Bit of wit: A letter to Mother Superior
Heartiest congrats on becoming a mom yet again. The newspaper tells me that you, a 65-year-old teacher with seven grandchildren, are now the world’s oldest woman to bear quadruplets. Your tally of kids from five fathers has shot up to 17, with their age group being a staggering 0-44 years. At this rate, we can look forward to a football match between teams formed entirely of your own brood. Great going! Even as same-sex marriages are being legalised and birth rates are dropping in the West, your prolific output is refreshingly old-fashioned. Indeed, you are a woman without a (meno)pause.
This letter comes to you all the way from Incredible India. If you think that my country is grossly overpopulated, you are highly ill-informed. In fact, the custodians of our religions want us to produce more and more babies. I can’t believe that these honourable men have any hidden tie-up with the diaper makers or the baby-food industry. Their fundas make sense: things are tough for the minority communities, there’s great security in numbers, the more the merrier, etc. Even our majority community, it’s feared, might be reduced to a minority if it takes its foot off the procreation pedal. If these gatekeepers of the faith have it their way, we would be kept locked inside our CCTVed bedrooms day and night. And the door would open only when it’s time to go to the maternity ward.
There are several social evils that worry our dharam gurus: son fixation, female foeticide, family planning, casual sex, attractive contraceptives. All these are no doubt hindering the rampant growth of population. A few babas, in particular, are apparently messing things up. Yoga guru Ramdev’s Putrajeevak Beej (‘son-only seed’) is said to rule out the possibility of having a girl child, while Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Raheem Singh is accused of having castrated hundreds of his followers on the promise of uniting them with God. What’s worse, porn queen-turned baby doll Sunny Leone is endorsing condoms, enticing people to have aimless intercourse. And to top it all, for the second time in 15 years or so, our Prime Minister is a bachelor (or nearly so), rather than the inspirational father-of-nine Lalu Yadav.
Under the circumstances, it’s you who can turn the tide as the new icon of motherhood and goddess of fertility. Your emotional line, “I decided to become pregnant again as my nine-yearold daughter wanted a younger sibling,” is sure to strike a maternal chord here. A sarv dharam (all-faith) delegation will soon visit the Fatherland and invite you to India to launch the ‘Hum Do, Hamare Char’ campaign. This will give the noble souls a golden opportunity to tour Germany, all expenses paid, and also take a break from their holy books and unholy devotees. But I must warn you that these God-fearing men are on a mission; they have a high moral standing, even when they are sitting. Don’t even try to do to them what Maneka did to Vishvamitra. World War 3 might erupt if our religious leaders forget their divine duties and start fighting over you. If you want Hindustani company for your kiddos, there are lots of Vicky Donors here, ever-ready to oblige you. Hope you will come.
A father of one
For the uninitiated, Dhan Mill Compound, a former granary and a cluster of warehouses, has morphed into the city’s modish food, fashion, design and lifestyle destination. Its streets are lined with art cafes, home décor outlets, ateliers, art galleries, pottery studios, dance halls and high-end boutiques, whose facades and interiors are as interesting and experimental as the wares they deal in. Interestingly, all of these fancy establishments are housed in re-purposed warehouse buildings, which still have metal roofs.
According to a Delhi government official, a break-up of the total jobs, including the list of employers and the number of people they hired, will be shared “in a couple of days”. Notably, the government portal was launched by chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on July 27, 2020, to help entry-level and blue-collar job seekers connect with employers at a time when the Covid-19 induced lockdown left many people unemployed.
“Manufactures, and start-ups which are working on alternatives to single-use plastic have to pay more GST for raw material. Hence, the Delhi government will write to the Centre and request a reduction in GST rates,” Delhi environment minister Gopal Rai said.
Safdarjung, Delhi’s base weather station, recorded 0.1mm of rainfall between 8:30am and 5:30pm on Sunday. The Capital recorded 1.9mm of rainfall on Saturday and 117.2mm on Friday, making the monthly total 119.2mm so far. The normal monthly average for July is 210.6mm, said weather experts.
Monsoon elevates Adam Khan’s tomb into an emergency sanctuary for passersby (and dogs) speared by sudden showers. Perched atop a Mehrauli hillock, the monument overlooks the Qutub Minar, which appears totally bechara and defenceless in the heavy rain.