Wednesday, January 27, 2016


ALIEN VULTURES THAT PREY ON OUR CULTURE

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Children were being taught not to behave like a flock of sheep. It was because of the fact that where ever the "Leader Sheep" goes (The sheep goes that walks first), the others follow. I am not sure if this is taught any more, especially, in political science,civil rights, history and journalism schools this moral is probably taught in the reverse. Or else, how can you explain the flock mentality of these particular flocks that go into a ditch, at the drop of a hat from the first one who starts a debate?

I read a funny anecdote in http://www.studyflight.ru/humour/humour.shtml. It goes on like this. 


A vampire bat came flapping in for the night covered in fresh blood and parked himself on the ceiling of the cave to get some sleep. Pretty soon all the other bats smelled the blood and started hassling him about where he got it. He told them to piss off and let him get some sleep, but they persisted until he finally gave in. "Okay, follow me" he said and flapped out of the cave with hundreds of bats behind him. Down through a valley they went, across a river and into a forest of trees. Finally he slowed down and all the other bats excitedly milled around him. "Now, do you see that giant oak over there?" he asked.
"YES, YES, YES" all the other bats SCREAMED in a frenzy.
"Good" said the first bat, "because I  didn't see it !" 



Got it? The blood thirsty vampires were after a prey that, after all did not exist. Finally, it turned out that the blood on the body of the "Lead Vampire" was, after all an accident but the craving for a sensation was too attractive for the bats to resist until truth dawned. 



Exactly! Our political, historical, civil rights, journalistic brains are always hungry for a fakery. If one vulture sees a non-existent cadaver, all others vouch for it. Politicians play politics, rights activist decide the caste or religion of the deceased and shout secularism, historians read history of such brutal murders (?) in the past Hindu Kingdoms and how they attacked the invaders and hooligans mercilessly and Journalists run 24x7 visual display of the reported body taking clippings from archives. The whole nation burns until the police declare it as a heap of gunny bags of "rotten tomatoes". The flocks move on to another illusion without even blinking an eye or feeling sorry for the damage they inflicted on the civil society. 

It started with the elections to Delhi. After the drubbing the opposition received at the General Elections in May, 2014 and other assembly polls latter and knowing the no-nonsense approach of our Prime Minister in governance and loss of their own stature in their respective fields, sans the patronage of those in power, these professional power brokers par excellence, started a proxy game of blame on him. This is exactly a repetition of what they did unsuccessfully when Gujarat was being ruled by his party for twelve years. Intensity of these attacks lacked in spice then as the government of Congress was feeding them biscuits so that they wag their tails and follow them. And added to that, they never expected Modi to perpetuate a political coup by dislodging Congress from power so decisively and showing these groups their place in society. It was a bolt from the blue, an aftershock of an earthquake. Illegal Funding was stopped, access to government departments dried up, investigators started swooping on illegal funding, corrupt and inept bureaucrats found the going tough, rights activists are finding it difficult to agitate on any issue of national importance as good governance started showing results.So, they started searching for frivolous issues here and there and are making noises. But like the "Cry Wolf" shepherd by, they are finding it difficult to sustain momentum. And the black in their own backs is turning more and more transparent by the day. If we take the issues one by one we can find them as non--significant as a nuclear weapon during peace times.  

Church attacks in Delhi and other places turned out to be either robberies, internal sabotage, attacks master-minded by political goons or just a political stunt to wean away vote banks. Then followed a fake agitation for reservations for Patels  and against continuing the same to the needy, oppressed classes, reportedly aided and abetted by a national party. In booth cases, the mud thrown on the sky fell on their faces. Whether only these issues contributed to electoral losses of BJP  or other factors played a role is a matter of conjecture. But noise pollution does enough damage to the body politic. Sustaining the momentum, though, is difficult in the long run. One way of seeing at it is that these flocks started beating the drums too early. The real wedding procession is far away, in 2019. 

