Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Hindu wedding, Urdu card: Non-Muslim couple prints invitation card for marriage in Urdu

This is an invitation card in Urdu, which is not too uncommon in India.

The only surprise here is that it is a Hindu marriage for which the invitation has been sent in Urdu.

Not just the card has 'Bismillah' on the front cover but has the complete invitation in Urdu script.

'Noor-chashm' Dr Navneet got married to Dr Tejasvini recently. The card requests the guests to attend the 'daawat-e-ta'aam'. These days many Muslims, who claim that Urdu is their mother tongue, get invitation cards printed in English [more in Northern India, particularly, UP].

As a matter of fact, it is a rarity now to see non-Muslim marriage cards in Urdu. This particular marriage took place in Hyderabad, Deccan [Andhra Pradesh].A few years back, I had posted the card 'Ganesha on Muslim marriage card'. Read it here.

I have nothing against cards in English. But just for the sake of fashion, English invitation cards with serious spelling and grammatical mistakes, irritate me. In one of marriages, the family was affluent but not educated], yet they got cards printed in English.

There were not just grammatical errors but blunders and bloomers. They were marrying off their sons and decided not to put up names of future daughters-in-law, because of certain strange traditions in their family. So when the cards went out, it appeared that two boys were getting married. So we see such absurdities.
Have you seen such unique cards elsewhere? If you have seen, do share. Now see about the marriage invitation card of a Muslim youth, which is in Hindi and also has Hindu religious symbol. Do check this interesting post HERE

Sunday, November 18, 2012

'Killer' medicine, 'Cruel' ointment that claim to heal miraculously: Unique drugs and their advertisements on Indian streets

The 'Killer' Cure
Doesn't it seem odd that someone not only dares to name a medicine as 'Killer drug' or 'Cruel ointment' but also sells it openly and it is purchased enthusiastically.

The 'Qatil Dawa' [killer medicine] and 'Qatil Malham' [or marham] are sold as panacea. Rickshaws with loudspeaker installed on the top, are seen commonly in Uttar Pradesh.

The announcement, 'Qatil Dawa', doesn't surprise locals as they are used to it. But to an outsider it can come as an absolute shocker.


In today's marketing jargon, it can be termed as a super strategy, a bold branding move to term a product that should give people life, named as a 'murderer'.

But 'Qatil' word is sometimes used in phrases for sudden or quick action also, and also for describing a stunning beauty, as 'Qatil Husn'.

This is just one of the such medicines that claim to work wonders for you.

The advertisement medicine which is quite popular in small towns and rural areas, can be seen above. 

The second such medicine is Zalim Lotion, a strange name. Zalim (pronounced Zaalim) is also an Urdu word that means cruel.

There is no denying its popularity. It sells in glass vials and is not sold roadside but is kept at chemist shops also.You can see the advertisement in an Urdu journal.

If you are interested in reading posters and ads on the walls then you might have seen even more weird names and ads of miraculous medicines.

What about this advertisement which promises that you can get rid of 'bawasir' [piles] by a single 'teeka' [vaccination]? There are many more photographs which I have taken in the last few years.

They include pictures of 'Haddi-Jod Kenra', where a person sits on the 'takht' [cot], and the banner says that he is an expert in 'haddi baithana'.

So if your have an accident and your bone has got dislodged, and there is no relief despite getting all sort of treatment or undergoing surgery, its an option!

The quack claims that he can set the bone right with a few quick punches. Many vouch for the expertise of these self-styled orthopaedics.

Even more interesting the advertisements of Vaidyas and Hakims, who claim to get you your lost vigour back. 

They use catch-lines like 'bujha diya jalao'. I don't how far they succeeded in 'lighting the lamp' again as they promise. [It is about curing impotence]. But on these famous Gupt Rog doctors, a separate post is perhaps needed.

Enough for now. Goodbye.

Friday, November 09, 2012

Communal riots in Uttar Pradesh: Transferring officers not enough, take tough action against bureaucrats who fail to control law-and-order

The first seven months of Samajwadi Party (SP) government has seen nearly half-a-dozen communal riots. Naturally comparison with the nearly riot-free BSP regime are inevitable.

To Mayawati's credit, communal elements were reined in during the five years she was in power at Lucknow.

After Congress was shunted from UP in late eighties, the SP governments were known for being tough on communal elements.

We still remember, how when a riot had begun during an earlier SP stint, helicopter was sent to bring back officers and their replacements were sent. But the present regime has failed to control riots. One after the other, there are communal conflagrations.

In Faizabad riot, it took 12 days for government to take action and shift DM and SSP. But is this enough? Why is the government not stern enough on bureaucracy. Fact-finding commissions reports suggest that violence was pre-planned.

Similarly, you will find Rihai Manch's Mr Rajeev Yadav's observations here in The Hindu's report. Even as there were inputs about impending trouble and even when rioters gathered, police hadn't taken action and remained mute spectators.

FIRSTLY, it's clear that no riot can occur if the district administration and police are really serious about maintaining law-and-order. There can be an exception. But generally, it is not possible.

Secondly, bureaucrats must be made accountable. They should be punished if they fail in their job. Why actions are not taken on middle-level officers. Why top officers are just shifted [a euphemism for transfer] or given a new posting?

1. Accountability must be fixed immediately. Transfer is no punishment. There should be immediate suspension.

2. Don't give a posting to tainted officers or those with poor record in any department for at least six months or year. This will send a strong message to the bureaucracy.

3. Suspensions in police are a sham. They are revoked a few months later. This shouldn't happen.

4. If the IAS officers who are in-charge, have failed to take stock of situation properly and are unable to run the district efficiently, it should reflect in their ACR. Once it starts getting into Annual Confidential Report, they will learn the lessons.

After all, DMs who basically have the responsibility of district, shun law-and-order part totally to SSPs or SPs for convenience sake. Forget checking corruption or implementing schemes, if you can't keep law-and-order, you are good for nothing. Such officers must get the boot.

5.  It is common knowledge that a tough administration can't allow riot to take place. Cops know troublemakers of their area of jurisdiction and when they know the message is not to let anything happen, nothing happens. Intelligence wings at all levels also collect information and send regular inputs. Troublemakers sense the gravity of situation.

They know when its safe to do a bit of rowdy acts or when even going out would lead to action under tough acts. But if there is a loose command, then it shows through the hierarchy. Citizens also sense that rumours are floated regularly and situation is not behind handled well because the officers are lax. 

In the light of above points, UP government must take serious steps to improve law-and-order, which is important not just for citizens but also for the overall image of the SP government.

First, Kosi Kalan in Mathura, then Asthan (Pratapgarh), followed by Barelli, Masuri town in Ghaziabad, Allahabad and now the latest is Faizabad.

Clearly, there is a pattern. Someone is responsible and if there is mischief, why local intelligence, police, administration fail to anticipate.

When it is openly said by top SP leaders that there is a conspiracy, why there is no action on conspirators.

DGP had also made a comment that his sub-ordinates didn't listen. Isn't it all an indication of the lapses that are occurring repeatedly.

Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav said that there are attempts to discredit the government. If it is true, then those who are responsible for these acts, should be caught. Law-and-order must be top priority.