Idlis for Headley  

Posted by Praveen in , , ,


India is trying hard to get 26/11 mastermind David Headley to India. The US doesn't seem to budge from the so called 'agreement' that it made with the terrorist, by which they wouldnt hand him over to India if he confesses to be guilty. And India is in no mood to let go. The officials of the concerned ministry been heating up their heads thinking of ways to extradite the accused. They say the decision of US to not extradite Headley goes against the treaties signed between the two countries. Not surprising, considering the fact that US never had this habit of honouring the treaties that it has signed.

Seeing all this busy action on the Headley front, one major question that comes to mind is, "what will India do withHeadley?" All this urgency to bring him to India makes us think that we are going to cut him into pieces the moment we get our hands on him. Alas! past experiences points in the exact opposite direction. We all know what we did with the one we caught alive. We started the courtroom drama "kyunki terrorist bhi kabhi human tha", which will complete its anniversary soon. Its sure to go on for many more years and may break the record of the longest running K-serials. The hero is given z-category security, chicken biriyani etc. There's a special subscription of cosmopolitan and the banned savita bhabhi comics for his private rocket launching needs. There was a proposal to supply him call gals too. And we even built him a 5 crore worth steel chamber, with the aim of 'protecting' him. We spent 32 crores for him in one year. And, considering all this...Do we really need to spent another 30 crores on protecting yet another terrorist? If the Govt is not planning to cut him into 1000 pieces or burn him alive or torture him to the 10th degree or cut his organs and blind him, Please dont try to bring him here. We don't have the patience to see yet another long drawn court drama. Please don't serve idlis to Headley.

your crusader Praveen

The Green Flag  

Posted by Praveen in

It was one of those railway stations where very few people came. And where only one of those odd trains stopped. One of those unremarkable stations with broken benches and the worn down office of the station master. For 40 years, I waved the green flag here. It was like a ritual. Looking at the timetable and then strolling out from the office to the platform with the green flag. Its a ritual nobody other than me cared about. Once in a while a curious kid points at me from the second class compartment and says something to his father. At other times, some old man just stares at me from the window, sometimes adjusting his glass to get the focus right. These are the only attention I've got in this lonely job. Sometimes, hapless wanderers do come in from far away places, with thirsty eyes and hungry stomachs. And it has been a part of my duty to give them something to eat and provide them shelter until they are good to wander again.

Now, 30 years since I last waved the flag, as I sit alone here, as an antique piece held up by worn down bones and displaying lines and cracks all over my face, I feel like one of those wanderers whom I gave shelter many years back. Though I could barely see even with my glasses, I could feel the changing colours of wheels inside the weighing machine falling on my eyes. Those olden days when my son Mihir made me take his weight on this machine every other day, came to my mind. There was a field of kans grass close to the station. Mihir used to run from our home through the fields as the trains passed, very much like that classic scene from 'Pather 'panchali'. Satyajit Ray must've been inspired from our little station and Mihir's run while he created that scene. In those days, I never once did have an idea that one day I'll be sitting at this very station like a useless furniture. This very station which once came to life only because of me. I haven't uttered a word in the last many years. I can hardly see. I can move only with other's help. But Mihir didn't seem to know that I had so much of life left in me when he left me here and went to the city with his family. He didn't seem to know that I still had a heart which loved him and his family. He didn't seem to know that my tears don't need anyone else's help to flow down. I could feel some currency that he left in my lap so that someone will take it and help me. If only that money could buy someone to put his hand around me and say, "I love you papa and I shall never leave you".

I could easily show the red flag to my life if I jump into the rails in my white shirt. But, as always I chose to live rather than bring poetic tragedy to this story. I fell asleep with the help of the cold winter winds. I couldn't do anything to stop the trembling and later got used to it. Someone's hand around me woke me up in the morning. I could hardly make out who it was. Still, I felt reassured. I tried feeling the face. The clues were not coming by. I was searching in the dark until he told me about a cold wintery night almost five decades back. One of those rare wanderers made his appearance in the station that day. A kid of about seven years. And as was my habit, I fed him and gave him shelter. He left after staying for few days in the office. It was just one of the many similar incidents in my life. But for him, it was one unforgettable incident. And that few plates of food meant more to him, much more than a lifetime of sacrifices meant for my Mihir. He held me up with his strong hands and led me carefully to the gates. I could hear the thud-thud of a train approaching. I almost raised up my right hand and waved the imaginary green flag.

your crusader Praveen

Year 2125-33% reservation for men!  

Posted by Praveen in ,


The Blames of India(BOI) dated 12th March 2125 reports that this is going to be a landmark election in the history of India. For the first time in 50 years, men are allowed to contest in the elections. The last man to contest in the election was Bingo Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi's son-in-law who won by a mammoth margin in the elections of 2076. In that year, India proudly announced to the world that its doing away with caste and religion based reservation thus ushering in a new golden era. Instead, the reservations will be completely based on the gender. The seat reservations in Parliament were as follows.

