It’s hot—I mean the weather. I mean that in Pune. I mean the one right now.
The temperatures in the city have consistently been hovering around/above 40 degrees, and this is unusual. That way, it’s possible that the the max. temp. figures themselves might not be very much above the average. It could also be that the min. temp. is way above the normal temp. Or, if not that too, then at least the temp profile throughout the day—the total flux received per day as such—might have gone significantly up. Or, the wind is unusually low… Whatever. But the fact is that it’s been very much hot for the past many days—not just in Pune but also for most of Maharashtra (and other parts of the country). … Hmmm….
…Is it just me, or have our daily newspaper-wallahs from Pune really forgotten to print photographs or news-stories on one or more of the following (listed in no particular order):
- Naked urchins caught mid-air on camera while jumping into: (a) Mula, (b) Mutha, (c) Mula-Mutha, or (d) a canal
- A vendor of water-melons caught napping on a heap of the fruit at the market-yard, right on the hot afternoon
- A sparrow or a crow perched on a municipality water-tap, its neck strenuously bent down towards the outlet of the tap, trying to drink the infrequent droplets of water coming out of the tap
- A close-up of a dry river-bed showing that typical criss-cross patterns of cracks developed in the baked mud
- A color photograph of a bright-red “gulmohor” tree, say on the NDA road, snapped by some practising general physician (who has not let his finer sensibilities die despite the demands of his profession and his obviously busy schedule (from 10 to 1 and 4:30 to 7:30, this being Pune))
- A photo of the fallen levels of water in the dams nearby. Here, two options are available to the newspaper editor: (i) If he likes a long-shot, show the dry contours of the near-empty reservoir. (ii) If he likes a close-up, show the vertical water level-gauge near the dam wall which used to have red and white markings in a previous life-time.
- A photo showing the audience in a small meeting hall, the audience consisting solely of working journalists, the photo itself appearing with a caption that the event was organized for discussing P. Sainath’s book: “Everyone Loves a Good Draught”. … Even without reading anything further from the news, it is easy to make out that they all are working journalists, because:
- all the males in the audience have beards and no female seems to have any kind of a make-up put on
- regardless of their gender, they all: (a) appear in cotton/khaadi “kurtas,” (b) record news the old-fashioned way, by scribing down in a school-student’s notebook, i.e. without using audio/video recorder, (c) carry “shabnam” bags
I don’t think I have seen any one of the above-mentioned news items in any one of our Pune newspapers (including the local editions of the National Newspapers) … Why is it so? Why? Have our H’ble Ministries/Departments of Information and Broadcasting, Environment, Irrigation, Water Supply, Science and Technology, Meteorology, etc. all been sleeping? Shouldn’t they be more careful and see to it that proper news items are punctually published in all our newspapers? … Weren’t the matters soooo much for the better during those BJP years?
..Err… Leaving aside the dark-grey [“nothing is all black or all white”] humor…
…Ok. Really leaving humor aside and getting serious about something that is worth getting serious about:
Here is a reminder that now is the time to execute at full-speed all those micro-level projects like “paaNi aDavaa, paaNi jiravaa.”
… I don’t know if it is true but it’s a widely held belief that if a summer is unusually hot, as this summer seems to be turning into, then the monsoon following it also tends to be more intense. … A greater rain-fall ought to make for good news in a heavily rains-dependent country like India, but, unfortunately, this always is not true—even a greater rain-fall is only a mixed blessing. In India, just the way we waste any other natural resource (including time), we also put to waste most of the water that falls in this land… The way we function, typically, people wake up about the need to put up small dams in their places only in the month of July (just the way we wake up to the need to put up large dams in place only in mid-May).
The time to act to for the next monsoon is now—at least for those micro-level projects.
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A Song I Like:
(Marathi) “nav laakh taLapatee, deep vijeche yeth_…”
Lyrics: “kusumaagraj” (V. V. Shirwadkar)
Music: “aNNasaaheb chitaLkar” (C. Ramchandra)
Singer: “aNNasaaheb chitaLkar” (C. Ramchandra)
PS: If someone can locate a record/CD for this particular song, please drop me an email (aj175tp AT yahoo DOT co DOT in). Thanks in advance!
PPS: Now that I have begun writing shorter blog-posts covering only one-two topics (and so long as I continue doing so) I am going to reduce the number of songs listed in this last section—one, at most two.
[To be streamlined at the time of the next post]