Prakash Jha’s Satyagraha raises more questions than it answers. Power is corrupting, we know that. But even an iota of semblance of power seems to ruin the rational thinking. Channeling the minds and power of million people, and to control those levels of energy and passion itself requires a continued impartiality, time and again.
Media played this role effectively with the Jessica Lal case few years ago, and helped get the justice rolling. Since then, there have been many more cases where either media, social media or few people have brought together masses to protest or demand from the Government. This begets another question on the role of media; with the powerhouse of information that it can dessiminate, as the provider of platform where discussions can take place or bringing a balancing act between factions of different thoughts – is it walking the talk?
In the last couple of years, this form of social justice has primarily been led by social media, and it has been a more of metro centric phenomenon. In this digital age, with the help of few entrepreneurs or support from corporates, these movements can really reach to masses across cities and states to be more effective in bringing about the social change that this country really needs. The angry young man of 1980s of Bollywood has emerged as the angry, silent masses of this century who are on the verge of bringing another social revolution. While these Bollywood heroes can do all to bring this to forefront, what is really needed is a Gandhi-like crusader with a reined passion, disciplined energy, detached emotions and unbiased mind to tie all the threads together to bring another Satyagraha.
That brings me to the beginning, did Gandhiji’s satyagraha really achieved what it set out to? Did we win the short term battle of India’s independence and lost out on a bigger and long term agenda of social independence? Did the leaders of the original satyagraha also became victims of passions of power and chose to be governed by emotions over logic? And thereby leading to deteriorating sensibilities of our sovereign rulers.
In search of more answers,
September 1, 2013