Touria Prayag's Blog

The day after Par Touria Prayag 16 Mars 2013

Posted in Uncategorized by touriaprayag on September 15, 2013

“ If we had to see things the way they are, ‘Mauritianism’ as it is today is a gift ,a burden, and an obligation – All at the same time.”

The image which President Pranab Mukherjee takes home with him is one of a flawless united Mauritius which takes great pride in its history, culture and independence. The besieged stadium to which thousands of Mauritians of all communities and religions fl ocked and filled beyond capacity is proof enough of how proud we are of our country and how we feel about our independence.For one day, we were all Mauritian irrespective of our origins. For one day, we looked at our neighbour’s heart rather than the colour of his skin. For one day, we became what we really should have always been: real Mauritians.

The State House and Clarisse House spoke the same language of unity, the opposition played its role and their efforts won the day. It is not clear how much damage was caused by a group of limelight-seeking individuals whose sense of judgment did not allow them to see that there is a time and a place for everything and that all our other problems, including those related to our choice of energy, had to take a backseat to allow the nation to live this great moment.

Once this one-day-in-the-year is over and the guest of honour is gone and our emotions have subsided, we can go back to our business as usual and try to take stock of what we have achieved during our greying independence. However, as the dust settles, certain pertinent questions beg to be answered. Are we really any closer to that Mauritianism we keep talking about or does it actually only hit us once a year? Are we proud of our country every day of our lives?

If we had to see things the way they are, Mauritianism as it is today is a gift, a burden, and an obligation – all at the same time. Isn’t it a gift that between the time a Mauritian child is born and the time he is tucked away in his cot, between the doctor, nurses and helpers, s/he has brushed with all of the five continents? That before s/he is of school age, s/he has been made familiar with the cultures of most parts of the world? That s/he learns instinctively how to greet, socialize with and entertain every member of each culture? Isn’t it a burden that each of us is dragging religious, cultural and
historical baggage we do not always know how to handle? Isn’t it an obligation to inculcate in our children the notion of real Mauritianism and nation building? After the great show in the stadium and after the departure of the Indian president, how much progress have we really made on the ground? When our flag flies high and swirls in the tropical
breeze for one day symbolizing the rainbow nation we dream to be, how much prejudice does every single colour of this rainbow still hide? While politicians stand side by side and make the most pious of declarations, how many lobbies are they going to kowtow to later?

The answers are not pretty but no matter. Days like these give the future generations reason to hope.

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