Then, came the Dadri incident. It was played as a drama very fast. The nation did not even get a feel of what happened. It was an unfortunate murder. Murders in villages, specially in UP and Bihar are regular phenomenon. Those who read news papers thoroughly understand it. What is happening in Bihar today? Why is no Media channel, no politician, no rights activist and no historian play to the gallery to rouse emotions of gullible public?  UP Government moved too fast, not in unearthing the truth, but appeasing the victim's family. It is obvious more than the eye sees in this. Truth will never come out. state government refuses Central intervention. Alleged attackers were bundled out under NSA. They have no chance to be heard. So, truth lies buried. in the meantime, all vampires fly there to feast on the cadaver. Noises are made. Once polls are over, all is forgotten.

Malda attack was similar, as many attacks in west Bengal are. None is allowed access. State government diverts blame on BSF and washes hands. Vampires sleep happily. After all, it is a secular government catering to vote banks. 

Then comes the unfortunate suicide of research scholar. Let us wait for the police report on the dalit status of the boy before we call him dalit scholar. Anyone going into the nitty gritty of how the death was perpetrated on the unfortunate youth by a system that preys on dead bodies will be shocked after the hallo bullo the politicians and whoever wanted a five minute fame on Media played. Let us analyse the sequence of events.

1.  In recent times, specially after, state bifurcation there was sudden spurt in the membership of ABVP in campuses. OU too was an example. There were SFI, NCUI, TRS union and ASA (may be said close to Communists). Rohit Vemula was intelligent, contributed to specific ideology but kept away from malignant disputes as far as possible, according to few associates.  How it happened, no one knows, he involved or was forced to involve himself in a squabble with an ABVP  activist. This happened in August, 2015.  Political, Journalistic, historical, civil rights vultures did not fly to prey on the incident. The VC changed in September, 2015. A committee, as mandated by University rules was constituted and it went into crucial details and suspended five students, without cancelling their monetary privileges. Then also the vultures kept silent. the case went to court and court did not give relief to the students. First and foremost, I have never come across cases of  attributing caste motives to such noble profession as teaching. They are like Army Personnel,  who are trained to keep off such things. The flock mentality that Congress nurtured for six decades killed this spirit too. So, we can never suspect the Committee  decision as driven by caste politics. 

MP Dattatreya wrote a letter to HRD Ministry to look into the incidents of deaths and violence in the University Campus. This is not uncommon.  even Congress MP V.H.Rao, wrote. Vultures preyed selectively. The VC came after August, 2015 after the attach incident. He too  was made scape goat. Now they want HRD Minister to resign.  

What these vultures are loosing sight is that India of 2016 is not India of 1947. Information flow is fast. People start thinking except in Jungle states like Bihar. In AP there is no reaction to the episode. They considered it as one more depression led suicide. Was Rohit under depression. None knows. But his family did not certainly help him. His parents were separated. There are serious differences in the opinions of his father and his mother regarding the caste of his mother. His father said money was never an issue.  They are sufficiently rich. His mother, though, stressed they were dalits. Police have a different view. Did his identity, whether dalit or not, disturb him? Was he thinking of the consequences of the truth coming out at a later stage and his losing the benefit? Or did someone from ASA knew the truth and troll him?  Was it the real "identity" he mentioned in his note that our vultures played double game on? It seems so. In the reported parts of the note he scrubbed, he reportedly mentioned ASA as troubling him. This can not be ignored in the light of the "identity" and the riddle of caste certificate. 

The vultures are trying to keep the pot boiling till Parliament Session, when they can start preying on the souls of the dead. 

And the fake leader, Arvind Kejriwal tried to perpetuate lie after lie. He went to HCU and said the deceased got seat on merit. His lie was immediately exposed. He wanted an apology from PM? Did he apologize to the farmer who committed suicide under his nose? No! Instead he blamed Modi's Police. People who live in glass houses can not throw stones on others. Those who have lot too answer can not question others. Those who can not keep their houses in order can not comment on others. Those whose pockets are picked can not advise others to be careful and frugal.

Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson went on a camping trip. After a good meal and a bottle of wine they lay down for the night, and went to sleep. Some hours later, Holmes awoke and nudged his faithful friend awake. "Watson, look up at the sky and tell me what you see." Watson replied, "I see millions and millions of stars.""What does that tell you?" Holmes questioned.Watson pondered for a minute. "Astronomically, it tells me that there are millions of galaxies and potentially billions of planets. Astrologically, I observe that Saturn is in Leo. Horologically, I deduce that the time is approximately a quarter past three. Theologically, I can see that God is all powerful and that we are small and insignificant. Meteorologically, I suspect that we will have a beautiful day tomorrow. What does it tell you?" Holmes was silent for a minute, then spoke. "Watson, you retard. It tells me that some bastard has stolen our tent!" 

Opposition is totally disgruntled. It is paranoid that if the Modi government is allowed to work, they have no chance of ruling India in near future. So, vultures have a field day. But vultures too get extinct in a time frame. Let us hope!

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SARVEY JANAHA SUKHINO BHAVANTHU








Tuesday, January 26, 2016

COLLECTIVELY WE FAILED THE SYSTEM - LET US OPEN OUR HEARTS AND FOLLOW MODI-A CHANCE THAT RARRLY COMES
FROM MY HEART - FROM ARCHIVES

Today, it is a case of failure of all four pillars of democracy. The Legislature failed to transact business a single minute for almost forty five days. This is the case in most states too. The judiciary failed to incarcerate a single corrupt politician during the past sixty three years. The executive failed grossly in alleviating the suffering of the masses. The Media failed to present a true picture of what is transpiring in the three other arms of democracy. Instead, as the recent events proved it connived with lobbyists to dictate the terms of governance as per the whims of a few famous journalists.A dangerous trend that emerged during the past few years is the counterattack by politicians of all hues on the persons that make allegations. ‘ Your back too is black’ is the common refrain. People are thrown into a dilemma on who is the ‘holy cow.’Above all, we, as commoners failed to raise a voice of revolt against the failings of the system. Instead, we preferred to be a part of the rot. We are happy to be divided on caste, colour, region, religion, poor and rich. We compromise our long term interests to a few subsidized freebies. We enjoy viewing a news channel the sings praises on a politician whom we adore, whatever his failings. We feel proud that our economy is growing at 9% p.a. even during a worldwide economic crisis. We fail to know and understand that the growth in our economy is mostly contributed by the services sector. We fail to grasp that the either agriculture that constitutes a 70% of our population is growing at less than 3% and that our manufacturing and infrastructure sectors are growing at less rates than what is expected.
We do not blink an eyelid when we are driving on roads that do no more exist,  even though we know that crores were spent on the the same very recently to be spruced up. We compromise by consuming a quarter kilo of onions/vegetables instead of a kilo a day. We do not protest though we know that the prices increased due to the wrong policies of few corrupt politicians/babus. No strong protest is heard from urban populace when hundreds of farmers are dying or killing themselves across the country due to crop failure. But these same people demonstrate violently, if need be, in case their dearness allowance is not increased in consonance with price increase, which again may be a result of crop failure.
The worst failure of the system is our un-stinted loyalties to a leader or a dynasty. We fail to see their failings. Our energies are wasted in recollecting the sacrifice their ancestors are said to have made for the nation and try to console ourselves that as grandsons/daughters these families are destined to rule us forever, whatever be our plight. We also fail to understand that a weak leader, though non-corrupt leads the nation only into an abyss, an irretrievable  mess and unsolvable conundrum.
Finally, we enjoy reading columns of writers who only preach what they never practised. These include retired bureaucrats, ex-governors etc., who never thought of raising a voice of  protest and resigned as a mark of resentment when they were enjoying the cozy comforts of the grandiose office they occupied.
Unless  commoners  become leaders unto themselves and unitedly fight the system, forgetting their caste, creed, religion and region, richness and poverty etc., this malaise will continue. Leaders and statesmen like Narendra Modi, who have the vision, energy and a history of true sacrifice can do a lot in this regard. Shall we hear him?


