The best way to know the self is feeling oneself at the moments of reckoning. The feeling of being alone, just with your senses, may lead you to think more consciously. More and more of such moments may sensitize ‘you towards you’, towards others. We become regular with introspection and retrospection. We get ‘the’ gradual connect to the higher self we may name Spirituality or God or just a Humane Conscious. We tend to get a rhythm again in life. We need to learn the art of being lonely in crowd while being part of the crowd. A multitude of loneliness in mosaic of relations! One needs to feel it severally, with conscience, before making it a way of life. One needs to live several such lonely moments. One needs to live severallyalone.

Saturday, 10 October 2009


The day when Francis Enduwar’s beheaded body was found and the subsequent day, we all witnessed something truly larger than life. Here was a son who had lost his father, a wife who had lost his husband, a police force that had lost its colleague, a state that had lost one of its innumerable faceless warriors. The way the family reacted to this gravest crisis of its life differentiates the ordinary Indian from its confused state which has made it a benchmark to take any tough decision after sacrificing many lives like Enduwar. The mother-son duo has once again made the ordinary Indian a larger than life figure, something we all can see all around us but do not or cannot see.

The day when the news of Francis Enduwar’s killing came, a devastated son was seen saying he would grow up to become someone like his father and would complete his work by killing the militants who killed his father. It was the natural outrage of a son on brutal killing of his father by some dastards. Next day, this same boy reacted on the tragedy saying he would like to become his father but when asked about avenging his father’s killing, he said he would forgive them as his father would have wished.

In all hype and hoopla, on all the debate of our people vs. extremists, in all the dilemma of action and consequences, this indeed is a glowing tribute to the immortal spirit of survival to fight; to embrace the vagaries of life to outdo them; to stand once again. This nine-year old has shown a mirror to all of us. The irony is almost of us are bound to dust it off.

• How many big names bothered to pay tribute to Francis during his last rites? None!
• Initial reaction of his department on his disappearance – he would have gone on some pleasure trip!
• The police were aware of his whereabouts after second day of his abduction yet couldn’t dare to venture in the woods to save a life. Life of a common man!
• The way we treat our saviours! Apparently Enduwar was not being paid for last six months, again due to some petty administrative reasons.

(After all he was just another non-existential entity for the system. When Mr E Sreedharan has to fight for his pension, who is this Francis and many more like him, who belong to the lower wrung.)

The naxal menace is growing and engulfing larger geographical areas. Government’s dilemma in formulating and implement a plan including better mix of rehabilitation and offensive measures are proving a boon for the militant elements who have distorted the naxal ideology of Naxalbari completely.

Once a movement based on ideology, now a bane for humanity. Yet there is a wife who rejected naxal’s demand of swap of his husband with Kobad Ghandy and some other top Maoist ideologues (or mercenaries of death who knows!) If we go back and try to put a little pressure on our grey cells, we would come across the most famous yet starkly paradoxical example when some dreaded terrorists were swapped for a famous political figure of J&K and her family now claims to be the liberator of the people of the state from the claws of an imperialist India! Yet we listen to them. We give them the space they don’t deserve.

Indeed what the Enduwars have done, right from the beginning of the crisis is truly remarkable. The way Sunita Enduwar reacted on the swap demand; her approach on dignity of her martyred husband; and poise of her son a day after the body was found, is truly unmatched.

Can we learn something? Can our policymakers learn something? Probably not!

The life of Francis Enduwar was not just another life and so of many other warriors of the state, who play their role quietly, ignored by the state and the system. Everyone needs to realize it. Government was debating and still debating to contain the naxal menace. The result, another 17 commandos massacred and two informers beheaded in Gadchiroli. Government is still not sure on scale of its firepower use against spread of the red corridor. But a Sunita Enduwar and an Abhishek Enduwar are guiding beacons that an ordinary Indian, fed up of political blitzkrieg, needs. An ordinary Indian now needs ‘larger than life yet ordinary figures’ to correlate, to idolize, to follow, and not marquees of red carpets and practitioners of elitist dogmas.