Category Archives: SATTIRE

Burmese days–by George Orwell

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Khidki (Window)

The Burmese Days … By George Orwell

–Read India read–

–Books are like docile stack of papers. But when you start turning the pages. They become a gripping world of their own–

    I have always believed that books and movies are the best mirrors of times for they often spill the beans. If you want to visit Burma of the 1930s read this book. It gives you a good flavour of how the Britishers behaved during those times. It also sensitises you about how a handful of Indians sustained themselves between the heft of the British Imperialism and the spread of the local Burmese population. And of course how, the Burmese society managed under the stubborn aristocracy of the misbehaved system.

    In this scathing and zipping novel written way back in 1934. Indians and Burmese are referred as niggers and beggars in some pages: and thus denied membership in a local European club in Upper Burma. (George Orwell thus spills the beans).

    The book mentions that in British regime when an illiterate domestic servant used to misbehave. He was sent to a prison with a chit—15 lashes.

    Background: From 1922 to 1927 Orwell spent five years as a police officer in the Indian Imperial Police force in Burma (now Myanmar). Burma had become part of the British Empire during the 19th century as an adjunct of British India. The British colonised Burma in stages.  Only in 1885 when they captured the royal capital of Mandalay Burma was declared as part of the British Empire. Many people don’t know that Burma was the wealthiest country in Southeast Asia under the British rule. Therefore many workers from India and China supplemented the Burmese population. As a colony it was very much seen as a backwater.

MAIN CHARACTERS:

        James Flory: is referred as ‘Flory’ in the novel. He is the central character. A timber merchant in his mid-thirties. Blessed or disgraced with a dark blue birthmark that stretches from his eye to the side of his mouth on his left cheek. He therefore avoids flaunting the left side of his face to people. He is friendly to an Indian doctor by the name of Veraswami. He likes and even appreciates the Burmese culture. This brings him into a conflict with the members of the local club. Who, do not appreciate his radical views.

        Elizabeth Lackersteen: An unmarried English girl who has lost both her parents and comes to stay with her remaining relatives, the Lackersteens, in Burma. Before her flighty mother died, they had lived together in Paris. Her mother fancied herself an artist, and Elizabeth grew to hate the Bohemian lifestyle and cultural connections. Elizabeth is 22, ‘tallish for a girl, slender.” Throughout the novel, she seeks to marry a man because her aunt keeps pressuring her and she idolises wealth and social class, neither of which she could achieve without a husband during this time period.

    Mr Lackersteen: Elizabeth’s uncle and Mrs Lackersteen’s husband. Lackersteen is the manager of a timber firm. He is a heavy drinker whose main object in life is to have a “good time”. However his activities are curtailed by his wife who is ever watching “like a cat over a bloody mousehole” because ever since she returned after leaving him alone one day to find him surrounded by three naked Burmese girls, she does not trust him alone. Lackersteen’s lechery extends to making sexual advances towards his niece, Elizabeth.

    Mrs Lackersteen: Elizabeth’s aunt and Mr Lackersteen’s wife. Mrs Lackersteen is “a woman of about thirty-five, handsome in a contourless, elongated way, like a fashion plate”. She is a classic memsahib, the title used for wives of officials in the Raj. Both she and her niece have not taken to the alien country or its culture. (In Burmese Days Orwell defines the memsahib as “yellow and thin, scandal mongering over cocktails—living twenty years in the country without learning a word of the language.”). And because of this, she strongly believes that Elizabeth should get married to an upper class man who can provide her with a home and accompanying riches. She pesters Elizabeth into finding a husband: first she wants her to wed Verrall, then after he leaves, Flory.

    Dr Veraswami: An Indian doctor and a friend of Flory’s. He has nothing but respect for the British colonists and often refers to his own kind as being lesser humans than the English, even though many of the British, including Ellis, don’t respect him. Veraswami and Flory often discuss various topics, with Veraswami presenting the British point of view and Flory taking the side of the Burmese. Dr Veraswami is targeted by U Po Kyin in pursuit of membership of the European club. Dr Veraswami wants to become a member of the club so that it will give him prestige which will protect him from U Po Kyin’s attempts to exile him from the district. Because he respects Flory, he does not pester him to get him admitted into the club. Eventually U Po Kyin’s plan to exile Dr Veraswami comes through. He is sent away to work in another run-down hospital elsewhere.

