Less than two weeks have passed since the horrific tragedy near Amritsar where 59 of the people celebrating Dussehra on railway tracks were killed, and over a 100 more injured, by a passing train. Yet, like many other such tragedies in India, it has already disappeared from public discourse.
A simple analysis using Google Trends shows that interest in the Amritsar tragedy peaked on 20 October, a day after the accident, and sharply declined over the next few days. In fact, by 23 October, searches for Amritsar tragedy fell below that for “Narendra Modi”, indicating that Indians had moved on. Just for context, more people were searching for “Virat Kohli” than for the accident in a mere two days after its occurrence. If we always knew that we, the people, didn’t care much for the loss of lives in accidents, we now have nice charts to show for it. The people affected, their loved ones, the citizens of Amritsar and the people of Punjab will, in decreasing order of time, remember the tragedy. The rest of us will move on.