Sunday, August 28, 2011

Bill pe Bill

Genre: Humor

Now that the government has agreed to include the recommendations of Anna Hazare in the proposed Lok Pal Bill, several other prominent personalities from the civil and not-so-civil Indian society have decided that they will also come up with their own versions of the Lok Pal bill to present to the government for consideration.

Arindam Chaudhury will present the IIPMPal Bill. Dare to think beyond Lokpal. Everyone enrolling to support his version of the draft will get free laptops and a study tour to Europe. 

Rahul Dravid will start writing his draft of the Lokpal bill and will continue non-stop for five days. 

Chetan Bhagat will publish his version as a book. Three Mistakes Of Lokpal: What Not To Do In Government

Ram Gopal Varma will present a sequel. Lok Pal Ki Aag.

Aamir Khan will release only one chapter of his Lok Pal Bill per year.

Lalit Modi will start a Lokpal Premier League (LPL)

Ekta Kapoor will script a version that will run for seven years and will be called Kkok Pal Bill

When Rakhi Sawant was asked if she will also contribute, she said "Yeh Lokpal hain na, mereko usse shaadi karneka hai. Mereko na usse ekdum love ho gayela hai" 

Although not an Indian citizen, Steve Jobs will be allowed as an honorary guest to launch his version called iPal Bill. After six months he will launch a faster, slimmer version called iPal2. 

Rajinikanth will not present any bill. He himself will be the Lokpal and the entire committee.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

What's In A (Re)name?

Genre: Current Affairs

No, this is not about the Anna Hazare-Lokpal issue. Everybody and their pet dog have presented enough and more views and counterviews on it by now.

Apart from cricket, India has another favorite pastime. It’s called Change the Name game. Many Indians, most of them in power, believe that the names given to streets, monuments, villages, towns, cities, even states of the country are not good enough and it is their sacred duty to rename anything and everything that has a name. Initially the argument put forward to indulge in this activity was that it is a sin to call places built by the British in India by the names the British gave, so they should be renamed. Accordingly Victoria Terminus became Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, Connaught Place became Rajiv Chowk and so on. Not satisfied with just this, came the second round or arguments- that the British “spoiled” the original names of our cities, so they should be renamed to their original pure form. In the process Bombay became Mumbai, Madras became Chennai, Calcutta became Kolkata, Trivandrum became tongue-twisting Thiruvanatanthapuram, Bangalore will soon become Bengaluru, Mangalore will become Mengaluru and so on and so forth, in the process wasting millions of rupees of taxpayer money in repainting all signboards, reprinting new stationery and updating all maps and databases.

After renaming of cities was done, someone thought, hey wait, this is not enough. We can go one level higher. Let’s rename our states too. And so it began. The ministers of the newly formed state of Uttaranchal felt the name was not good enough, and in the most expensive Backspace operation in history, decided to tweak the name to Uttarakhand. No, don’t ask me how this is any better. It just is. Because they said it is. Next to grab this opportunity was Mamata Banerjee, (who anyways has a penchant for grabbing many things including attention and cabinet ministry), who came up with the most unbelievable argument in the history of renaming- West Bengal is alphabetically last among Indian states, so its turn comes last in roll call and by that time the audience falls asleep, and to correct this catastrophic problem, passed a bill to rename the state to Paschim Banga (which she pronounces Poschim Bongo thereby making it feel like the name of a tribal village in central Africa) which brings her state’s roll number up to 21 from 28. Huge improvement! Now Uttarakhand becomes the last-in-roll-call. Now it will be fun if they decide to re-rename their state using the same argument. And then Punjab, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Tripura and Uttar Pradesh should do the same and boom! We are back to square one! And then Paschim Banga can think or renaming themselves further up in the alphabet. This cycle can go on and on and on. And millions of rupees of tax money can be spent on it. Meanwhile does it matter that the state has one of the worst road infrastructure in the country? Does it matter that the Naxal movement has resulted in night-travel ban on the important Mumbai-Howrah rail route resulting in trains being detained for upto eight hours inconveniencing thousands of travelers every day since the last fifteen months? Do these things need attention and money of the government? No, they can wait. More important is ensuring that the state’s name is not called out last during roll-calls.

Before these folks come up with the idea of changing the name of India itself, I will go and search for a new name for my blog because this one comes too late in the alphabetical order, so what if it doesn't matter anywhere.
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