Tol mol ke poll: Couch potatoes on a roll - Hindustan Times

Tol mol ke poll: Couch potatoes on a roll

ByChetna Keer
Jun 09, 2024 06:44 AM IST

India watched poll counting day like a band baaja baraat moment, divided into categories: cricket match enthusiasts, Netflix vs ballot box viewers, and business-focused couch potatoes.

It’s that empty feeling of a shaadi wala ghar post the “Band Baaja Baraat”, or, post band baaja baraat. Poll counting day, as always, had all the trappings of a band baaja baraat moment. It’s another story that for many a bombastic neta it was more of a “band baj gaya” moment. As far as India watching goes, the nation of couch potatoes who stayed glued to their idiot boxes on counting day, broadly fell into certain categories.

Poll counting day not only tossed up many a surprise and surmise, but also certain couch potato tribes on the rise. (Shutterstock)
Poll counting day not only tossed up many a surprise and surmise, but also certain couch potato tribes on the rise. (Shutterstock)

There was a tribe for whom the counting day was nothing short of an India-Pakistan match. They bunked office, college or classes, to cheer or sneer like the manic masses. The news channels merrily fuelled this feel of a cricket match by hailing D-Day results as a “Thriller”, a “Cracker” of a contest, and so on. Further pumping the frenzy of a cricket match were national and international headlines that screamed, Left Right and Centre, “Ab ki baar, 272 bhi too far”, “NDA 272 paar, INDIA raises bar”. Amplifying the adrenaline rush of a match type contest were Pakistani papers. They spiced up counter sentiments with headlines, like “India Defeats Hate”.

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Netflix vs net kicks

Then, there was a tribe of counting day couch potatoes who were as divided as the poll verdict. For, they were dividing their eyeballs between Netflix and net kicks (by the electorate). The eyeballs of this tribe could be seen gravitating fast and furious between OTT dramas on the idiot box and the drama of the ballot box. The eyeballs of this segment of India watching had a riot of a travel time flitting and fluttering between ‘Lapata Ladies’ and lapata majority. Their bated breaths suffered the same fate. Staying as hung over the thrillers as was the prospective Parliament.

Mandate vs mandi

Not to forget the tribe that went about their “business” with the profound air that election highs and lows might the nation enthral, all that got their adrenaline pumping was the other kind of crash and fall. Their eyebrows had a tough time deciding what to resemble in response to certain breaking news- the peaks of Mt Everest or the crater of Lonar. It was not so much the blokes barking ballot box narratives that got these couch potatoes’ brows resembling puffed-up idlis one moment, and idlis gone wrong, caving into inner chakras in introspective mudra, the next moment. For, their ears and eyeballs were not so much tuned to Kangana’s poll jollifications in Mandi or to the cosmetic changes in “Heeramandi”. Their breaths were hung more over the other mandi, Dalal Street.

The curious case of a sitcom called “Mandi Your Language”.

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