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“Log Kya Kahengay?” – A Struggle of Every Desi

“Log Kya Kahengay” has killed more dreams than anyone else in the world   

Scrolling through Facebook, this one quote flashed on my phone screen. The disturbing sparkle of this quote made me took off my blanket and I immediately got up. A cold ripple went through the spine when I wondered the true power this one line holds.

The very last week my little cousin was arguing with his parents that how he wants to be a musician and the conversation went like this,
“Mama I want to be a musician.”
“Beta it’s not a good profession, log kya kahengay?

And then the other scenario where a girl was seen convincing her father to marry someone of her own choice, the father replied in a very disconcerted tone,
“We have fulfilled all your desires but love marriage? Log kya kahengay? It’s not our culture beta.”

It’s saddening to see that we have brought up in a culture where suspecting our children and discouraging them to do certain things just for the sake of what others will think is very common. We—the Desis are forced to live a life in fear of public opinions. The fear of “log kya kahengay?” has polluted our culture so much that abiding by status quo of stereotyped norms is considered as a liability.

This simple phrase prevails over our hopes and desires. Millions of examples show that how people were forced to give up on their dreams and aspirations. Some wanted to be musicians and singers, while others wanted to live life their way or simply marrying someone of their own choice! But what happened when this phrase “log kya kahengay” popped up? They were denied! Discouraged to challenge the moronic and fat-headed norms of the society simply because their career choices did not make enough money to support a family or their decision to live life their own way might defile the reputation.

From reminding women of their waning youth to mocking men of their bald-headedness, from reminding parents of their obligations to pressurizing children about their career choices,

Who amongst us can claim not to have been appalled by logon ki baatein?

While the fear of public opinions or logon ki batein might seem facile or easy enough to escape — but easier said than done! This is a never-ending hoop of distress and angst. Not only us but the people dearest to us are also trapped in this hoop. In this chaos of living up to societal expectations, we make it easier for these “log” to say whatever they want; making it totally okay and normal.

The only way to repress this pressure is to change ourselves, because in the end we are the “log”. Be that as it may, the hypocrisy is the root of our society while diplomacy is the stem! It is we who need to open up our minds to the idea that not everyone has to live with the same idea of life that we have.

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