Tuesday, January 07, 2014

'Religious clocks' sell briskly at this shop: Will you buy Hindu Clock or Muslim Clock?


Just a few days back, I had an interesting experience. A friend had bought a watch for me as a gift from abroad but I couldn't wear it because its strap [chain] was loose.

That day I went out with the watch in my pocket. On way, I saw a small shop where there was no customer.

It took the man barely a few minutes to take out the links and fix them again, using the hammer and other equipment. 

I asked him, if I could get a good clock. The wall clocks in my house were not working well. In the drawing room, the clock stopped after a few weeks. I changed batteries but nothing happened. I replaced the clocks but the problem persisted.

The shop owner asked me, 'Kaun si ghadi lenge?'. 'Koi si bhi dikha dijiye", I said. "Dharmik [religious] ghadi chalegi?". "Kaun si". "Hindu ghadi ya Muslim ghadi", came the reply. "Ji?" "Yahi zyada chal rahi hain aaj kal", he said. Now I was a bit surprised. He pointed his finger towards these clocks.

There were lines of such clocks. The background had either Hindu gods or Islamic photographs. Hmm, so these are the Hindu and the Muslim Ghadis!

"Log lete hain inko?", I again asked. "Sab se zyada yahi chalti hain, bhai sahab", he said. "Hindu wali mein Ganesh ji wali zyada bikti hai", he added.

There was another interesting aspect. The price range was slightly different. For example, if clocks of A group cost Rs 160, the clocks of B group cost Rs 170.

Now I won't tell you which clock--Hindu or Muslim, is costlier of the two, because it will lead to different interpretations. You can, of course, speculate.

There were no Christian or Sikh clocks though. I came out wondering, why would people buy these clocks?

Is it just a fad. Or because this shop was near a locality of particular economic stratum, that these clocks sold more in this area?

I don't think that big showrooms would have many such clocks. Perhaps, when a person takes home the 'religious clock', the family members are happy.

As they feel that there is another godly or spiritual thingon their wall. People put up religious posters, calendars, photographs on the walls for a variety of reasons. 

So it is the 'Barkat wali ghadi' or as goes the old adage 'Aam ke aam, guthliyo.n ke daam'.

It is also possible that a Hindu may be Muslim clock or a Muslim may buy Hindu clock. Yes, it happens a lot, when people buy gifts, for friends.

Friends have gifted my Perso-Arabic calligraphy in the past. While I end this post, just a reminder. It is a light post. I found it amusing and so wrote about it.

There is a demand for certain type of goods and so they sell. It is not like the 'Hindu water, Muslim water' sold in pre-independent era. So don't take it to your heart.