Sunday, August 23, 2009

Jassu Jaise Koi Nahi....!

This is the biggest story in India right now. I am already sick of it. Khair.... I've said my piece.

Divorce - Desi style… Why Jaswant should demand alimony.

Jaswant Singh is behaving like an emotionally injured bride who has been thrown out of her ‘sasural’ and is back in the marital home, sulking away, while the neighbours gossip and speculate ( “ Bhai…. asli reason kya hai?”). Political divorces are no different from regular ones. In this case , nobody is sure on what grounds the papers have been filed - proven infidelity? Impotency? Dementia? Abject cruelty? Dowry demands? Irreconciliable differences? Or a plain and simple irrevocable breakdown of the shaadi? If it’s infidelity, the ‘other man’ has been dead and gone for decades. In fact, there are two ‘other men’ in the picture ( Jinnah and Patel ). Jaswant’s tell-all tome boldly names names, and provides ample fodder to the complainant to go ahead with the proceedings. In India, a great deal of value is placed on this particular virtue ( fidelity). An unfaithful wife is the bane of our society, and is frequently beaten\stoned\killed for her crime. In less drastic circumstances, she is given marching orders and instantly ostracized by family and friends.
In such a grim scenario, there are two options. The aggrieved wife can battle it out in court and claim alimony, or she can go public with her multiple grouses and expose her in-laws. Jaswant is in the happy position of a woman scorned – public sympathy is largely with him. What is the guy’s crime, the aam aadmi is wondering? He has written a book – and some would say – shot himself in the foot. Big deal. As an acknowledged intellectual with a track record of controversial actions and utterances, nothing that he has stated in his latest labour of love is all that radical or shocking. But in a country like ours ( hypocritical and judgemental), with so many sacred cows, even the mildest criticism of our national icons and praise for our declared enemies, is taken as blasphemy .Forget criticism, even an analytical assessment of history is considered sacrilege. We insist on sanitizing and neutering history to make it more palatable. This is such a bloody shame, particularly since we pride ourselves on our great democratic principles, free speech etc etc. And we can’t handle a few paragraphs that challenge popular perceptions? What has Jaswant written that is so terrible? He has certainly not made a huge hero out of Jinnah… nor a despicable villain out of Patel. But even if he had done so, does he not have the right to his theories and viewpoints? This is Jaswant’s individual take – he is entitled to it. You don’t have to agree with his views – that is your prerogative. But to reduce the whole thing into a ‘tu tu main main’ farce … or an episode out of the old ‘saas bahu’ serials, is to insult public intelligence…. bring out the dirty linen, but don’t wash it!
Let’s look at the worst case scenario – assuming Jaswant has indeed glorified Jinnah, does that alter history? Assuming he has vilified Sardar Patel, does that impact Patel’s elevated position in our minds?History depends entirely on who writes it. It has always been open to interpretation… it will continue to be written , re-written and re-re-written. An educated, mature society is willing to acknowledge as much and allow a thousand dissenting voices to be heard. Challenge opinion by all means, but don’t hang the opinion maker.Unless, of course, the entire expulsion natak is just that – a pantomime designed to distract attention from pricklier issues corroding the innards of the party. If ‘chintan’ ( introspection) was indeed the main agenda of the BJP ‘baithak’, there is little evidence of it in the hasty action taken against a stalwart. There can be some show of civility even in the bitterest of break-ups. Divorce doesn’t have to be this dirty. Warring couples in a civilized society speak through their lawyers and mutual friends. A 30- year-old marriage isn’t called off via a peremptory phone call made by a flunkey. Of course, Jaswant is appalled and hurt. And like most aggrieved wives, he has gone from playing martyr to attacker, with a li’l help from media buddies. It’s clearly beyond the scope of a competent Family Court to settle this dispute. The Padosis in Pakistan are going to town with the story. And Jaswant will have no trouble finding a fresh sasural across the border if he so chooses. In the meanwhile, he can hire a competent lawyer ( definitely not Arun Jaitley!), to represent him and fight for a big, fat alimony. Though, frankly, with all this masala and tamasha , the juicy royalties from his book (it is bound to become a runaway best seller), he should be in a very happy financial position.However, as any wronged wife will tell you – it’s not about the money. But like that old cliché goes – success is still the best revenge. Next time darling, stick to Teddy Bears’ Picnic!
I watched the Sarvajanik Ganpatis coming to their temporary homes late last night, and as always, my eyes filled with tears at the innocence of faith.
I ate puran polis at a friend's home, and broke my Shravan diet with juicy mutton chops, succulent prawns and tender chicken. Not forgetting the delicious kebabs with shredded mint patta. It was a small 'focus' group of powwrful and opinionated 'Thought Leaders'. Everybody was discussing just one thing - Jaswant Singh's explosive book. Well, my husband fell for the hype and bought a copy this morning. Tame stuff. The BJP should ask for a hefty share of the royalties - the tome may have gone unnoticed had Jaswant not been expelled by the party.