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CONSTITUTIONALLY RIGHT- INSTITUTIONALLY WRONG 
STRAIGHT FROM THE HEART OF MY WIFE- WOMAN IS WOMAN'S BETE NOIR 

FROM ARCHIVES


Various arguments were put across by readers on the subject of feminism and male chauvinism.   Travails of women in a ‘man’s world’ can not be looked down. ‘Are they less in the woman’s own  world?’, is a question that needs to be discussed.  Basically, how many women feel happy and comfortable if their first issue is a girl child? Very few, indeed. Not only that, the woman giving birth to a girl is maltreated and assailed by womenfolk in family circles. Educated families are no exception. In majority families, while fathers want girl children equally educated with boys, it is the mothers that put a spoke in the wheel. ‘ Getting rid of the burden of a daughter’ by marrying her off is a priority of mothers. Mothers are not alone to be blamed here. Womenfolk in the family and outside start nitpicking. ‘Something is wrong with the girl’, is the common refrain.
Once married, acceptance of the girl in the new family is the toughest part in her life. Here too, discrimination from the ‘womenfolk’ in the new family is quite distressing. How many mothers-in-law accept the girls as their own daughters? How many married or unmarried daughters in the new family accept the ‘newly-wed’ bride as one among them, basically a woman? Quite a few.  They start bellyaching her for such minor things like the way she talks, walks, dresses or works. It may not be exaggeration  if it is said that but for the menfolk in the groom’s family like father-in-law husband and brothers-in-law, many marriages end in distress.
The story does not end here. Once, the once-a-shy-bride assumes control in the family, the nitpicking roles reverse, more often than not.  Mutual jealousies between co-sisters and the sisters-in-law et al disturbs  the equanimity in the family, so much so that even in this era of nuclear families, there is an uneasy calm between families of brothers and sisters, if and when they meet. Once she comes of age and assumes the role of mother-in-law
she either forgets her past travails or tends to revenge the humiliation she suffered in her in-law’s house. She sees that her daughter-in-law takes the same beating and the saga goes on for ages.
The less said about teasing of women by women themselves, leave alone eve-teasing by menfolk. Recently, I dressed in jeans and tee-shirts on a visit to my daughter in  Europe. I am 62. When I showed the photos  at a family get-together, I was looked with assumed ‘derision’ . All the womenfolk in the family in unison condemned my way of dressing. One of my co-sisters went to the extent of saying that the dressing does not give respect to the family. I only dressed for my convenience and suitable for the conditions in those countries. It had approval of all menfolk in the family including my husband, son and even sons-in-law.  Mine is not a case in exception but general. Little do women realise that dressing is an individual prerogative.Convenience determines the dressing styles in most cases. A lady travelling  a local train during peak times in cities like Mumbai can not be expected to wear a sary and fall.
 
Even mass media is not helpful in this regard. The serials on TV portray women as weaker sex always crying. Or they show one woman conspiring against the other. This only aggravates the negative tendencies in women. The effect of mass media on viewers can not be ignored.
I am neither aggrandizing the men nor am I belittling the fairer sex. Before we ask men to mend their ways and give women their due, we should clean our stables. We should cry halt to negative tendencies in ourselves. We should learn to respect our own clan and protect ourselves and other women from the eagle eyes and evil ways of the opposite sex. Then only our struggle for equality in all fields can be achieved. Till such times we remain puppets in the hands of men.

