As an educated Parsi, I do keep a normal diary. But after the recent hullabaloo, I switched over to a ‘secret’ one to avoid persecution from the media and others who link me, Rohinton Framroz Dotiwala, with anyone wearing a dhoti. I was flooded with silly questions like “How many times have you been thrown out of clubs for wearing a dhoti and breaking their dress code?” Saala idiot log chhe! Cannot distinguish between dhoti, ‘doti’, ‘lungi’ and ‘veshti’. If they ever visit Dadar Parsi colony, I could explain the difference.
You see, ‘doti’ is part of the Parsi surname ‘Dotiwala’, no connection with any apparel. Of course, quite often but not always, the Parsi surname had something to do with the family profession. Daruwala owned wine shops, Furniturewala sold furniture and so on. But there are slight differences. Screwwala may deal in screws but nothing to do with screwing and Bhiwandiwala belonged to Bhiwandi.
Dhotiwala could refer to someone who wore a dhoti in the traditional style. Don’t confuse that with the typical Parsi surname Dotiwala. That was the surname of an Indian cricket umpire who officiated even in Test matches and was in the company of star Indian cricketers like Nari Contractor, Polly Umrigar and the Rusis (Surti, Modi). Dotiwala was a member of clubs but to my knowledge did not wear the dhoti, either to clubs or while working. It would have been difficult to signal a four, shout “No ball” while holding on to the dhoti on a windy day.
Yet the dhoti is constantly in the news and at the rate it is going could reach the SC which in my opinion is being asked to decide on the most inane questions like what lay behind the choli! Only the Tamilian would link the dhoti with Tami pride and Tamil culture. Both the DMK and the AIADMK are conjuring up visions of a dhoti votebank with the DMK highlighting the fact that Jayalalitha could not wear the dhoti but Karunanidhi and Stalin can. Further, Karunanidhi could rattle off dozens of rhyming couplets on the greatness of veshti and the not-so-great TNCA. Jaya should think of a popular retort like introducing an ‘Amma veshti’. This could truly be a crucial poll issue!
The Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) was goofy enough to raise the dress code on this issue. One of the Tamil stalwarts, former finance minister P. Chidambaram, was always immaculate in spotless veshti and shirt. They lent a special aura to his budget presentation. The debate could now aggravate the differences between the north and south because there were fewer protests from the north. Possibly north Indians believed the insult was only to the south Indian veshti and not to their dhoti which exposed a lot more leg and thigh.
The Mumbai-based satirist is the creator of ‘Trishanku’; E-mail your secret diarist: vgangadhar70 [AT] gmail [DOT] com
We at Outlookindia.com welcome feedback and your comments, including scathing criticism
1. Scathing, passionate, even angry critiques are welcome, but please do not indulge in abuse and invective. Our Primary concern is to keep the debate civil. We urge our users to try and express their disagreements without being disagreeable. Personal attacks are not welcome. No ad hominem please.
2. Please do not post the same message again and again in the same or different threads
3. Please keep your responses confined to the subject matter of the article you are responding to. Please note that our comments section is not a general free-for-all but for feedback to articles/blogs posted on the site
4. Our endeavour is to keep these forums unmoderated and unexpurgated. But if any of the above three conditions are violated, we reserve the right to delete any comment that we deem objectionable and also to withdraw posting privileges from the abuser. Please also note that hate-speech is punishable by law and in extreme circumstances, we may be forced to take legal action by tracing the IP addresses of the poster.
5. If someone is being abusive or personal, or generally being a troll or a flame-baiter, please do not descend to their level. The best response to such posters is to ignore them and send us a message at Mail AT outlookindia DOT com with the subject header COMPLAINT
6. Please do not copy and paste copyrighted material. If you do think that an article elsewhere has relevance to the point you wish to make, please only quote what is considered fair-use and provide a link to the article under question.
7. There is no particular outlookindia.com line on any subject. The views expressed in our opinion section are those of the author concerned and not that of all of outlookindia.com or all its authors.
8. Please also note that you are solely responsible for the comments posted by you on the site. The comments could be deleted or edited entirely at our discretion if we find them objectionable. However, the mere fact of their existence on our site does not mean that we necessarily approve of their contents. In short, the onus of responsibility for the comments remains solely with the authors thereof. Outlookindia.com or any of its group publications, may, however, retains the right to publish any of these comments, with or without editing, in any medium whatsoever. It is therefore in your own interest to be careful before posting.
9.Outlookindia.com is not responsible in any manner whatsoever for how any search engine -- such as Google, Bing etc -- caches or displays these comments. Please note that you are solely responsible for posting these comments and it is a privilege being granted to our registered users which can be withdrawn in case of abuse. To reiterate:
a. Comments once posted can only be deleted at the discretion of outlookindia.com
b. The comments reflect the views of the authors and not of outlookindia.com
c. outlookindia.com is not responsible in any manner whatsoever for the way search engines cache or display these comments
d. Please therefore take due caution before you post any comments as your words could potentially be used against you
10. We have an online thread for our comments policy:
You are welcome to post your suggestions here or in case you have a specific issue, to directly email us at Mail AT outlookindia DOT com with the subject header COMPLAINT