A Festive Thought...!


The ‘festive’ thought as mentioned above could be interpreted as controversial after the words that follow are swallowed up, and therefore I clarify at the outset that there is no malicious intention behind this thought. There is only the spirit of celebration.

The Indian festive season starts around September every year with various non-religious, religious and intra-religious festivals taking place almost every week. Since all such events of worship or otherwise are now called ‘festivals’, these get naturally opened up for everybody to participate. Like the quintessential slogan given in West Bengal by the Chief Minister during the Durga Puja ‘festival’, ‘Religion is mine, religion is yours; festival is for all’. For example, in this year’s Christmas ‘festival’ on the streets of Kolkata you would hardly find a ‘religious’ being among the thousands of intense merrymakers. So then, everyone waits for the occasion from September to New Year Day to participate which translates into roaming around, extensive use of public transport and a lot of eating.

Business enthralls on every Indian street with quick-bite stalls, fast food joints and the usual restaurants each of which gets literally surrounded by ‘celebrating’ revellers. It becomes ‘binge eating’ in the truest sense of the term. And, it is not at all a joke to indulge in this over a reasonably long period of 3 to 4 months.

While it is definitely a positive development of religious occasions transcending all barriers and allowing all across all religions to take part wholeheartedly, there is a bit of a concern, at least for this nondescript writer.    

You see, after continuous ‘binge eating’ bellies around are sure to grow faster. In fact, the human observatory data as revealed to this writer indicate this very phenomenon. As you know, in India public transport is very crowded, particularly during the festival season. Nowadays while travelling in a public mode you need to be on your constant guard to counter the pushes and pinning by the backpacks. Even non-celebrating normal commuters carry the omnipresent slinging backpacks. And, they bulldoze through to create a space for themselves, maybe just to indulge in the inevitable mobile surfing. Now, after bellies start growing faster you’ll have the added misery of countering the front-packs too. No alternatives. At least till the New Year pledges which may or may not contribute to a bit flattening bellies...



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