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Monday, October 19, 2009

Independence and the King

Should I say it all changed with our independence? In the year 1947, on the faithful day of 15th of August our country gained independence. We became a sovereign nation leaving behind the Raj era. All princely states were united and merged to form one country; properties and estates of kings, be they small or big was taken over by the new state and its government. Time had changed, kings were no more kings, and their property was now property of Indian government. People were happy, because now we were a free nation, a big force, a huge nation rather than small, divided and ever fighting ones.

Many kings could not digest this new system and loss of power. They had lost everything overnight and it was hard but others were ready to change. Those who could gather enough courage and had good education or vision joined political parties or entered business ventures and prospered, those who could not went into oblivion – were forgotten with time and are no more even thought of.

On the list was one whom we regard even today but who has lost its entire kingdom, his freedom and respect to some extent. One of the most powerful royal family in India with siblings and brethrens having presence in the whole country. His kingdom was the largest and certainly bone of contention for many other small kings. His rule was ideal with the denizens happy, perfect discipline, rules and orders were followed. In his rule no one used to waste, rule breakers got the harshest penalty that was death sometimes. But, nor he nor his siblings and brethrens could adjust to or understand the new changed system. Change is nature, everything changes with time and once who do not understand this stand to lose. But he could not adjust.

He along with him all his brethrens, lost the throne, lost the respect, lost the power. Although having presence in rituals, religions, folk lore and mind of people, everything was forgotten. Actually, he could not understand the change, for him and his siblings and brethrens he was still the king. He never thought that in independent India princely states and royal families are no more respected or recognized, kings are no more kings. Rather, kings and princes are treated as untouchable creatures. He never thought that Janta raj will become hell raj for him. He never thought that kings and prince will be taken as blood suckers and collectors of land and money, as enemy of common people, as pests to be precise. He could never come to terms with this new country and its laws.

People started killing his brethrens, encroaching on his property, robbing them of their land and food, his home was made open for the looters on the name of human rights. People who used to respect him yesterday started blaming him for their lack of economical progress and development. He became the main target for people and their leaders. No one gave it a thought that although people in his kingdom are not wealthy economically but are happy and have food, clean water and air available at all time. Rules are followed and no police force is needed. He had no military or police force to ensure laws and rules to be followed. His kingdom was not very affluent economically but everyone had what they wanted and if checked on happiness scale certainly they would have been much better than others it was prosperous in a different way.

Today he is almost on the verge of extinction; soon we will forget we had a great king like him, we will forget everything about his rule and prosperous kingdom। Or chances are, our new generation will be happy that he has been eliminated since in most of the stories for children he is portrayed as a beast. Ours is a free nation, free from the clutches of kings and princely states, ruled by common people and leaders selected by our masses. How can we allow a king be it king of the jungles to live peacefully.

Yes, I am talking of Tiger, the king of forests, who has lost his dignity and kingdom। Today our country is ruled by other type of kings who are as netas and wear white attire. No black and orange any more. Although he has been given the honour of being the national animal of our country but alas he is a king and we do not have any place for kings in our independent country. Times have changed, but I hope this king will get his honour and his kingdom back and may his brethrens rule the forests again. May be I am talking against the norms, against the new laws where kings are not recognized, but this is what I want from the deepest core of my heart. May the king live forever.