The End of An Era
A Reflection on the Impact of Change
Ravish Kumar, one of India’s most prominent journalists, resigned from NDTV after two decades. Ravish has received the renowned Ramon Magsaysay Award as well as the Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Award twice. The shocking news came after the Adani Group made an open offer to buy NDTV. Adani Group is accused of acquiring a monopoly with the aid of the governing party and of influencing Indian news broadcasts.
Several scholars have previously expressed their concern with the state of India’s mainstream media. Ravish Kumar’s resignation from NDTV has been dubbed “the deracination of the final wodge of Earth before laying a flat grave for TV journalism.”
I’ve been following Mr Kumar for over a decade, and regardless of differences of opinion, I’ve always admired his courage, analytical skills, sardonic verbosity, and his poker face. Whether you like Ravish or not, it is impossible to not feel his absence from television news.
This instance, made me wonder whether people experiencing a change that might be considered a historic turning point in the future realise the gravity of the event in the present. Does the unprecedented courage of the activists powered by the sorcery of The Almighty or conjured merely from the delusional neurons? Do historians who annotate the beginnings and the endings of a period terming them with fancy names realise the trepidations of the hearts of those living in the moment?
What do you think? Have you experienced an event in your life that today is of great historical significance? Do you think you are a witness to or a part of a transformation that the future will deem noteworthy? Were you the beginning or will be the end of an era? If you had the choice to be part of a crucial stage in history, what time period would it be and why?
Until you brainstorm these answers, please read the poem below where I have tried to untangle the chords of my heart which believe to have witnessed the end of a glorious era.
The End of An Era
The ants in the adjacent colony were anxious,
as the bulldozer crushed the last
block of old cement, brittle hope
strewn prostrate on the ground.
The hole which once emanated the scent
of cutting chai and freshly brewed espresso
today, stench with anguish, regret and fear.
The mind directed the hands towards the empty cartons,
the fingers wandered from desks to desks
grasping random papers as if they were
holy lottery tickets for a miracle.
Then, the terror blade uprooted the door
of their beloved news room.
The eyes which wrinkled simultaneous to
the dawn and the doom of cities,
the veteran tongue which speculated remnants of
grotesque local stories, often wondered
whether the air changes its course to gesture the end of an era
whether the water rippled anti-clockwise in protest,
whether the fire burned hotter to welcome a new era
and whether the soils swirled in submission to change.
As they trundled their life out of the floors
which once were a dais of the common folk,
then the realisation set in;
the signals of transitions are not shared by what’s around us,
rather, the helpless soul aches in agony
until the purposeless heart admits defeat
it is then, The End of An Era.
“In the midst of this screaming era
desires break constantly
longings cracks persistently
and countless dreams keep spilling around.” ―Suman Pokhrel