Thursday, 1 March 2012

Do we understand the meaning of "Human Rights" ?

Wikipedia defines Human Rights as - "Human rights are commonly understood as "inalienable fundamental rights to which a person is inherently entitled simply because she or he is a human being." Human rights are thus conceived as universal (applicable everywhere) and egalitarian (the same for everyone)."

Article 1 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) says - "All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood."

If we go through the above lines and understand the meaning of Human Rights, does it fall in place with India's context? How often Human Rights are violated in India? How many of us are getting/ enjoying our Human Rights as per the above mentioned definitions?

Human rights can be classified and organized in a number of different ways, at an international level the most common categorisation of human rights has been to split them into civil and political rights, and economic, social and cultural rights.

Civil and political rights are a class of rights that protect individualsfreedom from unwarranted infringement by governments and private organizations, and ensure one's ability to participate in the civil and political life of the state without discrimination or repression.

Economic, social and cultural rights are socio-economic human rights, such as the right to educationright to housingright to adequate standard of living and the right to health.

Lets again ask ourselves that are we enjoying or I would rather say exercising or allowed to exercise Civil & Political Rights, Economic, Social & Cultural Rights? Forget about enjoying or exercising, do we know our basic human rights at first place? Let me honestly confess I myself didn't know all this in so much of detail before I started writing these lines and so searched the  net for details.

Further to add from Wikipedia - "Economic, social and cultural rights are recognised and protected in international and regional human rights instruments. Member states have a legal obligation to respect, protect and fulfill economic, social and cultural rights and are expected to take "progressive action" towards their fulfillment."

Sorry to say, these rights are only recognised and protected in human rights instruments or books and are limited to that only. If India is a member of the United Nations and has to abide by whats said in the above mentioned statement, does anyone question our leaders when they go and ask for permanent membership of security council in the United Nations? Why would they question at the first place, when the people for whom these rights are meant are not bothered and have accepted the present situation as a way of life?

Where all do we see Human Rights violation in India? I think this question in itself is wrong. I must say, is there anywhere we dont see Human Rights violation in India? Why is this happening to us? Sorry to say, its because we are a race of "Dead People", most of whom are not even enjoying the basic daily life needs of a human and still we are silent and go on suffering. We at times link it with Religion and God and justify ourselves and all whats being done to us but God and Religion also says that "Tolerating wrong is equivalent to doing wrong" because by silently tolerating it, we are encouraging those who are exploiting us and doing the wrong to us as individuals and the society as a whole.

Some very valid questions were raised after Sonia Gandhi left to the US for treatment. Are these politicians more human than rest of the Indians? When they have failed to provide good healthcare facilities in the country, they should pay the price but the reverse is happening. We, the people pay the price for it. Unfortunately, those of us sitting in AC offices, cars and homes and using I Phones, Laptops and Tablets have changed their tunes and have forgotten the basic problems, issues and pains that almost 90% of our countrymen go through everyday and unfortunately its these facilitated people whose voice is heard. More than 60% of them care a damn to vote in cities like Mumbai because they are been given opportunity to loot, so why should it matter to them who rules the country. Many a times, I have asked them in reply to their tweets that rather than talking big things online, they should once take their loved one in normal government hospital for treatment. They should go there as normal Indian, as 90% of the people of the country have to go. Can they dare to do that? Forget about treatment, they cant even dare to go there for taking some very basic medicine injected.

Every other day, our loved ones die due to lack of proper treatment or live a sick life for years because of it. Most of us cant afford to get our loved ones treated in expensive private hospitals and even if we can afford, to quote a doctor- Private hospitals work like other "Private Companies". We are given targets of the number of surgeries, lab tests, etc that we need to do in a month for revenue generation". So even if you can afford it, they will give you a long list of tests to be done and then will definitely recommend you a surgery, which you should get done at the earliest. Almost a decade back, I had read a Survey in Outlook Magazine that "Medical sector is the most corrupt sector in India. It account for over 25% of the corruption done." So where will you go and who is responsible? What should we do when after spending lacs of rupees, we are not sure whether I needed that treatment or the treatment which has been done is right?

We are not sure whether the vegetables and fruits that we are eating have been ripened with life threatening injections and powders. We are not sure whether the petrol we are using in our cars is pure or has over 25% kerosene in it. We dont know how much of our money was allocated for the project and how it has been used and how much has gone into corruption. We dont know how much corruption is involved in Arms deals, putting the competency of our Armed forces and hence the safety of the country at risk. We are not bothered that my family also has the right to good education, medical treatment, healthy food and good jobs. We are not bothered that this is not what quality of life I must get. Even if we realize it, we end up showing our knowledge to the peers, relatives, competitors, or public in general and when it comes to doing something, we immediately blame others who dont even know as much as we know. Knowing something and still not doing anything is a bigger sin than not knowing about it at all. 

Human Rights are violated at every step in India. We dont get the seats in educational institutions that we deserve. We dont get through in competitive exams that we deserve to clear. innocent people are jailed or deprived of justice because they dont have money or influential links and goons are set free to commit more crime. People like Rajiv Gandhi or Narendra Modi who christened 1984 anti- Sikh riots and 2002 Gujarat anti- Muslim riots respectively are voted into power by our own people because till that time he has not burnt my house. Many people are seen advocating that Modi should become the PM of India. As I keep saying many a times, "You cant rear snakes in your backyard with a hope that they will bite your neighbours only". Those criminals or murders of Sikhs in 1984 or Muslims in 2002 have been left to roam around with impunity. Once they killed Sikhs or Muslims but being criminals, every other day they are creating or promoting crime against Indians, 8 out of 10 will definitely be against Hindus, being a majority, because before raping or murdering anyone, they dont ask victims religion.

Such abysmal is the condition in India that 4-5 top rank Medical Officers are killed in NRHM Scam in UP and no criminal has been arrested yet and the politicians behind all this cant ever be touched. And let us question ourselves, how many of those officers were Sikhs or Muslims? Likewise if Sikhs or Muslims feel happy when a person of other religion or caste is let down by a person of their community, same applies to them and a glaring example of the same is Pakistan. It had been harbouring anti-national elements in its territory and now the country itself is bleeding. Sikhs in Punjab also feel that nobody could damage Punjab and promote corruption so much as Badals did.

So, its high time that we all must wake up, understand that India is our home and all will be disturbed if any of the family member is disturbed. Lets not relate India with Hindus, Sikhs or Muslims but see this land as our motherland, which nurtures us, gives us food, shelter and homes to stay and sleep peacefully. We should vote unbiased and the only basis of casting a vote should be the past clean record of the candidate. We should learn about our basic human rights and start questioning about them and demand them. We must support, encourage and reward positive and rational behaviour and curb those who promote violence, corruption and anti social activities. We are not living in a poor country but only a few have looted the our wealth because we didnt care for it and didnt question them. We also have right atleast to healthy food, clean environment, good education and proper medical facilities. Lets wake up, realize, organize and work towards all this and not rest unless our goal is achieved. Lets implement same lessons in our lives which every parents teach their kids everyday. If all of us atleast become honest to our kids and ourselves implement what we ask them to do, our home India will be a much better, happier and peaceful place to live in.

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