Women-68%
Eunuchs-18%

[Train based eunuchs-10%
traffic light based eunuchs-5%
street based eunuchs-2%

home based eunuchs-1%]
Gays-5%

lesb-5%

Bi-1%

morphed swamis-2%

men-1%


It all started way back in 2009 with a proposal for 33% reservation for women in Parliament. Infact, the idea was there even before that. But the actions necessary for it to come into force started only in 2009. Although there was a lot of opposition from septugenarian and octogenarian male leaders, the idea of empowerment of women seemed too romantic to resist for most of the parties. It was said that this 33% bill will help the lady fish vendor, the old servant lady and even the happless prostitutes. Stories of how women in every strata of the society will be empowered by this simple 33% reservation in parliament, were doing the rounds. And to grab eyeballs, there were those oft repeated stories of women soaring high, from being an aircraft pilot to thenga ideel(malayalam for felling of coconuts by climbing up the coconut tree, which is usually done by men). And most of the times the second part of the thenga ideel story where the woman falls down along with the coconut, was conveniently forgotten.

The bill was passed with much fanfare. Men waited impatiently for their daughters and wives to become MPs and airhostesses or atleast a thenga ideelukaari. Sadly, the changes were not so visible. The surnames of the women MPs remained the same. The same families exported MPs year after year. Some parties fielded rubber stamp candidates of the ilk of 'Rabri Devi' to fill up their women quota. These women almost always won and most of them used to do a Puja of the icon of uselessness and rubber stampdom, Prathibha Patil, every morning before the Parliament session. The lady fish vendor was still selling fish(Infact her grand daughter is now a famous fish vendor too), the servant lady was still doing her chores and the prostitute taking enough actions and policies for 'customer satisfaction'. And banner headlines on the empowered women routinely came on most dailies.

For more empowerment, the percentage of reservation for women was gradually increased. Also, reservations were brought in for marginalised sections like eunuchs, gays etc. The male MPs gradually began losing their jobs. They came back to their hometowns and started doing work which were usually done by women. This newly arrived male workforce resulted in most of the women(except MPs) losing their jobs. Thus the Indian women was truely empowered. By 2078, men were completely driven out of the Parliament. And more poor women lost their jobs. For the next 40 odd years, there was a clamour from the women of India for 33% reservation for men in Parliament. The moustache sporting women inside Parliament strongly refused. But, when push came to shove, they gave in and thus in the elections of 3025, men are finally making a comeback. The 33% reservation for men is still pending for approval from both houses. Prominent women leaders like Mulayam Devi and Lalooni Prasad are strongly opposing the bill. We can just hope that men will atleast make a comeback to the Parliament which they once ruled and ruined...And also hope that atleast then women of the ilk of 'baalika vadhu' and 'never-been-screwed granny' will be truely empowered.

PS- Am not an MCP. Just that I believe this 33% sham's not gonna make the desired change

PPS- Had a tough time writing the president's name. I had completely forgotten her name and had to think for 3 minutes to get it. Tells a lot about our president

your crusader Praveen

Milking suicides  

Posted by Praveen in , ,


Its the suicide season yet again. I don't mean those unremarkable suicides which end up as single column news in the obituary page. We are looking at those suicides which get national attention. This time its the Telengana issue. The floodgates were opened when a youth set himself on fire and succumbed to his wounds last monday. Three more people have committed suicide in the next 24 hours allegedly because of the Telengana issue. But a close look at the details of the deceased will reveal that this is a clear case of 'milking an unrelated suicide'. First one in the list is a class 10 student who committed suicide by consuming pesticide. There are enough reasons to believe that this suicide is for reasons other than Telengana. A class 10 student has more things to worry about than dying for such foolish causes. The other two teenagers left suicide notes purpotedly written by them saying that they are ending their life for the Telengana cause.

The reason to doubt the truthfulness of these claims is obviously because of what happened in Andhra after the death of former chief minister YSR. There was a huge wave of sympathy being whipped up about the tragic death of a 'great man'. According to the media, more than 60 people committed suicide because they couldn't bear this loss. But an investigation at that time did reveal that there's more to it than the 'sacrifice story' that we all so easily believed. Apparently, YSR's partymen went around the state in search of houses where suicides had happened around that time. And then they offered the surviving family members money just to paint these suicides as 'YSR related'. Even those who died of heart attack were said to have died because of the shock of YSR's death. The fact that YSR rose to power playing all kind of dirty games and goondaraj was conveniently forgotten as we were presented with a new HERO, for whom the masses took their own lives.

This new wave of suicides seems to be one in this direction. Suicide notes are being drafted in many undisclosed locations. And the hawks are waiting for the next suicide, to claim it as their own. We can only hope that the government wouldn't buckle under such manufactured pressure and cut our delicious cake into yet another piece.

your crusader Praveen