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Thursday, January 14, 2016




SAMOSA TAX - SOUL OF TUGHLAQ HAS THE LAST LAUGH - JUST FOR LAUGHS



In Rome (Scamia's own country), sitting and eating is luxurious. Restaurants (most) charge $2 per seat, in addition to the food charges, that are usually very high. No  surprise that tourists who are tired of walking from one spot to the other, pay through their noses to sit and eat. I feel no tax is paid to the Italy Government on these charges. After all it is God Fathers' and God Mothers' own country.

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In Telugu there is one famous song. It goes like this. 

విన్నారా విన్నారా ఈ వింతలు విన్నారా, సంబరాల రాంబాబూ శ్రీమంతుడయ్యాడూ

Raambaabu is a BIMARU guy who lives under the staircase of a multi-storeyed building doing daily chores of the residents there for the morsel of food they give, the clothes they provide and as gratitude to the shelter he has got. A good Samaritan gives him the "feel-rich-feeling" ( FRF) by singing that he has become rich. People of the building treat him as VVIP. What happened in BIMARU Bihar is a replica of this picturesque fakery. Is it not? Think. This Feel Rich Factor was sold by the government for what it is worth. When truth comes out, it is a different matter. Feel Rich will fall to Fell Poor again.

Nitish promised that migration from Bihar would be curtailed. He shot two birds with one tax, called Luxury Tax. Is it not? You know! He brought the car owners and Samosa eaters on par. You see! In Delhi, Bihari migrants who own cars enjoy the "LUXURY" only on alternate days.  Who knows? Other cities may follow suit. But imagine , in Bihar Samosa eaters can enjoy the "LUXURY" of eating luxurious samosas every day. What more incentive the migrants can have to return or new migrants from not leaving Bihar?

And this LUXURY of luxury tax will improve the infrastructure projects in Bihar. This is how  it happens. 

In Delhi, Mumbai, Nagpur, Hyderabad, Pune and other towns and cities where large Bihari population migrate, a boy or girl while eating Samosas rue the fact that his/her brother or sister or his/her fiancee is enjoying the LUXURY of eating Samosas in Bihar whereas the poor boy and have no luxury of that. 

Or, you know, the local Regional Party leaders/members may mock them, "Hey! Poor migrant boy or gal! Why dont you enjoy luxurious Samosas back home? Why do eat our poor Samosas?" Naturally, pride of Bihari migrants takes a hit and they may decide to retutn to Bihar in lakhs. Railways and Transport Corporations may have to run "Migrant Return" special trains and busses until Nitish + Lalu are in power. And, Bihar may demand its share in the pie, as after all it is Biharis who pay the extra fare. This prods Railways to lay special lines and allocate more trains to Bihar. Other State Road Transport Corporations too will vie with each other to improve road connectivity to Bihar! You see how much Bihar gains from Samosas.

And, besides the luxury tax that is sure to fill coffers of Bihar, share of Bihar in direct tax collections improves by leaps and bounds. You know, this is how happens. Income Tax Department sees immense potential in Bihar for increase in taxable population. So, like Pigmy Deposit collectors in banks, IT Department may appoint local youth as Pigmy IT collectors and investigators. To start with, investigators will probe people who are in the habit of eating the luxurious Samosas daily or odd number of samosas on odd days and even number on even days. IT department will make it mandatory that all samosa eaters should provide PAN numbers and they will be taxed at source. Those who evade taxes will be raided. And the Pigmy IT collectors will collect IT from the delinquent luxurious samosa eaters. This will not only improve the finances of Central Government but share of Bihar will rise substantially in direct tax collections. And, you see, hurrah!, the state gets immense employment potential. 

