India That Is Bharat
Satiricus recalls that when he was a little kid his favourite game was chor-sipahi. Even then he understood that there was an inseparable relationship between the two. For him it was a fact of life that if there are cops, there have to be robbers; if there are thieves, there have to be policemen. Satiricus now sees that this congenital connection continues. In fact, it has even consolidated. Take, for instance, this case of a thief in a place called Delaware in the US. Sometime back he had broken into a house, which made its owner fix a new lock, which required a key to open it even from the inside. Time passed, and the same thief broke into the same house again. The owner was out of station, so the thief lived happily for a few days. But when he tried to come out, he did not know how to open the lock from inside. He was trapped. Who could help the poor fellow in this predicament? He knew who. He phoned the police—and they obligingly came and took him out (to put him in prison). See? What could the thief have done had there been no police?
Something very similar happened in New Delhi not long back, teaching a very similar lesson : When in trouble, call the police—even if you are a thief. It so happened that a trio of thieves was burgling a house, when they were discovered in the act, and a crowd of 250 people gathered outside the house to teach them a lesson when they came out. The trapped and terrified thieves, realising that it was better to be arrested than to be lynched, did the sensible thing—they phoned the police with an SOS: Saab, bachaa lo. The police, of course, gladly obliged them.
Back to USA, a thief in a city called Portland broke into a house, when the owner, who was out, unexpectedly came home. And what was the thief doing? He was taking a shower. When the owner asked him what he was doing, the thief feared the owner might have a gun. In such a sticky situation the thief quickly shut the bathroom door—and called the police. Outside, the owner too called them. The police came, took the man out, safe and sound—and sent him to jail.
A still more illustrious illustration of the commendable camaraderie between cops and robbers came from a place called Jerome near the US-Mexico border. A poor Mexican without money so desperately wanted to go home in Mexico that he requested the police to deport him. When they refused to do so, what did he do? He stole a police car and drove off. Almost fours later he was stopped and arrested 60 miles away for the theft of the car. Then they did what he wanted. They deported him. See? What could this thief have done without the help of the police?
Still more fortunately for American thieves, one of them thought the flow of the milk of human kindness would not be limited to the police of that Land of Opportunity (to steal)—in accordance with the laws of physics governing liquids flowing down, from North America towards the South even among the people in general. So a thief in Lima broke into a house through a hole in the fence and filled his pockets with stolen things. But alas, when it was time to leave he found that the hole through which he had squeezed in was not big enough to squeeze out—because he had stuffed so many stolen things into his pockets that he had become a little too bulky for the hole. Now what to do? He could have squeezed through by himself, but it would have been criminally unprofessional to put back the stolen things. And there were no policemen to help him out, so he did the next best thing—he knocked on the front door and requested the owner of the house to let him out. Unfortunately, the owner was not the obliging type. He hit him on the head and called the police.
Fast Food For Thought
Satiricus is patriotically proud to learn that the pharse “food for thought” is being upgraded to “Indian food for European thought”. For it was reported not long back that during Bollywood filmstar Shilpa Shetty’s visit to England the House of Commons of the British Parliament named a dessert in its canteen Shilpa’s Delight. How delightful. This will certainly promote Indo-British friendship, for the way to an MP’s heart lies through his stomach.
As a delicious sequel to this gastronomic greatness of glorious India came the news that Germany plans to award diplomas in the cooking of kebabs. The vocational School for Gastronomy and Nutrition in Hamburg is now offering these diplomas at the end of a six-month course, officially called Meat Processing Kebab Production Specialisation. Unfortunately and apparently, the German media cannot stomach this edible education. A radio station remarked, “One would have to search high and low to find a pursuit that is less appreciated and undervalued by the customer in the fast food sector than the high-quality preparation of a kebab.” Well, personally for Satiricus, this is fast food for thought.