There is nothing new to be ashamed of the CWG disgrace that has attracted international attention. The first expose was already given in Slumdog Millionare. The entire polity including the Prime Minister and Home Minister were gloating then when the Indian pride was raped in the movie. The international community is now getting a taste of what they saw in the movie. The same Prime Minister is now rushing to do some salvaging act. By turning a blind eye to corruption, the Prime Minister must have known by now what it does to us. He may be honest; he may not have taken the money. But as the supreme head in control of the situation, he can not close his eyes to the Himalayan corruption happening right under his nose. Some day or the other the damning repercussions of corruption will hit us badly. That is what is happening today. The Prime Minister stands as the first accused as an abettor in all the cases of corruption. Not all the cases of money laundering by the politicians may hit us like the CWG mess. But the impact would somehow be there on the nation and its people.
We are the people who are feared by Obama. We struggle and get a name for ourselves and the nation. But what a negative image these politicians are giving us! Should we need these politicians? It is my strong opinion that we don't need a shabby democracy like ours manned by greedy politicians. Damn with all of them. Let us dissolve all political parties and manage the country with a team of professionals drawn from various fields. Let one generation grow up without knowing anything about politicians, corruption and castes. Let them grow up with hard work, honesty and sincerity. The world has come from monarchy to democracy. Perhaps we need to find out a new situation by moving out of the discredited democracy of our land.
YOU KNOW someone is in trouble -big trouble -when the SMS jokes about him/her go into overdrive.
As of now, most jibes are directed at Villain Number 1 -Suresh Kalmadi. Sample his: "Baba Kalmadi, Have you any shame?
No sir, no Sir, we are hosting Common Loot Games.
Crores for my partners,
crores for the Dame.
Crores for me too for putting India to shame".
Black Sheep Kalmadi is in deep s**t. Err... should that read Dik-s**t? And a lot of smelly faeces has literally hit the fan in those pricey rooms meant for international athletes. Never mind.
Lalit Bhanot has hit head lines worldwide (80 newspapers, and still counting) by baring India's butt. Those different standards of hygiene" are likely to sink the Games in a sewage tank even before they have begun. Desi attitudes to what is sweetly called Number 2" (in schoolkids' parlance), deserves an entire tome to itself. Indians are obsessed by where, when and how to defecate. It is a national preoccupation, and has been so for centuries.
That we do our job anywhere and everywhere, and pretty much anytime, is well known. What poor Mr Bhanot has done is gone public with India's dirty secret. It is true -our standards are different from anybody else's. He has not specified better or worse.
It is only in India... that too, in a crowded, busy megapolis like Mumbai, that one can see grown men, heir genitals hanging over railway tracks, as they crap companionably, discuss the news with other s**ters and walk away, lota in hand, like it is the most normal thing to do. Right across from where we live (and very close to where India's richest brothers reside) is a narrow pathway jutting into the sea that cuts the bay. It is an open lavatory that functions 24x7.
From the crack of dawn till late at night, one can see a steady line of men and children walking down this strip, carefully selecting their spot, squatting precariously and then opening up their gut without the least shame or self-consciousness. Most of the pavements in this area, one of the supposedly poshest in the city (if not in India), are covered with piles of excreta (human and animal). There isn't an inch left to walk on... dogs, goats, cows and people nonchalantly s**t together...
nobody notices, nobody cares.
We are crucifying the wrong man for the wrong reasons. Mr Bhanot naively dismissed the charges regarding filth and unsafe conditions in the Village by saying it is not "such a big issue". You know what, he is absolutely right. Toilets can be cleaned up... stray dogs removed from beds meant for sportspeople. The other clean-up is far more crucial, far more critical and no amount of heavy-duty industrial-level cleaning operations can rid India of this dirty stain.
What the country is witnessing is corruption of the filthiest kind -undertaken on a scale that may be unprecedented in the world.
The fact that the money that has been stolen by these crooks is our money -the public's money -compounds the crime still further. Were we asked before these monster budgets were cleared? Were the people of India consulted on the rightness/wrongness involved in allocating such monies for what is nothing but an empty PR (public relations) exercise we can ill afford?
And now that we know how systematically we've been hoodwinked, is there any way to make up? Recover the money? Canceling the Games at this stage, is an immature, impractical suggestion. But giving citizens an assurance that the guilty will be punished (jail the buggers instantly!) will go a long way in keeping collective tempers down. Aha -here comes the catch. Who will decide which persons are guilty? What will they be charged with? Where is the proof? It will be another Lalit Modi-Indian Premier League (IPL) saga... another Ramalinga Raju eyewash, another Koda cover-up. To anybody with some common sense it is obvious that Mr Kalmadi was not working alone (just as Mr Modi wasn't). It is equally obvious, everybody from Manmohan Singh to Sheila Dikshit must have guessed what was going on -and if they didn't, it reflects poorly on their administrative skills.
Why aren't they assuming responsibility? Why look for scapegoats when everybody knows who the looters are? Mike Fennell's role is suspect as hell, and he really has some cheek writing to the Cabinet Secretary to express his "great concern with the preparedness" for the Games, considering it is he who should be in the dock himself! What audacity. Sorry to bring race into this, but we always tend to give the benefit of the doubt to the White Man -any White Man. Let's put it down to our colonial hangover... we still bow and scrape, cringe and kowtow when dealing with Westerners. Go to hell, Mike! Mr Bhanot should take the cleanliness debate to its next logical level, if you ask me! Why not?
The only hope left to salvage our tattered pride is to let the world know how superior we are and how scrupulously we clean ourselves after performing daily ablutions. We can also talk about how we consider our left hand to be "dirty" ( for obvious reasons). Mr Bhanot can present an international paper on -you've guessed it -toilet paper! And how Indians believe in the efficacy of using water to clean bums. These sort of diversionary tactics may pay some dividends at least, while bridges collapse, catwalks fall apart, loose tiles kill a couple of workers and strangers from foreign countries stroll into the Village unchecked with explosives packed into large, very noticeable suitcases. As for all those star athletes and even countries pulling out -big deal! These Games were never about sports. Just as the IPL was never about cricket.
Both were about making money. So much money that the amounts one hears about could have taken care of basics like roti, kapda aur makaan for millions in India. But since the poor of India are nobody's priority in the first place, why play spoilsport? Let the Games begin. And let us console ourselves that thanks to Mr Bhanot, at least now the world will know that Indians probably have the cleanest bottoms on earth.
Those who criticise us are just jealous.
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