[Read] Twinkle Khanna’s Hilarious Blog On Delhi’s Odd Even Car Formula
Twinkle Khanna just wrote a blog on Times of India, she spoke about some of the real troubles of Delhites in the blog in a hilarious way!
Here’s the blog-
A few days ago, I tried calling my sister who lives in the wonderful capital city. After seven failed attempts, I finally messaged her and that led to a series of hurried texts that went like this…
Me: Why aren’t you talking?
She: Going to market, call later, have to buy mask
Me: Why mask? Allergies?
She: Because of politician
Me: You are so allergic to a politician you have to wear a mask?
She: Typo, not politician — because of pollution — Ok am lesbian
Me: What! And you just found out? Omg! have you told mom?
She: No! am lesbian not lesbian
Me: Is this an existential question like ‘to be or not to be’? Ok get it, you’re bisexual — cool
She: Hate my phone! bloody autocorrect — AM LEAVING — not AM LESBIAN, you idiot !
From this exchange I gathered three things; my sister has not changed her sexual orientation; one must carefully reread messages before pressing send; and the air in Delhi is so bad that soon, like in dystopian science fiction books, people may have no recourse but to walk around in rubberized face masks with oxygen cylinders strapped to their backs.
Mr Kejriwal, the chief minister of Delhi and snazzy muffler man (when he is not going around ingesting doses of his omnipresent cough syrup or calling the prime minister a psychopath), is a bright individual, unwilling to sit twiddling his thumbs. He has introduced a road rationing policy based on odd and even license plate restrictions that will go into effect in Delhi from January 1, 2016.
It may have escaped his notice that this also happens to be the very same day scores of people are terribly hung over after their drunken new year revelries, and have problems remembering their own names, let alone odd and even numbers. Hence, the alternate driving day may get off to a bit of a hiccupy start in more ways than one.
The Supreme Court, which perhaps has a lot more experience with the peculiarities of human nature, and is well aware that those who can will always find ways to circumvent what they perceive as inconveniences, has taken its own measures. An order has been passed, banning the registration of diesel-run SUVs and cars with engine capacity beyond 2000cc in Delhi till the end of March; vacuum-cleaning pavements, curbing the burning of solid waste, asking taxi operators to shift to CNG, doubling tax on trucks entering Delhi, and barring entry of goods vehicles registered before 2006 into the city.
While Delhi is focusing on curbing vehicular pollution, a study conducted by National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI), shows that in Maharashtra, the highest percentage of particulate pollution comes from paved and unpaved road dust, and to my surprise, they report that bakeries emit a greater proportion of particulate matter in Mumbai than vehicles.
Our eventual redemption lies in myriad approaches but the measures by the Supreme Court along with the road rationing experiment are at least steps in the right direction.
The concept of road rationing is not Mr Kejriwal’s invention but has been around since 45 BCE when Julius Caesar declared the centre of Rome off-limits from dusk to late noon, for most carriages.
Which is why when they coined the proverb, ‘All roads lead to Rome’, they should have made it more specific by adding, ‘only before 6am and after 4pm, thank you for your cooperation, friends, Romans and countrymen.’
Caesar, of course, was not worried about pollution, but about traffic jams, with people yelling belligerently at each other, and passengers collapsing with strokes induced by road rage.
Well, not much has changed on this front in the last two thousand years, besides the addition of mechanical vehicles emitting toxins.
Road rationing has been tried and tested in a number of countries. It worked in Beijing and failed miserably in Mexico, and though I wish we would start thinking about all our other cities as well, at this point, everyone is waiting to see how Delhi fares.
In order to satisfy my curiosity, I tried calling sister dear again. She, as usual, did not pick up her phone. I then called a few friends living in the capital city and asked them various questions about pollution and policies.
A well-heeled gentleman came up with, ‘I have put air purifiers in every room, same brand that Obama used when he came to Delhi.’ I questioned him further, ‘But at some point you folks will have to step out into the open? And you saw those pictures of black lungs caused by pollution that everyone is posting on Facebook?’
He mumbled, ‘Yeah, but don’t talk to my wife about all this or like Aamir Khan’s wife, even she will start saying she wants to leave the country.’
Another slightly more responsible friend chimed in with, ‘Thinking of buying a second car, but a hybrid, and will send both the kids to school on the school bus. Really, they should make school buses mandatory for all children from grade 1 onwards.’
A call to a society doyenne found her moaning, ‘We are buying a third car with an even number plate because our other two are odd number ones. Such a pain!’
I took a deep breath and put the phone down without reminding her that soon after Marie Antoinette supposedly used the phrase, ‘Let them eat cake’, she was beheaded; but in our current scenario we will not need anyone to assassinate us as we will slowly die of asphyxiation, strangled by our own ignorance and imbecility.
DISCLAIMER : Views expressed above are the author’s own.
(Originally published in TOI)
Cover image source: Indianexpress
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