I get asked about my loyalties to which of the indian states a lot – as I have spent 13 years in U.P, 8 in Gujarat, 2 in Jharkhand, 3 in Maharashtra, 2 in Delhi, 1 in Karnataka majorly. My name is non – Indian, My surname is non detrimental in terms of nailing my origin state. My way of speaking Hindi tells people I am from North, my thoughts & lifestyle from West – so people get confused and I enjoy it as I like calling myself Indian as an identity and that’s it.
To answer the question in response to their curiosity – I tend to divide the response between North and West depending on who is asking the question and in what relevance. I sometimes also tend to explain my family background to some and how I am truly Indian in terms of my loyalties to a state.
However, if there is one State I genuinely wish to grow & come out from its old tittering historical chains – it is my state of birth and ancestors – U.P. This state was the battleground of Independence struggle, even Mahabharat, Ramayan are based here, from cultural, historical, political standpoint – I do not think any state can match U.P.’s relevance.
And it is sad to see its state in shatters – I do not have to go very far to understand it. I have toured multiple states for education, work, sports and U.P. stands out in terms of its potential of resources, population, relevance but the lifestyle, living conditions, infrastructure, facilities, law & order, women’s security, revenue generation, industrial development being far behind from other states.
The political aspects has not helped however if I have to blame one thing then I will blame the People living here themselves. Be it the man, woman, kid, elderly – they all seem to have happily accepted their grim state of affairs and love being not optimistic about future. My parents always pushed me to do well in studies however I am sure apart from that they did not have much recommendations on what does good things in life mean. 99% people I have met here do not understand the meaning of a good lifestyle, a relaxed, healthy, smiling, optimistic, quality, modernly equipped lifestyle.
They tend to somehow believe that being depressed, emotional, old school is the way ahead. I wish they will change.
Lastly and most importantly, I wish the men of this state to understand the real meaning of machoism, chauvinism and give space, respect & equal importance to women in their lives. I wish for the girls in this state to be able to achieve what they dream for and are not given any less opportunity than boys or kids of other states. (HeforShe)