Twice a day, as I walk past the tiny cluster of potters' huts on my way to college and back, I wonder at the extreme disparity between this world and the one I come from. These crumbling hutments with their innumerable residents and the clay pots, pans and animal figures, and those modern homes with their Air conditioners, comfortable furniture and luxuries that are in fact considered as basic amenities. Everything is the same - people, their daily need of food, water and shelter, their right to education and a decent living. Yet, the two worlds are far apart. The Indian economy is, no doubt, partly to blame. But the more important issue to be focused upon here is the impact this inequality has on children. Deprived of proper education, books, toys and such simple joys of living, all they are left with in the name of childhood are distant memories of a state of perpetual need and insecurity. Working at tender ages and the lack of education deprive these children of their right to a happy and stimulating childhood.
A popular SMS joke doing the rounds these days says that during a wedding, the bridegroom stops the ceremonies at the very climax of his wedding in order to update his relationship status to “married” on Facebook. What more, he asks his bride, standing beside him right in the middle of the altar, to accept his request to be listed as his “wife”. Very well put, I must say, keeping in mind today’s trend, where a kid’s Facebook statuses tell his family about his whereabouts and moods, and the number of people in one’s friend list and the number of messages in the inbox define one’s popularity. Brace up, people, for the Facebookian era is here.