720, 430 or 160?
Saturday, March 14, 2009, : Its peak noon hours and I am wandering in the lanes of Madhapur thinking about these three numbers. Well current state of economy has really made lot of people to think. I was thinking about how I can cut down expenses. I realized I spend dear amount on hair cut - 720 rupee each time [hair cut + color]! I never thought I should stop spending that money.
So by now, you must have understood one number – 720. I am looking around at other parlors and found another one offering same at 430 rupee. Cheaper but yet, not considerable saving. I see this small time shop offering same at 160 rupee. After little bit of wondering and wandering , I decide to go for 160 rupee option -because even if they screw up my haircut, it’s just one time affair as hair will grow again :-) and if it turns out to be decent, then I have found a good option to save money!
Come inside the shop. This shop is no different than other shops I have seen at Rajkot, Nadiad, Ahmedabad, Pune, Bangalore and Hyderabad. Huge chairs which you can’t push. A wall fully covered with mirrors. One or two benches to sit. Couple of newspaper and surely few filmy magazines. And yes, surely a television playing local movies :-)
However, barbers in Hyderabad are different. How? Generally when you go to a barber shop, barber concentrates on your hair. Not in Hyderabad though :-) Here, a barber’s concentration is equally divided between your hair and the latest movie running on TV! Don’t be surprised if you find barber forget to cut your hair for few seconds or minutes because he is glued to TV!
Let’s try to talk with the barber. How to strike conversation with a stranger and especially someone who is totally different then you in terms of place of origin, language, culture, profession…? I follow this :
- Talk in same tone / vocabulary as they talk. Though you don’t know local language, your Hindi or English can be adjusted as per need
- Talk about something related with them – their culture, their festival, their food, their city, their leader, their election – ouch nah, our election :)
And then I ask the barber if he is a registered voter (I recently registered for voting from Hyderabad and I have been asking people if they are registered voter). Answer is - Yes – he is.
My next question to him : Do you vote? Surprisingly, answer is - Yes! The barber is very clear about his political views and whom to vote. What sounds refreshing to me is his determination to vote!
How many of us can answer like this barber? Keep a hand on your heart and answer honestly –
- Are you a registered voter? If not, do you bother to register yourself?
- Do you know about parties and candidates? How clear are you about your politician views?
- When was the last time you thought about doing something for “motherland”?
- DO YOU VOTE?
It’s a shame that in the most intellectual country, politicians are wooing backward and illiterate people and not you. You know why? Because YOU DON’T VOTE. Pity that future of this great nation is decided by voters who sell their vote for one bottle of alcohol, 100 rupee note and one time meal. Do we know where this will lead us as a nation? Is this the future we are building for our children?
If you, I and people around us vote, it can surely make a difference. How much of a difference and when? Honestly, I don’t have an answer. But then, even Gandhiji didn’t have an answer about when we would get freedom from British when he started freedom movement way back in early part of 20th century. If people at that time had thought about same questions [why and when], we still would have been ruled by British.
Thank god. Our forefathers were not as short sighted and selfish as we are. They fought, they went to Jail, and they died for a cause. They sacrificed everything for a cause which they didn’t even know if they could ever achieve during their lifetime. Unfortunately, they died for all of us who today drive a jazzy car, earn a lot and crib about politics and nation while sitting in our air conditioned cabin. We do everything except – Voting. After all, what we have to do? No fight, no jail, no sacrifice. Just go out of our house and vote. That too once in 5 years. Yet we don’t. Shame on us.
If you are still reading this post, all I have to request you is :
- PLEASE VOTE.
- Please vote for party and / or person. Please do not vote for caste, religion and regional sentiments.
- Please INSPIRE and INFLUENCE people around you to vote.
Yes, we can -
- Yes, we can inspire our Family to vote
- Yes, we can inspire our Relatives to vote
- Yes, we can inspire our Neighbors to vote
- Yes, we can inspire our Colleagues to vote
- Yes, we can inspire our Maid, Cook, Driver and Watchman to vote
- Yes, we can inspire EVERY PERSON we interact with to vote!
Again, we are not god; we can’t be successful all the time. So what? When we are sincerely doing something for a genuine cause, for our beloved motherland, we don’t have to worry about failure and success. All we have to do is – honestly perform our duties to the best of our ability. Can We??
YES, WE CAN!
P.S. : Out of 100% of eligible voters, only around 50% bother to vote. Out of those 50% votes, someone who wins election will get only 20% of vote. So 100% of population is represented by someone who is preferred by only 20% of the population. What an irony!
Elections are won and lost by even just 1 vote! If you think your vote cannot make a difference, think again.