    U Po Kyin: A corrupt and cunning magistrate who is hideously overweight, but perfectly groomed and wealthy. He is 56 and the “U” in his name is his title, which is an honorific in Burmese society. He feels he can commit whatever wicked acts he wants—cheat people of their money, jail the innocent, abuse young girls—because although, “According to Buddhist belief those who have done evil in their lives will spend the next incarnation in the shape of a rat, frog, or some other low animal”, he intends to provide against these sins by devoting the rest of his life to good works such as financing the building of pagodas, “and balance the scales of karmic justice”.[13] He continues his plans to attack Dr Veraswami, instigating a rebellion as part of the exercise, to make Dr Veraswami look bad and eliminate him as a potential candidate of the club, so he can secure the membership for himself. He believes his status as a member of the club will cease the intrigues that are directed against him. He loses pre-eminence when Flory and Vereswami suppress the riot. After Flory dies, Kyin becomes a member of the European Club. Shortly after his admission into the club he dies, unredeemed, before the building of the pagodas. “U Po has advanced himself by thievery, bribery, blackmail and betrayal, and his corrupt career is a serious criticism of both the English rule that permits his success and his English superiors who so disastrously misjudge his character”.

    Ma Hla May: Flory’s Burmese mistress who has been with him for two years before he meets Elizabeth. Ma Hla May believes herself to be Flory’s unofficial wife and takes advantage of the privileges that come along with being associated with a white man in Burma. Flory has been paying her expenses throughout their time together. However, after he becomes enchanted with Elizabeth, he informs her that he no longer wants anything to do with her. Ma Hla May is distraught and repeatedly blackmails him. Once thrown out of Flory’s house, the other villagers dissociate themselves from her and she cannot find herself a husband to support her. Encouraged by U Po Kyin, who has an alternate agenda to ruin Flory’s reputation within the club, she approaches Flory in front of the Europeans and creates a dramatic scene so everyone knows of his intimacy with her. This outburst taints Elizabeth’s perception of Flory for good. Eventually she goes to work in a brothel elsewhere.

    Ko S’la: Flory’s devoted servant since the day he arrived in Burma. They are close to the same age and Ko S’la has since taken care of Flory. Though he serves Flory well, he does not approve of many of his activities, especially his relationship with Ma Hla May and his drinking habits. He believes that Flory should get married. Flory has remained in the same reckless state that he was in upon arriving in Burma. In Ko S’la’s eyes, Flory is still a boy. Ko S’la, on the other hand, has moved on with his life as he has taken wives and fathered five children. He pities Flory due to his childish behaviour and his birthmark.

    Lieutenant Verrall: A military policeman who has a temporary posting in the town. He is everything that Flory is not—young, handsome, privileged. He is the youngest son of a peer and looks down on everyone, making no concessions to civility and good manners. His only concern while in town is playing polo. He takes no notice of a person’s race, everyone is beneath him. Verrall is smug and self-centered. Encouraged by her aunt, Elizabeth pursues Verrall as a suitor, but he uses her only for temporary entertainment. In the end, he vanishes from town without a word to Elizabeth.

    Mr Macgregor: Deputy Commissioner and secretary of the club. He is upright and well-meaning, although also pompous and self-important. U Po Kyin contacts Mr Macgregor through anonymous letters as he continues his attacks on Dr Veraswami to gain a position in the club. As one of the only single men left in the town, he marries Elizabeth.

