PERSPECTIVE
Batwaara. After 1947, phir ek baar. Has the PM started a downhill journey?
- PREET K S BEDI
Batwaara. After 1947, phir ek baar. Has the PM started a downhill journey?



Since the PM has made a forceful intervention to reclaim yoga for Hinduism converting a good fitness routine into a Hindu ritual, it is time to bring some method into the batwaara madness so that we avoid the horrors of 1947. 
 
Since Hindus get yoga, Unnani naturally goes to Muslims and Christians naturally get allopathy. That leaves Sikhs high and dry, more high than dry actually. Only Gujarat and Bihar are dry; Punjab is not. So in order to safe-guard interests of the Sikhs who will be casting a vote in a few months, the government will sign a tripartite deal with Germany the home of homoeopathy and the many Drs. Mukherji of Calcutta who dominate the profession to lease homoeopathy to Sikhs in perpetuity. But on condition that every Sikh beyond the age of 12 undertakes a one-week course on how to say homoeopathy and not homopathy. 
 
To make up for the raw deal they get in therapeutic systems, Sikhs get to make the first claim in the foods category. But you know we are not greedy. Give us this day our makki di roti and sarson ka saag… and chikan curry, chikan tikka , chikan lajawab, chikan behisaab, butter chikan, masala chikan and we ask for no more. Hey sorry, also lassi please. 
 
While on lassi, we lay no claim on buttermilk. By all means give it to English knowing Christians with sexy phoren names. They also get to keep all forms of Italian food including pastas and pizzas. And all confectionary like cakes and pastries. Muslims get all the Kashmiri non vegetarian dishes, all kinds of biryani excluding vegetarian biryani, a non-dish that was created by vegetarians. 
 
The rest goes to Hindus including, as it does, the entire vegetarian palette including daal and vegetables and the Haldiram’s type of stuff but only if they undertake in writing that never again will they refer to kathal as vegetarian’s non-veg and publicly apologize for the existence of soya chunks which were originally a food for horses. 
 
No question about the next category. Ghazals, shers, naghmas and nazms must go to Muslims. They also get to keep Mohammed Rafi. Talks are on with Pakistan to see if we can have dual citizenship for Ghulam Ali, Mehdi Hassan and the younger lot. The Sikhs get Gulzaar and Jagjit Singh, Mikka, Daler and the entire library of Punjabi music from Canada and the UK. However the overseas transaction will happen only if one out of a hundred Sikhs called at random can correctly understand words of any one of the British or Canadian Punjabi songs to be selected by him or her. 
 
Christians get all the songs from Julie, ‘na maanguu sona chandi’, ‘Michael daaru peeke danga karta hai’ and all the Hindi Christmas songs with occasional English words in them sung by Lata, Rafi and the rest. This is as punishment for having converted a few centuries ago. 
 
Hindus keep whatever is not covered by the above. That’s a vast library of music and includes Lata, Asha, Mukesh and Hemant Kumar, Manna Dey, Kishore Kumar and is being offered strictly on condition that Hindus will agree in writing to accept and keep Abhijit. 
 
Muslims get Mughal-e-Azam, Anaarkali and Pakeezah songs and everything choreographed by Saroj Khan. Christians who have already bagged ‘Michael daaru peeke danga karta hai’ etc will also be able to keep everything that Terence has choreographed. As for Sikhs, they get the Bhangra, an honour and responsibility they have accepted with great humility. ‘O Biloo de papa, tussi vi dance karo na.’ Ghanta dance karega Biloo ka papa. Arms aur legs hilata thhaa aur log kehte thhe shayad Bhangra hi hoga. Ab Bhangra bhi gaya. Ab is umr mein Biloo ka papa kuchipudi seekhega? 
 
Now the real challenge. Who gets what in daaru? The easy part first. Wine shine toh Christians ko de do. Sunna hai church mein bhi laga lete hain. Good for them. Muslims are divided. While one set refuses to accept any daaru, there are many who want gin, vodka and Bacardi for their unobtrusiveness. Toh gin, vodka aur rum inki hui. 
 
Which leaves us with beer and whisky. After much consideration the Adjudicating authority (samjho like Cripps Mission) has decided to award beer to Hindus and whisky to Sikhs even though both had laid a strong claim on it. This because after several rounds of testing, the committee felt that paneer tikka goes better with beer and chikan tikka better with whisky. But both parties have agreed that in a spirit of give and take they will be open to sharing. 
 
And finally BC and MC. 
 
Though the claim of the Sikhs was the strongest as was their inventiveness in literally taking BC/MC to the next level involving a variety of interesting relationships, the Adjudicating Committee felt that culture is like a flower bed with flowers of different shapes, colors, texture and fragrance and by just removing even one plant you may end up with a completely different flower-bed. Some aspects of a culture just cannot be split. 
 
And so BC, MC and a variety of other C’s must necessarily be shared. As a proud symbol of the plural but composite culture we have shared for 69 years. 






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