Where Is Bharat?

April 01, 2010
Ramendra Kumar

The year was 2020. The Twenty-Twenty India Cup final was in progress. The two nations in the fray were reigning champions Maratharashtra and the challengers Ulta Pradesh.

The Maharaja of Maratharashtra Raja Thokoray was watching the match in Marathi while Kaya Palti the Maharani of Ulta Pradesh was witnessing the action in Bhojpuri. The game was being played in a neutral country - Dravid Nadu. (Nothing to do with Rahul Dravid who had retired long back and was now coaching Bangaluru boys in Kannada for the next India cup).

Dear reader, by now you have guessed that India had become a continent of 28 nations – each nation with its own language, culture, flag and currency. An idea of a common currency called Indigo on the lines of the Euro had been floated but had been vehemently opposed by Thokoray and Kayapalti. They did not want to have anything to do with each other. Even the cricket match was more like a war.

The link language of continent India was English and even that was creating a problem. The English spoken by the Malayalis was not understood by the Biharis. The Assamese version of English did not make any sense to the people of Goa. As a result interpreters had to be hired and the sales of ‘learn Tamil, Punjabi, etc. in 30 days’ sky rocketed.

This creation of independent states had had some other interesting fall outs. Shacrook Khan had been banished from Mumbai and had been forced to make Dilli his home. When last heard of he was making a film in which the hero coaches the female kabaddi team to victory in the World Cup in Mongolia. The title of the film – Chak Di Dilli.

Poor Rajnikaat’s plight was worse. He had nowhere to go. The Dravidians from Chennai were refusing to accept him since he was a Maratha. The Marathas had rejected him because he had worked in Bangaluru and Chennai. The Kannadigas did not want to touch him since he was a Maratha by birth and Dravidian by growth!

For some individuals however the fragmentation of India had proved a blessing.

Amitabhi Bachha had shifted to Ulta Pradesh and was now the biggest draw of Bhojpuri films. At the age of 77 he was acting in 77 films a year and advertising for every product ranging from tambakhu to churan and dhoti to lota. His latest hit Kabhi bhaujai, kabhi lugai had been nominated as UP’s entry for the Oscars in the foreign films category.

With all the top stars fleeing Amchi Mumbai, Ritesh Pradeshmukh was now hero number one. His film Mazha Sapna, rokda, rokda had celebrated golden jubilee in all towns of Maratharashtra – from Pandurna to Pusla.

The splitting trend was threatening to spread like a virus. In Jharkhand the doodhwalas were agitating for three separate nations – doodhkhand, dahikhand and Shreekhand.

Finally the older generation was nostalgic about the phenomenon that had been India. And when they declared Mera Bharat Mahaan, the generation next would question: Tera Bharat Kahaan.

Ramendra Kumar is an award winning writer for children with 15 books to his name. He also dabbles in satire, poetry and fiction. His work has been published and reviewed in major newspapers and magazines and translated into several Indian languages as well as Japanese, Spanish, Basque, Sinhala and Mongolian. He is also an inspirational and motivational speaker for children.
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