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The states of mind

Goa may be out of bounds for male bureaucrats on poll duty, but there are many delights in other places.

india Updated: Jan 05, 2012 23:33 IST

The Election Commission (EC) is one of the few institutions in India that is known to do its work meticulously. But we never knew it was this meticulous. On Wednesday, the EC made Goa — that state of susegad fame — out of bounds for male bureaucrats because they would be required in “tougher” states during the assembly elections. But this toughies-for-tougher-states principle is not the real reason for this move: there had been instances of misconduct by male officers during polls earlier: an officer had asked for “gender-specific” massages and another one had insisted on visiting a casino yacht. Poor fellows, how can anyone not do such things while in Goa?

But never mind, all is not lost; Uttarakhand, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, and Manipur can also offer some rich experiences. UP, our top bet in the entertainment department, could be voting as a state for the last time; next time there could be four of them! The state can offer some ‘Wild West’-type of experiences. Think of John Wayne and Clint Eastwood and replace Meerut with Texas and Ballia with Nevada and put up a ‘Wanted’ poster everywhere you go. To make it more authentic, get hold of some bandanas, spurs and buckskins (in India, go the Indian way, some cheap leather would do). When in Manipur, try polo for some Raj experience. If you can’t, then may be some boxing bouts with Mary Kom. Punjab is not drab either: think of the mustard fields. Dig up some old Bollywood romantic movies. And while in Uttarakhand, hear the (ND) Tiwari tales while knocking back some Old Monk.

Are you guys now ready to hit the road and soak up the experiences this country can offer? It’s all in the mind, after all.