Set free and Explore

Today exactly at this time, I left to the Chennai Airport to travel to Berlin. 17th of August marks one year in Berlin and it has been a wonderful learning curve.

I came here with great expectations and personal goals. Looking back, I can count a few that I can be proud of. Joining the Hertie School was one, participating in the UN-IGF as an ISOC ambassador was another, followed by fellowships to the EuroDIG, EuroSSIG, and an internship at the Berlin Social Science Centre. Everything executed as per plan. However, It was not all success as I missed out on multiple other opportunities but that is how I learn about the weak links that need to be strengthened in the coming year.

Berlin has been wonderful, alternate and mystic. As a stranger in this big city, I stay anonymous and I am anonymous. This anonymity guarantees the freedom that I never felt working from my home.

The freedom to move, the freedom to seek, the freedom to learn, the freedom to explore and the freedom to speak. The freedom to just be yourself and be comfortable with it, not worry about the improper self-cut hairstyle, experimental food, torn jeans and the broken laptop. It just doesn’t matter as long as it works, as long as this freedom allows me to place my finger on the inaccuracies of our governance system and learn from its imperfections.

Particularly with respect to India, as we sink together in the superficialities of our everyday lives, drowned by agenda driven expert opinions, there is a reason why our systems function the way they do. It runs deep, intertwined with the structures we inherited and the way we shaped them. There is a greater mismatch in the way our institutions work together which is further exploited by the ruling class. It becomes the duty of each one of us to take some time off and truly reflect on what we as a society wish for each other. At least we could start by ensuring a little bit of freedom to the person next to us and appreciate them for their work and the knowledge they carry, instead of judging them based on who they are or where they come from.

Set free and Explore