you're not the only one who has to battle emotions. I guess in one way or the other, everyone has to, no matter how happy they seem. I think it sometimes boils down to one's fear of how others perceive you. If you let out all your emotions for all to see, you might be seen as temperamental and unable to controls your feelings. On the other hand, if you keep it all in and put up a happy facade, you may seem like the happiest, most care-free person in the world. In the end, i feel that a balance has to be struck. Keep the feelings in to preserve your dignity when you must, but let them out to family or friends whom you trust. I'm sure they will understand cos they too have to go through it ;)

Ajit Chouhan said...

Good blog....some really nice posts..

cookiemonster said...

hey..great sure a lot of people identified with it...sometimes its really hard to open the gates how much ever u want to..just remember we're all here for u :) and we'll be sure to send u the hospital bill for emotional and mental duress udergone ;)

Macho Girl said...

me- *in deep thought*

Thanks :)

#cookie monster
Thanks a lot :) I better make sure I have insurance! Gonna be hard to manage all those bills :)