But there is a basic problem in collecting luxury tax from samosa manufacturers, who are mainly street industrialists or Income Tax from luxurious samosa eaters who are mainly hutment dwellers or pavement dwellers. Hence, Lalu+Nitish will take the next step in corporatising samosa manufacture. They may ask street vendors to stop samosa manufacture and invite big corporates and multi nationals to open samosa factories. Who said Bihar lacks industrialisation? With a stroke of pen, the luck of Bihar changes. Corporates and multi nationals will queue up. The street vendors thrown out of streets back on to the streets will be offered employment in these corporates as corporates do not have the where-withal of manufacturing luxurious samosas. The unemployed Lalu Pariwar will get Deputy CEO posts in one or the other corporates. Congress guys will swallow as many samosas as possible and will retain their fame as Scamosasters. You see how the economic landscape of Bihar changes overnight, thanks to Samosa Tax. 

There is another item of luxurious interest in the kitty of Lalu+Nitish. That is mosquito repellent. You know, even economist of the caliber of Dr. Manmohan Singh could not conceive the direct and indirect benefit of taxing this item. You see, this is how it happens. As in the case of samosas the  benefit of additional revenue through luxury tax and share in direct taxes will accrue. Besides, there is large potential for industrialisation and employment. You know, see how this happens.

Suppose there is a thousand crore mosquito population in Bihar. People will buy repellents and pay taxes. But stagnating the mosquito population will not benefit the state. So, the state encourages mosquitery like animal husbandry, dairy or piggery. In other words, you see, this industry encourages mosquito breeding as an indirect agricultural activity. To make it large scale, global tenders may be invited. African corporates from Nigeria, Uganda, Kenya etc.and secular corporates from West Bengal, Pakistan, Mayanmar, Bangladesh etc., will invest huge FDI  in the sector. Bihar will grow at 27% with a 27000 per cent increase in mosquito population and a corresponding increase in sale of repellents. And the increase in employment? You know, it will be multi fold. 

The soul of Indira Gandhi starts hovering above Patna. It is regretting the lost chance in removing poverty under Garibi Hatao. It is thinking, "If I only I had a chance of having these two Lalu and Nitish as advisers,  I would have taxed samosas and kachoris in North, Idly and Dosa in South, Pav Bhaji, Pav Vada, Dhokla, Kadi in the West and Bhelpuri, dry rotis and Murmura with Sev in the East. "

And the Soul of Tughlaq has the last laugh reading Indian history books. "They mocked me, the most intelligent ruler!" And Arvind Kejriwal tweets, " But for me, Bihar would not have grown like this." And Ashutosh tweets, "Bit fir uss, Bihari wuld not had growth like that" in his inimitable style. 

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SATYAMEVA JAYATHE

Thursday, January 7, 2016

ROAD TO HEAVEN AND HELL - A SHORT STORY

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Colonel Ramaiah (retired) starts his morning walk at 6 AM sharp. He starts from his home, a three storied building, in the posh DD colony, abetting the sprawling Osmania University campus, walks slowly till he reaches the gates of the campus and then walks briskly on the  pavement of the road that leads to the other gate of the campus. In all he covers a distance of eight kilo meters to and from his home. Before embarking on his daily sojourn, Colonel Ramaiah ( retired) sips the mug-full of South Indian filter coffee made by his loving wife Seetamma. 

Colonel Ramaiah (retired) is seventy years old but looks like a middle aged man. He is sturdy, his face radiates an inexplicable glow,he has broad shoulders, his hair is still black without the artificial tinkering with colors and he wears a moustache that he cared for, next only to his wife. 
Seetamma is the Itihasik Seetamma who has devoted her entire life to the service of her husband and children. An ideal couple, we hardly witness. She is well short of seventy, with wrinkles on the face showing her age. Her hair grayed early in life, as she struggled hard to educate and settle their three children in good positions abroad.

