There is always a voice.
When I was in college, and it was one of the best of times, I always wondered about not wondering about any sort of future. Well, I just let myself flow with whatever came by, like a ship sailing with the currents. Never did I realize then, that slowly and gradually, I and the rest of my batch-mates were being metamorphosed by a very peculiar process called ‘ISM’. Our tastes, hobbies, friends, opinions, outlook, attitude, ambition and even the choice of slangs were affected. And the important thing that I find as I look back to those days is the fact that it wasn’t only the mere idling of youth that happened. There was something better too. Something that was far better than just being baptized with dohas, treats and some misplaced sense of being “dynamite”. There was something really special- there was a voice.
This voice wasn’t too loud, but it was always trying to break out. It was always trying to say something that needed to be heard. The college politics, the dharnas for mess-changes, the struggle for ISM to IIT, the rally for Anna Hazare, the regular blood donations, etc.- it was all happening at ISM. A bunch of ISMites were busy in debating and discussing various issues- from capital punishment to mandatory military trainings, from House of Cards to the stability (or rather instability) of J&K, from something as global as the Non-Proliferation Treaty to something as local as the allotment of rooms for ISM societies and clubs. This voice, though not as glamorous as Shakira’s or as popular as a guitar’s, was being nurtured with care.
Today as I write this, having passed out of ISM around an year ago, I wouldn’t expect to hear that voice anywhere around, except in ISM (“Thou shalt trust your juniors”, the good Lord said. ). But, as I always maintain, expectations (especially mine) are belied, and this time for good. For this voice has gone national. It has moved out of the confines of Dhanbad and is now all out in the open. This voice is trying hard to rise above the din of rock music and glamour shows. It is trying to be heard, dressed in the garb of an inspiring initiative called ‘Reweyou’
A brainchild of four of my good friends- Varun Pandey, Anshul Ranjan, Rajwant Singh and Sukoushal Jain- Reweyou is a startup, a social organization, a political weapon and a public forum, all in one. It brings you the luxury to revisit the concept of democracy. It gives you a chance to be heard. Because this organization, I feel, is all about voices- yours, mine and ours in the long run. Their premise is simple- if you have any problem for which you think some political leader is responsible or of concern and which needs to be chalked out but it isn’t being done, then ping them. They will take up your cause, join your voice with other similar voices and raise an alarm to the proper authority. So next time you see something terrible like an Everest of garbage on the street side, broken roads, life-threatening cables hanging loose from electric poles in your neighborhood, smelly water or even some idea that could make your locality a better place- then here’s your chance to be heard. Ping them, or as they say in a more suave way, ‘Reweyou’ these four blokes and then see your voice rising above all the honks and the loud-speakers.
If I had to bloat and gloat about this group, ‘Reweyou’, I would have told you that these guys are really working their A’s off. The last time I heard, they were promoting ‘One MP, One Idea’ thing amongst common folks and not-so-common folks (i.e. MPs). Doesn’t it sound interesting? Besides they have been crowd sourcing public feedback and taking it to the concerned representatives to kick out a few sanitation and cleanliness problems. So here’s the deal- I will give you the link to this group ( http://www.reweyou.in ) and next time you see anything worth a change then simply ‘Reweyou’. Cause believe it or not, one guy and one girl (or a man and a woman, whatever) at a time can really change how our society is.
Now for those who are thinking why am I promoting or maybe trying to promote this group, the answer lies in this paragraph. First thing, it is not just because they are my friends. It is because they are my friends with an initiative that sounds and looks really resourceful and hopeful at the same time. It is because we need to encourage folks who are trying to change things for better. Because maybe they are doing what is everyone’s duty or responsibility. Because we need to understand that the gap between democracy and politics needs to be bridged in India. Because sometimes when you are really tired of all the falsettos and baritones of men with power, you don’t need to despair; you just need to hear something else.
And trust me, there is always a voice.