True when it comes to a nation competing with the world the idea of national pride takes a new meaning and height. Sports competitions are the best examples of this. Rio Olympics just concluded and its highlights are still fresh in our mind. In this case, the national pride we projected are in terms of the medal tally but of course, in that we weren't featured significantly. India is featured very low there. But that cannot be counted against India's national pride because in a competition there will be always excellent, average and poor. An opportunity to realise where one stands in terms of the strength and weakness is a matter of realism.
But again how do you define pride? This is the best definition I got for personal pride after a simple search: PRIDE Pride is Personal Responsibility In Delivering Excellence. There is also something confused as pride; arrogance and disregard for others to boost one's self-importance and ego.
The above definition of PRIDE is applicable at the national level as well because a nation can be taken as a big person.
Now coming to the other Rio highlights; let us look at what news has been flashed across the world about the way Indian's sports officials, including Vijay Goel the sports minister of India, took responsibility vested on them in delivering excellence. Oh yes, he went to visit Rio, unlike sports ministers in other nations, but to embarrass the whole nation including the Indian Olympians.
A few samples of this bitter pill the Indians talk about when they meet and feel ashamed, that is those who really understand the meaning of PRIDE.
- "The sports minister of India, Vijay Goel, who was accompanying Indian athletes to show his support and monitor requests of athletes, ended up almost losing his Olympics accreditation. The minister's 'entourage' without having accreditations to certain locations behaved in 'aggressive' and 'rude'manner when they were stopped by the officials to enter."
- "The Indian Olympics contingent had two official medical staggers, Pawandeep Singh and Col R. S. Negi, who both were radiologists by profession and had no prior experience in sports medicine."
- "The two radiologists, coincidentally are related to Indian Olympic Association's (IOA) key members. According to reports, O.P Jaisha's coach had to get into scuffle with the doctors to demand medical attention after she fainted during the marathon."
You can read more of this here.
Well, one can argue, it's all over, the next Olympics is going to come only after four years, so why should we bother about these things anymore or doubt the sincerity of those who feel ashamed about these things.
As individuals we feel helpless is also another way of seeing this. And it's where the officials and politicians who were responsible for causing this outright mayhem get scot free. And they will continue showing the same disregard riding the people and a nation thinking that is what they are appointed for.
One way to make a change is everyone who feels that PRIDE should talk about that to create its awareness. If none talks, we are helping to make it a forgotten thing and the show of ego will take precedence over it.
It's good news that while I was concluding this, I saw this on Facebook; a petition started by Devyani Chaudhari, "a former table tennis player who represented India in 1980," addressing Mr Modi, the prime minister of India. She is asking the PM to take necessary steps so that the oncoming Asian games and the Commonwealth games both happening in 2018 can avoid the Rio embarrassments.