Today is Valentine’s Day. And the first person I wished was my Dad. After all, a father is the first and biggest hero in a daughter’s life. And he wished me back with all the enthusiasm of a young college-going kid. It made my day.
The moment I stepped into my office, a chirpy voice called out “Ma’am Happy Valant Day”. I looked out and saw our cleaning lady with a huge smile on her face. She might not know how to pronounce “Valentine” but she knows that it is a day celebrating love.
It is weird how this custom has surpassed all the boundaries of religion, age or social status and penetrated into our daily lives. Does this mean that we have forgotten our “culture” and “upbringing”, as so many of the so-called “guardians of our culture and religions” allege?
It might seem so at the beginning. I remember how my parents used to worry when I used to sing “Haawa Haawa” or “Choli ke peeche” as a kid. Ditto 20 years later when my friends worry about their kids singing the songs of Yo YO Honey Singh. But does this really mean pollution of culture and corruption of our minds by the western culture?
I do not agree. I believe that what is relevant to the present generation will always live on. I am avid listener of Rock and Hip hop but I still sing Rabindrasangeet (songs by Rabindra nath Tagore). I sing those old songs because they are about human emotions and these emotions are at the core of every human being, no matter what the age. At the same time, every generation searches for its own unique form of expression. And that explains my addiction to the new film songs or the music by Green Day.
So, all the people worrying about our “Indian culture” should stop doing that. If they are relevant to the present and future generations they will live on. And if they do not, if they lose the relevance, then it is inevitable that they will fade away. Some customs will survive; some new customs will be integrated. That is the nature of life. After all, change is the only constant thing in life.
So, let us just sit back and relax. For all those people who believe in Valentine’s Day, go celebrate this day of love. And for those who don’t, well, just leave the others to celebrate it. HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY…Cheers!!