The Gorkhaland agitation has found a sympathetic chord in the Indian Democratic Republican Front, based in Delhi. Its president is the Rev Christopher, a short, middle-aged stocky Gorkha, who looks more like a wrestler than a priest. He conducts prayers at the Church of Nagaland on Christmas, Easter and other Christian feast days. But these days his services are for peace and amity in Darjeeling and other affected areas, while the lost woman he rescued and married years ago waits at home.
In a statement, Rev Christopher said, “The historic Gorkhaland Movement has erupted again on the demand for a separate state. It reminds me of the bitter days of the agitation of 1986 under the leadership of the late president of the Gorkha Rastra Mukti Morcha, Subhas Ghising. But the agitation was non-violent. Now the armed forces are out to quell the agitation in which peaceful citizens are being killed or injured and hooligans are exploiting the situation.”
As a Churchman, it makes Rev Christopher feel very sad and he’s offering prayers night and day so that common sense prevails and incidents of arson and violence come to an end. Sweating profusely, he goes about with his son meeting religious leaders, leading citizens and media persons seeking moral support for Gorkhaland but with non-violent means. Not the bloodcurdling war-cry of “Gorkhali Ayao!”
Spot the difference
It is true that a book is man’s best friend but it must be also kept in mind that each friend differs from the other in terms of style, appearance, personality; so do books. Of late, the trend of releasing coffee-table books has increased. A few days back, a colleague received an invitation for a book launch event. Knowing about the fashion of coffee-table books, our colleague mailed the organisers, asking whether the book was a coffee-table book or a regular read as he wasn’t interested in the former at all. Replying to his query, the organiser wrote a mail which read, “Yes, you can read this book while enjoying your coffee.” Puzzled at the reply, our colleague then called up the organisers and explained to them the difference between two kinds of books. Strangely, the organisers had no idea about the difference between a coffee table book and a normal read! Sharing the incident with other colleagues, our friend wondered if organisers of book launches have no idea of this difference, then how can one expect the general public to do so?
A chaotic joy
Travelling in the Metro is an exciting ride in itself. Many incidents occur during the journey that keep one entertained throughout and some even bring a smile on one’s face. One such interesting moment happened when a colleague was travelling back home from office. Basically, announcements inside the train are made to keep the travellers updated about the arrival of each station. However, imagine the level of chaos that can occur if something goes wrong in the announcements, especially during rush hour, when the coach is jam-packed. Our colleague somehow managed to squeeze through the crowd and then saw an elderly woman hurriedly getting up and moving towards the exit door. The announcement being made was, “This station is Rajendra Place station”. Nonetheless, she couldn’t reach the door on time due to the crowd and thus missed her station. Irritated at having missed the station, she waited to get off at the next one. To her amazement she saw that the next halt was the station that she thought she had missed. The glee on her face made her look like a joyful baby, who finally got its candy after much effort. Well, goof-ups are not always bad, our colleague concluded.
Our inhouse wag quipped that Prime Minister Narendra Modi fired a dud when he tweeted for calm ~ with Internet disconnected, how could the Panchkula protestors and rioters get the message?
* * *
Contributed by: Sri Krishna, R V Smith, Kumal Roy, Nivedita R and Rakesh Kumar