    Ellis: A violently racist Englishman who manages a timber company in upper Burma. He is a vulgar and spiteful member of the club who likes stirring up scandals. He believes in the British rule of Burma and that the Burmese people are completely incapable of ruling the country themselves. His hatred of the Burmese culture causes some clashes with Flory due to Flory’s friendliness with the Burmese, especially Dr Veraswami. Ellis is in support of U Po Kyin’s plan to ruin the reputation of Dr Veraswami and needs no evidence whatsoever of Dr Veraswami’s guilt.

    Francis and Samuel: Francis is a Eurasian clerk to an Indian money lender, whilst Samuel is a clerk to some of the pleaders. Both are sons of Christian missionaries, the book explores attitudes towards their mixed heritage.

PLOT

    The novel is set in the imperial Burma of 1920s. In the fictional district of Kyauktada. The original of Kyauktada is Kathar (formerly spelled as Katha), a township where Orwell served. Kyauktada is the head of a branch railway line above Mandalay on the Ayeyarwady (Irrawady) River. The story opens with U Po Kyin, a corrupt Burmese magistrate. Who is planning to destroy the reputation of the Indian doctor Veraswami. The doctor looks for protection in this disaster from his friendship with Flory who happens to be a pukka sahib (European white man) who has a higher prestige. Dr Veraswami wants to become a member of the prestigious British club because he thinks his standing with Europeans is good. U po Kyin intrigues against him and refuses to cow down. He starts a malicious campaign against the doctor and persudes the Europeans that the doctor holds disloyal, anti-British opinions. He also releases false anonymous letter with false stories about the doctor and thinks it will work wonders. He even sends a threatening letter to Flory.

   Flory is a worn out 35 year old teak merchant. He is responsible for appropriation of jungle timber for three weeks in a month. He is unmarried and even friendless among his fellow Europeans. He has a ragged crescent of a birthmark on his face. Flory is disillusioned with his lifestyle. Living in a tiresome expatriate community centred round the European Club in a remote part of the country.

    On the other hand he has become so embedded in Burma that it is impossible for him to leave and return to England. Veraswami and Flory are great friends. Flory often visits the doctor for what the latter delightedly calls ‘cultured conversation.’ In these conversations Flory details his disillusionment with the empire. But the doctor flares up whenever Flory criticises the Raj and defends the British as great administrators who have built an efficient and unrivalled empire. Flory dismisses these administrators as mere money makers, living a lie. ‘The perennial lie that, we’re here to uplift our poor black brothers instead to rob them.’ Though he finds a temporary rejoice with his Burmese mistress. Flory is emotionally bedevilled. On the one hand Flory loves Burma and craves a life partner who will share his passion, which the other Europeans find incomprehensible. On the other hand, for essentially racist taste, Flory feels that only a European woman is acceptable as a partner.

    Flory’s dilemma seems to be answered when Elizabeth Lackersteen. The orphaned niece of Mr Lachersteen, the local timber firm manager arrives. Flory saves her when she thinks she is about to be attacked by a small water buffalo. He is immediately befriended by her and they spend time getting close, culminating in a highly successful shooting expedition. Where, after several misses Elizabeth shoots a pigeon, and then a flying bird. Flory shoots a leopard and promises the skin to Elizabeth as a trophy. Lost in, romance and fantasies. Flory visualises Elizabeth to be sensitive and non-racist. He so much desires a European woman who will understand him and give him the companionship that he needed. As a result he turns away Ma Hla May, his pretty, scheming Burmese concubine out of his house. Under the surface, however, Elizabeth is appalled by Flory’s relative egalitarian attitude towards the native, seeing them as ‘beastly’ while Flory extols the virtues of their rich culture. She finds the Burmese repulsive. Worse still are Flory’s interests in high art and literature, which remind Elizabeth of her boondoggling mother who died in disgrace in Paris of ptomaine poisoning as a result of living in squalid conditions while masquerading as a Bohemian artist. Despite these reservations, of which Flory is entirely unaware. She is willing to marry him to escape poverty, spinsterhood, and the unwelcome advances of he perpetually inebriated uncle.

    Flory is about to ask her to marry him, but they are interrupted first by her aunt and second by an earthquake.  Mrs Lackersteen’s interruption is deliberate because she has discovered that a military police lieutenant named Verrall is arriving in Kyauktada. As he comes from an extremely good family, she sees him as a better prospect as a husband for Elizabeth. Mrs Lackersteen tells Elizabeth that Flory is keeping a Burmese mistress as a deliberate ploy to send her Verrall. Indeed, Flory had been keeping a mistress, but had dismissed her almost the moment Elizabeth had arrived. Elizabeth is appalled and falls at the first opportunity for Verrall, who is arrogant and even ill-mannered to all but her. Flory is devastated and after a period of exile attempts to make amends by delivering to her the peopard skin. A bungled curing process has left the skin mangy and stinky and the gesture merely compounds his status as a poor suitor. When Flory delivers it to Elizabeth she accepts it regardless of the fact that it stinks and he talks of their relationship, telling her he still loves her. She responds by telling him that unfortunately the feelings aren’t mutual anymore and leaves the house to go horse riding with Verrall. When, Flory and Elizabeth part ways. Mrs Lackersteen  orders the servants to burn the reeking leopard skin, representing the deterioration of Flory and Elizabeth’s relationship.

    U Po Kyin’s campaign against Dr Veraswami is simply to malign him so that he can push his candidature instead for the membership of the European Club in Kyauktada. The club has been put under pressure to elect a native member and Dr Veraswami is the most likely candidate. U Po Kyin manoeuvres to let go a prisoner and plans a rebellion for which he conspires that Dr Veraswami should get the blame. The rebellion begins but is quickly put down. But in the process a native rebel is killed by the acting Divisional Forest Officer, Maxwell. Uncharacteristically courageous, Flory speaks up for Dr Veraswami and proposes him as a member of the club. At this moment the body of Maxwell, cut almost to pieces with swords by two relatives of the man he had shot, is brought back to the town. This creates tension between the Burmese and the Europeans which is exacerbated by a vicious attack on native children by the spiteful arch-racist timber merchant, Ellis. A large but ineffectual anti-British riot begins and Flory becomes the hero for bringing it under control with some support by Dr Veraswami. U Po Kyin tries to claim credit but is disbelieved and Dr, Veraswami’s prestige is restored.

     Verrall leaves Kyauktada without even saying goodbye to Elizabeth. Heartbroken she falls for Flory again. Flory is happy and plans to marry Elizabeth. However, U Po Kyin has not given up. He hires Flory’s former Burmese mistress to create a scene in front of Elizabeth during the sermon at the Church. Flory is disgraced and Elizabeth refuses to have anything more to do with him. Overcome by the loss and seeing no future for himself. Flory first kills his dog, and then himself.

    Dr Veraswami is demoted and sent to a different district and U Po Kyin is elected to the club. Devious plans of U Po Kyin have succeeded. He now plans to redeem his life and cleanse his sins by financing the construction of pagodas. He dies of apoplexy before he can start building the first pagoda. His wife envisages him returning to life as a frog or a rat. Elizabeth eventually marries Macgregor, the deputy commissioner, and lives happily in contempt of the natives, who in turn live in fear of her, fulfilling her destiny of becoming a ‘burra memsahib’ (respectful term given to white European women).

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By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

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Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(Archived in 7 prestigious libraries of the US, including, Harvard University and Library of Congress. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in Libraries and archives of Canada and Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai)  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2014)

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. Book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

Story of an Indian salesman who is lowly qualified but fights his ways through uncertainities to reach the top. A good read for all salesmen. Now available in Amazon.com

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

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VIEWPOINTS CHANGE WHEN YOU SEE THROUGH SOMEONE ELSE’S EYES

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    There is nothing called good. Nor is there, anything called bad. For it’s only what you like and what you dislike. So relax, because, for everything that you dislike there is someone else in the planet who likes. And for everything that you like, there is someone else in the planet who dislikes—that holds good even for an AK47 assault rifle—which the victim hates while the killer likes. Life revolves around the ebbs and flows of such likes and dislikes. The ball game thus will only go on. And it only emanates from your aggressive sense of hues and a bloated ego. For, essentially, life is but stuck between the black and the white. Where, the final journey of course is in white. Confucius says—‘Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.” So love what you like. But don’t dislike the person who dislikes your likes. Because, everything produced by mother earth after all is meant for someone’s eyes.

    Learn from your own life. There have been times, when you’ve worn that most expensive suit of yours that costed a bomb. But it went without a compliment, even when, it was of your own taste. Followed by the cheapy dress, that you wore the very next day. That someone had gifted you, when your friends or your love charm came up and said, ‘wow you’re looking gorgeous.’ So don’t just consider your taste and choice alone, to be the paramount. Give space to others in the spectrum of your colourful world. For, a human being is too incapacitated to discern what others find good in him. I was once wearing an expensive dress of my choice and the day passed without a single compliment. But the very next day when I was wearing a gaudy pullover that I had bought from the footpath market in Connaught Place. A sos purchase. The day was flooded with compliments. Where, I remember, even in borrowed sweaters during hostel days I looked ravishing.

    So, in many ways you’re really ignorant about what suits you and what doesn’t. But yes, you are aware of the junk that you wish to collect and possess. To, come to think of it. You really don’t know those eyes, or the ecstasy behind those eyes that are eyeing you. What you wear is meant for some other eyes to evaluate, for you have already surrendered to the dress that you’re already wearing.

    The best of cars the best of jewels and the best of persons, they all fade away with time. They become stale—when ‘like’ turns into a ‘dislike.’ And what is left behind is only the spark of relationship and the hallowed name when it goes beyond the bridge of spines. So, while acquiring the momentary rainbow don’t dismantle the stable joints of your life. What is, more important is the soul connect than those short lived combinations, colours and designs. So, learn to share and be happy to accommodate.

    Live for the happy chime’s of life and its pantomime and not for those tricky colours that blinds your mind.   

    Hum se colour hai … colour se hum nahi. Hum se zindagi hai zindagi se hum nahi. Par in sab mein hum akele nahin.

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By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share if you like it

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(Archived in 7 prestigious libraries of the US, including, Harvard University and Library of Congress. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in Libraries and archives of Canada and Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai)

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2014)

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. Book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

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THE IRONY OF TASH, MOUSTACHE OR MOOCH

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    Recently a friend of mine ventured into buying a rickety second hand car that was more than 18 feet long, but more than half a decade old. I asked, ‘why this car? Instead, you could have bought a brand new hatchback in the same budget?’ He replied ‘My dear friend you will not understand this, yeh mooch wali gadi hai.’ He, like me, had no mooch but knew all about the varied nuances of a mooch. Another friend of mine since college days, sported a handlebar wider than his face. Just, because he wanted to look like an ostentatious macho, to all those known to him, and like an army specimen, to all the unknown. But sadly, girls rated his fertile front as hideous because of his mooch. From a distance, he was easily recognizable, as one could clearly see only a bushy moustache, walking up and down without a face–so virile was his tash.

    Then, I also knew of salesman resembling the famous dacoit Veerapan with his deadly moustaches sprouting all over his face. But this was much before Veerapan actually surfaced. The lady customers refused, to be attended by him even when he was very God fearing. Perhaps, he couldn’t change the scary image of such a well mustachioed face

        Mel Brooks, American actor, producer and director justifies it well on the silver screen for the select few and goes on to say, ‘A cinema villain essentially needs a moustache, so he can twiddle with it gleefully, as he cooks up his next plan.’ But it still doesn’t make me believe if Moochs, have a direct link with virile manhood.

    Media reports insinuate, Indo-China confrontation is almost over. But then the handlebar-mooch remains, like its sardonic thorn, that is upping the ante. And unless one side droops, the likelihood of a war is very much there. So, not only men, even, countries wear moustaches. But then India happens to be a she country, then how can she have a moustache. And what about China? Well they prefer calling it ‘ancestral land’ … gender neutral to reap the benefit of both the sexes. So then, I don’t think there should be a problem for either of them, to pull out … as ladies needn’t even have a mooch ki ladai. Buy yes, both can behind the scenes give, ‘moochon mein tav’ in front of their countrymen.

