They are often found dressed in immaculate uniforms, holding sticks or arms at times, and performing a job which seems mundane and easy, but is one of the most underrated jobs anywhere to find.
Most of them work in onerous conditions, often in day and often in the night, at times all alone, and at times with some backup might. Some of them are big and burly, while most others don’t devour any fancy diet, but all of them have one common identity, they are hardly ever dearly identified. They are found outside shopping malls, big corporate offices, housing societies and industries, schools and colleges, and sundry other structures of different kinds. Whether it be in the dark or under the searing sunlight, if anything untoward happens, they hardly take a flight from putting up a fight.
They live a tough life, often work for well over 12 hours a day, sustain in bare minimum conditions and still keep up at work, vigil and agile. They brave it all to protect us from whatever bad can happen all the while. We, the people owe they much, in gratitude and in kind, for they are the ones, who keep us safe at all time.
They are our security guards- The Unsung Heroes, who most of us forget to thank for the unparalleled contributions they make to our lives.
Their contributions are hardly ever acknowledged and celebrated, so much that most of us move past them oblivious to their presence and the state in which they keep upright. Passing a smile in those moments is not such a taking act, yet people hardly ever think about giving these fellow humans an ephemeral moment to smile and breathe with a sigh.
Many also tend to believe that the job of a security guard is nothing much of hard work to be exhorted. After all, their job looks mundane and simple to the average observer’s naïve eyes. What they see is someone in a uniform sitting behind a desk in a quiet setting outside, asking people to fill an entry in a register before entering and exiting a premises, or at times also frisking through them to ensure no body poses any threat to life.
The fallacy in that vision lies in the neglect of the bigger picture- The environments these security personnel work in, the risks they put up with, and the meagre pay they earn for what a tremendous lot they put at stake every successive day or night. Such strenuous realities often fail to make it to the mainstream thoughts of the masses. So much that instead of being sympathetic, benign and supportive of them and their job, many smack the poor security personnel for hassling them through security checks and asking them to sign on a register upon every act of entry or exit in/out of the premise assigned. That process takes merely a few seconds, but a good arithmetic of people still find the security guard stealing away a big chunk of their productive time. That’s ignorance and irrationality, inking the inhumanity of the human mind.
Yet, hardly are these security guards seen to be abusive or aggressive. They remain silent, insist on the people to comply. For performing their duty, they receive verbal and physical invectives slapped on their visage, and yet they don’t have the luxury to sensitize. After all, that would be bad and unacceptable behaviour, leading to the termination of their earning right, which is anyway the bare minimum which fends and keeps their families alright.
Moving on, with improper security booth structures, they either find themselves battling severe cold, or trying to find refuge from our country’s blistering heat. Albeit, working conditions differ for security personnel of different kinds, but most of them don’t get even minimal comforts at the workplace whatever the location and time.
Also, while they put their lives at risk to protect their employers and their entitlements, few provide their guards with insurance just in case anything undesired is to happen to them while on duty line. Ergo, most of them have no real form of protection, but some bits of hope and some strong will to fight.
Appending to the woes, there are hardly proper breaks for food, separate and hygienic sanitation facilities for the male and female guards, dedicated medical assistance or any provisioning for resting time.
Further exacerbating the picture is the paltry pay they are remunerated with, and the heavy exertion which comes attached. And, at the end of it all, what they earn for themselves is a distorted family life. Given the uncertainties involved in the work times, at times their children don’t see them all day, at times the children find them asleep all the time. Thus, the toll on the dynamics of family living is a cost, these unsung heroes pay to fend for the very families, every day and every night. Ergo, attached to their job is a big price, which their parents, wives and children pay while praying to Allah, Hanuman or Jesus Christ.
That is bound to foment at least a tad bit of resentment and frustration in some of these security personnel’s minds. After all, it’s not a dream job, but a necessity to survive and their only means to thrive.
With security companies raking in thousands of crores of rupees pan India each year, and as they continue to sell the people the idea of safety and stability, being consumers of these services, it’s also job of the people as humans to ensure that these unsung heroes get a fair standard of in work and life.
How? Maybe the people need to hold the security companies accountable for a fair standard of living for their employees. Or maybe the Governments at Center and States should be pursued to ensure strict implementation of all laws in this regard to safeguard the better interests of this community of the underrated falcons who stay up with undeterred might.
These heroes are the vigil third eyes of the community, battling and befriending the dark and lonely nights. These are heroes with no glory, something not by choice, but by a commitment greater than anything else right. They are committed to sacrifice all that they hold, to provide a safe and secure living to the communities they serve, and the families they come from.Theirs is therefore, a commitment to sacrifice.
For that, it’s a debt which the masses owe them, to raise the proverbial hats we wear in the respect of the security personnel who watch our back and front. Also, the masses owe them a compassionate aura to work in, one where the security guards would have a reason greater than just a meagre pay to protect us against all oddities. That would make their hardships more worthwhile, and their challenges lesser daunting. That would strengthen their hopes, and further pulsate their might.That’s a debt which we people owe these unsung heroes of our lives.