I asked them, what was the ultimate unifier? “Death” they intoned in chorus. I burst into ineffable laughter, leaving my interlocutors bemused. We had actually challenged the preaching of Gospels, I explained. Death has gone several rungs down the ladder and is just a formality now. All their lives, our ancestors were taught that every mortal mingles into dust, but now the maxim has changed- ‘Our residues mingle and jingle effusively into celebratory dust’.
It is excreta galore- ranging from shits, spits, coughs to their liquid variants, name them and Eureka! You catch a glimpse. The morning starts with the summa cum laude performers lining up to deliver coup de grace. From railway platforms to open pavements, continued till the fecund farmlands, they are omnipresent exhibiting their obverse orifices. Moaning in fortissimo, nescient of the worldly bindings of shame and etiquette- they are the secret of our effervescent agrarian supremacy.
Shitting and peeing go hand-in-hand; brothers-in-arms, partners-in-crime; they are discrete yet inseparable. The best thing about pissing is that the performer, being a free-lancer is unbound by stages and social status. Unlike, in case of its solid substitute- the exhibitors here are not only the impoverished and uncultured, the neo- suburban middle class also grant full participation.
Coming to the third variety, though the most negligible in quantity/serving, it makes up with its ever growing popularity amongst masses. The aristocrats, middle-classes, impecunious souls- we all expectorate gleefully, though the quality of progeny might differ given the distinguished classes of raw materials- pan masala, guthka, supari and the dull transparent cough. One can spot such hallmarks anywhere and everywhere- bus stops, buses, car parking lots, cars, pavements, and of course as memoirs on historical monuments.
Collectively, all of them contribute to the ‘national garbage museum’. These unsung heroes are the hosts as well as victims of list of diseases ad infinitum. Their chef d` oeuvre being left alfresco, let alone the indistinguishable nature – begetters could never be rewarded.
In a shocking move, the tyrant government tried to confine their creative freedom within boundaries of monolithic goals, which read: ‘Sulabh Shauchalaya’. Then, as if the first was not enough, it imposed fine on spitting and peeing in public. But the mavericks were defiant not to succumb to hygiene, sanitation and such obsolete jargons of civilized society. A mass revolt spread across the nation like forest fire, more people with varied abilities joined hands to excrete in open, leaving the passersby run for hankies. Thenceforth, as the folklores say: “They excreted happily ever after”.