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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A Saga of Elite Monkeys and Common Monkeys

Posted by Venu K.M

A Saga of Elite Monkeys and Common Monkeys

(Paraphrase of  Himanshu Kumar ‘s  Original Story in Hindi “Bandar Nama”;
I must say that it will  not make a perfect translation; it may not match the rich narrative content of the original, either)
Elite monkeys lived atop a big tree, never coming down. They kept all the fruit for themselves and never allowed the common monkeys living down to visit the high branches weighing down abundant of fruits. The elites though engaged commons for watering the roots below, the latter were kept in perpetual hunger. A few of them were indeed given some fruit and were assured of honourable names like police, forces etc, in lieu of keeping their colleagues from visiting  the top.
Once, an elite monkey named Gandhi came down from the top and suggested that all the common monkeys would non co-operate in watering the tree hereafter, and the elites should be compelled to do the bit of task themselves and also to share the fruit. He suggested that the elite monkeys should consider themselves as trustees of all fruit. The elite monkeys not only didn't care for these words but one of them also killed him. Another elite monkey named Nehru suggested to let some fruit trickle down, if it be uncomfortable to treat all monkeys as equal. Yet, no fruit trickled down. The commons then began to organize and they started working on digging around the roots to uproot the tree. They also started killing the some of the common monkeys in the force that had been employed by the elite monkeys to keep guard. They wanted to grow a new tree on which all the monkeys would be treated equally. But the elite monkeys at the top declared war against the common monkeys, accusing the latter to be naxalite monkeys without love for the tree. In the meanwhile, some monkeys made their ngos and tried to make it known to the elite monkeys that they should share at least few fruits with the commons and that would pacify the agitating common monkeys. Few common monkeys on ground who had been co-opted by the elite monkeys to stand guard and to carry out the trickle package, had already become snobs .The small and big task s delegated to them by the elite monkeys had intoxicated them. They ate even those fruits making part of the package they were supposed to deliver to the hungry commons .Some of the elite monkeys who called themselves 'media', began to spread one sided stories against the whole thing, trying to serve the elite monkeys. Following these developments, utter confusion and chaos prevailed in the whole tree; As things took such a turn, someone from the elite monkeys suggested that corruption is the reason for all these, and said that the fruits should be delivered between the elite monkeys without corruption. For ensuring this, he suggested to put in place a lokpal system. The common monkeys down, started making noises and protests, saying that these talks of anti corruption are just about delivering the goods to the elite monkeys, and that the common monkeys are completely left out. They maintained that the new talks of anti corruption revolution are about a revolution of the elite monkeys!
The elite monkeys on the other hand, can't even imagine how at all such a system of exclusive rights to all fruit to elite monkeys living atop came to exist.
Alas, stories   about trees of other forests in far away lands, started pouring in. They have it that in a big  tree named Egypt and in few other trees  of distant forests , the monkeys living  on  grounds  and  lower branches  are already in near command of their trees!

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always want to defend peace, justice, peoples' right to love each other and live with dignity,struggles against parochial visions and hatred;instinctively a defender of socialist and democratic values