Friday, May 27, 2005

God's own land can send you to heaven pretty quick

Every trip back home, I end up traveling about 7000 miles each way. Out of these 7000 odd miles, there is a 30 mile segment needs special mention. It stretches from Karipur in Malappuram district where the Calicut Airport is situated, to my home in the suburbs of Calicut city. I always end up considering myself lucky to have survived this real life stunt of a road journey that can any day rival the scariest of rides offered by theme parks. I now have sufficient reason to believe my fears were not unfounded.

Read this story in Manorama Online: Vazhiyum, Sathyavum, Nammude Jeevanum

To make the long story short, lives lost in Kerala's roads every month far exceeds the state’s toll in the recent tsunami. And, like every other critical problem that this state faces, no one seems to take notice and act.

More money appear to get spent on welcome banners and hoardings put up by the roads than on directions or warning or pedestrian crossings. To make matters worse, even though this populace has forgotten everything that Gandhi taught or stood for, it has certainly adopted ‘civil disobedience’ as the main stream life philosophy, at least on the streets. Every day, every major newspaper has at least half a page, some time even full, filled with traffic accident reports. And, as far as I can tell, not a single accident gets investigated or followed up to find and rectify the cause.

Yes, agreed that cramping so many people in so less a space with unplanned development is guaranteed to be chaos. But then, are we really left with no choices than expose the lives of ours and those dear to us, to this madness?

If you have any thoughts on what can possibly be done, I urge you to post them here. Personally I would like to get involved to seek some action if there is a viable suggestion (that of course may not get interpreted to be a 'CIA plot’ or a ‘capitalist and fascist and utopian idea only for the rich’ and may have the good luck to survive allegations of being partisan to religions or castes or regions)