Takes a city to light a pyre

A very dear friend of mine was to fly down to Bangalore today and spend a week at home with me. His flight was scheduled to touch down in Bangalore at about 11 in the morning. But at about 9, I got a call from him informing me that he won’t be flying in because there are no autos or taxis to take him to the airport, which in turn has cancelled all outgoing flights for the day. Why? Because prominent politico Bal Thackeray is seriously ill and may pass away soon.

image courtesy business line

The question is, of course, why must a city shut down (read be forced to shut down) for his passing – imminent passing? Sure, if there was an assassination plot, but here’s an 87 year old man whose lungs are failing him. Why is that reason enough to force-shut shops and pelt stones? Is that reason enough for the state’s Chief Minister to review the law-and-order situation? Is that enough cause to cancel every cop’s leave?

Yes, I do understand that some people are getting ready for grief of the highest order. People who have for decades worked with Thackeray and may not be able to bear the sorrow of his passing. But if they must turn this sorrow into a violent protest against something, let it be their own cars and scooters instead of state-run buses and trains. No? Apparently not. After all, didn’t Bangalore itself erupt in all ugliness after Dr. Rajkumardied? I suppose in the country we live in, it does take a city to light a pyre.

Now then, I’ll go and eat that dinner for two alone.


Categories: India, news, politics, strange people | Tags: , , , , | 5 Comments

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5 thoughts on “Takes a city to light a pyre

  1. So the people are protesting that he may die? Protesting to who? God?

    • I think they’re generally protesting because they haven’t protested in a long time. And this ungodly act by God himself / herself has probed them into getting on the streets and generally displaying their frustration about not having protested in a long time.

      Just saying.


  2. A musician friend of mine has been agonizing over this because he has two gigs in Mumbai this week. If Thackeray dies, then the gigs are definitely going to get cancelled and that’s not something that cash-strapped indie musicians can afford.

  3. If I were your friend, I wouldn’t be worried much. There’s always life support, you know. You could be all dead inside but your lungs will be made to pump for years and years. Who knows! The Sainiks might consider this option and your friend could well have his gig and play it too. What kind of music does he play, though?


  4. Pingback: A flag disgraced. By a tainted corpse. « kahatkabirsuno

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