Friday, August 19, 2011

Be a follower, but also be a leader: Small Initiative makes the difference.

(On the backdrop of fight against corruption)

Driving in Pune is a real challenge. If you are able to drive in Pune, you can drive anywhere in the world. I take more convenient route to reach the office. This route has less traffic signal and leads towards highway. I believe on defensive driving. However one day at one signal, I somehow miss the red signal while turning towards left side. All vehicles behind me did the same thing. They followed me and drove without notice of red signal. Next day when it was red, I stop and all vehicles behind me also stop! It happened on couple of occasions.

On last Saturday, we went to Marathi Comedy Drama. My wife had already booked tickets over phone. When we reached there to collect tickets, lot of people were standing and making a crowd. There was mess at ticket collection window. Nobody was bothered standing in a queue. I just requested the crowd to be in a queue. As all people were educated nobody resisted and formed a queue.

I would like to tell you about the psychology of the people and mass.  Take a recent example of crusade against corruption declared by Anna Hazare. We all are suffering from this disease. Corruption is the way of life. Anna Hazare and team came forward. And now every common man is the follower of Anna.

We are in the society where majority of the people are followers. If you take simple initiative to make the difference, you will get the followers. Following is not bad, but their energy needs to be channelized.  Each path is only one of a million paths. Therefore, you must always keep in mind that a path is only a path. But there should be somebody who makes the path. Anna Hazare is making the path by putting his heart in it. Leader does the same thing. When you follow somebody you should find the heart it.

But my intention is not to ask you to be only a follower and even Anna also does not expect this. There are lot many thing where we can make the difference. Every human being has the huge potential.  One small lead makes the difference. If you are the first at the traffic signal, you can take a lead by respecting the signal. You will see followers behind you.

Two years back, one clerk in nationalized bank denied to give the demand draft to my wife ( and asked her to get it from another bank. He had claimed that he was very busy and the day was for the disbursement of pension to pensioners. He was rude with pensioner and was giving the excuses. Will you spare him?  She did not.  She made a formal complaint to manager, nothing happened.  She complained higher ups and even grievance cell of the bank and it worked. The clerk had to face the disciplinary action and the Chief Manager of the area was at our home to apologize. The issue was not denying the demand draft; the issue was his behaviour with the customer and poor pensioners.

The problem in our society is we care a lot about our time. We feel that we do not have a time. At another side, we have lot of time to spend on social networking sites, parting etc.  We allow others to abuse our right. Have you find out another escalation route, if somebody is not responding properly?

Anna will not be there with you when any government official would ask the bribe for doing your work. You have to resist and take a lead to take that matter at appropriate platform. The time has come not to be in the victim role. One small lead makes a difference, not only in your life but others also. It is upto you if you want to be follower and leader.  

That may be the reason why Anna Hazare’s movement asks everybody to be another Anna Hazare (I am Anna).

1 comment:

Vaishali Pargaonkar (Gandhi) said...

Yes. True. In our country people have the attitude of "Why me?", when it comes to taking any initiative. On a news channel covering Anna Hazare's protest, the reporter asked a participant clad in white kurta pyjama, "I am Anna" topi & an India's flag in hand, "What is Jan Lokpal Bill?", the man had no definite answer. He just shouted slogans "Hum tumahre sath hai?". Little should he have taken pains to first understand why is he exactly present amidst the crowd shouting slogans of Vande Mataram. He was just following the mob blindly!!

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