Sometimes I feel like a stranger in my own country. Off late, when I go somewhere and I am asked for ‘aapka parichay’. In my introduction, I say, ‘Rajeev Gupta, Gairsain’, which I guess should be sufficient. But they insist in asking, “No, where are you from? Which organization?”. They want to get out of me, that I am from Delhi and that I work with SBMA. I go to market, after little conversation, I am asked, “where are you from, you need a lodge?”. Recently, I visited a community health centre in the village, and I wanted to ask the doctor why the costly medicines are never available with the dispensary and if she is allowed to prescribe such medicines. So I went up to the doctor, and told her that I needed some information from about medicines. She asked me for introduction. She spoke further only when I told her that I was from the NGO. Now that she knew I was from NGO, she asked why would NGO be interested in this information. That’s why I did not want to divulge that, because after that, the conversation takes a different turn. In fact, so many people come to this only medical centre from remote villages. I am sure the doctor does not know them either. But she doesn’t ask them their introduction when they come for treatment. Or perhaps she does not bother to know a patient as long as he doesn’t do the abnormal task of questioning. Similarly, when I went to Krishi Mahotsav, and tried to make my point, the government adhikari asked me to give my introduction first. Why do I have to be from any organization to make myself heard? Can I not talk and ask because of the fact that I am an Indian? Do my wearing jeans and tshirt and sometimes a cap and clicking pictures make me any less Indian and I look like being from Africa, or America or Europe or Pakistan? The only explanation I can think of is that there are millions of India’s that exist with in the Indian Republic and each of those tiny India’s consider the others as a different country. With so much of diversity, such dilemma and identity crisis are bound to be there.
One thought on “My introduction in my own land!”
A simple explanation is that you look like a shahar ka babu :).
Btw since when did you start doing social service.
My guess (hoping my googling skills have not rusted) is that you are working with Shri Bhuvenaswari Mahila Ashram in Uttarakhand. (SBMA)