Collective  Deepawali :

Who Will Bell The Cat?


Great writer Bernard Shaw was  once pestered  by a  playwright to attend his play performance. The writer was shocked to see Shaw in slumber during the show and said, “Mr Shaw, I was hoping you will give an opinion on the play, but you slept through it.”  Shaw replied, says the story, “That was also an opinion.”

The lack of response to my idea of collective Diwali celebration  was, perhaps, an expression of opinion by the readers on the issue of taking lead to organize collective Deepawali fireworks.

In propounding the idea I was not even as original as the rat that suggested belling the cat. The rodent was questioned Who will bell the cat?  In the present situation I did not equal even that tiny creature: No one came forward to question me, much less taking the initiative. 

The idea is old. Years ago in Bhopal at a Holi get gather only Gulal applied gracefully and mutual introductions done to correct  many  distortions like gambling, use of harmful colors, abusive songs or jokes, sexual harassment etc that have crept into the festival.

No one said they were people’s fundamental rights.

With a  °did I not tell  you” glee in his eyes, an opponent of the idea of collective fireworks said “Someone has to take the lead on any issue. Who can be that someone ….  you or me? Except posting on social media, what  can we do? Our postings are deleted: even forwarded unread — dumped  on someone else” as we are busy people. No one has time to discuss.   Unless this issue is taken up by some higher-up, nothing will happen. “Our postings are just a waste”

When a lady from Andhra sent a message that she celebrated collectively with three families of her father-in-law and his two brothers I was tempted to say it was nothing but a family union.  Then I realised it was the first  step and could be extended soon to the other families in the

building and gradually to other buildings, the locality and then the town.

Small steps can often become giant strides.


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