- Nadira Gunathilleke
Be alert and save the country
When a crime takes place, majority of us wait, curse the criminal and
stay shocked for few days, may be weeks (rarely) then go back to the
normal routine. Only the immediate family members of the victim remember
what has happened for a longer time and only one or two of them think
about it after three weeks.
does not matter whether we like it or not, this is the nature of us. One
can call it moving on. But 'moving on' does not mean that one should
ignore his/her responsibility towards the victims.
How about a total stranger fighting for the lives lost and doing
justice risking his own? Then how about a grandmother who risks her own
life to catch the culprit who destroyed lives and properties of innocent
We cannot estimate the worthiness of her act. We can only hand over
something to her as a token for her selflessness and bravery. In the
common society rarely people admire such heroic acts and accept the fact
that women are smart just as men when it comes to `men's work'.
This is the story of the woman CDF (Civil Defence Force) member who
had arrested the LTTE cadre behind the bomb blast in Dehiwela railway
track. She was promoted and rewarded for her courageous act few days
back by the Government.
She was promoted to the position, Woman Warden and rewarded with
Rs.50,000 in cash. It is significant because the recognition took place
just after the country celebrated National War Heros' Day in the
Parliament ground, the most ideal place.
Two other women CDF were promoted as Sub Warden and rewarded with
cash Rs.10,000 each for seizing 100 GN sticks and arresting two LTTE
suspects at the Puliyanakulam checkpoint on February 2.
These women are the golden gifts of mother Lanka and provide a very
good example for some other Sri Lankan women who risk their lives not to
protect others but to invite danger.
Here are some `bitter stories' related by train passengers themselves
after the recent train bomb blasts.
Some women who travel from office trains, just get into the train
hurriedly, grab a seat, and close their eyes very tightly. This is not
to sleep or relax but to ignore pregnant mothers, elders and disabled
persons. What a good way to be cautious about strangers and unidentified
May be men too do the same. This was revealed by several regular
train passengers after the recent bomb blasts.
The same happens very often in the crowded buses. There you can see a
lot of men and women especially who are sitting close to the front and
rear entrances of the bus pretending to be in a deep sleep in order to
avoid sacrificing their seats to a pregnant mother or an elder.
When a clergy get into the bus standing passengers happily wake up
the passenger who is pretending to be sleeping. But if passengers
sitting close to the entrances close their eyes tightly how can they
notice anything/anyone unusual?
It seems when a new person comes and sits in a train compartment the
regular passengers scold him/her and chase him/her away forgetting that
they are also human beings.
According to some women passengers it is women who do this more than
male passengers. When a woman shouts and chases away another woman, can
we expect kindness and sympathy from men?
Public transport services are not private properties of anybody.
Anyone can get into a train and sit anywhere. That is their right. But
how can we expect certain persons to obey one's rights when he/she
ignores a pregnant mother? When a woman tries her best to ignore another
pregnant woman there is no point talking about being observant.
It is obvious that our social ethics and values are decreasing
rapidly. Caring for others can only be started from homes. First parents
should care for their children and grown up children should care for
their parents. Without this basic step nothing will happen as we expect.
If a parent does not care for his/her child and the child does not
care for parents after growing up how can we expect them to care for
unknown passengers travelling in a bus or train?
This is not a good trend. Not caring for others is not only bad
behaviour but also a hazard to safety. Ignorant persons are in a deep
sleep until something bad happens and then put the blame on anyone