Have been thinking for quite a while to write but ended up with at least half a dozen unfinished notes. Looking back into those, I realized all of my thoughts were pointing towards certain unprecedented achievements that some individuals /institutions have achieved over the past few months. I have tried to put them together, and created a list of "Achievers of the year" of my own. Do feel free to comment and also suggest if I missed any names. Here goes the list (not necessarily in the order of importance):
1.The Thakreys and their ilk: For the ability to make an issue out of nothing and getting all the free media attention for it. For integrity in their family and parties-Each one of them toes the same line in spite of all political and personal differences. For setting new benchmarks in ethics in Indian politics. They've definitely broken new grounds by attacking an MLA who chose to disobey them at the floor of the house. Next target: Warning our honorable PM to speak in Marathi the next time he is in Maharashtra, followed by "appropriate action" if he doesn't oblige.
2.Arundhati Roy: Our one-book-wonder, for the ability to speak about almost any topic under the sun and getting all the media attention in the form of front-page articles and prime-time interviews. For saying that India has forcibly occupied Kashmir and has been conducting atrocities on the Kashmiri diaspora (Kashmiri pundits who were killed/migrated/continue to suffer, be damned). For advocating that India should cut its carbon emissions at the expense of its growth (otherwise how will the developed world manage to keep their air conditioners on all the time). For advocating that the barbaric acts of naxalites are perfectly justified (definitely, if they don't scare the government agencies away, how will the mining mafia prevail in the region!)
3.Madhu Koda: His money making abilities will put Warren Buffet to shame. No one would have made USD 400 million in less than 2 years, starting from humble backgrounds of a mine worker.I tried to extrapolate how much he would earn by the time he will be 85 (average age of Indian politicians),assuming he makes money at the same rate and invests it with returns of 10% per annum.The number turns out to be a whopping USD 174 billion! Now who says he doesn't deserve the "Achiever of the Year" award?
4.Bhartiya Janta Party: For setting an example of what will become of a politcal party which is out of power.The BJP has almost become an institution in itself on the aftereffects of losses in elections-chaos,mismanagement,lack of direction and infighting which eventually lead the party on a path to self- destruction.This has enlightened other parties and now they are ensuring whatever it takes to stay in power (including nurturing the "enemy's enemy", money exchanges and what not)
5.The Ambani brothers: For striking this fabolous internal gas-sharing family agreement, which if implemented, would have resulted in billions of dollars of profit for Reliance (billions of dollars lost by the government be damned, anyways the money if gone to the government would have been lost in corruption). Now what with the deal not coming through, the brothers have again shown strong belief in business ethics by taking their (dirty) secrets out and washing their linen in full public view.
6. Ajmal Kasab: For the ability to keep the Indian media as well as courts interested in what was originally an "Open and shut" case. His resilience (e.g. asking for mutton biryani) even while he may be on a (never -ending) death trial is a lesson that each one of us needs to learn. That his trial has been going on for a year now proves the Indian judicial system is fair and just, and gives an equal opportunity to everyone to plead for innocence, even if it is a man who was caught red-handed, was recorder on a thousand cameras, has hundreds of witnesses and even has confessed to his crime.
7.Manu Sharma: For enlightening hundreds of thousands of people languishing in jails, on how to get out of the prison and lead a normal life. He is a father-figure for all those convicted for various crimes and has shown the ways in which one can make the law authorities show their generosity. Up next is a book from him on "!00 ways to escape punishment for serious crimes". We believe the book will be a best-seller
8.The media: For ensuring the Indian television viewer is so much informed that he can put Britannica and Wikipedia to shame. Because of our news channels, people are already aware and prepared for the impending doomsday in 2012, a Chinese military invasion that has already started, and that by 2050, the entire human race will be wiped out from earth and replaced by robots.The media must be also be lauded for its role in highlighting the heroism and achievements of all the 7 achievers mentioned above.
The list probably doesn't end here!!