The Panorama said...

Well writtten in your usual racy style. Now I definitely have to read Jaswant Singhs book. As for the controversy, I really have no opinion about it. But it was interesting to read about it.

Anonymous said...

Save paper.
Type Online ???

Sun said...

Thought Leaders??? hahahaha...gaspots who take themselves too seriously, more like

Sidhusaaheb said...

Interestingly enough, if Jaswant Singh had written that book, say, a couple of years ago, he would probably not have been expelled from the BJP and that is because he was not a dissident at that point of time. The party would still have dissociated itself from the book, I suppose, and described its contents as his ‘personal views’, however.

In light of recent developments, it appears safe to conclude that the book proved to be a rather convenient excuse for throwing out some one who had been asking too many inconvenient questions about the reasons for the BJP’s defeat in the recent Lok Sabha elections and demanding that those responsible be held accountable for their role in the debacle.

Theyoginme said...

Sounds like I too need to buy Jaswant Singh's book. Are you seeking a cut of his royalties?... I had planned to look for 6 days of War by Michael Oren at the Strand but this sounds more interesting...

I am glad you broke your fast, cause I think the Oregon "spirit" will be a nice complement to the spicy kababs.

Anonymous said...

mz de, loved your post, very reminiscent of your earlier writing. everyone knows about gandhi's obsession with "testing himself everyday" by having young nubile women supporting him as he walked. he was often asked by his detractors why not two youths from the hundreds in his ashram. but he is still the "pitah" of our glorious nation. remember the author kamala das? she wrote this spill-her-guts book about her family when she thought she was terminally ill (mistakenly - thanks to our competent doctors!) and the flak she faced when the book was published! now jaswant should behave like the third bahu you have not mentioned. the one who needs to get away from her sasural and frolic elsewhere - hence this book! is there another party, a la BJP, just about to take birth? mubarak ho, BJP, aapke bachha hua hai!

ruben said...

Whether Jinnah was a Nationalist or a divider of a great nation..who the hell cares about all this after more than half a century after his death. The truth is that India is now an independant country and has been divided into two nations at the time of independence.
Its quite an amusing thing to see quite a few idiots in our country hankering and debating about someone who they may not have even seen or were in the dipers at the time of independence.

चंद्रमौलेश्वर प्रसाद said...

so! the moles are becoming hills:)

And that is the difference between divorce and alimony.

peternalicia said...

This has nothing to do with your post but i wanted to mention SA RA GA MA PA LIL CHAMPS here. what an utterly fantastic show - its the best relaity show indian channels have churned out ever since i can remember.I immediately wanetd to adopt afsha and Alka Yagnik and Abhijeet are graceful and super. The talent is phenomenal. Credit needs to be given where its due and this show is definately a huge success story.

Apologies for rambling on about it but i thik it needs a mention and was wondering if you have seen it and your thoughts.

Incidently on last nights show an actor called Shreyas (whose second name i have forgotten) was on.He was humble, down to earth and was so refreshing to see an indian actor without the airs.

Anyways, have a good day.

Harish said...

The Voyeurs that we indians are, it gives us immense sadistic pleasure to watch secrets being busted and drama and melodrama.

Love Aaj Kal ke baad, we could have Break Off Aaj Kal about our ex minister.

speaking about the seriousness of the issue, whats the big deal about someone expressing their views so openly in democracy. If you are on the public eye, and an opinion maker you cant always be sacrosanct and pious. Its just human to have wronged. Why cant people express their opinion freely. Why cant people have the maturity to agree to disagree....

