Come to think of it, I could have changed forever certain English idioms and phrases. Everyone says I had been “kicked upstairs” but the fact is I have been kicked downstairs. There is a lot of difference between the two.
My new job gives me a lot more time for such introspection, so I am keeping my secret diary up-to-date. From Mumbai police commissioner, I am now director of the Maharashtra State Security Corporation and busy with a study on how pins and paper clips could be a hazard to security. This did not need a huge cabin, lots of furniture and accessories like constables at my beck and call, the entire PR department of the police force and so on. My job is so hush-hush that I have to manage with two chairs and a staff of two, one full-time, one part-time. It is so hush-hush that first and foremost I have to find out what exactly I am supposed to do as director of the State Security Corporation when there are so many agencies already dealing with state security. Hence the current obsession with pins and paper clips.
Of course, I am also collecting material for my memoirs. Someone wrote that my kind of policing was all brawn, no brain. Listen, with the kind of boss I had (home minister R.R. Patil), where would brains come into play? Still, I was happy the state government was shown in a good light. My transfer and promotion file was cleared in just two days, that must be some kind of a record.
And yet, I am sorry that morale was down in the police force during my tenure. Yes, no police constable came up to me on a public platform and presented me with a rose as he did with Raj Thackeray. This must have boosted the morale of the force and as if this was not enough, our beloved Thackeray cousin visited police HQ and dropped in for a chat with my successor, Satyapal Singh. I never knew Rajbhai cared so much for the Mumbai police and hope he visits the police commissioner’s office more often. Such visits would do wonders to police morale. I am sure in the days to come, Uddhavbhai will do the same and if the Thackeray cousins take charge and run the Mumbai police force from the control room, there will be no complaints of “remote control”. Direct control could be better though I don’t know where that would leave R.R. Patil saab.
While on the question of brawn and brain, I must say no policeman wants to deal with communal riots. But leaders of some political parties (everyone knows who they are) wanted them. They could call in “their boys” and wreak havoc in the city. At the Azad Maidan, I did not allow this to happen and that was not liked by many people, including Shobha De who discovered a new hero in Raj. No prizes for guessing who’ll be minister for culture, fashion and ishtyle if the mns comes to power in the state and forms a ministry under Raj Thackeray.
The Mumbai-based satirist is the creator of ‘Trishanku’; E-mail your secret diarist: vgangadhar70 AT gmail.com
Thank you to all those who have taken the trouble to read the article and share their thoughts. Out of the arguments made here, there are two that perhaps need answering. So here they go.
1. The first part of the article compares outcomes (relative percentages of population of the religions concerned) irrespective of the process that led to those outcomes - whether immigration, relatively faster population growth or conversions. This was for two reasons. One, to put the figure of 2.3 per cent in "numerical perspective", as the article itself explained. The second reason was that outcomes are ultimately what the crux of debate is about. The rest of the article in any case dealt with process - or conversions in this case, from both a contemporary and historical perspective.
2. Some commenters have tried to cast doubts on the reliability of Census 2001. Those who do this should bear in mind that Census 2001 was conducted by a BJP government. Considering the extreme importance that BJP gives to this issue, it would be reasonable to expect that IF it had perceived a problem with the methodology that was distorting the numbers, it would have fixed it. As the article mentioned, BJP or BJP-supported governments have been in power for 10 of the last 40 years, or about a quarter of the time, and the only reasonable conclusion one can arrive at is that any misreporting of numbers, real or perceived, would be marginal and hence, not of importance.
To all other arguments made, my answer is the following: Please read the article again, with particular focus on the quotations of Vivekananda and Monier Williams, and the history of the missionary efforts in Bengal and their outcome.
Esteemed Mr.Arup Patnaik ji ,the Director,MSSC. Mumbai
Please don`t get disheartend .Such things happen only in India. Sincere,dutiful and prudent officers,particularly in police force ,do have to face humiliation. Anyway whatever happens that happens for something good.( to be known lateron ) You got promotion and now you are quite free , no hassel wessel absolutely tensionfree and most importantly you will be finding ample quality time to be able to enjoy with your family members,which they have been deprieving of so far . And of course , as you have mentioned that you will be writting your secret diary too.
Wishing you best,
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