“Tune hi sikhaya sachchaiyon ka matlab,
Tere paas aake jaana maine zindagi ka maqsad,
Satyamev… satyamev… satyamev jayate,
Sachcha hai pyaar tera, satyamev jayate.”
Above is an excerpt from the theme song for the current hit TV series “Satyamev Jayate”. For me it means “The search for truth has made me realize the meaning of truth, when I got to the truth did I understand the true purpose of my life, I now know that truth always triumphs when true is your passion.” Satyamev Jayate meaning “truth is invincible”, is a Hindu mantra from the Mundaka Upanishad, is the national motto of India and also features on the National emblem of India. The TV series which has taken the nation by storm is the first of its kind addressing simple but grave issues faced by our society today.
Aamir Khan is doing a commendable job of using his star power to highlight the problems faced by our Indian society today and he has the whole nation (including my family and me) hooked onto their television screens every Sunday morning at 11.00 am. As soon as an episode goes on air the online social networks (blogs, twitter, facebook, etc.) are abuzz with discussions about the problem being addressed on the current episode effectively hosted by one of the most loved stars of our time, Aamir Khan, who does a mighty good and honest job.
Satyamev Jayate or as people call it SMJ has aired 8 episodes till now. I will not discuss each episode separately, which you can watch on their official website, but want to share what I took from the 8 episodes. The usual pattern followed by the show is that an issue is addressed, then a couple of tear jerker case studies which make sure a even a thick skinned, middle-class, common man’s soul is shaken to the core, talking to experts on the issue (for it and against it) and then a solution. The solution can either consist of an organization, a social worker, an entrepreneur or an individual working effectively for or against (whichever is morally correct) the issue addressed and showing us that there is a way out of the rut. The picture painted in the beginning of the episode is so bleak that sometimes we are forced to believe that the situation is hopeless and the solution at the end comes as a ray of light.
After 8 episodes of SMJ it is the solution which has intrigued me most and given the ray of hope. I know the show has had its fair share of criticism, ranging from frivolous (Aamir Khan taking in Rs. 3 crore per episode) to baseless (the show is working on behest of corporate), but still accolades to the SMJ team for making a complete show and not just addressing an issue but providing a perfectly workable solution to each of the issue presented till now.
SMJ has taught me that sometimes we are so convinced about the status quo that we feel there is no other alternative for a particular issue to the extent of showing resistance if somebody proposes a change. All is not lost and hope is still there.
For example, in the yesterday’s episode (Pesticide in foods) the owner of a pesticide company was convinced that there is no alternative of farming to generate high yielding crop except the use of pesticides. In fact he offered Aamir Khan a “Noble Prize” if he was shown an alternative way without compromising the yield and increasing the cost. The solution presented to him by a scientist Dr. G V Ramanjaneyelu based out of Hyderabad was not only simple and organic but also extremely cost effective. Another example, was in the medical malpractices episode where Dr. Devi Shetty whose Yeshasvini healthcare schemes provided affordable healthcare to poor without compromising on the quality. Love Commandoes in the honour killing episodes, basic education & communication with kids in the child sexual abuse episode, are all examples which reinforce the fact that there is always a solution and most of the times it simple, affordable and can be found amongst us.
Satyamev Jayate for me now means that we should not only search for the truth, but should resolve to stand by it and give a purpose to this mission of truth with passion.