let us remake the world

More than ever today I remember the lyrics of Jimmy Cliff's song:

Remake the world
With love and happiness
Remake the world
Put your conscience in the test
Remake the world
North, south, east and west
Remake the world
Gotta prove that are the best..

The terrible week that has just gone by has perhaps - and I say perhaps - woken India from the ataxic and catatonic state it had allowed itself to sink in for reasons better left unsaid. The people are angry. There is a permeable sense of outrage. Everyone seems to want something done. Some want extreme measures, others seek softer solutions but everyone wants to see some action.

The picture you see was taken last week, probably when most of us were glued to our TV screens trying to make sense of what was enfolding in front of our eyes. These are the children of our Sanjay Colony primary centre. Most of them belong to migrant families and they are from all caste and creed. Even their teachers are a motley crew: one from what we call the lowest caste and the other a gypsy whereas the third is from a educated home. That afternoon was geography class and hence time to play with the big inflatable globe. For me the picture was portentous of a message. It was time to remake the world, if not for us, at least for these children as they trusted us implicitly. One just could not let them down.

And the world cannot be remade by apportioning blame to some outside foe: be they those that rule us or those that follow a different faith. To truly remake the world we need to look deep into ourselves and see were we have gone wrong. How have we allowed the world to be what it is today. People are on the streets, each one expressing his or her anguish. For the first time politicians are being riled. Suddenly people have found their lost voice. But for how long is the question begging to be asked.

The little kids hugging the world are looking for answers long owed to them. Will we have the courage to remake the world?