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.

Tuesday 12 August 2014


The Bharat Ratna – the season is in vogue again, and with the Independence Day approaching near and a new government in the office with a new ideology and pushing for more and more of symbols fitting in that ideology – the annual process of selecting the ‘gems’ and ‘luminaries’ of the nation is gaining feverish pitch.

It happens every year, more so in the recent years, with the round the clock media coverage amplifying the scope of the controversy! This year, it is different because of the new government in the office.

The other category of ‘considered highly decorated civilian awards’ - the Padma Awards, announced on Republic Day, are mostly seen as falling in the category of ‘obliging’ or ‘patronizing’ and lobbying-for-the-award reports make regular headlines.

Yes, there have been worthy claimants and right decisions but the ‘at will’ distribution has sullied the reputation of the Padma Awards with controversial or not-up to-the-mark names like q Sant Singh Chatwal, or a Saif Ali Khan, or a Chitranjan Ranawat. The list is long and the run of controversies is endless.

And the Bharat Ratna is slipping to the similar practices.

Yes, the recipients so far have been beyond the shadow of doubt except the last year and the row year-after-year, where there has been a row, has been basically about ‘who is left out of the list’.

Now, a maximum of three people can be awarded the Bharat Ratna in a year. So far, 43 individuals have been honoured with the Bharat Ratna. 11 of them were recognized posthumously for their contribution. There have been years of multiple awardees and there have been years when no one was found fit, an anomaly, when the controversy has been evergreen on ‘many left out names’.

Yes, there are many more names deserving this honour and they have been left our due to the political reasons and nothing else.

And this ‘deliberately ignored or left-out names’ is getting more and more biased.

A Congress-led government would never consider names like Atal Bihari Vajpayee or Veer Sawarkar and would award Rajiv Gandhi before awarding Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel (Rajiv Gandhi – 1990 / Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel – 1991).

A Bhartiya Janata Party-led government would do the opposite. The natural choice for it would be Atal Bihari Vajpayee or many other worthy names Congress and other so-called secular parties would never even think about, though names like Atal Bihari Vajpayee or Major Dhyanchand should be acceptable to all.

Yes, it was a silly and unacceptable decision to choose Sachin Tendulkar over Major Dhyanchand last year.

And names like Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel or Subhash Chandra Bose should never be made part of this ring of politics.

Like Mahatma Gandhi is beyond the likes of the Nobel Prize, greats like Patel or Bose are beyond the reach of awards like the Bharat Ratna. They are not honoured by the awards; rather, the awards get the sanctity when embraced by them.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey -