Saturday, July 26, 2014

Say 'No' to candles n cake

His pigtail stood up and started wriggling at a feverish pitch. Pandit Choitharam jumped up in ecstasy on reading the four-column news report in the Gujarati daily, Dainik Swadharm."Throw away candle, feed a cow" screamed the headline. He put on his reading glasses to read the full report. 

"Don’t blow out candles on your birthday. It’s “western culture” and needs to be shunned. Instead, wear “swadeshi clothes” this day, do a havan, pray to the ishtadev, feed cows," advises Dinanath Batra, the author of the new textbook for school kids made compulsory for 42,000 schools in Gujarat by the state government. 

"NaMo, Namo ! This is great news. At long last, after almost a thousand years of receiving slavish education, the children of swatantra Bharat will get to learn the greatness of Hindu culture," the pandit ejaculated, throwing a sideways look at his wife. He tied his pigtail into the shape of Omkaara, adjusted his sacred thread to cover the rotund tummy, put on his wooden sandals and walked out. "I must spread the good news among the Brahman samaj," he resolved, heading for the nearest Shiva temple where all the under-employed priests of the locality gathered in search of pious and gullible clients in the hope of getting the contract for performing Satyanarayan Katha.

Ever since the country became an enthusiastic partner of the global culture, this great nation's holiest of holy religion was facing the greatest threat to its very existence. "Need not fear anymore, now that Lord Shiiva, pleased with the chant of "NaMo, Namo", has annointed the Hindu Hriday Samrat as the first authentic Hindi king, India, which has been a Hindu nation only in our dreams, is going to become one in our very own life time," the deputy chief minister of a former colony of  Portugese was reported to have proclaimed in a TV interview. "I am a Christian by birth with a Hindu soul," he declared.

The author of the revolutionary textbook which promises to inculcate patriotism among children suddenly made his appearance on the national educational scene after the higher secondary school pass model-turned-starlet of the idiot box was made the HRD minister by the Hindu Hriday Samrat.  Dinanath Batra, the author, (Disclaimer: Not related by blood or wedlock to the notorious Trichologist Dr Batra who promises to grow rain forest in Sahara desert), had been hiberating all these years in a non-descript Saraswati Vidyalaya of a remote tribal village of the Anandamans. 

Batra's existence and latent talent was discovered by Goondacharya, a self-motivated propagandist, who had given up his illustrious career in politics just for the love of the lady whom the BBC had described as the sexy sanyasin from Khajuraho. Goondaji - that's how thousands of selfless volunteers addressed him - recommened Batra's name to the honorable CM of Gujarat. A former school teacher, Ms. Happiness Petal, desperately needed some kind of magic wand that could transform her image of a puppet doll into that of an iron lady of independent mind befitting her status as the first woman chief minister of Gujarat. 

Batra's textbook proved to be that magic wand. Besides prescribing the ideal recipe and ritual that should be followed during birthday celebrations, the textbook recommends to redraw the map of India as 'Akhand Bharat' to include what stands today as Pakistan, Afghanistan, Nepal, Bangladesh and Myanmar and observe August 14 as "Akhand Bharat Smriti Divas". This has inspired some enterprising coaching classes to introduce classes in cartography. 

Happy days are here again for the likes of Pandit Choitharam and Saraswati Vidya Mandir coaching classes. 

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