The ‘spirit’ of Jaipur

I am tired of hearing phrases like ‘The ‘spirit’ of City x or y or z’ every time there is some calamity hitting them. If in India people bounce back to their normal lives soon after the tragedy hits them, is it because of their ‘spirit’ or because of their helplessness? A news channel today narrated the ‘spirit’ of a cobbler who rushed back from the hospital after someone told him that his tools have been stolen. Can a poor man afford to rest in the hospital when he knows that his very livelihood is being taken away from him? Does he have the luxury of time to recover? Why do we shy away from the fact that he has no option but to start living a ‘normal’ life?

7 thoughts on “The ‘spirit’ of Jaipur

  1. I agree…in some ways there is no choice…
    Spirit gives it a very bouncy feel but the truth is it is his livelihood and he has no choice…
    Not that having that kind of motivation to just dust down and get back to work is wrong – but I know what you mean…
    Thanks for visiting my blog btw…curious how you got there..since I have not seen your name in the few blogs I frequent…

  2. Yes Noon, this is like giving ‘compulsion’ a colorful attire of ‘great spirit’..

    I think I reached you through MM’s blog (not sure though!) and yes I did like what I read 🙂

  3. While I agree that

    A) Majority of news channel in India are trash & they focus more on TRPs rather than meaningful news. I’ve seen a news correspondent ask a father who lost his son hours ago – “How does it feel to have lost your only son”? In my opinion, the only answer to that question is one (probably 2) tight slap on the face of the person asking it.

    B) Poverty remains the biggest challenge for our country. People have to earn a living whether be it blasts, heavy rain or scorching sun.

    However, when there’s blood & fear all around you, panic & chaos gripping a city which has been a peaceful heritage for decades, it does require people to stand up & raise their spirits to lead a normal life.

    Being a Jaipurite, I know the scale of the tragedy that has struck this otherwise peaceful city. It has required a lot of re-assurance from the administration and counselling from volunteers to get things back to normal.

    Unfortunate as it may be, I’ve seen a few such massive tragedies closely – 9/11, regional riots in France, Sarojni Nagar blasts in Delhi & now this incident in Jaipur. Clearly, our financial obligations put us in a different category (aka 3rd world) from developed ones like USA & France and we have no choice but to try to move on in our lives despite tragedies.

  4. Right said Gaurav..
    A) I do find these t.v programs extremely irritating when they ask such senseless questions. Like the corny saying goes – ‘Its all about grabbing eyeballs…’
    B) Well, there is no denying the fact that it takes lots of courage and strength to be able to forget the tragedy that has just struck you, and spring back to normalcy. But every wound needs some time to heel. Poverty doesn’t give that comfort to these people. We don’t have fundas like ‘counseling’ or ‘support groups’ to help the affected people. And so its really commendable that despite all this, people in India move on so quickly.

  5. gaurav says:

    I kind of agree with you on this whole hoop about ‘spirit’. I had seen the news clippings on Jaipur blasts that you’re talking about. To my memory, the worst example of this spirit tamasha was the Mumbai deluge in July’05. After continuous rains and a high tide and submerged several parts of suburban Mumbai under 3 to 10 feet of water, all transportation ground to a halt – no trains, buses or taxis. Office-goers had no choice but to try and walk a few kilometers; and the highest (and safest, free of dangerous underwater potholes/manhole) ground is usually the railway track. Wha t do our news channels report – ‘look at the spirit of mumbai… despite so big a problem, they’re still walking.. if there is no train on the track, they’ll walk on it… that’s professionalism’. For god’s sake, where’s the spirit in walking home ?!!! What do they expect people to do? Stay at their work place for two days – or try and walk to an alternate place?
    Whatever happened at Jaipur was horrible and pained the entire country, but to hide real lack of intelligence, control and policing behind ‘spirit’ of the city is preposterous ! All places are peaceful till something goes wrong. What do you expect the people to do – sit at the blast site and stare at it for weeks. Obviously not – life goes on – and soe does work – we have families to feed, remember? And that’s not unique to jaipur or mumbai or any other place

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