Some men are crooks, but most women are holy angels. But nothing is sacrosanct as trends could be changing, especially in Delhi Metro, and that too just for a seat. For on a day when I was travelling from Rajiv-Chowk to Huda-City-Centre, Gurgaon in a crowded metro, I witnessed something quite demeaning.
I had just boarded the over-crowded metro from Rajiv Chowk when a lady appearing in her mid-thirties, more from the rural background came and stood next to the vestibule. Not very far from where I was standing, but very close to the two-seater generally reserved for senior citizens or the differently-abled, near the vestibule. She suddenly squatted on the floor, when people thought she was perhaps unwell. Mind you,Delhi metro otherwise doesn’t allow you to squat on the floor. And after a short while she started nudging the old man on the senior citizens seat, to vacate the seat for her, as she was not feeling well.
The frail looking senior citizen looked at her, somewhat dismayed. And in all sincerity and to help the young lady; he offered his seat by getting up. The lady without losing any time and even without a word of thanks or a grin or even a twitch on her face slipped into the seat by just sliding up like a snake from a squatting position as if she was not able to walk. I surely found this weird. All this happened just around Central Secretariat station. She then just closed her eyes to dose off. And this gave me a feeling as if I was watching some kind of a skit. The old man then moved to where she was squatting and rested himself against the side of the metro while standing.
In the jam-packed morning metro no one had the eagerness to notice anything like this as everyone was too busy thinking about the day ahead: thus planning for it; barring the old man who perhaps was troubled, and me who just by chance happened to witness the proceedings happening in very close proximity.
By now the metro had come out of the underground, and had moved ahead, towards Qutub Minar station, as if to welcome the morning sun in the freezing winters of Delhi. Just then I churned myself a bit, more to comfort myself, as I was brutally sandwiched between passengers, is when I had an eye contact with the old man who seemed quite uncomfortable. But then I thought, being uncomfortable is definitely a lower priority than being unwell. And the woman was still resting, with her eyes closed.
On seeing her, I too decided to shut my eyes for a couple of minutes while standing. Thinking it will give some comfort and will make me feel fresh. Just then the metro announced ‘Chattarpur station’ and started slowing down. With the announcement the lady opened her eyes, she was now wiping her face with her hanky trying to look fresh and even applied some perfume out of a miniature. She then gathered her shawl and coolly started inching towards the exit door by nudging men to make way for her. And by then the metro had stopped at Chhatarpur station. Where, she got off and started running ahead of men, to catch the lift. No one could have said she was unwell. I glanced at the old man, only to realise he was where he was. I then looked at the seat vacated by the lady. It was occupied, but this time, it was an old lady–thankfully a senior citizen.
And, all is not fair in love and war. For, once when I was returning from Huda City centre, Gurgaon to Rajiv Chowk. I was again standing near the vestibule, where, the two senior citizens seat were occupied by two girls, perhaps college going. One out of them appeared to be all by herself and apparently from North-East. The other appeared to be a local with her boy friend; and while she was seated, her boy friend was standing right in front of her, in quite a lovey-dovey mood early in the evening; surely not gelling well with the ambience around.
At MG Road, an elderly looking senior citizen couple got in and walked towards these girls–rightfully for the seat. While the girl from North-East coolly got up and gave the seat to the elderly lady; the boy friend of the other girl told the elderly gentleman ‘she is not well so she won’t get up.’ The poor old man had little choice but to keep standing.
But the boy friend’s lie was more than evident when every now and then, and under some pretext or the other he was groping his girlfriend. Trying to hold her around the shoulders, fondling her lips or even caressing her hair, and the two were making the ambience look sick.
After about twenty minutes they both got off at INA market and disappeared holding hand in hand. That clearly showed she wasn’t sick. The empty seat this time was immediately occupied by another young lady but without a boyfriend; even before the senior lady who was already occupying the seat could pull her senior partner to occupy the vacated seat. So he remained standing again.
And this is what came to my mind. Some men are crooks, but are most ladies angels? Or is it that some men make some ladies crook? Or ladies now want to compete with men in crookedness? That apart, but what is more saddening is, just to grab a seat and that too for a while one can fraudulently declare herself sick and go the extent of snatching the right of a senior citizen. So are most women Angels? Can I say no?