Friday, September 16, 2005

A Snap Shot from Bengal...

Two official tours within a week!
And this time I was in Bengal in the city of Durgapur! Of all the states there is something unique about its people & culture. There r so many facets of it & one of them touched me when I was going to my Hotel.

It was 7.30 PM in the night when we boarded the taxi . But soon we were in the midst of two small political demonstrations coming from opposite sides which we call here as Juloos.
Now Juloos is a common phenemona all over India but then ....untill now I have presumed it to be a day time activity! but Bengal proved me wrong.:) So we waited patiently to let them pass & then moved on.

The next day just when our car was going to the plant for some site visit we got stuck in the midst of another meeting this time called by CITU to support country wide workers strike proposed in last week of September.

It was 4.30PM & there were red flags all over the place.

Workers have just started to trickle in. Warming up exercise was on. There was this gentleman in front of mike with three to four person around him for generating chorus & what I could gather from my little knowledge of this wonderful language bangla it was someting like

29th Septambere Chokka Jaam....Chokka jaam Chokka Jam
Haat bazaar hobe naa hobe naa..... hobe naa hobe naa
Gadi ghoda cholbe na cholbe na.....cholbe na cholbe na and so on.......

Such was the symphony of the chorus that I thought that I was hearing some Hindi poetry of Veer Ras. These poltical workers are so good at their art of mobilising a crowd. Soon the entire campus was filled with people. I soon found out that most of them were not much interested in speeches of their leaders. They have heard so many of them before & for them coming to the meeting was a good excuse to leave their work early . The leaders also knew this fact & ended their meeting quickly with in half an hour so that their listeners can go to their home in time.

The Marxist culture is so omnipresent everywhere in Bengal. Though the marxist ideology is mellowed down considerably but still u feel its remnants as soon u enter this state....

4 comments:

Phoenix Rises said...

Hi!
I didn't actually understand your views on the Marxist culture. You are for it or against?
Personally I think that all this juloos business should be curbed. Working and being productive matters more!

Manish said...

hmmmm PR no doubt abt it! I hate strikes or bandhs as u do ! As for Marxists they have their + s like land reforms which was implemented in bengal many years ago.
Their big - is creating a poor work culture , too much unionism etc

PuNeEt said...

Juloos...ye they are so common in Bengal...

heard a lot of Chooka Jaam...

They come down on roads for every damn thing...

Good post buddy

Cheers

Manish said...

So u have heard of Chokka jaam :)Puneet. I agree with what u pointed out!