Traveling is therapeutic in every sense. It not only pushes one out of the comfort zone but also inspire to have a refining perspective about life and how are we supposed to see it. Either with family, or friends, every trip is a lesson for life and cherished forever, nevertheless.
Nov 2005: My dad had planned a family trip to North India beforehand and there was an air of excitement because those days we were hardly a travel geek. The happiness was soon shortlived as we’d received information that bomb blast had taken place in Delhi (Starting point for our trip) and was under high alert and scrutiny post the attack.
News Channels wouldn’t stop covering the sights Delhi as terror scene, creating a sense of eerie. It was indeed scary and this ultimately convinced my parents to call off the trip although reluctantly. When my father informed the travel agency in Delhi to cancel the itinerary, the manager was surprised. He convinced us not to cancel. He didn’t worry about the loss their business could incur but he insisted us not to blindly trust what is being shown. He assured he would receive us personally when we reach the destination to which we got a little relief.
As planned, We left Bombay and after a day of train traveling via Rajdhani Express, we reached New Delhi railway station and were indeed received by the manager and the driver (too sweet of them to do that)
Before taking us to the travel agency, manager took us to the spot where blast had taken place (Main Bazaar in Paharganj) and said, ”Sir, This is the place where bomb had exploded, look at those security guards (pointing towards to them), they are asleep and snoring to their glory. The spot is closed for investigation purpose. That’s it. Look around, do you feel unsafe anymore?”
What caught our attention was the fact that Delhi was visibly ‘calm’ and leading a mundane life as if nothing had happened. Shops were running smoothly, there was traffic, in short the city was as vibrant and colourful and full of life. Those days Delhi used to be labelled as ‘terror capital’. Now it’s been replaced by ‘rape capital’ post the horrifying Nirbhaya case seven years later.
We were glad that we did not cancel our plan. From thereon we embarked our road trip to cover places like Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Uttaranchal, Haryana and eventually got back to Bombay.
WE DID NOT FEEL UNSAFE DURING OUR ROAD TRIP AND THAT WAS A BIG ACHIEVEMENT.
Learnt a lesson for life:
Never believe what you always see because visuals can indeed be deceptive.There is no questions that all sort of violence exist and it is prevalent in all corners of the globe and not country-specific.
As far as India is concerned, Not all the cities, bylanes are as communally imbalanced as portrayed in television. It depends entirely on how you perceive it. If you choose to see the world in the lens of politicians and media, India will always be the most unsafe and be reminded to live a vigilant life, but when you throw away their glasses and behold with a renewed perspective, Everything is normal, calm, beautiful and colourfully vibrant.
Watch News for knowledge, being human, it is possible for you to get affected but never get so carried away in it. In the end, your fear is their biggest weapon. Never forget that