India, as known to all has been a land of rich cultural heritage. We have countless religions, communities, languages, dialects, customs, festivals, Gods & Saints - all bundled in the 3.2 odd million sq. kms and spread across in 30+ States and UTs. Largely peaceful, but occasional differences leading to violence has also been the highlight of this diversity. Yet, it is a country that can be a guide to others on how to gel well with diverse customs.
But somehow of-late, 'attack on culture' bug has caught up big time with most of them. There are now hordes of saffron brigade opposing everything that has been the boon or bane of globalization and ends up with DAY. DAY is synonymous with 'bright' but this very DAY and the petty fights and debate associated with it looks to take us towards 'dark'. Call it irony or misfortune, but it is the reality currently.
Whats the solution for this nuance? May be we must tread the middle path and walk the tightrope. Afterall, every group in India has got the right to oppose or propose. Let all Days which entered during the 'Opening of the economy Day' be in intact. But let the reason for celebrating it be different. Possibly we can reschedule Valentine's Day, Fathers' Day, Mothers' Day, Friendship Day for the time being, review the scenario, and then move ahead accordingly. Some of the proposed solutions from my side are as follows (could also be opposed as I mentioned before)
1. Valentine's Day - May it be celebrated on the Day when Lord Sri Ram broke the Shiv Dhanush to earn Sita Mata at Janak Maharaj's court. The catch here is Shiv Sena could take offence since Lord Sri Ram broke SHIV Dhanush and not an ordinary dhanush. That can be resolved. Lord Sri Ram's ardent followers, BJP, will woo them. With the current political scenario in Maharashtra, they can afford to only stay united. We may also have to slightly alter this to Lovers' Day since St. Valentine doesn't come into picture here.
2. Father's Day - Bhishma Pitamaha in the Mahabharata on knowing that Satyavati's father doesn't want to give her hand to Shantanu (Bhishma's father) because, Bhishma would steal the chance of her son ascending the throne, Bhishma takes the oath to renounce the throne and also pledges to promise life long celibacy. The day on which Bhishma took this oath and sacrificed power and pleasure for his day can be celebrated as Father's Day.
3. Mother's Day - Kaikayee utilized the long pending wish to demand from Dasharath and asked him to send Lord Sri Ram into exile for 14 years so that her son Bharath could ascend the throne. On knowing this, Lord Sri Ram readily accepts it without any wrath or ill-feelings towards his mother, leaves to the forest. This day of great regards and respect towards a mother who wished evil for her son can be marked as Mother's Day.
4. Friendship Day - Sudhama makes it to Dwaraka to meet his childhood friend Lord Krishna. He doesn't forget to take a pack of beaten rice along with him which was Lord Krishna's favourite during their childhood days. Appalled at Lord Krishna's glory, Sudhama holds the beaten rice back and is ashamed to offer it. However, Lord Krishna spots it and forces Sudhama to give it to Lord Krishna. Surprisingly, Lord Krishna doesn't show any signs of his well-being and accepts the beaten rice with joy and hugs Sudhama for getting his favourite thing. This day when 2 friends, though financially opposite to each other showed great character and displayed true friendship can be celebrated as Friendship Day. The day when the mighty Hanuman brought an entire mountain on not finding the Sanjeevani, to save the life of Lakshamana can also be celebrated as Friendship Day.
The depth of relationships displayed by the aforesaid characters indeed have a meaning. It can move even the stone-hearted. By doing so, we don't take away the freedom of those who have embraced the entrants of globalization and also keep the conservatives happy. Those like me, who know that the various meaningless Days are just some commercial ventures for Archies, Papyrus, Expressions et al can read some better news rather than see abuse of relationship a day after the Day or read about the attacks on greeting card stores.
Now what do we do for those who want to celebrate My Beautiful Neighbour's Day, My English Teacher's Day, My Kaamwaali Baai's Day and the likes?