The day 6th January, 2016 was no different in the lives of Colonel Ramaiah (retired) and Seetamma. It was a bright sunny morning. The Moon who till then was singing lullabies to the world with borrowed radiance slowly vanished into the West soon after the Sun, the punctual servant of humanity and all things living, appeared in the East with blazing rays to wake up the world from slumber. The white night turned the plate and became dark red. A mild Southern wind was blowing carrying the frangrance of early morning dew and flowers in the garden of Colonel Ramaiah (Retired). The world was peaceful like the serene mind of a just born baby. Budding flowers dancing in their own places looked like a teen aged girl who wore the  saree of her elder sister first time in her life. Birds started singing solo and duets. The world was still in a camatose stage and looked like a lazy servant, who, hearing footsteps of his master still sat lazying "Let him come, then I shall see". 

People living in posh bungalows are enjoying the cool air- conditioning in their houses. Middle and poor classes woke up early unable to  bear the heat, sweat and biting mosquitoes. Milk vans started arriving with the sound of horns and polluting smoke. News paper vendors sat on the pavements making bundles of  news papers of the day. Small shops catering to the colony residents opened shop. Early morning daily shoppers thronged the shops to buy a milk sachet, a news paper, a cigarette, a coffee or tea with buscuits. Mothers of babies and toddlers came out to buy chocolates and buscuits for their small ones to keep them in good humor until their daily chores were finished. Teen aged students were cycling their way to the early morning tuition classes. Here and there parents were waking up their boys and girls to prepare them for the tuitions. Teachers woke up early to get ready for the day's gruelling tuition sessions. In all the world was hesitant unable to decide whether to sleep or wake up like a night duty security guard closing and opening his eyes. Back in the backyard of the bungalow of Colonel Ramaiah (retired) a cuckoo bird sitting pretty on a mango tree sang "Coo, Coo" announcing arrival of spring. A crow sitting on a neem tree shouted "Caw! Caw!" as if admonishing the cuckoo bird that spring was far away and it was too early to sing Spring songs. The cuckoo bird flew away from the garden and settled on a mango tree in the neibourhood. The crow defected to the mango tree. "Must have been a politician", thought the cuckoo bird and again started singing "Coo, Coo". 

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Colonel Ramaiah (retired) woke up sharp at 5.00 AM, as had been his practice of fifty and odd years. He finished his toilets and washing and brushing, combed his black hair proudly to set it neat, got rid of his night dress and wore track suits and jogging shoes and called "Seetamma! Coffee! " His wife, who is as punctual as the Sun in the East came out with a big coffee mug. Colonel Ramaiah (Retired) inhaled the aroma of the coffee for the umpteenth time in his life and said, " The aroma of your coffee is waking up the entire neighborhood. Even the cuckoo bird mistook that Spring arrived" for the umteenth time in his life. Seetamma  giggled and the dimples on her cheeks showed themselves prominently. "Seetamma! You will go to the Heaven and I to the hell for troubling you daily so early." Seetamma chided him mildly, " Why do you talk death early in the morning?" Colonel Ramaiah (Retired) showed the news paper of the day and said, "See! Everywhere there is death only. Not a single heart -warming news" Seetamma did not even look at the news paper and went away to bring her coffee. Colonel Ramaiah giggled and enjoyed his dose of a big mug of coffee. His big black moustasche danced funnily on his face as he giggled. 

