Only the wearer knows, where the shoe pinches

As the old saying goes, “Only the wearer knows, where the shoe pinches”, it fairly beautifully applies to the general attitude of people living in today’s society as well. The current society is plagued with innumerable problems ranging from lackluster attitude of civic authorities, to corrupt government officials to declining mental peace to eroding familial values to spreading terror in the society. But is anyone listening, is anyone bothered, does anybody have any time to devote to one of the problem areas that the society is facing and do something to at least create an awareness for it, if not make an attempt to solve it.

Everyone expects the garbage to be cleaned up by someone else conveniently ignoring certain basic facts that each one of us is, in some way or the other, responsible for the garbage. The society finds a very easy escape route of any problem that comes. There are basically three things that everyone in the society, in general, does to address a problem,

1) Ignore the problem,

2) Let the problem happen till a maxima is reached, and

3) Think that this problem is not going to hit me.

Unfortunately all the three approaches act as a positive catalyst in nourishing the monster that loves to devour the succor in the society. Pigmenting the core of problems with a plastic smile allows it to grow in isolation, assume an incurable form and steal nutrition from the same society that protects it like a parasite residing in a host.

Only those people are seen doing something to create awareness in the society, the ones who are badly smitten by some or the other problem in the society and even there the ratio of the total number of suffering people and those actually working to eradicate it maddeningly high. Only when the cornering and suffering grows beyond all tolerable levels within reasonable limits, do some people come forward to take the plunge into the dumping ground called ‘Society’ to cleanse it. Even then a majority of people think of suicide as a solution to end their problems.

One such reflection of incidences can be found in the alarmingly high number of suicides by married men of late. It is a well – known and an established fact that in any marital dispute the sentimental balance of the law, law – makers and law – executioners lies with the female partner as opposed to the male partner. With increasing number of false dowry harassment and domestic violence coming to forth and the number of divorces also rising alarmingly, it is no wonder that each year 56, 000 married men are committing suicides as opposed to 27, 000 married women.

The situation being so pathetic and despicable, yet do we see anyone doing anything about it. No. Even those who are affected by it want a quick fix and want others to do something about it. And those who are not affected by it have at most a few words of sympathy for them and nothing else. Save Indian Family Foundation, the largest and the only NGO in India, fighting for ‘Gender Equity’ and ‘Family Harmony’ receives over 200 distress calls from battered and shattered men all over India over its various help lines. But how many of them are ready to volunteer for a fight to eradicate this social evil of “Misuse of Women Protection Laws”. A discouragingly small number of a few hundreds.

More recently we had a spate of unfortunate and merciless terror attacks in the form of 8 low intensity serial blasts in Bangalore and 19 high intensity ones in Ahmadabad and 2 futile attempts in Surat. Analysis puts it as a total failure on part of the intelligence and surveillance agencies compounded with a condemnable low preparedness of the state governments in dealing with such situations. And these blasts are not something new. We had quite a number of them in the last few years be it Lucknow, Delhi or Malegaon. And yet such a big intelligence lapse!

But who is bothered? Everyone thinks as long as we are safe, nothing needs to be done. And truly no one will do anything either. People will discuss for a few days (perhaps I hope so, or maybe I am over – optimistic), media channels will run the stories for a few days, electronic and print media shall cover the event till they get something more sensational and then life will carry on as usual.

Even those terrorists who do this, know very well, that nothing is gonna happen and this fact is the largest confidence – booster for them. So this question goes to the society that be it the case of any problem, does it still want to wait till the lightning strikes it or is it ready to sensitize itself to sense over – impending social catastrophes and take steps to shatter its impact? Only the wearer should not know the pinch.


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