Spoilers for Karnataka: Indignity War

Why is it that after every dreamy manifesto every five years from all parties in any electoral contest, nothing changes for our country? Why is it that many people I have interviewed in Karnataka don’t really care who gets to sit on the throne after the elections? Why is it that the pre-poll promises are never taken seriously in our country? Will Karnataka become a better state if the BJP comes to power? Will it worsen if the Congress gets the power back? What can Mr. Yeddyurappa do this time after getting elected that he couldn’t do in his previous term? What can Mr. Siddaramaiah do in the next five years that he couldn’t do in his current term? What are they going to change? Like many others, my answer is – nothing, because we are trapped in the time loop, not very different from the one created with the Eye of Agamotto by Dr. Strange. Only that, this time, the eye is blinded and in place of Dormammu, we sit there, too bored to look into the details of a disaster fomenting before us. Or maybe not, maybe all this is for some greater good. Hold on, before you pelt generalisation stones at me, I have a few things of my own to throw.

Are you a pornography consumer? Would you like to watch porn videos in the Karnataka assembly? That’s not an entirely unrealistic fantasy to live by. BJP provides tickets to live such fantasies, thanks to their Achhe Din promise. Laxman Savdi and CC Patil were the two MLAs caught watching porn in the Karnataka assembly in 2012. Guess what, they are here to be reelected. BJP has given tickets to Savdi from Athani and to Patil from Nargund.

The situation is brighter than you would guess. BJP has fielded 83 candidates with criminal charges, Congress has fielded 59, and JD(S), touted as the kingmaker has 41 candidates with criminal charges. When all the criminals get concentrated inside the assembly, we can obviously hope for less crime and more peace in other parts of the state. In all, out of 2560 candidates analysed by The Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), 391 have criminal cases against them. 25 of them have Attempt to Murder cases against them and 23 have cases related to crimes against women in their names. 4 of the candidates have Murder cases against them at present. In case you are interested in knowing the names of these candidates who are going to keep us safe, hide here – adrindia.org

Congress coming back to power will also mean the continuation of the good present days wherein voters would be allowed to set the state on fire for their rights on issues like Kaveri water sharing etc.

In other good news, Dr. G Parameshwara of the Congress gets his ticket from Koratagere. This is perhaps his reward for speaking truth to power after the Bengaluru Mass Molestation Case – “such things happen”. He is going to obliterate all the western influence on us or at least half of it once he gets all the Infinity Stones from his chosen constituency and will call it mercy. Why would the mining barons be left behind? Reddy brothers are coming to a constituency near you very soon, of course, as Yeddyurappa says, “Winning each seat is important.”

Also, try hiding your excitement at this – Siddaramaiah is the same MLA who got DIG D. Roopa transferred overnight after she tabled her report on the VIP treatment for Shashikala inside the Parappana Agrahara Central Prison, Bengaluru. For his proactive step, Siddaramaiah gets tickets from 2 constituencies – Badami and Chamundeshwari. He gets an additional reward for his superhuman efforts to clean the Bellandur lake, a ticket for his son Yathindra too from Varuna.

Manifestos are out! Parties are enunciating their glorious vision for the state. Thanos has used the Time Stone to take Mr. Modi and Mr. Amit Shah back to 2014, so they are doing a rally on every-feet-road of Bengaluru. Mr. Rahul Gandhi has taken help from Thanos to find out that one situation where he gets to be the Prime Minister out of 14 million outcomes and hence, is going temple-hopping with his face turned towards 10 Janpath saying, “there was no other way, Mom

There are more rumours out there. Please your ears and eyes by clicking on the links mentioned below –

Satyamev_Jayate_India

India is being gang raped every day

Usually, I cite numbers and data while putting my point across. However, that’s not how I want to say things here. In a country like India, where most of the cases of rape or for that matter, any other crime go unreported as well as under-reported (media), numbers won’t help us reach anywhere. We, the people of different religions, castes, states, and political affiliations, might be able to congratulate ourselves over lower rates of crimes when compared to the other competing groups. So far, it seems that data has been used only to impress upon others that things are worse elsewhere and hence, we have nothing to worry at present. Yes, we are waiting for our hell to be as terrible as that of the second person on the street. Once we provide equitable distribution of hell to everyone, we will perhaps start thinking of the ways out of it.

 

In any case, a lot of data has been cited over the last few days by sections in the media to bring home the point that Hindustan is Rapistan in disguise. Should I contest such claims? You don’t have to go very far. That some people who never used the name Hindustan for India, find a sudden spike in their love for it, is not a coincidence. That most of these part time activists continue to spawn wealth showing misogyny, glorifying eve-teasing, and encouraging the pursuit of unrequited love on screen, makes it all the more ironical. The question ends there. They are not to be trusted. You can’t look up to them. You should not look up to them.

