Of Introspection and Criticism

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Mantasha Bint Rashid

Mantasha Bint Rashid

The recent government order directing all the government and semi-government offices to replace incandescent bulbs by compact fluorescent lamps (CFLS) is a sensitive and bold step towards conservation of energy. There are many who could question that if the government is really interested in energy conservation, why don’t its departments clear their electricity dues. A department of government paying the other department of government keeps the total money with the government same. It is called contra-credit. Let us not take the wrong lessons from the media reports?

With tremendous energy crisis across the globe, we still use electric heaters and boilers at home which consume high amount of electricity because the purchasing energy saving appliances pinches our pockets. For people in low economic strata, this could still be a valid reason. But what about colonies with lavish bungalows. Why do they involve in pilferage of power? And strangely, why think of such people as smart and appreciable?

Our social standards are highly hollow and hypocritical and the same is reflected when a publicly known corrupt person is appreciated and saluted. More than often, he leads the congregational prayers in his area or sometimes even acts as a treasurer of the mosque or some other time organizes huge gatherings on celebration of Eid-i-Milad or some Sufi saints’ Urs. If corruption as a practice is widespread, can’t we devise social mechanisms so that the wrongly amassed wealth is given no public acceptance?

Perhaps not, because each one of us is a part of the same vicious corrupt circle and hence feel weak in the knees to stand up against it. When we talk of energy conservation, isn’t our buying and using private vehicles again an indication of dichotomy? Statistics show that in the year gone by, nine lakh vehicles were registered in the state which shows an increase of 12% over 2011(addition of one lakh cars!). One shouldn’t get surprised as everyone has a right to better living and with bank finances, buying a car (even SUV) is a small thing. But the question arises; where will this life style take us? Rather, where has it taken us already? Same roads and an ever increasing vehicular traffic has resulted in frequent traffic jams. Not just traffic jams but parking issues, increased accidents, possession of fake licenses by adults and sometimes by minors too. In J&K, 6000 accidents took place in which 1000 people were killed and some 3.5 lakh challans were issued. Let’s not forget the increase in lifestyle diseases like diabetes, hypertension and other problems which are aggravated by sedentary routines and driving.

Now the question arises that if we know all this, what have we done about it? Why can’t we cycle instead! It will save money, time and energy, and keep us healthy by providing daily exercise. When the members of “change group” initiated the idea of cycling to reach their offices, they were laughed at. We need to shun the fears and inhibitions of being criticized for cycling and stand up for our health, environment and safety, whereas we can’t waste our time and efforts on criticizing the government for not widening the roads, not proving adequate parking space and not managing traffic. All this criticism is valid only when we as conscious people do our bit.

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2 Comments

  1. All of us think about environment n conservation of energy but wen it comes to individual level, everyone passes d ball to others’ court, thinking wat cn a single individual do.. But unless n until we initiate things at individual level, reforms at societal level wl remain a dream.. Lets talk about change group itself.. Agreed dy wr laughed upon but dy shdnt hv given up at any cost.. If v want to save something v hav to lose anything as wel..ds doesn’t apply for CHANGE only..applies for one n all n bcz we r d youth of ds society bigger part of responsibility lies on our shoulders.. Let all of us contribute our own bit towards protection of mother earth!

  2. Very rightly said Miss Mantasha. our nation has gone corrupt not in this very sense but in every aspect of life. by doing this we feel that we are enough smart to cheat and save our resources which unfortunately is the other way. we are over-wasting our own resources and then defaulting on the government ex checker corrupt the whole system. I fail to understand why is our intellectual society silent on this or sometime i feel do we have intellectual deficit that nobody cares to check all this. time to wait and hope that everything will be alright is over. I appreciate your writing a straight forward to the point writeup. Even our religious places are going corrupt. if we can see our mosques and other religious places which use lot of energy and other resources fir now reason as people have forgot that the light of a religious place is not due to installing lot of electric lights but by the number of people offering prayers in it. this is what our religion says but we decorate our mosque by lighting, cutting trees and designing different styles inside, burning wood in mosques for heating purposes even now people now use electric boilers to heat-up the place. Cycling again is a wonderful thing and we must feel beautiful and proud to adopt it but unfortunately K-factor which is full of ego and status comes in between. i feel lack of oxygen now a days and if this massacre of cutting trees, purchasing more cars will make this heaven a dreadful hell.

    but I promise to keep contributing to the society for myself only. the society needs to understand that if a person is planting a tree or cycling few miles it is only for his/her own-self not for anyone else.
    Plant trees plant life and cycles and save life

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