Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Just another day in the numerous days we celebrate in the 365 days cycle. I have often wondered and debated how relevant is it to celebrate these days, as in why only a special day to say somebody I care, I love, best wishes. But then probably, yes it just requires that special day to tell we care and we are there, be it birthdays, anniversary, mother’s day, father’s day, environment day, friendship day or Valentine’s Day.

The earliest recollection that I have of 14th Feb dates back to school days. Suddenly in class 7th or 8th this particular date in the month of February became a one to look forward to, with all the hype created courtesy all the music videos, merchandise and the card companies. So, there we had all the shy geeks, the roadside romeos, the lovelorn kids discovering their feelings for a certain somebody and expressing the same packaged in flowers, cards, teddies, gifts. The innocent feelings, the don’t know how to react situations, the hidden messages, the wasted hours trying to catch a glimpse all seemed so perfect, straight out of a Bollywood romance. But I think after those initial years, this date has never meant anything much to me.

This year suddenly a certain Mr. Muthalik has helped the cause of the lovers of India and contributed immensely to the making of the V-Day movement. The attack on the women in a Mangalore pub has suddenly made the Valentine’s Day a movement among the youth. From the Consortium of Loose Pub going women to the Pink Chaddis, the movement spread far and wide across the nation courtesy the social networking sites and the media hype. So, on the D-day the pink chaddis made front page news across all the papers and maximum airtime was allotted to the noble cause. The channels were flooded with reports on how a brother sister duo was beaten by a certain group for roaming together, shots of a woman’s face blackened for roaming around with a guy, a couple forcefully married, a few chased from gardens and other hangouts etc etc.

Amidst all this I happened to be roaming in the streets of Connaught Place on the 14th. What a sight! It seemed like a festival around, with all nicely decked up guys and girls with flowers and cards in hands. Shops filled with V-Day special goodies, discounts, restaurants offering special couple menu, decorations with neon lights and the red colour all around, made me feel either I live in a different world or probably this is a different world. Getting a place to dine where couples did not indulge in any public display of affection seemed a little bit of a task. Also, a visit to a popular cafĂ© joint proved to be much more amusing. Finally, after managing to get a seat for a round of conversation over a cup of coffee I was a little taken aback to know that they would only serve the special Valentine’s Day couple menu irrespective of whom you were with and how much you care for the Valentine’s Day. So, forced to choose a mushy cold coffee from the V-Day special menu, I was left with a bitter taste of the whole pink campaign.

What I found amusing in this entire episode was that how a certain incident led to a national movement out of just another day in the list of 365 days. So, in the campaign of pink vs saffron, my vote goes to none. As much as I despise, the Ram Sene for their heinous crime, I also cannot convince myself to be a propagator of the pink campaign. Actually on the hindsight, I was just wondering the attack on the Mangalore pub was so strategically timed (only a few days ago 14th Feb), that this leads me to smell a different conspiracy. Mr. Muthalik hope you were not funded by the so called card and goodie MNCs to make a movement out of nothing. Just a wild thought!