If you are sound of memory, you should remember how the protesters were subjected to lathicharge during the Nirbhaya Case protests at Raisina Hills. Bengaluru mass molestation evoked a response to the effect of blaming the molestation on western culture by the then Home Minister of Karnataka. In case the media didn’t tell you, he is currently the President of Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee. What did you expect, that he would be suspended from the party? Politics doesn’t work that way. So, it is beyond any doubt that we can’t look up to the politicians of the opposition party at the centre.

The apologists for the party in power at the centre have only one agenda at every unfortunate incident in the country – “Where were you when this happened to a Hindu?” So, they are fighting the leftist liberals from the media establishments and the party in opposition tooth and nail over their hypocrisy when the fight should have been about something else. Not that it’s a bad thing but our Prime Minister who remembers the birthdays of all the leaders of the world and wishes them religiously on twitter, talks to the country so passionately when he has to count the achievements of his government but doesn’t consider speaking to the people of his country directly in such times, particularly when members from his own party are in the dock, paints a grim picture for us. When a government stops talking to its people and engages only the opposition, the country should be worried. We have nothing to look up to here either.

There were sections from the media who didn’t have their dinner after the conviction of Salman Khan in the Blackbuck poaching case. In a parallel world, I would have imagined them to have demanded swift action on such cases in contrast to about 20 years our judiciary has taken, however, that cannot be the case in India. Do remember, this is the same media that zoomed in on the father-son feud of Akhilesh Yadav and Mulayam Singh Yadav for weeks. Nothing strikes strange about it? Well, Mulayam Singh Yadav is the same person who once said – ‘Ladke hain, galtiyaan ho jaati hain (after all they are boys, mistakes do happen)’. In a parallel world, I would have imagined a complete boycott of this man from our television screens, sound boxes, and printed papers. Well, not in India. We can go to the extent of feeling sorry for one Mr. Lalu Prasad Yadav, the single most important factor for the miseries of the state of Bihar. In all likelihood, the media of this country stands confused about its role. Is media just a messenger? In that case, the stakeholders won’t be able to peddle their personal agenda and bias in the name of news. Can media also do activism? Yeah, but please let me do my activism from my dinner table watching twitter live feed. Also, let me do my activism when I am tired talking about Virushka wedding and Saifeena wedding. Also, let me do my activism after I have told the world how Taimur missed his poop today. Also, let me do my activism when the accused or the victim falls into my self-concocted definitions of Hindu, Muslim or Dalit. Also, let me do my activism when the establishment stops distributing me sops or declines my invaluable services on offer. In all other times, my activism will be holidaying in the Bahamas.

 

I have been reading all kinds of reports in the last few days, from blind narratives to depraved decoction of toxic minds. One of the reports mentioned that Indians are looking for the video of the kathua rape on porn sites. There exist other videos with hashtags on the victim’s name. If the report is correct, who are these people – Politicians? Media? Bureaucrats? Hindus? Muslims? Part-time activists? Dalits? We know these categories are born from us. We know the ones deriving voyeuristic pleasures from rape are walking amongst us. Where is the blame to be fixed then? On us! The truth is we have taken sides, right from our personal lives to social, we tolerate and encourage gender discrimination and gender crimes. Not that this is a foolproof example, but it may act as a cursory indication of how deep the rot is within us, here is what I am talking about – पिलपिलाते-हुए-आम-लोग. The truth is India is being gang raped every day, after administering the sedatives of politics, religion, fake journalism, lazy intellectualism, and a deep support for personal and social nepotism in all these spheres. The truth is the ones who are changing the world the good old way of changing themselves have been silenced by design. The truth is that all the potential agents of change have disappointed our country once again and on top of that list sits the sorry figure of the most crucial agent of change – the Individual – dejected and degenerated.

I hope something comes out of this chaos. I hope we understand that unless we choose to join politics en masse, our politics will remain rotten. I hope that someday we will create more movies like Pink or Parched instead of maintaining a consistent irony between our speech and action. I hope that as journalists, we will report the everyday hearing of a rape case for 20 years if it comes to that and not wait for the survivors’ father to die to spring into action. I hope that we get the basics of our religions right which have love and peace as their fundamental tenets. I hope India learns that the narrative of its religions is being hijacked by mercenaries across the spectrum who force us to keep looking outside for validation.

