I love this crazy maddening country India that I live in… however, as a ‘firangi’ (foreigner), I cannot vote and therefore, have no say.
Often this makes me feel mute – not having the right to voice my opinions and frustration at certain situations. Or more positively, am restricted against playing a direct role in being part of any kind of political change. Fair enough, I chose to retain the citizenship of my birth – Canada, so this is the result.
This morning, my partner forwarded a marvellous film short that speaks to this. “Mute” is by a new company based literally around the corner for us called Handloom Picture Company. And while it directly talks of our circumstances in Mumbai, there is a universality to many elements in the message – it is worth checking out.
There are some real gems :
Potholes as big as the incompetence of the municipality – see Sidewalk adventures… stumbling to work contrasting Mumbai where it is a constant obstacle course to Jakarta where there is an effort to improve
Sabzi (vegetables) market doing better than the stock market – on the extreme rise in inflation of every day items impacting the lower & middle class
Can’t sleep waiting for my sister to come home safely (see ‘Eve Teasing’ – The other side of my love affair with India)
There is universal frustration from the salaried middle class who pay significant advance taxes deducted directly every pay cheque whereas the ‘services’ received are next none and much of government expenditure goes to line corrupt pockets! The sheer frustration is palpable when the young man shares:
What am I getting in return for all the taxes they suck out from me?
Good question! I can’t help ask that as I wrestle to prove – yet again – to the Income Tax Authorities that I have indeed fully paid my taxes! I’m strangely glad I received the nonsensical refund notices for pennies as it alerted me to a bigger issue. The cynical side of me wonders just how much time, money and effort it will take to prove for a third time that – The government owes me money! – and not the reverse!
Watch the film (just under 3 minutes) for the punch line… and think about it the next time you complain about the city / country you live in!
- The government owes me money!!
- ‘Eve Teasing’ – The other side of my love affair with India
- Losing the right to vote?
- Gay for a day (or more!)
- Sidewalk adventures… stumbling to work