Although 2016 will go down in history as a year of misery and bad decisions (looking at you America), it was not a completely desolate year, as a few good things happened but those little moments of joy and pride were overshadowed by the massive let downs and disappointments. So as we start the New Year, instead of focusing on all the bad of the previous year, let us concentrate on all the good. Whenever we reminisce of 2016, let it be of all the wonderful and amazing things that happened, which keep us hopeful of a better tomorrow.
Here are some of the things which contributed in ensuring that 2016 was not all lousy for us Indians.
1. Who run the world? GIRLS!
At the 2016 Rio Olympics, the chances of India winning a medal were somewhat bleak. That is, until the powerhouse wrestler Sakshi Malik won a bronze and became the first Indian female wrestler to win a medal at the leading sporting event. Following this, P.V. Sindhu clinched a silver in badminton and Dipa Karmakar, though could not win, created history by being the only Indian female gymnast to finish fourth. She also landed in the difficult Produnova vault, being only the 3rd woman gymnast to do so.
2. ISRO – the space conqueror
The Indian Space Research Organisation launched 20 satellites through a single rocket in June and in September its PSLV put 8 satellites in 2 different orbits. Also the launch of INSAT-3D satellite using GSLV in 2016 has placed India among the few elite nations that have mastered cryogenic technology. All in all, it was a notable year for ISRO. The organisation is now aiming to launch 83 satellites at the same time on 27 January, 2017.
3. Chakde India!
The Indian paralympic contingent brought laurels to the country as they won four medals at the Summer Paralympics 2016, including two golds from athletes Mariappan Thangavelu (High Jump) and Devendra Jhajharia (Javelin Throw). Deepa Malik won the silver in shot put while Varun Kumar Bhati had to settle for a bronze in the same high jump event as Thangavelu.
4. Mr. World!!
Becoming the first ever Asian to win the title of Mr. World, the Hyderabad model Rohit Khandelwal made the whole country proud. Armed with superhuman good looks and sharp intellect, Khandelwal beat 46 participants from around the world to claim this prestigious title.
5. You Go Girl!
Indian acid attack survivor, Reshma Qureshi , made history by walking the ramp at New York Fashion Week for designer Archana Kochhar. All of 19, this teenager whose face was brutally mutilated in an acid attack, made heads turn as she walked the ramp amid applause and cheers. Another braveheart, Laxmi, also an acid attack survivor and social activist, walked the ramp at the British Asian Trust charity fashion show to spread awareness about violence against women. As these powerhouses took a step on the ramp, the society too has taken a positive step towards inclusivity.
6. It’s all in the Movies
2016 was the year the Indian film industry shifted from its flimsy Bollywood image and gave us some powerful and substantial films. Although a complete change is impossible, but the release of movies like Pink, Dear Zindagi, Dangal, Udta Punjab, Neerja etc. showcased a gradual shift to intelligent cinema and an audience ready to lap it up. Issues, which were previously supposed to be taboo, were taken up, like mental health, drug abuse, consent, etc. Barring the usual mindless and insubstantial stuff, it was great year for Hindi film enthusiasts. Let us hope this continues in the new year!
See, it wasn’t as bad a year as we thought it to be. As Dumbledore has rightly said,
“Happiness can be found even in the darkest times if one only remembers to turn on the light.”
So let us keep that light on and hope that 2017 is filled with more of the wonderful things and less of the horrible.
Happy New Year!