The Guns of Gurgaon

August 9, 2009

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/Managing-Gurgaon-traffic-at-gun-point/articleshow/4866579.cms

A direct post from a news article. I don’t even want to say anything…

Managing Gurgaon traffic at gun point

7 Aug 2009, 1215 hrs IST, Ranjan Roy, TNN

GURGAON: I invariably approach the Delhi-Gurgaon toll gate on the expressway prepared for the worst. But I wasn’t quite ready for what I saw on
Gun on Gurgaon streets “I wasn’t quite ready for what I saw on Wednesday night,” says Roy.

As I navigated my car towards one of the tag-users lane, trying to avoid trucks and cabs muscling in from all angles and squeeze through thin spaces between the multiple lines, I was cut off by a light commercial vehicle that barrelled down from the right.

The LCV nudged me out a bit but I stood my ground. It then moved forward and tried to growl its way in. I rolled down my window to give the driver a piece of my mind. The driver of the car in front of me, who was seated at the back while his owner drove, got off and tried to reason with the trucker to back off. But the truck driver
wasn’t listening.

That’s when I saw the artillery come out. A young man, wearing jeans and tee, leapt out of the driver’s seat and rushed to the truck. He whipped out a revolver and held it against the LCV driver’s neck and asked him for his licence. The ashen-faced driver, his bravado now drained by the black barrel pressed to his adam’s apple, meekly complied.

I almost cheered! If this wasn’t a dangerous act of vigilantism, the young man could deserve a medal for bringing some order to the toll gate chaos. With traffic billowing around the chicken necks that the tag lanes have turned into, I regularly see tempers fray and people routinely roll down their windows and curse and even get off and thump bonnets of cars that try to nose in from the sides into the lanes. But guns being pulled out was a new one.

As I watched the young man hold the LCV driver at bay, some other cars and cabs tried to sneak into the lane and blocked his car again. Having crossed the LCV, the gunman now strode ahead to take on smaller prey. Brandishing what looked like a heavy-calibre revolver, the kind cops are armed with, the man yanked out the ignition key from one car and threatened a few others that were seeking to muscle in.

“Goli marega kya?” shouted a cabbie. The young man hissed something – possibly, “Don’t tempt your luck.” A middle age man had come out of his car to say something to the young man. His family was screaming inside, trying to tell him not to provoke the man with a gun.

By this time his car had crawled to the barrier. The young man tucked in his revolver back into his jeans and drove off, fading into the traffic.


All I wanna say is that they don’t really care about us!

July 11, 2009

By the way, today’s post is being published while I am surfing on Tata Indicom’s Photon+ Wireless Broadband Data Card (wow – didn’t realize it was that long and complicated – and no, am not being paid to write that). Nice speed. 4/5 rating.

I was driving through Delhi today and passed along the most beautiful parts of Delhi – that’s right – Akbar Road, Janpath, Aurangzeb Road, Africa Avenue, etc. There were many thoughts that came to my mind. Some of them were:

a) Crooked, dishonest, illiterate politicians get to stay in houses with sprawling lawns and state-of-the-art facilities, while a very very large proportion of regular, honest, hard-working, salaried individuals are paying 70-80 lakhs for a 1600 square feet apartment in Gurgaon. Don’t even want to talk about Mumbai – not only because of 1600 sq feet (which is palatial in that city), but also because of the paltry sum of money, i.e. 70-80 lakhs, which is just about good enough to get you a pigeon coop in a decently located area in Mumbai.

b) Why is all the greenery in the godforsaken city of Delhi/NCR concentrated just around the houses of these losers? Isn’t the rest of the population of the capital deserving enough to breathe good, clean air and live and experience decent surroundings?

c) If they have been elected by the people and want to do good for the people, why are they given houses that the same people who have elected them can never get access to? Forget the houses, the public can’t even get access to the people whom they have elected.

d) Why do they get unlimited and uninterrupted water and power supply when the common man on the road or anywhere else for that matter is subjected to all the misfortune of no water and no power? Shouldn’t they stand side-by-side of the people who have chosen them as their leaders?

If they can get clean air, water, electricity, why can’t you and I?

Why can’t the powers that be come and live among the people?

Have they forgotten the meaning of democracy? To refresh their memory, a democracy is for the people, by the people, and of the people. In this case, all 3 parameters seem to be missing. These elected representatives have become celebrities in their own right.

One might argue that since they are important people in our country, they need protection. Well, don’t you and I need protection too? Why should we be subjected to all the dangers in the world and the people whom we have elected to protect us from these dangers lead a sheltered life? Why can’t they face the same hardships that you and I face on a daily basis?

We gave them the right to lead and represent us. We however, did not give them the right to live like kings/queens while we suffer because of their shortcomings, incapable decisions, and corrupt minds.

