Thursday, November 23, 2006

Only in India

For every smart person in this country, a hundred morons are born to level the equation back to zero.
Consider this hypothetical situation. A guy takes his 10 year old son to a multiplex. But mistakenly, they enter the wrong theatre where the movie has already started. Soon, a couple of adult scenes come up on the screen. Now after the usual reaction of shock and awe, much publicized by Bush in Iraq, the father has the following options:

a) Sit through the movie as if nothing has happened.
b) Walk out of the movie with his son, and ignore this incident.
c) Sue the multiplex for letting a kid enter an auditorium that is screening R-rated movies.
d) File a case with the authorities, asking for the immediate termination of the multiplex as it is showing content that goes against the 'great' Indian heritage.

Now a bold father would go for (a) (I wish my dad was this cool), and a sensible one would go for (b). A slightly firebrand father would accept (c). And remember the moron I talked about earlier? Yes, idiots of those kind would go for (d). I hope that you would agree that anyone who opts for (d) is a Darwin-award qualifier for surviving evolution inspite of nowhere being the smartest.

Now let us replace the hypothetical situation with a real one. Replace 'multiplex' by Orkut, 'movies' by Orkut communities, 'adult content' by an obscure Anti-Shivaji community, and the moronic father figure by this wonder of evolution called 'Subodh Balsaraf'. Yes, he discovered the said community, and has filed a PIL in the high-court, seeking immediate banning of Orkut in India. More details here.

In the not-too-distant past, the Indian government matched such an act with a flawlessly stupid performance of their own --- blocking blogspot for a few days. So this has me worried, because the fate of my 12554 'frenship' requests now hangs in a delicate balance.

I will not go into the details of the dozens of fallacies in Mr. Balsaraf's case. They are too many and too obvious --- freedom of expression, obscure community, low Orkut penetration, American website, state-sponsored censorship and so on.

Just makes me think that is Shivaji's stature so fragile that nincompoops like Mr. Balsaraf have to constantly defend it using such means? Sadly, it seems so.

16 comments:

Bridget Jones said...

are these 12554 'frenship' requests incoming or outgoing ?? :D

Anonymous said...

Hey bridgetjones...
'Incoming' I suppose, since the Chip is still around and going strong. Would have been outgoing had the original been in its place :p

Asterix: Nice take on the issue :) And dont change the pic :p

Anonymous said...

Another great writeup on a issue which is not supposed to be an issue. Thanks to the lukkhas... our overburdened courts have one more case to handle... and the paisa-paisa-money-money chanting lawyers will make some buck in the process...

But it seems we have some distant cousins in South America :). Orkut on Wikipedia has a section each on Legal problems in Brazil and India :D

Asterix said...

@bridgetjones: Uhh...ummm...right now they are all incoming requests. As the wise bird said, the Chip is still around :)

@tweety: Thanks. I intend to keep the pic till I am able to find a 'girlfren' out of so many potential 'frens'. In other words, till eternity.

@goldensilence: From Ram Jethmalani playing the devil's advocate (and how!) to such inane cases, our legal system has no respite in sight. And with all due respect, Brazil is no match for India!

Mudra said...

Crap!! I was gonna write on this! Chor... lol...

No but damn good take, as usual... and you know what's worse then people filing such PILs? Half the time, the government okays them too! Now THAT is sad.

Asterix said...

@mudra: :) you snooze you lose! I am sure with government and citizens like ours, you and I will have plenty of stuff to write about without running out of topics.

sangy said...

wow, i bet in his head, this dude sees himself as the last defender of shivaji-dom in thsi country. this, people, is why this country's schools need great history teachers.

Asterix said...

@sangy: No he isn't the last one. Gems like him grace the sands of Maharashtra even in this century.

Anonymous said...

Hmmmm.. interesting..
So all this concern for Orkut is only so you can get your daily dose of "frenship" requests huh? :-) No "frens" from Blogspot?
;-)
V

Asterix said...

@V: How dare you question my pure motives!! I am all for fren speech...oops I meant free speech.

Mallika said...

Where do I start? Refreshing, articulate, mature and objective - but you already know that...

The last 2 qualities being something that MOST Indians are proud to lack. Mr. Balsaraf is our latest shining example.

Incidentally - Parents entering an 'A' film with yr kid ABOUNDS all over Mumbai..especially in the suburbs.
I've lost count of the no. of times parents VOLUNTARILY bring their kids for 'A' films and rent DVDs of the same.
Pratibha Naithani's moral policing was in vain.

Asterix said...

@mallika: Thanks for the kind words.
Self moral-policing is the only option. Let everyone decide whats good for him/her. Unless it interferes with someone else, ofcourse.

The Golden Silence said...

Yet another case Dhoom 2 !!! ..... this is hilarious.

Asterix said...

@goldensilence: Somebody pinch me! Am I clairvoyant or what!! The stupidity of the case, however, ceases to amaze me.

Mallika said...

Something that Google chose to keep quiet:
Post Mr. Balls-saraf's earth shaking discovery .. the Google office in Mumbai was trashed by Shiv Sainiks.
A couple of people were beaten up. Not just that - Property in other offices in the same bldg was trashed.
Google however made sure the incident was hushed up.

Asterix said...

@mallika: Ah! How could I forget the Shiv Sainiks! How can they be far behind, when mayhem and idiocy is on offer.