So much has already been written about Kerala during the floods.Social media is abuzz with gallant tales and tales of misery , valour and tragedy. What does a puny Bihari like me do? I take my smartphone and share all of the above feats with my friends and relatives up north. I am astounded by the activism of the informed population. Everyone who knows to volunteer,has volunteered. The doctor, the engineer, the actors, the bureaucrats,the politicians, the priests, the fishermen, the football team, the IT geeks, the lawyer, the Electricity Board employees,the snake charmers,the drivers, the divers, the military, the clubs and the animal activists! They installed the faith back into the devastated spirits.The faith of a helping hand extending their way, no matter what!
Bihar gets floods every year and all the young rivers- Ganga, Kosi, Punpun, Gandak know how to misbehave; belligerent year after year, without ever calling it an annual off. Every year, lakhs of homes get inundated, mud and brick structures dissolving like emulsion to the swallowing waters. The helicopters do their relief work and go back home. But where are we? We don’t go. We don’t volunteer. We don’t feel the need to help. We do a bit of social activism along with the media houses who announce a few donation portals.What happens then?
The survivors escape to towns and cities to recoup and restart.They have had enough of this apathy.The paddy growing farmer becomes an apprentice to a carpenter in Kerala. The lentils reaper is now a painter in Gujrat. And the great granary of India is slowly losing its custodians and guardians to building apartment complexes.In my stilted Malayalam, I was desperately trying to explain to the interiors team about a certain change in the layout when the supervisor cheekily switched to Hindi and asked me to explain comfortably as all of his team were my country cousins.