Saturday, October 9, 2010

Good Indians vs Evil Indians

The Devas finally came to the rescue of India. The Rakshasas have not yet been destroyed, but they have been exposed sufficiently enough to save India’s honour before a watchful world. We can now walk with our heads held high as befitting citizens of a great country.

Such was the hold of the demons that the Devas had to appear in multiple avatars – as Bharat Bala, as Shyam Benegal, as Prasoon Joshi, as the all-conquering Keshav and as hundreds of nameless but astonishingly coordinated school children. Together they made the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games a moment of pride for us, effacing if only for a while the shame of greed and incompetence that preceded it.

All of us had always known that India had the abilities and the skills to organise the most challenging of events. But our political sphere allows the scum of society to occupy commanding heights of organising committees. In the case of the Commonwealth Games, it was clear that a Disorganising Committee was making a hash of it. But that Committee reckoned without the assurance of our protectors that “for the destruction of evil-doers, for firmly establishing righteousness, Sambhavaami yuge yuge”.

So the avatars came. And how magnificent India looked before the world. The seven years and seven-thousand crores spent by the Disorganising Committee brought us disgrace. The ten months and one hundred fifty crores spent by the creative cultural team for the opening ceremony brought us glory.

That difference came about because of the difference in attitude. The primary interest of the Rakshasas was to feather their nests. Pride in their country was a sentiment totally alien to them. The Devas, by contrast, were motivated by nothing but pride in their country and culture. Some of them who led the team did not even take a rupee as fees. This is India at its finest. The pity is that all too often the vilest outgun the finest.

More worryingly, there seems to be no stopping the Chief of the Rakshasa Brigade. People like Jaipal Reddy and M.S.Gill, having discovered that they were outstanding non-performers, kept away from the limelight at the opening ceremony. But not the unashamed Kalmadi. That he was allowed to speak at the august function was an affront to the country. He made it worse by acknowledging the presence of Abul Kalam Azad ( May his soul rest in peace!) and later by thanking Prince Diana (will her soul now rest in peace?). This man is a serial blunderer too.

But even he, given to selective deafness and selective blindness, must know that he is hated by the people of this country. The crowd at the opening jeered him. Some days earlier, when he was dining at an upmarket Delhi restaurant, upmarket people from nearby tables went up to him and abused him. The internet is full of scorn and derision.

Nothing seems to penetrate his skin, though. He is said to be busy with p.r.campaigns designed to convince the world that the opening ceremony was a smashing success because of his untiring efforts behind the scenes. Claiming credit for other people’s work is an integral part of the fixer’s techniques. He will claim credit for everything that goes well with the Games, putting the blame for things that go wrong on Mani Shankar Iyer’s and other available shoulders. That’s the style of this kind of operators.

But the machinations of the guilty men should in no way lead to their exoneration. They need to be held accountable and punished, not acquitted. If their political godfathers, who let them run wild in the first place, continue their misplaced sponsorship even after the Games are over, then the godfathers’ role in the shenanigans will also have to be tracked and exposed. We are a land blessed by the Devas. Rakshasas belong to the nether regions where they can organise a Paataala Olympics.