2018, Column, LazyEye, Telegraph Calcutta

Our national dish: Pakoda!

You may have no excuses, you were told a full week ago: India has been done dana done, done dana done, Done. NothingHappened has finally been banished, thank you and GodBless, things are happening, they are getting DONE. Bakoda has said it is getting done, and Bakoda can say no wrong. Bakoda has proclaimed all it requires is Pakoda.

Make a Pakoda and all shall be done dana done done, so Bakoda says and so all patriotic folks should believe, for the good reason that Bakoda says so… Make a Pakoda, and all thereafter shall be well.








Bakoda knows, trust me, he has been making Pakodas all his life. He may call himself a chaiwala, but that’s just him being humble. Bakoda is a terribly humble man, we know that, so humble he was willing to call himself a chaiwala when he was to the monogrammed suit born, each suit worth tens of lakhs. And yet he said he was a mere chaiwala! Such is his sublime humility. At the first hint of criticism he cast that monogrammed suit away, auctioned it off. What’s a suit for such a man as Bakoda, he gave it the boot. And so was born that insidious allegation that his is a suit-boot ki sarkar. All because he booted the suit.

What has the world come to? Maa-kasam, Bakoda shall never don that suit again. (Psst, he never does wear a suit, or anything that he wears, a second time, but we aren’t telling anyone that, are we? Boot the suit is such a fabulous riposte to suit-boot, we just can’t get over how clever we are, but hush!)

And daren’t you laugh. That’s not a good thing to be doing. Laughter is anti-national. It reeks of treacherous collaborations with Surpanakha and Tadaka, or even Ravan, who’s to tell? Laughter means you are on the other side of the GreatGoodLord who lost his cradle which we are struggling to gift back to him because He Himself apparently cannot. We shall build it, come what may — cradle waheen banaayenge.

And while Project CradleWaheenBanaayenge proceeds, we shall also dedicate ourselves to the other patriotic duty of PakodaAurBanaayenge.

Bakoda said Pakoda! And Bakoda means business. Just as Pakoda means business, an oily business, but a business all the same. But Pakoda doesn’t come easy. Rome wasn’t made in a day, making Pakoda is a slightly more complex undertaking. You’ll see, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.

You are a little on the daft side, you need explaining. You thought DoneKiBaat will be done in one week, between the space of last week and this one? So much has been done. But that’s not it; done dana done is yet to unravel and come into its own. It is almost an unpatriotic audacity for someone to try to suggest all DoneDanaDanDone has been done in the space of two Sundays and fewer words than Bakoda spews on the last Sunday of each month. Things take time. How long did NothingHappened last, after all? Seven decades, or thereabouts? And you expect that to be undone in seven days? God did that, yes, but Bakoda isn’t God, or is he? He may be, my apologies, he may well be.

Who else could reveal to humankind the magical thing that is Pakoda? Mahadeb missed a trick. That is why he remained a chaiwala and Bakoda became The Chaiwala. He had Pakoda to go with his chai. Pakoda is what separates all chaiwalas from The Chaiwala.

Pakoda is panacea; it is what we have always needed and were never told until Bakoda did us the favour. Pakoda is everything. Imagine what it does to unemployment, our biggest problem and Bakoda’s biggest promise. Pakoda needs vegetables. Employment. Pakoda needs dough and batter. Employment. Pakoda needs oil. Employment. Pakoda needs utensils. Employment. Pakoda needs fuel. Employment. Pakoda needs cooks. Employment. Pakoda needs chutney. Employment. Pakoda needs vendors. Employment. Pakoda needs Pakoda eaters. Employment. What do you do? I eat Pakoda. How much more gainfully can you get employed than to be a professional Pakoda eater? So if you are not making Pakoda, eat Pakoda, do your national duty.

Deeah Leader has sounded the call

So laziness please do shun

Get down to work in earnest, all

And serve us a Pakoda, well done.

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