ALS Ice Bucket Challenge in the Era of Water Shortage

ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, a social media campaign to raise awareness for the disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is taking the virtual world by storm, with actors, sports personalities and celebrities joining the bandwagon to take the challenge.

As a concept for raising awareness goes, it’s a fantastic idea. And yet, it raised a small doubt in me, when is read this headline: Rural women go the extra mile in walk for water. The report says, on an average, every second woman in India has walked 173kms to get portable drinking water in 2012, 25kms of extra distance than in 2008-2009. When a part of the world fights for survival and remains thirsty, isn’t it a shame to waste buckets of water yourself on accepting a challenge? If you are so inclined to help the charitable organisation for ALS, why not donate instead?

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But then again, I think, there is no fun in only donating the money, right? The fun is in accepting the challenge and upload a video of yourself doing it, which makes you look cool. After all, you are in the league of Bill Gates, George Bush, Mark Zuckerberg, and many other celebrities, as well as you friends, colleagues and host of people on Facebook and YouTube! Now you can call yourself an activist as well.

Today I read another news about my country, that of flood situation worsening in Assam, and I am left thinking, isn’t it a little strange to participate in the ALSIceBucketChallenge now in the face of such situations, or do we no longer care?

I guess I am not the part of the netizens who believe in #ALSIceBucketChallenge. You may think that I don’t care, and you may be right too. When the people of my country suffer over water, I guess I cannot be so frivolous over a bucket of water. As for my charitable donations, I truly don’t believe in sharing that information. Something’s are better done in private. And while we are in the topic, let me tell you that I am in awe of US President Barack Obama, who when issued the challenge, opted to donate instead. Whoa!! Great going, Sirji.

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