Tuesday, March 28th, 2023 00:37:54

Tunnel Of Friendship

Updated: September 8, 2012 4:07 pm

India That Is Bharat


Being a secular Indian despite being a na-pak Hindu, Satiricus has been quite impressed with the latest ‘Confidence Building Measure’ (CBM) initiated by Pakistan, miscalled Terroristan by American ignoramuses, to reciprocate what super-secular India is diligently (or desperately) doing in this regard. He is talking about the delightful discovery of a cross-border tunnel in Kashmir that the Pakistanis have been found to have dug. Satiricus had heard of building bridges of friendship, but he had not yet heard of digging tunnels of friendship. Oh, well, one lives and learns. So Satiricus is happy to learn that there can be more ways than one, literally, for our Pakistani friends to come calling on us just to say hello. He also fondly hopes that this tunnel would prove a positive step towards facilitating the pilgrimages that India has suggested as the latest addition to Indian CBMs. For what is wrong with opening up (or digging down) one more avenue for Pak pilgrims’ progress from their end and for devout secularists’ sojourn from our end? In fact, as things always happen in threes, as they say, secular Satiricus hopes that this second tunnel to be found will be followed by a third. And when it is dug and ready, some distinguished dignitary of our secular dispensation would go to inaugurate it. For what would we Indians not do for Pakistan’s friendship? Satiricus for one is sure that while overground bridges are good, underground tunnels are better. And if what is called track-two diplomacy can be practised, why not one more track?

What’s In A Name?

Ring, oh bells, rejoice, oh shores, for this family business of saving our desh is happily headed for a hat-trick. At first it was ‘Sonia lao desh bachao’. Sonia came, she saw, and she saved. But did she save enough (apart from Swiss stashes)? Digvijay & Co. was doubtful. So the next clarion call was, ‘Rahul lao desh doubly bachao’. After a becoming bout of reluctance, he has come. Satiricus was delighted at this double deliverance for his desh. But apparently his arithmetic was not imaginative enough. He now learns that if India can be singly saved by Sonia and doubly saved by Sonia and son, it can be triply saved by Sonia, son and daughter.

So it was in the fitness of things that according to a recent report, “Priyanka Gandhi may be heading for active role in politics….” Priyanka Gandhi? Who’s Priyanka Gandhi? Satiricus thought there was a Priyanka Vadra. But that is exactly why Satiricus is a stupid scribe and not the editor of the big newspaper that writes of a Miss Gandhi years after she became a Mrs Vadra. In a way, it is funny. When Indira Nehru married a Gandhi she became Indira Gandhi. When Sonia Maino married a Gandhi she became Sonia Gandhi. But when Priyanka Gandhi married a Vadra, she remained a Gandhi. To make this confusion worse confounded, the last sentence of the said report says, “Priyanka has so far stayed away from active politics citing family commitments”. Which family is the report talking about? Priyanka Gandhi’s Vadra family or Priyanka Vadra’s Gandhi family? Oh, well, what’s in a name? Everything.

Corruption’s Shelf Life

Justice Markandeya Katju is a learned personality. Satiricus is an illiterate ignoramus. So it is natural that Justice Katju’s wise words would not be easily understandable for Satiricus. Take corruption. Justice Katju has trashed Anna Hazare’s and Ramdev’s crusade against it, giving the verdict that it is “nothing but empty gas”, and learnedly added that “in this transitional period there is no moral code,” and “corruption will continue here for the next 15 years.” Well, now, what do you know? Obviously, Satiricus does not know what Justice Katju knows. For when he says corruption will continue for 15 years, he says in so many words that corruption will discontinue after 15 years. Isn’t that wonderful? In these commercial times when everything has a “use by” date, it seems corruption has a shelf life of 15 years. After that it will just go away, turn to dust, vanish into thin air. So Justice Katju is quite right in condemning the current crusade against corruption as a useless activity. And of course Satiricus must not be so presumptuous as to ask him how he determined the duration of the transition period at 15 years, and how the absence of a moral code in this period will be automatically replaced by the presence of a moral code at the end of it. He must also not wonder how a moral code can come about in 15 years if a civil code could not come about in 50. At the most Satiricus may say that when Manu wrote his moral code and called it Mānava Dharma because it was for all men, poor Manu had no idea that his Smriti would vanish into Vismriti till the time to automatically appear again as per Justice Katju’s timetable.

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