There is something about us...Indians. My American friends always asked me...what makes you all so happy, so joyous, so celebrating. When westerners visit India one thing they always find is no matter how poor, how developing we are, we are surely happy. they see faces of happy, smiling people...and they wonder, how can we smile in the midst of all the poverty that is going around, Recently I was watching ABC's Good Morning America show where they did a special show on Mumbai and showcased this kid 'Dev' from slums of Mumbai - Dharavi. This guys was speaking fluent English and doing a well respected job in a MNC. He gave a tour of his modest home and his family in Dharavi - a mere 200 sq. feet room where 6 people sleep, cook, operate - habitat. It was so heartwarming to see how humble and still confident he was, but most importantly I thought he looked happy, he looked content. And that's the main thing. At times, I wonder what makes us so happy, so joyous....may be that's the face we show to the outside world no matter how unhappy we might be inside or is it really that we are happy within. when Dev said that everyone should know that people living in slums also have dreams and hopes, I am like that's it. He said it. Bingo. That's the magic word - Hope. I think we as Indians are very hopeful people. Our ancestors have seen extreme poverty and so always have taught us to be hopeful. It is this hope that keeps our juices flowing, it gives us way to survive and succeed. We have learnt how to struggle and how to manage with least resources. We are taught to be hopeful and wait for the sunny days to come. we have taught to be patient. May be that's the reason we show our happy faces or may be that's the reason we ARE happy.
after slumdog's success, suddenly slums in India became kewl, they became exotic, they became hot spots for tourists and journalists. India's poverty and it's slum life became a star attraction. Some had issues with it but no matter one likes it or not, that's what is happening. Even our politicians started using them as a weapon for their 'prachaar sabhaas'. Poor residents had no idea how and when they became so famous, so public, so "in". I am hopeful - see I used the H word again, that the Dev's of this slum world know what's happening around them and not fall prey to false promises. I am hopeful that the Dev's of this world will get a right recognition to their voice. Yes, the world is watching them, then why not make use of this wonderful opportunity and make the lives of millions of Dev's better. Let's make them happy in the real sense. Then only we can proudly say "Jay Ho"