“Modi Bhagwan ka Jai Ho!” greeted the phone call. It was my friend, Joseph. I don’t know whether he said ka or ko or ki or ke or ku. My knowledge of Hindi is as bad as his and my knowledge of vowel sounds is not as good as Prof Higgins’s.
“Why are you so thrilled?” I asked. “Excited about being sent to some gas chamber or something? Freudian death wish!”
“Nahin, yaar.” It was interesting to hear Hindi from someone who never spoke that language with me. Some people are intractable survivors. “I managed to sell all the stock I have been holding in my portfolio for over two years. The moment Modi’s party won the elections the stocks simply sold out at a decent profit.”
“Jai Ho! Hail Modi!” I said in spite of myself. “It means that now I can sell the little land I have in Kerala for some profit.” Enthusiasm is contagious, as Rajneesh Baba said.
“You don’t have to sell it, yaar,” said Joseph with the enthusiasm that Goebbels had when the Second World War broke out. “Modi Bhagwan will take it over for the Tatas or the Ambanis or even for Barrack Obama. You know, Modi paid well for all the land he took over from the farmers in Gujarat when Tata Motors wanted to set up business there to manufacture cars that don’t sell. I just found it out by Googling...”
I didn’t understand what Joseph was saying. I remembered that the first name of Goebbels was Joseph and got stuck with that memory.
That’s my problem. I get stuck with history sometimes.
“Hitch your wagon to the Modi star, you idiot,” Joseph continued. “He is our Saviour, our Redeemer, our Rama, our Allah...”
“Our market, you mean?” I blurted out.