The Original Bihar-Ke-Lala
Guest post by Mallikarjuna Kalika, sarcastic blogger, cricket buff, currently doing BTech from a reputable institution, but disillusioned with engineering (who isn’t!). A voracious eater and an avid reader. You can find his blog here.]
I remember this guy from high school who was cheated out of an opportunity to cheat in the exams.
He had stashed micro-photocopied reproductions of the textbook inside a defunct cistern, and was biding time, trying to guess whether the time was opportune yet to rush out under the pretence of an urge to urinate and have a cursory look. But one of his classmates, Pappu, who was aware of such machinations, excused himself earlier, went to the toilet and extricated the photocopies.
This particular classmate, who was the son of the very teacher who was going to correct the papers, did not need to cheat. His grades were immaterial, yet fixed. The highest possible. In fact, his seat was already confirmed at a prestigious college, so his appearing for the tests was a mere formality.
For a few Brownie points, and for general applause and pomp, he made public his findings. Our Mr Photocopy, as expected, flunked, and had to repeat that particular paper. And to rub burnt-coal on his wounds, none of his friends sympathised with him, even those who stood to benefit from the photocopies. Instead, they chose to celebrate Pappu’s valour to get into his and subsequently his mother’s good books.
Lalu-ji couldn’t have felt any better than Mr Photocopy when the ordinance relating to convicted netas was being ripped apart in full public view. Pappu could have kept his mouth shut, and Mr Photocopy could have made proper use of the ordinance, er, photocopies, and evaded punishment.
At a time when scamming is the order of the day, somebody who managed to make money out of nothing should be awarded the Star-Plus nayi-soch award. Instead, he gets the Prasad. Prasad is his middle name. No pun intended.
The roster-list was empty, yet Lalu-ji managed to feed the cows, oxen and the like that didn’t even exist. Money out of thin air, literally. The last time I saw anything close to this, my friend’s dad was procuring fake receipts at a petrol pump, for fuel that was never purchased, that would be reimbursed later. Arguably, he doesn’t understand the stupid logic behind this incarceration.
Hindus believe feeding the holy cow is an act of reverence. Bah, humbug! Bhalai ka zamaana hi nahin raha. What did Lalu-ji get? A prison sentence for feeding holy animals. Seriously? What does it matter if the cows were imaginary or that he made a few crores in the process?
Probably the ‘few’ in ‘a few crores’ is the problem. In the SI unit of Indian-scamming (2G, coal and what not), this value could well be rounded off to zero.
Surely, this is the reason. A baby-scam of smaller-than-the-PM’s-vocabulary proportions is the last thing our leaders wanted. Probably the amount involved was unbecoming of a national leader. Lalu-ji, for them, is an embarrassment. They need scammers who can keep up with the national average.
But people forget that this fodder scam is not his biggest con. He has scaled greater peaks which cannot be quantified in terms of money even if it is in dollars. Remember how he pulled a rabri out of his hat when forced to resign back in 1997?
Now that he is gone, the humble Indian Samosa faces an existential crisis. Aaloo’s relationship with Samosa stands to be terminated now that Lalu-ji is gone. For a man who is famously joked about as being capable of turning Japan into Bihar in a mere two months when informed about a proposal by the Japanese government to turn Bihar into Japan within 2 years, he will be missed.
Six years without contesting is not a very long time. No allowances or perks, but who needs them anyway? The siphoned money could easily ensure sustenance for the entire family during this mini-vanvaas, even while taking into account the fact that Lalu-ji is the poster boy of family planning, with his family just two short of a full cricket team strength.
For now, Lalu-ji ke paas koi chaara nahin hai. But he’ll sure have enough food for thought during the time he spends in jail.