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The other IPL scam

Little did Richard Nixon and his pals know that their wickedness (or stupidity, depending on how you wish to look at it) would be immortalised for generations (and rip-offs) to come. Watergate, it seems, was the Waterloo that closed the floodgates of creativity forever, writes Preeti Singh.

india Updated: Apr 30, 2010 10:39 IST
Preeti Singh

Little did Richard Nixon and his pals know that their wickedness (or stupidity, depending on how you wish to look at it) would be immortalised for generations (and rip-offs) to come. Watergate, it seems, was the Waterloo that closed the floodgates of creativity forever.

So, even as con men and criminals continue to dream up those ingenious schemes to keep authorities running around in circles, their laudable hard work is not being mirrored by that of us hacks. In direct contrast to your average media person’s imaginative potential, taglines are lagging way behind headlines. No sooner did a fresh scandal hit the airwaves, than we went scurrying off to add a rather stale, uninspired suffix to the lead character in the eye of the storm.

The jerky christening and re-christening of the current indignation that is keeping our parliamentarians busy is a sad comment on a nation famous for inventive nicknames. From flirting with ‘Tharoorgate’ and ‘Twittergate’ to ‘Kochigate’, the frantically-jumping roulette ball has stopped at ‘IPL gate’ and stuck. And bingo! We have our latest scam.

When will we finally unlock the rusted gates to our creative imagination and do what we do best: break the mould even as we break the news. And why, when it comes to homegrown rogues and their tales, must we be shackled by American folklore? Let’s go local, I say. In fact, I quite like the sound of ‘IPLkalafdaghapla’. What’s more, this would get those western tongues rolling a bit, and even the scores a little for having to embarrassingly mumble ‘volcanic ash’ every time that flight-grounding, smoke-spewing volcano with the sadistically unpronounceable name is mentioned.

While we’re on the subject, don’t you ever wonder how we celebrated India’s sporting successes before ‘Chak De’ came waltzing in and just refused to leave? Like Scamgate on loop is our country’s victory song. Oh, and I’m sure Prime Minister Manmohan Singh must definitely be thinking twice about flashing a victory sign these days, shaking in his boots at the thought of having Snoop Doggy Dogg synch a hundred replays of ‘Singh is King’ as he marches out of a grueling Parliament session. In fact, I wonder if BBC might get away with serenading Gordon Brown with ‘The Final Countdown’ one of these days?

So I say, let those Yanks enjoy their 21st century reincarnations of Nixon’s bumbles in the form of ‘Climate gate’, ‘Trooper gate’ and what not. Why must we be bound by their lack of imagination? Come now, it’s our scandal. Why pay obeisance to someone else’s? And while we’re at it, let’s hear some new tunes, eh?