An Exercise in Anger

Caveat : I wrote this post in the position of an observer and not an commenter. The descriptions are strictly Photojournalistic and not an opinion.

An Exersise in Anger - Part 1

Anger and hate burns thick in the black of their eyes, it rings through in their deep shouts and it reverberates through your consciousness. Flags are waved like staffs swung from side to side and effigies lie on the street smouldering. More slogans ring through the air as the large mass of people pull forward. The energy is exhilarating and is hard to ignore. Clenched fists rise up in the air in unison, gentle blows to the sky. One hundred and fifty thousand people can not be wrong It is obvious that Mr. Bush is not all that welcome in India. The match has been lit now let us see the hatred burn.

Protest - An Effigy of Mr. Bush
[Burning flame marks the mood of the assembled.]

Never mind the spelling you get the picture
[Never mind the spelling, they might have a point]

The protest started like so many others before it- through resentment shaped in the form of a small article in the morning newspaper stating a time and location. A round of forty-two religious, social and political organisations including the CPI, CPM, Samajwadi Party and Bahujan Mahasangh had called for this demonstration. If you have noticed the irony here most of these parties are not exactly in the opposition. Central Line trains filled to the brim rolled into CST every two minutes feeding this every growing protest. I too had gone on one of these trains a few hours earlier. It is strange how society works itself up when it wants to get worked up. In the end all this is - is an exercise in anger.

[ Shouting "Jeoorge Bussh Murdabad," breaking into "Gulli Gulli meh shoor hai Jeoorge Bussh Oil Chor hai"]

Shoes rain down in Anger

On the train of protest Part 1
[On the train to Azad Maidan]

If you looking for more picture - here is where to go.

If you are looking for a news article on the same go here - Anti-Bush protests held nationwide

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Anonymous said...

you go. love most. fabulous capturing. luck for tomorrow.


Josh Lee said...

Nice coverage and commentary. It is "an exercise in anger," but it is important for the message to be heard that even in an 'allied country' not all people agree to go along with their president or with President Bush. As long as a protest remains non-violent, I see nothing wrong in it.

Patrix said...

Just by looking at the pictures, I am not sure if these people are protesting against Bush for the right reasons. Bush as a liar is more of a concern to American or Iraqi citizens because they bear direct consequences. Why would people in India apart from a moral stand point be concerned? Definitiely the common man is not protesting here. It is either those pseduo-closeted intellectuals (the Left) or those that are whipped up by religious sentiment.

Akshay said...

phal - thanks for the kind words phal they're much appreciated.

josh - the protest being non-violent should be the upmost component and yes they do have right to protest given they have valid reason to protest.

patrix - Most of the people at the rally where some influenced by religious.The left played a very limited part in the rally in Mumbai. Arbitrary issues like the Dannish Cartoon came up in the protest.Yes, they probably had no reason to protest. But then again there was a clear resentment, a resentment Bush seems to ignore instead of addressing. .

Suds said...

Hi Akshay great pictures and good commentary. But I agree with Partix. This rally maynot be driven by Left but they also have not left any stone unturned. Even the speaker did not attend the dinner with Bush. Anyway. that is a different topic altogether. But personally I feel this visit is very good for relationship between 2 great nation. We are natural alies.

Akshay said...

suds - thanks for the comment. I no doubt in saying that this will be could for Indo-US relations. My only worry is that, people in America who are Anti-Bush becoming Anti-India. Already we see it happening in certain segments of the American political system.

Anonymous said...

Where were these protestors when the Saudi King was India's chief guest? If these protestors really cared about Human rights, shouldn't they have been out in full force on 26th Jan as well during the King's visit? Most of these protestors are narrow minded fundamentalists brought up on communal fodder. They cannot think beyond the narrow scope of religion.

BTW does it strike anyone that India's so called "secular" communist parties and non secular communal parties share similar concerns and protest on same issues? Food for thought indeed!

It's time to expose the Indian communist-communal party links and their conspiracies to destabilize India.

hammer_sickle said...

Check out more photos here..

Akshay said...

Anonymous -
Yes, I would agree when you say there is a disparaging reaction from the protestors to different foreign heads of state. On the other hand I won't be to swayed away by these particular protests because they were not anti-India. The people protesting didn't find Bush welcome and they protested it and constitutionally it was well within their right and I don't think it was in any way a conspiracy to destabilize India.
Personally I am not a big fan of communal forces especially the saffron alliance.
The protests are in a way subjugation of the what many Muslims feel is a ploy to prosecute them by religion. It is as if America VS Iraq can be substituted by America VS Islam therefore the protest in large numbers.

Hammer Sickle -

thanks for the pictures.

Monologist said...

So here's the thing right.
You're burning all these things and prehaps even rioting?
Does this hurt Bush?
Er... answer is no.
Does it hurt [you the people?]
yeah... because you're damaging your own land, your own mother earth.
So who is being disrespectful?
Who is being silly/stupid?

Perhaps its me, but I never thought protesting really does much. I think there are far better ways in doing things and getting better outcomes.

In the end, who looks like the moron?
Cuz, if it were my country... I'll think everyone was just damn fools for ruining business, and for causing chaos on MY country.

Hate Bush? Sing it to America, not India
But that's just my take on the protesting

bharath said...

black of their eyes, it rings through in their deep shouts and it reverberates through your consciousness

I don't know what you call it in english. but using rings of eyes to sound, and using reverberations of sound to consciousness was, ahem, a very neat play on words/phrases. :) now I go read the rest of the blog.

bharath said...

One hundred and fifty thousand people can not be wrong

In the time of Indian partition there were 150 thousand muslims who thoughts hindus were out to kill them, and 150 thousand hindus who thought muslims were out to kill them. they were both wrong, but they had to prove themselves right. so they killed each other. (sorry that for brevity, i have reduced the whole thing to this description)

I am just saying: to raise anyones anger about bush, you only need to associate bush with something base and vile. but, bush comes to india as an ambassador of a country, not on a personal visit. so our protests are directly against the US and the purpose why its in India.

I won't say it is right or wrong, but I really doubt 145 thousand of them know anything about US or the deal between US and India, because they are protesting bush and not the deal.

I don't want this comment to be any longer :P so I stop for the sake of brevity.

Akshay said...

Caveat : I wrote this post in the position of an observer and not an commenter. The descriptions are in the Photojournalistic degree a description and not an opinion. I'm adding this to the post as well.

Monologist - I agree, nothing good will come out of the protest. They are just disparaging themselves in the world view. But again nothing bad will come out of it either. I've specified my view in the Caveat.

Bharath - I could be mistaken but it is called an onomatopoeia. Thanks, I was trying to be lyrical - it helps describing events sometimes. I agree with your views Bharath. My post was purely descriptive. Saying that I don't remember any protests when President Bush came to India in 2000.

Mridula said...

Akshay, I will comment just on the pics and they are fabulous.

Bombay Addict said...

Dude, awesome stuff.

mar00ned said...

Excellent piece of photo-journalism. Awesome stuff.

Apoplexy said...

Wonderful are the kind who would have loved seems to me.
Why cant I post comments on the Dharavi post? The whole page doesnt seem to load.
Whatever...keep up the great job.

Sigbhu said...

Splendid photographs!

I wish i could take stuff like that!

Is it difficult, taking photographs at moments like these? I often slink away, put my camera back, at the slightest sign of violence