Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Amchi Mumbai 2020

By Ramendra Kumar

Circa 2020. Place: Amchi Mumbai. All eyes were glued on to the telly. The Twenty-Twenty India Cup final was in progress. The two nations in the fray were reigning champions Maratharashtra and the challengers Ulta Pradesh.

The Raja of Maratharashtra, Raj Thokoray, was watching the match in Marathi while Kaya Palti the Maharani of Ulta Pradesh was witnessing the action in Bhojpuri. The game was being played in a neutral country — Dravid Nadu. (Nothing to do with Rahul Dravid who had retired long back and was now coaching Bangaluru boys in Kannada for the next India Cup.)

Dear reader, by now you have guessed that India had become a continent of 28 nations — each nation with its own language, culture, flag and currency. An idea of a common currency called indigo on the lines of the euro had been floated but had been vehemently opposed by Thokoray and Kayapalti. They did not want to have anything to do with each other. Even the cricket match was more like a war.

The splitting trend was threatening to spread like a virus. In Jharkhand, the doodhwalas were agitating for three separate nations — Doodhkhand, Dahikhand and Shreekhand.

The link language of continent India was English and even that was creating a problem. The English spoken by the Malayalis was not understood by the Biharis. The Haryana version of English did not make any sense to the people of Goa. As a result interpreters had to be hired and the sales of ‘Learn Tamil, Punjabi, Etc in 30 Days’ skyrocketed.

This creation of independent states had had other interesting fallouts. Poor Rajnikaat’s plight had become horrible. He had nowhere to go. The Dravidians from Chennai were refusing to accept him since he was a Maratha. The Marathas had rejected him because he had worked in Bangaluru and Chennai. The Kannadigas did not want to touch him since he was a Maratha by birth and Dravidian by growth!

Shacrook Khan had been banished from Amchi Mumbai and had been forced to make Dilli his home. When last heard of he was making a film in which the hero coaches the female kabaddi team to victory in the World Cup in Mongolia. The title of the film — Chak Di Dilli.

For some individuals, however, the fragmentation of India had proved a blessing.

Amitabhi Bachha had shifted from Amchi Mumbai to Ulta Pradesh and was now the biggest draw of Bhojpuri films. At the age of 77 he was acting in 77 films a year and advertising for every product ranging from tambakhu to churan and dhoti to lota. His latest hit Kabhi Bhaujai, Kabhi Lugai had been nominated as UP’s entry for the Oscars in the foreign films category.

With all the top stars fleeing Amchi Mumbai, Ritesh Pradeshmukh was now hero number one. His film Mazha Sapna, Rokda, Rokda had celebrated golden jubilee in all towns of Maratharashtra — from Pandurna to Pusla.

The Save Tiger campaign launched by NDTV in 2008 hadn’t created much impact on the survival of the four-legged mammal, but it had sure resurrected the two-legged homo sapien Balls Ihave Thokoray. Though his growl had become more a purr he was still crawling along at 95. His tirade against anything north Indians had led to some strange results.

Doodh was now a four-letter word in Marathi and even kids were denied their quota. When they cried for milk they were given Shreekhand diluted in water.

All the taxis on the roads were replaced by Victorias. To popularise the use of Victorias the Amchi Mumbai Mayor had offered tax exemption to Marathi producers who depicted a Victoria chase instead of a car chase in the climax scene of their film.

The history taught in Amchi Mumbai schools had undergone a radical makeover. The Father of the Nation was Chhatrapti Shivaji, Grandmother Maa Jeejabai and Bhau of the nation Sambhaji. A theatre screening the ‘dubbed in Marathi version’ of Sholay had been burnt since the one-line retained in Hindi had raised the hackles of the leaders of Shav Sena: “Tera kya hoga, Sambha.”

“It is an insult to Sambhaji — the Bhau of the nation,” the leaders had screamed.

With the Gujaratis, Sindhis and Marwaris having left Amchi Mumbai, it had lost its financial muscle. The stock market had crashed so many times that Dalal Street had been renamed Halal Street. Mumbaiwallahs were now looking up to the Dabbawallahs and other such success stories for inspiration.

The disappearance of Madrasis and Telugus was creating a very peculiar problem. With idli and sambhar no longer available, the Mumbaikars were on a strict diet of pau bhaji and usal pau and bloating up by the day. The buses and trains of Mumbai could now accommodate only half the number of commuters which was adding to the chaos on the streets.

But Balls Ihave Thokoray was happy. He had patched up with his nephew Raj.

He had decided on his succession in a very democratic manner. He had held a Sledgefest contest on the theme ‘Uttar ko gaali’ in Amchi Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium. The judges had been Symmonds and Hayden from Neecha-Gira Pradesh.

Well, Raj had beaten his cousin and senior Thokoray’s son Oodhav hands down. Raj’s colourful verbal and obscene body language had made even the honoured guests blush.

So Balls Ihave Thokoray had anointed Oodhav Mayor of Aamchi Mumbai, Raj, Raja and himself, Maharaja of Maratharashtra.

Nevertheless, the state of bliss which senior Thokoray found himself in did not last long. Raj started a vicious campaign against Oodhav and the other Marathas with moochh. Soon Shav Sena split up into Shav Sena Moochh or SS(M) and Shav Sena Moochh-less or SS(M-L). The SS(M) comrades started beating up SS(M-L) workers. Terrified, the SS(M-L) workers went on a mooch-shaving spree. As a result the barbers began doing a brisk business. An enterprising nai called Sharad Barber launched a Barbers’ Consortium for Cutting in India (BCCI). The BCCI launched an IPO, which was oversubscribed, and this made the barbers the richest community in Amchi Mumbai. They formed a party called Barbers’ Jagran Party or the BJP.

Statehood was declared for Mumbai and when the elections were held the result was a hung affair — with the three major parties needing 13 seats to form the government. And since none of the party chiefs was ‘well-hung’ they ended up wooing the minorities — that is the Taxi Drivers and Doodhwallahs who had managed to somehow survive in Amchi Mumbai. They had formed a Taxi and Doodh Association, or TADA, which won the crucial 13 seats. After a lot of donkey trading and auctioning the result was finally out. Aamchi Mumbai had finally a stable government: Oodhav and Raj were the deputy chief ministers and Sharad Barber the Governor. Now, I bet you can never guess the name of the chief minister? He was none other than the leader of TADA — bade bhaiyya’s chhote bhaiyya: Bhramar Singh.

Amchi Mumbai’s cosmopolitan fabric was finally restored with sattu and shreekhand coexisting in the same thali.

4 comments:

Fleuve-sous-terrain said...

Hilarious! In many ways, this is a better 'Future Fiction' than its American counterpart "Idiocracy"!

#@®$#@ said...

Awesome conceptualization !! Bravo !! Its really hilarious and makes each one of us think.

Keep blogging

Gajanan said...

nice way of structuring the thought process and wrapping it up in humor ... well 500 insane start shouting somthing... 50 so called sane pple broadcast it all across..and 5 crore suffer..5 pple like us write blog on it :)

meenakshi dufault said...

Brilliant and hilarious. keep blogging.