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Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Indian Summer

For a nation obsessed with its male members… it seems good news that its new PM announces 25% seats for women ministers in his cabinet. Not just any altu-faltu ministries… Foreign ministry is under Shushma Swaraj. Koi mazak hain!

While PM Narendra Modi gets lauded beyond belief for being 'forward and progressive'… I gape at the blooming amaltas in the streets, devouring aam aadmi's summer delight - mangoes!

Amaltas in full bloom brighten Delhi's streets… 
My friends update me on PM Modi's run for the top office... in a good light. They seem quite delighted. Say he is hardworking and had a professional team of researchers to help him gather facts and figures… and a creative team of international market researchers who worked closely with country's top ad men to draft an impressive... all-front-friendly manifesto… complete with rhyming jingles.

He has a brilliant manifesto. Just like some people have a CV you cannot reject… he came all prepared and presented it in ways that every front had to nod a yes some or the other way. He is a wordsmith, a magician, a business man, a chai wala… and what not! I need to read more really!

Some predict that Modi will take 3 years to make any considerable change... but that he would have happy episodes planned like in a soap opera… to keep the highs and lows all in favour… foreseeing a longer-ruling tenure that should last minimum 10-15 years. It is not difficult to win sentiments of the majority... who r addicted to sulking restlessly in front of their TVs… hoping their country/lives will improve if they don't move or blink. They happily collect enough data/facts to fill the otherwise lull intervals that come between chai sips and biskut bites. 'Indians are intelligent, they know who to choose,' Modi is quoted on FB. And of course we are… we share smart Modi quotes and what fun we had ridiculing R.Gandhi funny video posts all through the campaign time.

For someone who grew up here and left Delhi years back it remains not so changed - socially, politically, culturally… donno if I should be glad about the fact that it is this city I call my real hometown… or that it is here I started my career as a journalist… donno if I should rejoice the fact that there is no editor who will cull out the essence of my political stories. Today am a random visitor who comes to enjoy summers and sigh/laugh along with old friends who tell the tales.

Engulfed by a damn sentimental saffron wave in Dilli since the swearing in… here is reporting few personal accounts from the country's capital city wrapped in a potent-donno-good-or-bad-but-hopefully-good-if-modi-walks-his-talk gossips.

1. evergreen slums: open door policies on immigration continue to bring in refugees from neighbouring countries (e.g.: bangladesh) into delhi's expanding slums…

2. deplorable status of women: girls continue to be married off before they turn 14…

3. no minimum wage: house helps/unorganised sector have no idea what that is…

4. exploitation of the dream-less: plenty of school-aged girls work as house maids feeding their family of drunk men who pull rickshaws… many are mothers b4 adulthood…

5. superstitions galore: it was my misfortune to learn from a dear family that has little girls… and are caught in some practice of 'not piercing the girls' ears' till their baby brother is born!!!

6. rich-poor divide: slum dwellers serve the flat/villa-dwellers and the later has some explanation for living the life they choose to. 'we are not lazy to clean up our crap… but there r too many ambition-less ppl around. it is a dangerous socio-economical condition. anyway lets look at more value for money.'

Guess women in this country have unblvble pressure to perform better… but have no time to get equipped/better empowered cos they are willingly tied down with so many sentimental chords/chores despite house helps who decide their routines… and of course the right answer lie in pleasing their elders (mostly men) who know better anyway… and cos 'that is our sanskriti' (culture) rt? sorry if i have missed out on featuring women who love this crazy lifestyle and only occasionally miss their dreams. they will be featured in another blog…. along with those who will fight tooth and claw to make u believe whatever they are doing is their choice anyway!

Can't stop loving dilli… it prods me come cm back again… to recharge all the desi madness.

It is totally another thing that am down with the Delhi belly this time too… hence forced to stay indoors [online ;)].

But... acche din aayenge! (good days will come - one of the popular modi slogans)… that is a wishful thought… but lets hope than not!