What on earth allows or authorize humans to celebrate festivities at the cost of life on planet? It cannot be a victory of right over wrong, when people choose to keep mum while there is an onslaught (of planet) in front of them.

The rich tradition of Indian festivities is one that propagates waves of immense exaltation among masses resulting into a renewed interest for historical tales and values. People come out in large numbers for mass gatherings and community fairs, eventually, making up for a society that is inclusive & united and yet so diverse. Diversity also reflects itself in varying tales for observing these festivals in different regions of country and also the diverse ways in which the festivals are celebrated.    

 

Walking through the stream of whole festive season, one important halt is Hindu festival of Vijayadashmi or Dusshera, which stands for victory of virtue over vice, righteousness over sinfulness, good over bad, integrity over evil and truth over deceit. The famous tale of Lord Rama winning the battle against Ravana, a symbol of evil is main cause of Dusshera celebrations. The occasion marks burning of sky-touching effigies of Ravana and his family members, son Meghanada and brother Kumbhakarna, which in essence signify burning of immorality and evil deeds. In parts of India, especially the Bengal, the festival of Durga Puja also coincides with Dusshera celebrations, when idols of venerable Devis are immersed in water bodies with huge mass processions.

 

These traditions have been going on for centuries, however, all that has changed in all these years is insertion of more affluent means to celebrate to make celebrations look glorious, as such effigies with premium Chinese firecrackers and shiny-coloured idols made up of toxic chemicals stand as classic examples. It is quite unfortunate to mention here that none of these developments played a healthy part for environment. Burning of effigies is so much polluting that besides the severe harmful impact it has for life on planet, emission of toxic gases jams flow of air in cities for days and cause serious breathing disorders. In quite a similar way, idols immersed in water bodies cause water pollution by releasing toxic materials and making it difficult for aquatic animals and plants to survive.

 

What on earth allows or authorize humans to celebrate festivities at the cost of life on planet? Such behaviour of communities on the occasion of festivals amounts to celebration disguised as devastation. It cannot be a victory of right over wrong, when people choose to keep mum while there is an onslaught (of planet) in front of them. Such irresponsibility is by no means an Indian characteristic, for this civilisation has played a crucial role as a saviour for environment so prominently for all the years.

 

Better ways shall have to be sought out for celebrations so that alongside humans, nature & surroundings could also celebrate. Eco-friendly is no more just a placard slogan but it is more apt to say that eco-friendly is life-friendly for present as well as future. Only conserving environment can truly fulfil meaning of Dusshera.