Wednesday, 22 September 2010

The Nation's Hero

Suresh Kalmadi, who unarguably is the most talked about man in India (and perhaps, the rest of the Commonwealth), is a national hero. In a day and age filled with unscrupulous, conniving and corrupt schemers, Mr Kalmadi represents the shining ray of hope that this nation has to offer. Sure, one might say that he’s the one responsible for the debacle known as Delhi Commonwealth Games, 2010. But, Mr Kalmadi’s love for India and Indians far exceeds his desire for material gains, which if I may add, were just means to a far greater and nobler end. 

In so many decades of Indian sporting history, what glories have our athletes won? I certainly cannot think of too many. One might cite certain statistical data, but it doesn’t paint the glorious picture that we’d wish to see. Too long have we been content with bronze and silvers; we just remember the one gold (won by Abhinav Bindra, if you remember, that is). Another great tragedy is the treatment meted out to the players by the coaches, and the pitiful condition the politicians’ subject the coaches to (why, some even refuse to acknowledge that there are any coaches whatsoever!). The point is, India’s image as a sporting nation is in shambles (no, we do not include cricket in this category). In such grim times, Mr Kalmadi has done what many thought was beyond even the impossible.

Kalmadi had a simple philosophy when he began preparations for the Games: with great power, come greater responsibilities. He sought to bring back the golden glory of Indian sports, and he did so by employing what some might call ‘questionable tactics’, but his intentions remained the noblest.

Well, to start with, Kalmadi orchestrated every single tendering process with pin-point precision giving the bids to those who wouldn’t get them otherwise. It takes an unselfish man to think of those who are more unfortunate than he is! Look at all the contractors who were given a job in these days of recession. Kalmadi’s concern was not just limited to these people; it was the athletes-the bright and shining future of India, that he really cared about!
Since the Games are in Delhi, our athletes would enjoy a home-ground advantage. Kalmadi merely made it more home-like. One has to but look in the papers and read about collapsing bridges, building, ceilings et al. Now, if Kalmadi gave the foreign athletes a flavour of India, can we really blame him?

I mean, it’s not exactly an act of sabotage; when in India, live like the Indians. Of course, if those poor chaps decide to pull out, it’s really their loss. And since Indians are so used to jumping over craters, pot-holes, dodging falling debris, branches from the sky, leaking roofs, and living in harmony with strays, the advantage is ours. If the Games do go ahead (and I assume they will), our athletes will show the world that they are the best, even in adverse circumstances! Of course, sceptics might argue that since there would be no foreign athletes, there would be no competition. Thus our fellows would win by default. This is utter nonsense. The Games are a celebration of India, and everything that we stand for, which is, resilience, endurance, sportsman spirit, and an optimistic outlook to life (exemplified by how Sheila Dixit goes on record to say everything will be fine. What an amazingly optimistic woman!).
And, we shall get home the gold, not by an act of shameless nepotism, but by overcoming the challenges that the common Indian man faces every day.

Suresh Kalmadi, with his hard work and fruitful endeavour, has given a lease of life to a dream that was, is, and will always be cherished by Indian athletes: the gold medal. He did so not at the cost of harming others (no one died in any of the accidents), nor at the cost of chasing away foreign athletes (are we to blame that their infrastructure is so good? Besides, they even have different levels of hygiene!).
He has fought for the Indian dream, for the Indian common man, and the aspiring Indian athlete (there’s no evidence that he doped some of those losers, is there?).
And for all this, Mr Suresh Kalmadi is the greatest Indian of the decade, a true patriot and a national hero!

Note: This essay is a work of satire, and while the facts are one-hundred percent genuine, the manner in which they are discussed is done so from a purely artistic standpoint.