    Moustache, no doubt is the royal asset of a man, which is more loyal than his hair. That triggers and circulates his wild airs. And, while, one can see its pontification right below the eyes. He  should not make it the focal point of his false prestige. 

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By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share if you like it

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

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SUNANDA PUSHKAR MURDER CASE

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    It is deplorable to see Sunanda Pushkar murder case not reaching its logical conclusion? In addition, I’m even shocked and surprised to see the horrifying and poltroon attitude of Shashi Tharoor who isn’t seen pushing for justice for his slain wife. Any other politician husband who still happens to be the Congress spokesperson would have gone hammer and tongs to town and would have threatened to go on fast until death till the culprit is nabbed. But the situation out here is tragically quite different. As he is trying to maintain that stoic silence, but in whose interest no one knows. And one loosely feels the family is in no hurry to get her justice.

     On the other hand look at Delhi Police. They appear to have botched up the entire case, as per TV reports, of certain channels. And what to talk of Home Ministry, that is incubating over the matter as if to assess the political gains. Least they could have done was to hand over the matter to CBI. Very sadly … this happens to be our callous India that loves, playing around with dead and fractured souls. What a pity. Mare hua ko bhi nahi chodte (They don’t even spare the dead).

    One wonders how easy it is for the state to dump a murder case and that too of a socialite coming from high society. So, then what happens to the lower and the downtrodden, and of course the whole thing is reeking of filth in our high social circles.

    And last but not the least. The likes of Agatha Christie, Arthur Conan Doyle and Erle Stanley Gardner who made crime as their mission of life must all be churning in their graves over the alleged bungling up, by Delhi Police in this high profile murder case. Now let us see how Subramaniam Swami takes the lead.

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By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share if you like it

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

*****

 

 

 

WHATSAPP GROUP CHAT

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    So much time they have—In other words a universe of a time. One chat message and there are twenty responses, and then the domino effect starts—for I can’t be left behind, says the egocentric mind. I’m talking about the whatsapp group in our RWA. Where, one gets to feel as if the whole society has become a beehive—infested by a swarm of predatory flies. Thriving on some lethal one-upmanship—where the killing field is the chat box itself. As and when, you flag an issue. The views of members start flooding in instantaneously even when they are variegated. Normally, they display cool courtesy. Occasionally they trade nagging heat and at times they even explode. But there are many fire tenders to keep the situation under control.

    The chat moves at the speed of sound if not light. After all, it houses a powerhouse. Where, most are domain experts, some the last word, few are litterateurs and writers. Not to forget the DJs, digital and security experts, and the event managers. And needless to say that everyone is a Mr know all.

    You are constantly on guard. At the beep of those frequent chat notifications. Irrespective of the fact, whether you’re in office or in the cool confines of your home. There is always an issue at hand. Blown out of proportion by excessive interaction. Where, every member has to make that metaphoric superlative comment—meri kameez tumhare kameez se ziada safed hai. Because you need to be in the circuit to remain relevant. So at least send a thumbs up. The quantum of notifications is so much. That if you wish to read them all. You’ll not have time for anything else. 

    Every minute there is a notification. So it is democracy at its best. Issues could be halka or even routine. But viewpoints need to be weighty with a tinge of metaphysics and farsightedness. Considering the legion of scholastic personalities residing in the society.

    But where will all this lead to. Frankly speaking no one knows. As most are shooting from the hip. But I guess it’s about time to lay-off for some time. To, do something more relevant, soothing and satisfying. And let the society be in the safe hands of too many cooks. Hopefully they won’t spoil the broth.

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By Kamlesh Tripathi

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                                                        https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share if you like it

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

*****

 

 

   

 

CHANAKYA NEETI-1

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SAYS CHANAKYA—1

Vishadapyamritam grahammedhyadapi kanchanam,

Nichadpayutama vidya striratnam dushkuladapi.

