Whoever the homeland may belong to, it is not merely a piece of geography. It is also not just history. Nor is it the rivers of the region, or the mountains. It is all those things that keep getting absorbed in your very being whether you want it or not. It constantly nurtures your mind, heart and soul. Keeps it alive... It is our land that gives us a vision. Gives us strength to see our country and see beyond it. To connect with our place and times.
- Krishna Sobti, Memory's Daughter, trans.
The state government would have us believe that normalcy has been restored in Nandigram. A "new sunrise", they're saying. I wonder what that means. All those women who were raped. Is the government going to dictate to them what normal is? Is 'normal' handing a red flag to you after your women have been raped and murdered, your men beaten up and burnt alive and your houses razed to the ground?
The burden of the past, it is a great one. Will anyone forget?
There is no activism in me. Just a lot of rage. And severe, numbing shock. I look at photographs we spare our readership. Photographs of rape victims, of men with faces so badly smashed all you can see is coagulated flesh, not even the eyes can be made out. No, these will never be published, there is only so much intrusive journalism - we try not to cross the line. But I see the pain, I see the blood, I see a torn sari and mauled limbs and stains.
There must be a way out. Please, God, let there be a way out.
p.s.: Please, spare me the inquisition. The last and penultimate paragraphs are not necessarily related.