Enough. Be one of us – be among us – face our difficulties – survive with us.

…And then, I returned to Gurgaon. That should explain all of this.

– Hef.


Weekends

August 31, 2008

An important event in every working individual’s life – the big W – the Weekend. A lot of people look forward to it, a lot of them don’t for their own reasons, some people enjoy it, and some people just louse around at home doing nothing awaiting the impending doom of the next working week which will start in a few hours time.

I live in a village, Gurgaon (and yes, I refuse to call it anything but a village) that has little to do over the weekends, unless you are a shopaholic with a lot of money and an insatiable craving for stepping out into the horrid heat.

You see what happened here – I got carried away and I am sure this is going to turn into one of those posts where I criticize anything and everything about this place. Sometimes I wonder why am I here. Isn’t being here or not completely in my hands? What’s binding me to this place? Why am I not bold enough to just take a step and get out of here if I can’t come to terms with this place? Well, let that be the topic of discussion for another post altogether. Let me get back on track here.

All right, so coming back on track…a lot of people in this part of the world believe in the fact that they should go out for a weekend break to a godforsaken part of this country just for the drive and the heck of it. Well, as you might have guessed by now – I am not one of the flock.

A lot of people also like going out for a movie and a lunch/dinner with their better halves/families/friends. Again, I am out of this for a few reasons – my better half goes on a cleaning spree over the weekend and I am too lazy to be involved in it. A movie + lunch/dinner means a 1000 bucks down the drain for sure. I might as well just buy a DVD or watch one of the many zillions that I possess but haven’t seen yet and order in a cheese pizza with Thums Up – all this for less than 500 bucks and in the comfort of my own home, not that my place is a very ambient place – no reasonably priced apartment in Gurgaon is for that matter. As far as the question of friends/family is concerned, my friends are too busy with either getting hooked up with females or spending time with one of their own. As far as family is concerned – I don’t even have any in this place (and thank God for that).

Well then – what about new friends? Isn’t Delhi the place to make friends of all shapes and sizes? Well, yes and no. Yes because it is true…you need to have someone with the same mindset and with the same ideologies as yourself and no because the kind of people that exist in this part of the forest are extremely impractical, crude, rude, dishonest, ill-mannered, sick, corrupt and corruptible individuals. There has to be a reason why someone from this place will want to spend some time on a weekend with you. There just has to be a hidden agenda behind the smile. In short, friends/family/strangers aka potential friends – OOTQ – out of the question.

Ok, so what do I actually end up doing? Nothing. Period.

Lie around the whole day, do some grocery shopping, order in grub, watch DVDs/TV, yawn, and of course – my favorite pastime – crib about this place and contemplate and try and figure out how to get back to where I came from – Hyderabad or Kolkata or to a completely unknown destination such as Singapore, Bangalore, or anywhere but here!


Life in Gurgaon (or the lack of it)

June 3, 2008

pssst..scroll down for the latest clippings.

Gurgaon – the city of spires, towering buildings, swank malls, etc., etc., etc., is also the much-hated, much-despised city with no transport, no water, no electricity, high rentals, horrid people, the list goes on and on and on and on. My hate for this city cannot be measured in terms of words – in fact, words run dry to express my hatred for this godforsaken so-called ‘city.’ There’s plenty that’s to be said here in this group.

I am surprised how this city is surviving. It is perhaps the biggest eyewash that an individual can fall prey to. On the outside of it all is glamour and glory, but the inside is as hollow as an empty barrel of wine. There is nothing in this city that might attract an individual to settle down here – no parks, no recreational facilities, dust and dirt seem to be the order of the day, horrible summers, extremely chilly winters (not that I mind those), once again the list can go on and on and on.

What’s perhaps one of the most unique and differentiating features of the culture of this place is the people. Crude, dishonest, rustic, out to make a quick buck, rude, abusive, alcoholic, desperate, wannabe, woman-ogling, spineless – these are the first few adjectives that come to mind immediately.


There’s one characteristic feature about this city that will remind you of your ‘desh ki dharti’. Yes, you guessed it right – dust, ‘dhool’, ‘mitti’. It is present in abundance and will get in your face and eyes even if you don’t want it to. Very generous of the government and the numerous money-greedy builders all around the ‘city’. If dust was money, Gurgaon is the ‘golden goose’ of the world. It flies everywhere and anywhere. Now, I don’t blame the weather gods for dust storms, since that is a natural phenomenon and there’s very little we can do about it. But, a constant dust storm and a manmade one at that is just too much to digest. People are sure to die of some form of lung disease if they stay for long in this ‘city’.

