Monday, July 01, 2013

Learn and Rebuild

Vasu Reddy from Chicago

The devastation caused by heavy rains is continuing to raise the human casualties along with unimaginable loss of property.  There is really little evidence on how many people have been lost in the floods due to the way the Indians keep track of their near and dear ones.  One might never know how many people might have perished in the floods and the loss of livelihood in the aftermath.  One can only imagine about the number of people who perished in their path to devotion.  There is also a lot of talk on the loss of businesses around the temple along with washed away guest houses and other areas that were built around the temple premises.

Now that the devastation has already happened and the human fragility has been completely in the open, it is perhaps a great time to do the right things to necessitate the rebuilding that will allow for the holy places to be intact for thousands of years to come.  To start with these places of worship have been standing the test of time and weather for hundreds of years and they have seen every possible natural causing that we can possibly imagine.  The holy shrines are not new to severe weather; be it snow, rain or any combination thereof, and have been free standing in their pristine surroundings for centuries.  The weather has always been unpredictable, and trying to fight the might of the weather gods has not been possible for humans from the beginning of time.

The devastation caused is not just because of severe weather, but stripping the natural surroundings of the cover it provided to the holy places, and as well as the areas surrounding the mountains and rivers.  Human greed and unplanned development, and me syndrome are the causes of stripping the natural surrounding that protected the pristine places of its protection from flash floods and severe weather.  It is not just the remote and pristine places that are being bulldozed by humans but the entire nation is being abused beyond repairable stage by people, and they simply don’t care about what might happen to their surroundings and what will remain for generations to come.  

The nature has a way of reinventing itself and despite the harshness shown by humans it can typically bounce back with its beauty by rebuilding its natural surroundings by getting a little care from who occupy its surroundings.  The cost of what has happened is immeasurable to both human and natural environment, but steps can be immediately taken to help both the natural habitat and human workforce.

Instead of the country’s politicians bickering over their helping hand to the affected population and the environment, they should immediately adapt to the idea of conservation and reforestation, along with planned development along the forests and rivers.  India has an abundance of people power and intellectual power to develop and execute to preserving the environment and saving the human life; both simultaneously.

With so much rhetoric from the politicians, no immediate actions are taken to help with the physical and psychological aspects of the devastation.  The plan can be very simple to find eminent and experienced people in conservation and have them devise a plan for India’s rivers and forests.  Every nation has natural calamities, and typically the nation comes together to help and restore the environment, while lending helping hand to those who suffer natural calamities.  India with its vast population and fairly reasonable resources should seek the expertise of its people to rebuild its rivers and reforest the nation.  There is no lack of political support to help the people and save the holy places, just that the focus is more on political one-upmanship, rather than helping the needy and saving the environment.

The government and the opposition parties should simply use every resource it has to help rebuild the rivers and canals, and deploy all its resources to reforestation, along with curbing illegal building and development.  While the idea might be simple to say, it will be difficult to practice in India as the national interests will be rarely put ahead of personal and political gain.  When you see the coverage on the plight of the pilgrims compared the coverage of the politicians bickering and taking credit is given more prominence, which clearly shows that idiocy is television worthy.  The nation should react to the disasters as a whole; the volunteers of India can always outnumber the politicians to take charge of protecting the country’s wonderful and pristine landscape, by simply taking steps to help protect the environment.  Before and even after independence India and its population are capable of putting nation first, and putting India’s natural resources first is not out of bounds for the citizens.  It is time to start respecting the precious nature and our surroundings and every able person can help a lending had to rebuild and recreate the magic of India that it was.  God will certainly smile on us when our environment turns back to green forests, wild life and humans coexisting, flowing rivers and pristine and unpolluted nature all around, along with people having respect for each other and mother nature.  Each and every person can help in rebuilding the beautiful country that was and can be with a little bit of effort from every individual.

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