Feast for Thought

Not pontificating. Only trying to bat on the side of the environment. And ethics. And simple living. And slowing down. (And trying to learn and practise before preaching or teaching...)

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Between the land and the sea - Notes from #ChennaiRains 1

1. Preethi Sukumaran -
I just heard from my mum last evening. After an initial text I assumed they would be well taken care of, and I was right.
They ran out of water on Wed morning and there was approx 3+feet of water flowing strongly in Balasubramanian street near Vivekananda college in mylapore where they live.
My father and his 87 year old neighbour pumped small amounts of water and passers by helped haul water into the home. They decided to ration their water use so that everyone could use some so they used roughly 2 buckets of water per family for drinking, cooking and sanitation.
My 78 year old aunt started seeing her cylinder behave strangely so she walked down one flight of stairs to our neighbour s on the first floor to get fed.
In the meantime, lions club volunteers knocked on my parents door to ask if they wanted food. My mum who is 67, has vision in only one eye, and is severely arthritic told the volunteers that she could cook and had some provisions and requested them to help someone else who needed it more.
In the meantime, my cousins biked it from triplicate in pouring rain, crossed a spate of 5 feet water just a street away and came bearing rte food for everyone in the street - idlies, bread and jam were taken and eaten with great relief.
Chennai - we are a quiet lot. Our city goes to bed early. We wake up early. There are temples, mosques and churches everywhere. Our hotels wake up embarrassingly early to serve frothy filter coffee. And we are probably India's diabetic capital.
But we come to the party. With bells on. (And our lungies).
So mind it.
2. I am Prassana Venkatram working as a system analyst for an American software company in Chennai. Presently drawing 18 lakhs P.A. proud owner of a 3BHK in suburbs of Chennai. Today I have 2 credit cards with more than 1 lakh credit limit and a bank balance of 65 thousand in my account. But due to heavy water logging I am not able to move out my house, all I need is water and food for my survival. Till yesterday I was worried about my appraisal and was expecting at least 15% hike but today I am standing in my terrace waiting for a food packet.
Nature is the best teacher.
3. 

4. Our Government's priorities are different -
The one service TN govt is operating in full swing: Tasmac liquor outlets

5.
 Rama Sivaraman's post.
10 hrs
Rama Sivaraman added 2 new photos.
A few hours ago my husband met an interesting auto driver in one of the petrol bunks on Mount Road.
Here is what he said.
"M.Muthamizhselvam DL No 3724 B No 00376. My cousin and I met him at my cousin's petrol bunk today ( he came searching for petrol which was difficult to get).He has been driving for free for last 4 days to save and help citizens of Chennai in this hour of calamity.So many painful stories he has to tell us of the sufferings of people of Chennai. He has been rescuing people along the route of the water from the Chembarambakkam lake.
These are among the many many unspoken off, unsung saviours of Chennai. Let us salute their service .
This driver did not want to be photographed at all.My cousin and I requested him for these photos.
Please see board in Tamil that prominently says Free Service."

6. Raja Visweswaran
***Sorry for this rant, can't help myself***
So the media mavens and their masters, the "liberal" Congress-tards are now coming out of the woodwork (after first ignoring the Chennai story for the better part of the first week, expounding on "intolerance" instead); these horrible people have decided that the most important stories out of Chennai are
1. The doctored photo of the PM surveying the damage (even though he himself posted only the correct picture and it was the PIB that created the stupid photoshop one)
2. That a bunch of ADMK goons are insisting on pictures of Amma to be pasted on food packets (even though both the ruling party and the government are clear that's not authorized and will punish anyone who breaches the rules)
Seriously !?!
There is amazing work being done by hundreds of volunteers, great efforts by the Army and Navy ... and all you can see is the political nonsense ?
There is a 60 year old milk delivery lady called Radha who collected milk packets from the local vendors and delivered to her customers, wading through waist-deep waters. Because she didn't want to let down her customers OR allow the milk to go waste. Now, THAT is a story : not that you would know that reading the papers in Delhi or Mumbai.
There is an Amazon employee called John, who has been going with all the supply boats in an area, wading through waters filled with various dangers; delivering food packets to the needy. He did NOT check if the recipients were Christian, how very "intolerant" of him, no? Where is John's story in your Delhi / Mumbai editions, you great people?
The biggest mobilization in the first couple of days (when the disruption was greatest) came from the RSS - by all accounts, they helped without asking for anyone's religion or caste. In one area, they carried marooned people (ahem, some of them were Muslims ! can you imagine the horror?) on their shoulders. You seen that story anywhere in Delhi or Mumbai?
A large group of people from Bangalore (a city with a longstanding rivalry with Chennai, and some anti-Tamil protests from time to time) have volunteered their vehicles to deliver supplies to Chennai residents. There is a convoy being organized to evacuate people from North Chennai, which is worst affected. Where is that story in the Delhi / Mumbai / Kolkata editions ?
The government at both the Centre and the State level have gone in with large scale rescue efforts. Okay, so the coordination isn't great (the corporation kept sending the Army to the wrong areas) but they are trying really hard. One Army unit saved 700 people from a single group housing area over 2 days. They lifted a pregnant lady with her chair and all, to avoid even the slightest danger to the unborn child. Here IS a great story - although don't bother looking at the Delhi / Mumbai editions of TOI etc. - this story doesn't appear.
Muslims are cooking food AT the Parthasarathy temple (that's right Muslims are INSIDE the temple, cooking), and this is being distributed by a Christian organization in a largely Hindu area. Where is that story in the Delhi / Mumbai / Kolkata editions, you idiots ? Are you ignoring it because it goes against your "intolerance" storyline?
Do you awful media and Congress people really have an inability to see the good and leave it at that ? Does it rankle you to say that someone is doing a good job? If that is the case, then in future stop pretending that you are neutral. Its obvious that you are anything but.
We in TN know not to expect help from you "liberals" and media giants. All we need is you avoid distracting everyone from the task at hand with your irrelevant, sensationalist stories. Can you manage at least that, you miserable excuses for human beings?

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i appreciate that you have some thoughts to share, and are taking the effort to do so.

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