Another interesting feature about this place are the traffic lights – or once again, as the subject of this blog post is – the absence of it. There are no traffic lights. Kids, if you decide to take the car out for a spin and bang the car, blame it on the lights – they NEVER work!The administration (read ‘the police’) is virtually non-existent. Oh, am sorry – yes, they do turn up at traffic signals once in a hot, sultry afternoon only to fleece passers-by and owner driven cars for some excuse or the other. It seems that these rascals survive on bribes and bribes alone. I personally, have been a party to their indiscipline. It so happened that at about midnight one Saturday, my car was involved in an accident and I promptly called up ‘100’ to report the matter. The response I got from a yawning, sleepy, lackadaisical, hopeless thing called a policeman, was that it was too late at night and that noone could come at this hour. Therefore, I should probably try and come the next day some time around 10 AM. It’s a different matter that my car is not running at all and I can’t move it forward or backward. Next time folks, if you are in Gurgaon, and you see someone commit a murder, don’t bother reporting it – they’ll ask the dead person to walk into the police station the next day after taking a bath and washing all that blood off. 

What worries me immensely is the sheer feeling of insecurity and absence of security one can see all around them. When the administration can be so careless and non-bothered. If you’ve been (un)fortunate enough to visit any of the commercial offices/complexes in this city, there are security guards who seem to think no end of themselves and are rude and ill-mannered to the core apart from having absolutely no education whatsoever. These fellows stand across each other holding a rope in their hand to allow/disallow unauthorized cars to enter the building. Ropes! to stop cars. Ropes! I realized the day that I reached this place that we are just sitting ducks waiting to be hit by a major terrorist attack. I wonder what these terrorist groups are doing bombing Jaipur and Hyderabad. Gur(Bad)Gaon is a city with a large gentry of people working in MNCs and feature one of the largest populations of expats in the country. Wait – what am I doing here? Giving dope to these terrorist outfits! Then again, Gurgaon deserves it. Just not with the people from outside of this place in it.

If you decide to live in this place even after reading all this – please write back to me at

hefspeak@gmail.com. I will write a wonderful eulogy for you in advance and free of cost.

 


If you decide to get out of this place after reading this post or at least have the desire to move out – you too must write back to me at hefspeak@gmail.com so that I know that I am not alone in this world and in my views. I promise to publish the best views for/against Gurgaon.

Yeh Hef ka vaada hai – tootega nahi!…and here’s the latest from the ‘Millenium City’ 

tip – right click, ‘save as…’ and then enjoy it in it’s full g(l)ory.

A linkback that I got from a gentleman who shares my hatred for Gurgaon 🙂

Posting the translated version (courtesy: Google Translate) from Polish http://myindiaexperience.wordpress.com/category/gurgaon/

Coming here I knew more or less behind zapowiadało be quite so nice … And how is it really? 

Gurgaon to Manhattan to the trash. All of these elegant office buildings wyrastają with clouds of dust, which of the ubiquitous construction sites wciska in each slit. Evenings, in the light of headlamps and riksz cars on the highway you can see only orange cloud. Dust settling everywhere, in the closet, on a bed, even in the office .. not to mention the black after one day kołnierzykach or shoes, which must be cleaned up twice a day to look decently. 

Around the office is clean and neatly, but only twenty meters away, starts the biggest brothel the world – people sleeping together with cows and dogs on the narrow road separating the compartments, dumps which every twenty meters along the roads, of which fear stalls packed to buy water, not to mention about food, which przyrządzają on-site mixing dough hands, without any sanitary facilities and who later also eat with bare, nieumytymi hands. 

If all the cities in India are chaotic, to Gurgaon is all that is worst in India. But businessmen from Microsoft, Oracle, Alcatel, IBM, PwC whether Ericsonna do not feel – air-conditioned office – air-conditioned car (with driver) – air-conditioned house. A class. 

However, one can not fail to notice it. Traffic jams. Therein lies everyone – if you ‘re going to Delhi in peak hours, count on the fact that, despite the highway (for quite a standard), this may take 2 hours. Gurgaonu infrastructure is – does not have sidewalks, roads are holes, too small, or is not at all. Current sits down every few hours, and on Tuesdays, all shops are closed by law to reduce its consumption. The water disappears and is generally niepijalna. After each major rain, the streets become rivers because there is no low tide, and then śmierdzą krowimi gut and remnants degradable food and dogs. Fortunately, we have said that it’s cool – najzimniej for years – the temperature does not exceed 35 degrees. 

It is difficult to understand why all these companies have chosen Gurgaon on the location – but this is – this basin white and blue kołnierzyków. I malli – there are already several (Nasci?) And still produces more. But there is nothing more – some kondominiów, Malle and offices. A wild and trash around the market (which goes to one). Forget about parks, walking Aleje, cafes, Poland said that the wild capitalism. If so – invite you to Gurgaonu. 

As someone enough – I recommend Hefner …

He probably meant “as someone who has experienced Gurgaon enough and hates it to the core”…”I recommend Hefner”