Baba, are you a teacher?

One fails to understand the criminal silence adopted by various quarters of the civil society towards the plight of “nation builder”.
File Photo
File Photo

When I first joined the department of education as a teacher, I was told that you have chosen a job which is prophetic in its character. I quite often come across the term 'nation builder' used for a teacher at various platforms. My joy knows no bounds whenever praise is showered on my profession by none other than my own teacher colleagues. But, soon after coming out of these conference halls and other such gatherings one feels that these observations are never accepted by my society outside. My society paints me differently. I am being looked down upon in every respect. 

Though my primary job is to teach, but my services are utilized for various other  purposes. All these extra assignments have not only left me mentally sick, but have assassinated my character. Our materialistic society, which attaches more importance to money and power, has a different approach towards my job. Day in and day out, my identity and potential is questioned, which has miserably left me dejected and hurt. If I raise voice over a public interest issue, they say I'm mentally sick. 

On the one hand, I am mercilessly dragged, abused and manhandled for demanding my rights,  while on the other I am asked to come up to the expectations of the society. At a time when the whole Muslim world was celebrating Eid I was forced by the circumstances to leave my family and attend a peaceful protest programme at Srinagar. On boarding a car for Srinagar on Eid day sounded strange not only to my parents and better half,  but to my innocent children as well who were anxiously waiting for Baba's  Eidi. These little children never knew that their Baba was a teacher who has become indebted to whole of the village for running his household affairs. While seeing people coming out of Eid Gahs, I remembered my family. On receiving a call from my three year old daughter tears began to roll down from my cheeks, as she was waiting for her Baba to fetch a doll from Srinagar. But Alas! Baba had only two hundred in his pocket as vehicle fair.!! 

On reaching Srinagar, pepper gas and Pava shells greeted Baba and his thousands of dejected colleagues who were there to register protest against the insensitive approach of the society towards its "nation builders". Watching the nation builders cry in pain is a wake up call for all of us as a responsible society. Here one fails to understand the criminal silence adopted by various quarters of the civil society towards the plight of "nation builder". My identity as a teacher is at the risk and losing its meaning. 

While I was penning down these lines my three year old daughter entered the room and asked me "Baba, are you a teacher? I was lost somewhere in my thoughts. I held my face in my hands and with a heavy sigh I replied her "Yes, Beta I am a teacher.

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