Food for thought…
Imagine yourself going up or down in a lift at night and the light goes off. The lift stops and one or more of you get trapped in the pitch dark. You scream at your utmost and no one hears you for less than 10 seconds. You know you are above the surface of the earth, have enough oxygen to keep breathing for some hours, surrounded by a metal cased lift walls which cannot cave in, and a button at your hand to press in case of emergency. Close your eyes and imagine how do you feel…
I know exactly how it feels. I got trapped in a lift some few floors above the ground . I saw my end from the closest and shreaked hysterically at my best for ‘help’ ‘help’ till after some 20 seconds, rescue arrived. I did not have the presence of mind to even think of pressing an emergency bell right next to me. I even had a cell phone but no presence of mind to even think of it. The state,both physical and mental, in which I walked out of that lift was only seen to be believed. So embarrassed was I for several months that I could not look the eyes of those two men who rescued me,for a long time.
The thought still sends shivers through the cells of my body.
Today, there are 33 miners trapped 2500 feet below the earth’s surface in a remote Atacama desert of a far flung country we call Chile in a remote continent by the name of South America. They haven’t been trapped for 20 seconds or 20 minutes or even 20 hours. They are there since the past 20 days. They were mining the precious metal called copper to get huge revenues for the owners and for their country. The mine caved in and the 33 miners began climbing the emergency ladder, but they could get only upto a third of the way.
Ask why? Because the mine owners had never bothered to finish the ladder to the top. If this ladder was in place they could have been out in 48 hours after the incident.
The owners of the San Esteban Mining Company that runs the mine said “it was THANKS to the safety regulations that the miners were found alive and WELL.
”Clap clap! “ (I wish I could keep my social norms up on the laddle and swear all the possible four letter words I know)
If this is not enough to shake you, the news is:they are going to stay there until December when the rescue tunnel is completed to pull them out.
Yes, they are getting oxygen, water, food, letters from the loved ones everyday through a duct with the diameter of a grapefruit. Camera too has been lowered for them to send their images and messages for their loved ones and to the rest of the world to know what they are going through.
Yes their relative are camping close to them—2300 feet vertically above them. They are really happy to see their partner’s ,son’s, father’s recorded films, showing they are alive. Yes the miners and their families are blessed. Eating, living, happy—why should they get the news coverage from our “independent media”. This is not a sellable story in our part of the world, why should our reporters or journalists hype this news.
They are not Palestinians ,they are not Iraqis, they are not suffering Indian Muslims, they are CHIIILEEEANS. Why care?
We have our own mega problems .We have BIG issues like big cricketers being pulled in a conspiracy of the gora media because our team was so good ,that no one could ever defeat us in the tests, one days or the twenty-20. Jealous world. Ehh !
Indeed we are the chosen people .Why should we care even to know whether Chile is a country or a condiment?
We have the right to cry foul when we don’t get enough foreign aid or foreign empathy for our floods and they have no right of their plight to be even known by our countrymen.
We have the right to ask for all the aid possible and they have no right to question our governance.
We have the right to call others infidels and they have no right to call us extremists.
This is the world in which we live. We look at things from a tube through which only those things which matter to us are visible. We prefer to keep the rest of the issues as” none of our business “ attitude. We are a great people!
I feel ashamed of myself. I feel so probably because I got trapped in the lift myself. Those amongst us who didn’t they needn’t worry.
Why didn’t these floods drown my conscience?