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Colonel Ramaiah (retired) started walking. He is still walking. After a few minutes or was it hours or days, Colonel Ramaiah found himself in a no-man's land. For a split second he had an idea that he was not walking but floating in the air. He turned right. There he saw a beautiful garden. Flowers of various hues, colors and fragrance adorned the garden. Are they Angels there or Elves floating in the air carrying beautuful flowers and fruits in golden plates? Who are those beautiful maidens? They are going up, floating in the air. Then he saw up. On the right side, up, up and up, there is a golden lettered sign board. "WAY TO HEAVEN". Unconciously, he turned right to go on that road. But a strong hand pushed him forward. He was unable to trek on the road to Heaven. A short, plump man was seen going behind the beautiful maidens. Who is he?It is a familiar face. The short and plump man was enjoying himself. "Poor Indians! Half naked fakirs!" Did he say that? Is it Winston Churchil? Even now he treats us with contempt? Colonel Ramaiah (Retired) wondered. "Yes! My son! I am Churchil! I am in the Seventh Heaven! When you are going to hell, keep walking!" He laughed all his way through the gates of Heaven, the beautiful maidens preceding and welcoming him. For a split second Colonel Ramaiah felt that Churchil was jeering at him. "But where am I going?" thought Colonel Ramaiah (Retired). " See the board my son!" "Father! Is it you! Where are you?" "See the board, my son!" the voice repeated. He raised his head and saw the board, "ROAD TO HELL". " What a beautiful road!" he exclaimed loudly. On the right side a man was walking seven steps at a time. If he missed the count he was going back and again starting his steps. Who? Is it not Samuel Johnson?  "Yes! My son! The road to hell is laid with good intentions" so saying the apparition jumped seven steps and reached the gates of Heaven. 

"Is there no single soul here to clarify on my doubts?" he shouted. "There are only souls here my son! Good souls on the Right and wicked souls on the Left."  "Father! Is it you again? But I was not wicked. I always helped people."  "Yes! My son! We are your family. Yes! You always did good to others. But that was your curse. Whatever good you did, the fruits of it accrued to you. But you donated the fruits too, in your enthusiasm tohelp others. Today morning only you blessed your wife to attain Heavenly Abode. Your balance in the fruits exhausted. Immediately, you left your body and started walking on the road to hell." Your wife followed you in a few minutes. See to the right." , thus spake his father in a conciliatory tone. " He saw to the right. His wife was on a golden chariot, being driven by seven Angels with seven horses pulling the chariot speedily. "But, how did I die? " " You were poisoned by your wife. Your coffee of the morning had poison." Thousands of ghost-like apparitions appeared in the horizon. "Poisoned! Poisoned! Poisoned by the most loving wife! And she is on the road to Heaven!" Colonel Ramaiah (Retired) was confused. He was not allowed to stand. He was being pushed. He was not alone now. Billions of souls were following him. What is this stinking smell? Is it so polluted here? So thinking he reached the big gates. "GATE TO HELL" A large sign board greeted him. 

"What is this?" he asked a black man who was continuously writing something. "Hell Jee!" Colonel Ramaiah (Retired) misheard it as Delhi and thought it was natural with the smell and all. He thought for a second and saw the man once again. A familiar face! On his shirt, it was written 83 B. "Oh! Our Journalist friend from Delhi? So he landed at the hell's gate!"

Colonel Ramaiah (Retired) could not control his laughter. He was laughing, laughing and laughing, until he choked. But he continued laughing. "Ha, ha, ha, ha! "

Seetamma rushed from the kitchen. "Jee! Wake up! What happened? Did you dream? You will choke yourself to death!" 

"Death!" Colonel Ramaiah mused loudly. 

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Colonel Ramaiah woke up, finished his toilets, brushed and washed, combed his hair proudly, sat on the reclining chair and called "Seetamma! Coffee!" She brought a mug full of South Indian filter coffee. He enjoyed the aroma for a second, took the mug and started sipping the coffee. He said, " Seetamma! Sit! I had a funny dream! I will tell you! ". He narrated the dream without missing a sequence and started laughing and sipping the coffee simultaneously. He laughed, laughed and laughed until he choked. He fell down. The coffee mug was broken into pieces. Coffee spilled all over. And what else fell down? A dead lizard in the coffee mug.

Looking at the plight of her husband and the dead lizard in the coffee, Seetamma swooned and fell on the thick edge of the reclining chair on which Colonel Ramaiah was sitting and relishing the coffee. Death was instant. Colonel Ramaiah opened his eyes for a split second and blessed her, " May you attain Heavenly Abode!" and his head dropped down. He too was dead! 

The roads to the Heaven and hell were opened for the immortal souls!