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INDIAN SOCIAL REALITIES

The Social Fabric of Life

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An Ad from Delhi:  One Stop Shopping for Life’s Myriad Problems

Vinay Lal

Here, then, is the best ad in the world, this one from Delhi.   Ever had any problems with your sex life, with the management of money, or with disobedient or wayward children?  Is your husband too domineering and demanding, or does your wife nag you?  Do you suspect that your wife is trying to poison you, or that your husband is bedding another woman?  Or are you starved for love, or simply feeling low?  Did you dream of a modeling career and do you instead find yourself serving as a cashier, flipping burgers, or getting bored silly at some clerical job?

A visit with Miyan Kamruddin Samrat, who makes his home near Aggrawal Sweets in Kalkaji, in south Delhi, is guaranteed to resolve your problems in life, however small or "majestic".  Kalkaji, where our Miyan lives, is home to many temples, among them the famous Bahai temple and a new Hare Krishna Mandir, but where is the need for such grandiosity when Miyan's blessings will suffice.  Kalkaji’s great claim to fame is that it has, in the hands of Miyan Kamruddin Samrat, become the one stop shopping center for life’s problems.  Miyan Kamruddin has issued an "All India Open Challenge" that he will find the resolution to your problems within seven hours.  Why seven I cannot say, as I am not aware of the significance of seven in Indian numerology. Or perhaps Miyan just happened to watch a pirated copy of the "Seven Year Itch" before he issued his challenge?  Heck, seven's as good a number as any.

I marvel at Miyan's ingenuity and his sparkling imagination.  For someone who sits near one of the dozens of humdrum "Aggrawal Sweets" sprinkled generously through the thoroughfares and neighborhoods of Delhi, he's aiming to beat the Deepak Chopras of the world at their game.  No seven steps to success are required, only a stop by the great mall of solutions.  Krishna in the Gita was unequivocal:  come to me, surrender to me, he said, and you shall have bliss.  "Whatever you want, you get it", says Miyan:  "My promiss." Truly is Miyan a Samrat, ruler of the world.  Miyan is even familiar with the wicked stepmother syndrome, so those like Cinderella trapped as a consequence of their father's second or third marriage need not despair.  The return to the mother's bosom may not be possible, but Miyan is there to give succor to wounded ones.  Miyan is evidently also familiar with the charms mentioned in the Atharva Veda, as much as in medieval European manuals, to trick one's enemies.

Miyan, most of all, is an equal opportunity employer.  He doesn’t only cater to men who believe that sex with a virgin will cure them of AIDS.  Quite to the contrary, it’s time to recognize the world for what it is:  we ditch some, we get ditched some.  Thus this admixture of realism and optimism:  “Meet Once Lover, Who Are Ditched by Each Other.” 

Copyright:  Vinay Lal, August 2009

 

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