Friday, August 27, 2010

Government reveals that Commonwealth Games a practical joke; gag hoodwinks entire nation

With a little more than a month to go for the 2010 Commonwealth Games, the Indian Government has revealed that there are no Games, and the event was nothing but a big practical joke on the Indian Public.

“Booyah, India,” shouted Manmohan Singh as he revealed this amidst peals of raucous laughter. “Now you know why we seemed to be so badly prepared for the Games. That’s cos there are no Games, duh! We just did it to show you guys up and boy did you fall hook, line and sinker,” said the PM as large numbers of press-types looked on sheepishly knowing very well that they had been mad fools of right and proper.

“You think we’d spend Rs. 28,000 crore on a sporting event that no one gives a shit about? This in a country where millions of children die of preventable diseases before they reach the age of 5? You must be kidding me man. You think we’re dumb?”

The 2010 Commonwealth Games logo. NOT!

The practical joke was apparently a very well constructed one with dummy detractors like Aiyer set up to “criticise” it in order to make it look a bit more realistic.

“Ha! Aiyer played it well didn’t he? Had you guys fooled to-ta-lly. We were a bit nervous about that; I mean how many people would believe it if a Congress MP went in himself and condemned his own government’s games. But it went off like a dream; nobody suspected a thing!” gloated Singh.

The bits about massive corruption in the games were also, as is evident, not real. As Suresh Kalmadi said, grinning from ear to ear: “How you guys fell for that story about Scheduled Caste fund being diverted to building stadium, I’ll never know!”

“I must admit the Government had me,“ says Delhi resident, Ravi Kumar, raising his hands in mock surrender. “I should have seen through it after that story about treadmills being hired for 10 lakhs hit the headlines. But hats off; this Commonwealth Games thing was an amazing gag. Nice sense of humour these government-walahs have.”

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Why the 15th of August?

And not the 16th of August or the 13th of September was the date that was decided upon for India’s (and Pakistan’s) independence.

Well, because British India’s last Viceroy (and independent India’s first Governor -General) was a bit full of himself.

The 15th of August, 1945 was the day on which Japan had surrendered—special for Mountbatten because he had been the Supreme Commander for South-East Asia during World War II. In Freedom at Midnight, a book which accords the same position to Mountbatten as the New Testament to Christ, he says:

“I thought it had to be about August or September and I then went out to the 15th August. Why? Because it was the second anniversary of Japan’s surrender.”

On its own, that India’s date of independence was decided such that it would soothe its Viceroy’s vanity might not seem so important. However, when put in context—the extreme haste, even panic in which Britain withdrew from India (transfer of power was originally fixed for June 1948) might have exacerbated the frenzied killings that accompanied Independence—it might have been, tragically so.