Your space


All of us love to capture nice moments in camera and no wonder, photo and video shoots are integral parts of our family functions and excursions. Now imagine this. While you are out on a picnic or hosting a party, you know you are under ‘watch’ and it would all go into police records for security reasons. That’s not funny, you would say.
Consider another case. You are texting a message to someone and the person next to you glances at your cell phone. It does irritate, doesn’t it? Well, the content would often be perfectly okay for anyone to see it but why an uncalled for curiosity, you would wonder. There may be nothing private, fine. It doesn’t mean it should be public!
Each of has one’s privacy intruded sometime or the other. Personal space, privacy and freedom are the watchwords in today’s world and interestingly, all of us seem using these terms as per our convenience. More importantly, people across age groups and cross-sections — kids to old and policy-makers to preachers — look at the concepts through their frames.
Let’s accept we seldom have an unbiased and objective perspective towards space, privacy and freedom. It shouldn’t therefore come as a surprise when we encounter issues from domestic to national-level owing to misinterpretation of the three. Indian families spelling rigid sets of dos and don’ts rules for daughters and daughters-in-law are common. Also not uncommon are people invading others’ space and privacy. Individuals misusing freedom aren’t unheard of either. Even as we talk about personal space, we don’t mind sharing every bit of our life on social networking sites.
It’s not your near and dear ones alone who care about you. There are police and moral police too! Cops have decided to seek details of parties at private resorts from their owners. Besides asking for permission in writing, they are supposed to submit a list of probable guests. This is not all. The entire event has to be under video surveillance. This is all for security reasons, police claim. There can’t be two opinions about safety and security. Still need every party be in-camera once you know it’s harmless? Once convinced, can’t cops leave it to good sense and discretion of participants?
Now take this. Our politicians are known for banning books and films for ‘objectionable’ content or language. Is it valid every time? Take for instance the latest movie ‘Aarakshan’. Honestly, do developments in Uttar Pradesh and murmurs about it in our own Maharashtra are warranted? Can’t we wait and watch, literally and figuratively? You decide. And we call ourselves the biggest democracy in the world! Opinions may differ but a blanket ban doesn’t appear a solution to settle a matter. It simply shows we can’t welcome views that don’t match with our own.
Things are no different in our personal lives. Most of us feel our personal space is intruded upon and privacy is not maintained. Do we think equally seriously when it comes to others? We gossip about them endlessly and show a great deal of curiosity in their issues. But when it happens with us, we go hoarse over intrusion of our space!
Let’s perceive space, freedom and privacy in the right spirit and honour them. If we want to have our space, earnestly give others theirs. There may be nothing to hide but a few things could be one’s very personal. Space, privacy and freedom cannot exist putting relationships and social life at stake. Again, let’s not forget that we might have to compromise on them at times for ensuring safety, security and law and order.
Sense will prevail once we get our basics right. Till then we will continue to have people poking nose in our affairs, cops keeping vigil on every single party and politicians banning this book or that film.
- KanChan

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