13/7: Mumbai Strong; But For How Long?

It felt like a scene straight out of a Hindi movie. I woke up to voice mails and nonstop messages from friends letting me know that Mumbai had been attacked. Again. My heart literally went dhak-dhak; dhak-dhak; dhak-dhak. I jumped out of bed with a lump in my throat and crashed on my couch in front of the television. For a hard core Mumbaikar (at heart at least) like myself, sitting and watching your favorite city up in flames, courtesy of a series of coordinated bombs, from the opposite hemisphere is heart wrenching. I found myself  falling into 26/11 mode. Unhappy, angry, scared and furious, I heard the updates while my Mother called relatives and friends to check on their safety. Lucky for us, our loved ones were all safe and sound.

I have one question for the Indian government: can you or can't you protect your citizens? It is just not fair for Mumbaikars to deal with such incidents over and over again. Just because they happen to be a resilient city, this does not mean this vitality should be taken for granted.  Everyone has a breaking point. If you, the Indian government, cannot protect your taxpaying citizens, then either you step down so we can find an administration that will or you step it up. Trust me, there will come a point where the citizens of the country will hit their saturation point and then, they will take it upon themselves to protect their country. And if they revolt, you'll find yourself dealing with dire circumstances; one that will be harder to control.

The details will keep coming in and we'll hear from the government who 'condemn' the attacks. Of course you do! The five year-old kid down the street playing gaali cricket condemns it. Our government uses that word far too loosely, it really pisses me off. But where are our Marathi manoos? The Shiv Sena, as usual hibernating in their homes, will come out of their hiding tomorrow morning and tell us how 'upset' they are. No one will take responsibility and we'll go back to believing that we are safe. For now at least.And we'll have those Candlelight Vigils headed by Bollywood stars but what good will that do?

This time however, the panic was not insane. We saw Mumbaikars come out to help one another. Twitter was used effectively while the rumors were kept to a complete minimum. It was all information and for the first time, Social Media in India did not sensationalize a dire situation.

Personally, I don't know what to say this time around. Who do we blame? The terrorists? Why should we blame them. They know we aren't and can't be protected and thus, they attack us again and again. Or should we blame our government? The ones we vote for or really, don't vote for. It's times like this I always say, if you didn't vote, then you need to STFU. It's because of you - the educated non-voter, that we have a government that is incapable. And it's not the rich that suffers; it's the common man on the street who hurts the most. The man who decided to have a quick bhel puri at Zaveri Bazaar, who will never come home again.

Look, terrorism has no religion but we know where it's coming from. So where do we go from here?

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