 

I hope Indians stop helping the TRPs of news channels that have brought one entire community in the dock for the crime of few. I hope that Indians stop becoming the business pastures of the actors from the film industry who get deaf and mute when one of their own stands as the accused but obsess over shaming Hindustan over ‘Devi’sthan. I hope India learns that the online narrative is fast eating up the real space of this country. I hope we realize that we have started believing that our responsibility ends with a post, a placard, a tweet, a blog, a day’s heartache, or a month’s shock. I hope Indians learn to look away from the light-hoggers and give a chance to the voices of thousands of activists who are working every day of their lives to prevent rape and help the survivors. I hope that when I reflect upon my action or inaction every day, I don’t find myself to have encouraged crimes of any nature, sexual or non-sexual in any way. I hope that someday as a human being, I will be able to look inside my being before pointing accusatory fingers at others – people or institutions. I hope this country sees through this and sees this through.

 

 

Image Credit

Modi’s Pakoda Politics for 2019 and Chidambaram’s Joblessness

“Mitron, humne pakode khaane chaie ki nahi khane chaie?”
“Modi! Modi!”

“Mitron, pakodon ke saath chai peeni chaie ki nahi peeni chahie?”
“Har Har Modi! Ghar Ghar Modi!”

“Mitron, wo chai mmain aapko pilaauunga kyunki mmujhe chai pilaane ka experience hai! Platform pe chai bechne ka dard kya hota hai, ye mmujhe maloom hai!”

 

Our Prime Minister Narendra Modi in one of his recent interviews asked if a pakoda-seller earning 200 rupees a day could be considered unemployed. Mr. P. Chidambaram who held the finance ministry in the UPA rule has suggested that by Mr. Modi’s logic, beggars should also be considered employed. The twitter town is abuzz with exchanges between sides.

Mr. Modi on his part is frying his pakodas like he always does – well in advance. Like for everything else he does, he also becomes the first Indian Prime Minister to bring pakoda-sellers into the national discourse. However, one may ask, why pakodas singularly? There are other things sold by the street-side entrepreneurs, say, pav-bhaji, vada-pav, 99 types of dosas, etc. Shiv Sena has already laid its claim on vada-pav politics by offering free vada-pavs to Shobha De earlier. Let’s leave pav-bhaji for Uddhav’s cousin in the name of Marathi-Asmita. Dosas would have obviously offended the Dravidian parties for it would have meant Gujarati appropriation. Modi had already used up the khakhra card by waiving off the GST before Gujarat elections. Here, I summon the spirit of Shekhar Gupta of the Walk the Talk, The Print, the NDTV, and the Lutyen’s Dhaba to answer this. Pakodas are eaten across the country in varying forms and with different names. The country is 80% Hindus, so naturally, most of the pakodas prepared are consumed by the Hindus of this country. Mr. Modi being the Hindutva icon that he is, used the case of pakodas to polarise the electorate and gain Hindu votes in 2019 elections. 

 

To be honest, this is the closest thing to confession that voters of this country can get from both the leading parties. Confession 1 – the present Government is selling pakodas in the name of job creation. Confession 2 – the opposition sits unemployed in the sixth row waiting for pakodas. The stage for 2019 elections is set. After spilling chai all over the kurtas and suits of the opposition leaders in 2014, Mr. Modi is all set to play with some pakode ka tel in 2019. P. Chidambaram is making things difficult for Rahul Gandhi by protesting against pakodas. At a time when Rahul Gandhi is looking to increase his pakoda tally from 44 to 545, P. Chidambaram should just fall in line and start begging for more pakodas right away. He will at least have a job that way. All the watering attempts at pakodas are going to cost the Congress party a lot of oil in face with no pakoda in hands.

 

 

Image Source – Karnataka for Employment (KFE)

Irom Sharmila & the thick lines between activism and politics.

 Irom Sharmila (Iron Lady) has decided to quit politics after her poor performance in the assembly elections of Manipur. She got a meagre 90 votes which is sad but what is sadder is that she has decided to call it quits! After this, many media outlets are projecting her loss as the elegy of Indian democracy.

Continue reading “Irom Sharmila & the thick lines between activism and politics.”

Another open letter to Shri Rahul Gandhi

Dear Shri Rahul Gandhi

I am angry and this is a serious letter. So I am not going to throw cheap banters at you. I have also consciously decided to not throw any personal insult at you. I will go ahead with this letter with an assumption that this country has to put up with you till some real leader is allowed to surface on the national scene from your party.

Continue reading “Another open letter to Shri Rahul Gandhi”