You dont like the book. Dont read it. Simble!!!! kaiko itna bawaaal karneka?

how i wish jassu and congress would join hands with each other... we can call it "Sauten bani Saheli"

it will be a blockbuster then. hai na De... ??

sanju ayyar said...

"I ate puran polis at a friend's home, and broke my Shravan diet with juicy mutton chops, succulent prawns and tender chicken. Not forgetting the delicious kebabs with shredded mint patta."

See, it just took you eight words and a punctuation mark to break your Shravan. Life's simple, De!

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

It is more about Jinnah or Jinn, Patel and Nehru. Jaswant's book is not that readable just like any other boring history book. The only spicy thing has become public.

There are two types of secularists. Nagative and positive. Negative secularists dont love any religion and they are also indifferent. Positive secularists try to find good in all religions. Jinnah might have belonged to the former. So there is no big deal about being secular unless it benefits humanity as a whole.

Partition was good because fundamentalist muslims enjoyed going the whole shariat way while most Indian muslims watched them horrified and relieved along with hindus of all hues.

Jaswant Singh is flogging a dead horse and BJP is getting TRPs by banning the book and banishing them. An example of throwing the baby with the bathwater.

Now Jaswant is ready to face Sach Ka Saamna with Rajeev Khandelwal.

Roshni said...

What a great post!!!I agree word to word with you on this one....hats off for such a wonderful blog .

Jogeshwar said... I get it, there's always an 'another way' to make a bestseller.

anamika said...

Jaswant singh reaction is quite a surprising one as he always came under A class politician who has brain and intellectuality with them..but guess this took a tole on him.

but i m sure he doesnt mind the publicity of the book with attached royalty.

Latha said...

'Jassi jaisa koi nahin'. I liked the typical journalistic title.
And Aham....'Sauten bani Saheli' ? Hahahaha. That was a good one.
And Hobo...We can type offline & then go online.
When did Jassi mourn ? He is busy wishing good luck to the BJP.
I'm not so much worried about the BJP or Jassi.
Just imagine....
What if Jinnah hadn't partitioned the nation ?
The Lashkar-e-Toiba's, Jamat-ud-dawas, Jaish-e-Mohammeds would've been at our doors. They wouldn't even have to face a Jawan 'cause there wouldn't be any borders to cross. They would've mixed with us.....the 26/11 perpetraters.
These politicians who are crying hoarse couldn't save us from the 'n' number of bombings by the infiltraters. Why do they condemn the partition ? They should be greatful to Jinnah that only 27 bombings took place now thanks to the partition. Otherwise everyday would have been a happy bombing day for the terrorists.
We wouldn't celebrate the 'Ganesh Chathurti' for example....

Another Kiran In NYC said...

Okay I read the book. Bahut boring unscholarly analysis and unnessarily wordy hai. Nuff said.

Thats final.


Anonymous said...

the innocence of faith?. ..hmm doesn't take much to channel this innocent passion to ignite hatred and spite between faiths ..

Besides there is hardly anything innocent about sarvajanik ganapatis .. it's no more than a big giant money making scheme in most cases. Collecting donations for ganapati is open lootmar of aam janata.

AMIT said...

Yes Ganpati Utsav is on now.Enjoy it and nice blog written.

Domain registration india

Anonymous said...

Humpty Dumpty & Kati Patang.


What a joke?

Finally the BJP is falling (tearing) apart, after almost destroying the Country, courtsy Mr. Advani and his goons. Is he still on his pad yatra?
Finally it all comes back.




Crazy Blogger said...

arey book hi to likhi hai. Gurucharan Das in his book India Unbound clearly said that India couldnt develop just coz of congress. Personal opinion yaar. Y cant these people understand

Sushant Kumar said...

Are the things written in his book facts or just figments of his imagination ?

Sharma, Nishit said...

Very nicely drafted and the content is such that reader can't leave it unfinished.....It's Civil war inside BJP camp and it's impossible for them to bounce back from this situation...End of road for BJP and party time for congress and allies

parwatisingari said...

can I refer you to this--
this was a good one.

Unknown said...

well written....

Work from home India