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Jun 23, 2012

Fasting - a way to protest

[Had written this piece for a discussion few months back, just thought of adding it to my collection]

“To fast or not to fast, is the question?”.. I believe fasting and an era stand independent. Fasting as a protest method  is not a genesis of the 21st century and I am sure all of you would agree with me on this atleast. If we rewind , it was prevalent way back in the spiritual era times also when a common man with uncommon will-power fasted to protest and  woo the GODs in heaven. The only change now is that the protest is against other men – Government or Governing Bodies.
I strongly believe that non-violent protest like fasting so profoundly advocated by Mahatma Gandhi[who fasted in protest and we got an independent India to live] or Nelson Mandela[who fasted for the prisoners rights and got a concession from the South African Government.] and now Anna Hazare[the anti-corruption crusader] has only empowered our society.
 Particularly for increasingly insensitive governments who do not rise from their slumber on hearing the hue and cry of the harassed public due to innumerable menace, violent protest will only stand futile. A fasting protest that gathers and captures the common predicament of the mass invigorates the people and inspires to join the protest. Such non-violent protest methods depicts the sanctity , strength and pure intention of the society to embarrass the other party or make them realize the error in their ways.And when such a protest gets coupled with support of the lakhs and media the impact becomes more powerful. The sheer will of a person to fast for the cause of the masses and die for it in itself becomes the clincher. It forces the sleeping beauties in the Government to do nothing but agree. Channelizing such protest and gathering mass support is essential to make it louder for the deaf ears to hear otherwise cases like Irom Sharmila [fighting to remove the AFSPA act in Manipur] or Swami Nigamanand [Fighting for clean Ganges] would become rampant.
I would like to end my discussion saying that if non-violent fasting methods for the first time could bring all parties in the history of Indian politics together then why be violent.

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