Thursday, August 27, 2020


Times Now studio, PrimeTime, Navika in a green sari avatar, stands next to the life size display and reads what is allegedly Rhea’s WhatsApp chat. Not read, shouts.

‘Dude Bhubaneshwar is the scene.’

The ticker at the bottom is in overdrive. ‘RHEA DRUG DOSSIER EXPLODES’ ‘(Hashtag)IndiaForRheaArrest.’

Next slide appears. She continues… ‘Best weed ever’

Rahul ShivShankar (RSS) eggs her on. She takes decibels and drama a notch higher.

‘She knows it all, she says it’s the best weed ever.’

Dear Navika, no matter what the truth and reality of SSR case is, Rhea doesn’t know it all. Whatever weed she allegedly tried isn’t even close to the best.

What you, RSS, Rahul, Arnab, Sudhir, and most of your other TRP competitors take before you head to your primetime and superprimetime tamashas beats every other variety. That is the best of the lot.

Saturday, August 22, 2020

Freedom Sale

We sit sipping from our morning glass of warm water.

“Freedom sale.” She reads aloud as an ad pops up on her phone.

I pause my reading of the op-ed on the Supreme Court Bhushan Contempt case and look up.

“Ye Freedom abhi khatam nahi huyi kya?” she asks.

Sometimes the questions and their answers word themselves.

“Dheere dheere ho rahi hai.”


The thought lingers. Clings. Grows.

Amazon freedom sale. Everything from A to Z.

The freedom sale is thoroughly planned.

It is planned to be a thorough job.

Saturday, August 01, 2020

Of containment zones and age advisories

“Mummy, Dadu and I are going out. I am taking my bike.”

It has rained whole day and the weather is pleasant outside. It took a lot of pleading but Dadu has agreed to leave his news and take him outside.

“No Rohan, you cannot go outside,” Mummy tells him as she pours milk into simmering tea.

“Why mumma?” He has completed his homework and he will not let mummy talk him out of his one hour of fun.

“Rohan, there were two corona positive cases in the next block yesterday. As per the rules in UP an area of 500meter radius becomes a containment zone. Now we cannot go outside till atleast two weeks assuming no new cases are found.”

“Dadu said we could go.” As water rushes to his eyes he runs to his Dadu. Mummy sims the stove and follows him.

A priest of the mandir and 14 security personnel were found covid positive around the mandir complex.

Mummy mutes the news and looks at Rohan clinging to his Dadu.

“Papa ji, now our area is a containment zone and we cannot step out for two weeks at least.”

Rohan cries louder and digs deeper into the sofa and his Dadu.

“Also, papa ji you know the government advisory, children and seniors above 65 years should not go out.”

“Bahu, what is the age of Modi?”

Somewhat confused she looks at him as he takes the remote and changes the channel.

“Rohan, let’s watch cartoons.”


Sukhdev Singh is milking a buffalo when I call him. We are speaking after a long gap. His voice carries the same cheerful energy I remember....