If there is nectar in poison, accept it. If there is precious metal or object in filth, retrieve it. If a low bred man has some good knowledge, wisdom, art or quality, imbibe it. If a woman born to a family of disrepute turns out to be a lady of high qualities, possess such a gem.

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Strinaam diguna aaharo budhisatasam chaturguna,

Sahasam shargunam chav kamoastgun uchayate.

Compared to males, the females, eat twice the amount of food, possess cleverness four times, display courage six times and have hunger for sex eight times.

*

Aanratam sahasam maya murkhtavmatilubadhata,

Ashochatavam nirdayatam strinam dosha: swabhavjhaha.

Speaking falsehood—starting a work without any due diligence or thought, daredevilry, deceitful behavior, foolish acts, greed, impurity and cruelty. These are things, basic to the nature of women.

*

Bhojayam bhojanshaktitascha ratishaktivarragna,

Vibhavo danshaktishcha naslapasya tapas: phalam.

Only great penance can earn one: Rich food to eat and a good digestive power to dispose it—A beautiful woman, for a wife and the virility to ravish her—and riches with charitable disposition to use the money for good causes.

*

Yasya putro vashiibhooto bharya chandasnugaamini,

Vibhave yashcha santushtsatasya swarg eihev he.

This very earth is heaven for one whose son is obedient. The wife is faithful and whose own heart is content with whatever money he has.

*

Te putra yepiturbhakta sa pita yastu poshakah,

Tanmitram yasya vishwasahah: sa bharya yatra nirvrati.

True son is the one who is obedient to his father. A true father is the one who looks after his sons. Similarly, true friend is the one who is trustworthy and true wife is one who makes her husband happy.

*****

Translated by Kamlesh Tripathi

POEM: THE RAT-RACE

Copyright@shravancharitymission

THE RAT- RACE

In the heat of life,

There was never a summer,

But when the heat was over,

Only the winter got closer.

*

In my hectic life,

I was always uptight,

About things that mattered,

And also about things that didn’t matter.

*

In the days of heat,

Life was like a marathon race,

Where some pseudo brainwaves,

Had termed it as a rat race.

*

One initially thought,

It’s a onetime race,

But sadly, it turned out to be,

A lifetime of a race.

*

Where, the rats were surprised,

That it was some enterprise,

Where man stole the race,

And made it into a rat race,

And that too, without their gaze.

*

It all started well,

Like the string of jingle bells,

But soon the jingle was over,

And you were left as a rover.

*

There was so much to do,

And so much to improve,

Where I had my own dreams,

To brew and stew,

Until one day I realised,

I had a career to pursue.

*

Between the race and career,

Man had no breather,

Soon he became a teaser,

And with that a big schemer.

*

That resulted in endless pursuits,

And pointless disputes,

Bereft of generosity,

And full of ferocity,

Where humans were estranged,

And demons were ordained.

*

From exhaustive to repetitive lifestyle,

To loads of competition,

Until one day I realised,

Sanity was about to get paralysed.

*

As the stance of life was changing,

Where heat was evaporating,

Where winter was upstaging,

Grace was receding,

And where time was forsaking.

*

Is when I asked the creator,

What happens now?

When heat becomes cold,

Summer becomes winter,

Hectic become skeptic,

And I become rustic.

*

Nothing said the creator,

As good sense of life is always greater,

Then the rat race,

That happens to be a crater,

And in disguise a hater.

*

So come out of it,

To live in the winter,

That also has a summer,

That also has a shelter.

*

For rat race is just a phase,

And phase should not be a craze,

And the ultimate is encased,

In the wisdom of faith.

***

Share if you like it

By Kamlesh Tripathi

***

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

         Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

         IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(Archived in 7 prestigious libraries of the US, including, Harvard University and Library of Congress. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in Libraries and archives of Canada and Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai)  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2014)

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. Book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

Story of an Indian salesman who is lowly qualified but fights his ways through uncertainities to reach the top. A good read for all salesmen. Now available in Amazon.com

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

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